A Look Into the Trump White House: “Fire and Fury”

Lauren Zou

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Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House, by Michael Wolff, has been causing quite the stir in the political scene, as it depicts details from behind the curtains of the government’s actions. Wolff says in his book that he was able take up “something like a semi-permanent seat on a couch in the West Wing,” and soon got fly-on-the-wall access to Trump’s White House. Through conversations and interviews with White House staff, political figures, and even Donald Trump himself, Wolff has crafted a non-fiction story, exposing the U.S. president’s crude actions.

In Fire and Fury, Wolff focuses mainly on Trump, writing about his short attention span, his limited knowledge about the Constitution, and white supremacist values. He cites interviews with Steve Bannon, the former White House Chief Strategist, who bashed the Trump family for being “as dumb as a brick.” He even mentions moments when the Trump family was discussing Ivanka’s potential presidential campaign in 2020, or how Sam Nunberg, a campaign advisor, attempted to explain the Constitution to Trump but could not get him past the Fourth Amendment.

Following the book’s release, Fire and Fury became immensely popular, ranking number one on ebook sites, such as Apple iBooks and Amazon.com. In addition, places like Iran and North Korea have been using the book as support for their arguments against Trump and his actions. Representatives from Iran’s state media even used Fire and Fury to assert that Trump is unbalanced and that the world should refuse any U.S. efforts regarding the nuclear deal.

With its popularity came heavily controversial sides and retaliation from the government and Trump himself. Through various nasty tweets, Trump commented angrily that Fire and Fury was “full of lies, misrepresentations and sources that don’t exist.” Trump’s administration responded by threatening a lawsuit, in an attempt to shut down sales and the release, based on defamation and libel. However, Wolff’s legal representatives reacted by stating that the lawsuit would threaten the First Amendment, which legalized freedom of speech.

Many teachers and students in Scarsdale High School are also reacting to the book’s popularity and negative impact on Trump’s reputation. “I believe the book will have less of an impact than many expect. The book seems unlikely to impact Trump’s approval rating, as it is already historically low and has withstood many similarly negative reports about the president’s competence and mental state,” commented SHS History Teacher Chris Paulison.