While the world has been captivated by the disaster unfolding in Texas over the past week, Americans took a break from the on-going flood coverage on Tuesday and turned their attention instead to the first lady – or more pointedly, to the first lady’s shoes.
As Melania Trump and the president boarded Air Force One to Houston, cameras furiously clicked to capture the first lady’s ‘disaster-zone chic’ look: black cigarette pants, a green bomber jacket and sky-high stilettos.
It tool less than an hour for the photos to start circulating on social media and the mockery to start flooding in online.
Articles about the first lady’s outfit started appearing online and the cries of “out of touch!” and “is she serious?” reached fever pitch during the three-hour flight from Washington to Houston, forcing the White House to issue a statement saying it was “sad” people were obsessing over Trump’s clothes rather than the recovery effort.
CNN reporter Kate Bennett tweeted White House communications director Hope Hicks’ statement on the matter.
It seems all the fuss was for nothing though as the first lady had changed outfits by the time she touched down in Houston, exiting the plane in a crisp white shirt, black pants and sneakers.
During the visit, she joined the president for a tour of the water-damaged city and met with FEMA and the US Coast Guard to discuss the recovery effort.
In a surprise move, the first lady later released a personal statement through the White House, saying she wanted to offer help and support “not through just words, but also action.”
“The effects of Hurricane Harvey will be felt in Texas, Louisiana, and other parts of the country for many months and years to come,” she said in a statement on the White House website.
“So far, 1.7 million people are under orders to evacuate their homes, and, as the floodwater in Houston rises, sadly, so will the number of evacuees.
“I want to be able to offer my help and support in the most productive way possible, not through just words, but also action. What I found to be the most profound during the visit was not only the strength and resilience of the people of Texas, but the compassion and sense of community that has taken over the State. My thoughts and prayers continue to be with the people of Texas and Louisiana.”