Meltdown over Melania Trump’s renovation of Rose Garden vs. reality – there’s something very wrong

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Supporters of first lady Melania Trump’s recent renovations to the historic White House Rose Garden are pushing back against critics, noting among other things that one of the major improvements made includes new access to the area for people with disabilities.

“The Rose Garden layout we have all come to know and treasure was designed during the Kennedy Administration by Bunny Mellon. For 60 years, this space has served as the backdrop for many important events. The garden has also served as a peaceful outdoor escape for many administrations and their guests,” a statement from the first lady said.

“The changes you see tonight are the result of a thoughtful and collaborative process carefully crafted with the help of scholars and experts in architecture, horticulture, design, and historic preservation,” she added.

Noting that the improvements made included upgrades to “infrastructure and utilities” to better “meet the needs of a busy White House,” the first lady added: “These improvements also make the garden fully accessible to all Americans, including those with disabilities.”

A Twitter user posted a comparison photo of the before-and-after Rose Garden to demonstrate improved access.

Nevertheless, the complaints continued to pour in.

But the complaints seemed outsized, petty, and, in some cases, unhinged since the upgrades the first lady made included improvements that would allow more Americans to enjoy the space.

And in that vein, there was plenty of support for the first lady as well pushback against the first couple’s haters.

Conservative actor James Woods pointed out the improved access in response to NBC News journalist Howard Fineman, who complained that the first lady turned the Rose Garden into “a neo-fascist parade ground.”

“It’s based on plans created by our then First Lady, Jacqueline Kennedy, and her advisors back in the early 1960’s. The limestone pathways were added by Melania Trump, our current First Lady, as a sorely needed update to accommodate Americans with disabilities. You’re an imbecile,” Woods wrote.

Others lent their voices of support as well, praising both the design and noting that complaints from people like CNN’s Ana Navarro are uninformed and based purely on dislike of the first couple, regardless of what they do.

In her statement, the first lady thanked those who helped her with the project, which — according to her office — was paid for using private donations, not taxpayer dollars.

“Gardens are symbols of growth and hope. We celebrate this garden in the hope that future generations will not only enjoy – but also draw inspiration and strength – from this space where so much of our history has been shared,” she said.


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