The Reddit user who created the video of President Donald Trump punching a man with the CNN logo as his face has apologized, saying the video was meant as a joke.
The user posted a lengthy apology on an alt-right Reddit forum where he had originally posted the video that was later posted to Trump’s personal Twitter page and retweeted by his official presidential Twitter account.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 2, 2017
Not only did Trump come under fire from members of both parties for the tweet that some said could be taken as inciting violence against the news media, but when the source of the video was found it was discovered the Redditor had also posted anti-Semitic posts, including a compilation photo of CNN staffers with Jewish stars by each of their faces.
The original apology was locked by the forum’s moderators, so he reposted, but that, too, has been locked.
BuzzFeed’s Brandon Wall managed to get a screengrab and tweeted it out:
— Brandon Wall (@Walldo) July 4, 2017
In the apology, the user says he is not anti-Semitic and does not condone violence against the media or anyone else. He said he meant the video only as satire and that his desire to get reactions by trolling became an addiction.
He has since deleted the anti-Semitic and other offensive posts.
The White House said the Reddit post was not Trump’s source for the video.
The apology comes a day after CNN’s KFile figured out the man’s identity and attempted to contact him.
After he posted his apology on Tuesday, he contacted CNN and confirmed his identity, but asked that it not be revealed out of fear for his safety and to save himself and his family embarrassment.
CNN said it was not publishing his name because he is a private citizen and made a lengthy public apology as well as took down all his offending posts.
But it added, “CNN reserves the right to publish his identity should any of that change.”
That statement drew sharp rebukes from many on Twitter, including WikiLeaks, who accused CNN of blackmailing the user into good behavior.
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) July 5, 2017
— Joel B. Pollak (@joelpollak) July 5, 2017
Those critics failed to persuade Weekly Standard contributing editor John Podhoretz.
Sorry guys. It isn’t “doxxing” to do clever research to uncover someone’s anonymous identity and then keep him anonymous
— John Podhoretz (@jpodhoretz) July 5, 2017
Meanwhile, CNN’s Andrew Kaczynski, who authored the piece said the line was not meant as a threat, but only to say CNN had made an agreement with him to withhold his identity. Kaczynski said the man has called him and told him he did not take the wording to be threat.
This line is being misinterpreted. It was intended only to mean we made no agreement w/the man about his identity. https://t.co/9FL6EvTikx
— andrew kaczynski 🤔 (@KFILE) July 5, 2017
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