Actor Kal Penn appeared on CNN’s New Day to discuss the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, to which he belonged before the group resigned last week. It was done in reaction to Donald Trump’s response to the horrifying, violent white supremacist marches that recently took place in Charlottesville. In the discussion, Penn also managed to recycle a 30-year-old insult against the president to express his thoughts.
“This is very much a cultural issue,” Penn said on the Tuesday, August 22, show. “I think the response to Charlottesville — his response — was the worst of who we are. And we just felt like that was not who we are at all and we are better than that and this was an opportunity to show that.”
“You’re dealing with a tiny-fingered vulgarian,” the Designated Survivor actor said. “Who loves to tweet as a way to get policy done. We’re better than that.”
The insult originally comes from Vanity Fair editor Greydon Carter and novelist Kurt Anderson, who famously called Trump a “short-fingered vulgarian” in a 1988 issue of Spy Magazine.
Trump’s hands have been an ongoing topic of conversation, and the president even discussed them during the GOP debate in March 2016 while referencing Senator Marco Rubio‘s prior comments on the size of his hands.
“He referred to my hands and said, ‘If they’re small, something else must be small,’” Trump said during the 2016 debate of Rubio’s previous assertion. “I guarantee you there’s no problem.”
Many viewers were outraged by the comment and slammed Trump for using the debate as a platform to discuss the topic. “What a sad state of affairs. You all should be ashamed,” one Twitter user blasted out as he shared a CNN news story relating Trump’s declaration about his genitals. “Just taking care of the most important things. like most presidential candidates do at the #GOPdebate. I wanna die,” agreed another.
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