It's only been 10 days since President Donald Trump abruptly and unceremoniously fired former FBI Director James Comey, and ever since, his administration's been caught in a downpour of controversies, scandals, and one explosive report after another. It's getting to be hard to keep up with all the news, but one detail from a potentially huge report in The New York Times has definitely caught some attention ― the president's description of Comey as a "nut job," fueling jokes and memes on social media.
The full contents of the report could have serious implications for Trump and his presidency, as it alleges that he told two top Russian officials, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Ambassador Sergey Kislyak, that Comey was a "nut job." More seriously, he also claimed that the "pressure" of Comey's Trump-Russia investigation was "taken off" by the firing, yet another statement that could imply obstruction of justice.
But it's Trump's choice of words that's drawn a lot of fire on social media, the decidedly ableist term "nut job." Needless to say, it's a little wild for a president already under heavy scrutiny to make this kind of comment to Russian officials, about an investigation into Russian interference in the presidential campaign, but that's just the world we live in now.
1. Real Cute Of The New York Times
Real cute of the NYT to pull the trigger on that Trump calling Comey a nutjob story after Donny had taken off for Saudi Arabia— Erin 🎶Gloria🎶 Ryan (@morninggloria) May 19, 2017
2. FBI Director: Nut Job
Trump on...— Matt McDermott (@mattmfm) May 19, 2017
Kim Jong Un: smart cookie
Putin: brilliant and talented
Assad: deserves an A
Hussein: so good
FBI director: nut job
3. Javert, A Real Nut Job
Javert, a real nut job, at least he's off my back now— Matt Pearce (@mattdpearce) May 19, 2017
4. On An Unrelated Note...
5. You Publish First!
6. Quite The List
Trump on:— Carrie Dann (@CarrieNBCNews) May 19, 2017
Lindsay Graham: "A nut job"
Glenn Beck: "A real nut job"
Bernie: "A total nut job"
Kim Jong Un: "Could be a total nut job"
7. America In The Near Future
“We just fired the head of the country. He was crazy, a real nut job,”— BadHombreLands NPS (@BadHombreNPS) May 19, 2017
-America in the near future, I hope.#ImpeachTrump
"Crazy, a real nut job." Ahem.— Alex Wagner (@alexwagner) May 19, 2017
9. Not More Crap He's Said
FYI: Trump calling Comey a "Nut Job" is trending but "Venom," "Rough Night" and "Despicable Me" are movie titles, not more crap he's said.— Alan Spencer (@MrAlanSpencer) May 19, 2017
10. The Most Transparent Administration
Trump has inadvertently delivered something Obama promised, but failed at: The Most Transparent Administration Ever. https://t.co/0vSPg7JqYh— Kenneth P. Vogel (@kenvogel) May 19, 2017
11. A List Of Slang
Early example of "nutjob" comes from syndicated columnist Jim Bishop in Nov. 1959, in a list of slang collected by NYC Police Department. pic.twitter.com/VUxTvJ7CiM— Ben Zimmer (@bgzimmer) May 19, 2017
12. Reach For Their Style Guides
Reporters around the world reach for their style guides to find out if their outlet's house style is "nut job" or "nutjob"— Doug Saunders (@DougSaunders) May 19, 2017
13. It's Trending
"Nut Job" is trending on Twitter.— Yashar (@yashar) May 19, 2017
14. The Nut Job
15. To The Russians
The President of the United states trashed the person leading an investigation into Russia TO the Russians by calling him a "nut job" https://t.co/hCT0wYrtI8— Yashar (@yashar) May 19, 2017
16. Friday: Nut Job
Mon: Trump gave Russia intel— Kumail Nanjiani (@kumailn) May 19, 2017
Tue:&told Comey to drop investigation
Wed: Special counsel
Thu: House maj leader "Putin pays Trump"
17. The Nut Job Told The Nut Jobs
The "nut job" told the "nut jobs" that the head of the FBI is a "nut job"— Tony Posnanski (@tonyposnanski) May 19, 2017
You can't make this stuff up
18. Oh My God
Vocal outburst in office to this story: “Oh my god.” https://t.co/A4UEJWinn6— Dan Diamond (@ddiamond) May 19, 2017
19. Our Number Two Lookup
📈'Nutjob' is our number 2 lookup right now. https://t.co/bpGxeCtpSr— Merriam-Webster (@MerriamWebster) May 19, 2017
You can always count on Merriam-Webster to chime in with the driest of humor ― the dictionary's social media arm has been killing it as of late, updating the Twittersphere any time something in the news causes a search term to spike. Of course, "nutjob" ended up surging upon the release of The New York Times report, which it describes as an epithet "derived from the word 'nut' ('a crazy person') combined with the word 'job.'"
It's also apparently the sort of thing you have to worry the president might say about an investigator ― really, his investigator, considering he was at the center of the Trump campaign ― right after firing him. While he's greeting the Russian ambassador in the Oval Office, no less.