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3 Jun, 2019 18:12

Fist bumps, no curtsies & clashing outfits: 'Gaffes' open Trumps' meeting with British royals

Fist bumps, no curtsies & clashing outfits: 'Gaffes' open Trumps' meeting with British royals

US President Donald Trump and his wife Melania have certainly made a big impression just hours into their UK state visit. British tabloids had a field day with accusations of fist-bumping the Queen and no curtsies for the royals.

Such occasions, which are filled with pomp and ceremony, usually require invited guests to behave with a certain level of decorum, but if you believe the British papers, the Trumps didn’t get the memo.

‘Did Donald just fist-bump the Queen?’

The US president’s greeting with the Queen at Buckingham Palace took an awkward turn as he shook the hand of Her Royal Highness (HRH) at an angle, prompting frenzied speculation on social media that it was not a handshake but a fist-bump. The Queen seemingly went along with the unorthodox greeting.

“Did ⁦@realDonaldTrump⁩ just “fist pump” the Queen?? #Homies” asked one Twitter user.

A number of observers suggested that HRH initiated the move “to avoid crushing his tiny, tiny hands,” while another claimed that there was “no gaffe that Donald Trump will manage” that the Queen hasn’t seen before from her husband Philip.

What, no curtsy?

The Trumps were not only given a ceremonial welcome by the Queen, but also by Prince Charles and his wife Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall. It’s traditional to bow and curtsy to the British royals, but the Trumps were having none of it.

The press, and many Britons sharing the coverage on Twitter, fumed at the apparent lack of respect.

“Why can’t Melania Trump curtsy or bow to The Queen? Is Melania’s corset too stiff?” asked one person.

“So far he [Trump] started talking to the Queen from literally 5-6 feet away and Melania didn’t curtsy… it’s going well,” lamented another.

The Trumps did not bow or curtsy during their first UK visit last year. Neither did Barack and Michelle Obama, back in 2011. It's almost as if Americans have made a point of their fierce independence from British royalty since, oh, 1776.

Melania and Camilla wear similar outfits

Another point of contention was Melania's choice of a white Dolce & Gabbana outfit that looked very similar to the cream-colored Anna Valentine of Duchess Camilla. The US First Lady accented her ensemble with a navy blue collar and bands around her waist and headpiece.

One celebrity fashion expert interviewed by The Independent said Melania's outfit suggested "a lack of awareness of the Duchess of Cornwall’s history of sartorial choices." 

Oh please! Americans barely know their own history, yet they're expected to keep track of what a British royal chooses to wear?

Melania’s dress is used to 'counterbalance' her husband

There were even attempts to psychoanalyze Melania and Ivanka Trump's choice to wear white. Dawnn Karen, CEO of Fashion Psychology Success, claims that Melania was trying to illustrate an air of “integrity” to counterbalance the opinionated remarks of her husband.

“How do you do that without vocalising, as such? So her wearing white – this white dress coat – is symbolic of integrity. I believe that is what she is trying to convey alongside the president.”

Or maybe the First Lady and First Daughter wore white because that's what posh Americans wear in summer, which in the US officially begins on the last weekend of May. But that doesn't sell newspapers.

The Trumps arrived in London on Monday morning to start a three-day tour of the UK. They’ll banquet with the monarchy in Buckingham Palace, meet with the outgoing PM Theresa May and honor war dead in Portsmouth to mark the anniversary of D-Day.

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