‘The World is Laughing’: Kamala Harris ‘Cringe’ Video at the White House Relentlessly Mocked

By: Georgia | Last updated: Jun 24, 2024

Vice President Kamala Harris hosted an event at the White House with the “Queer Eye” cast, which quickly spiraled into controversy. 

During the mock press briefing led by Jonathan Van Ness, the playful nature was met with criticism. Notable figures expressed disdain, reflecting a broader disapproval of the seemingly light-hearted use of the prestigious venue.

Who's the Favorite? JVN Spills

While at the White House, Jonathan Van Ness added a personal twist by chatting about his favorite from the original ‘Queer Eye’ cast. 

Jonathan Van Ness passionately singing or speaking on stage, dressed in a colorful outfit with a rainbow motif, under purple lighting

Source: jvn/X

He kept the details close to his chest, making his reveal a fun guessing game for fans.


Something's Missing

Observers noted a curious omission during JVN’s performance: the iconic White House sign was nowhere to be seen on the podium. 

Vice President Kamala Harris speaking at an outdoor event with a colorful 'Celebrating PRIDE 2024' backdrop and American flags, with a crowd of onlookers

Source: VP/X

This small but noticeable detail lent a casual vibe to the whole affair, signaling a break from the usual formalities.

Jordan Peterson Voices Disapproval

Not everyone was amused by the lighthearted event. Author Jordan Peterson voiced his frustration on X, formerly Twitter, stating bluntly, “Seriously, WTF,” and demanded, “Enough of this.” 

Jordan Peterson speaking at an event, dressed in a dark suit and looking expressive, with a blurred background

Source: Wikimedia Commons

His comments mirrored a broader dissatisfaction with celebrity antics at such a prestigious location.

Conservative Backlash Intensifies

The conservative influencer Libs of TikTok also took to social media to criticize the event, calling it a “mockery of our great country.”

A large house decorated with a rainbow flag over the entrance and a large 'PRIDE' sign on the lawn

Source: WhiteHouse/X

This sentiment was reinforced by a follower who claimed, “The world is laughing at us,” amplifying the criticism.

A Serious Concern from Texas

Sarah Fields of the Texas Freedom Coalition expressed grave concerns, labeling the event “an attack from within” and a “mockery of our country.” 

An outdoor pool at the White House with the water reflecting a 'PRIDE' sign and the presidential seal

Source: WhiteHouse/X

Her severe take on the situation highlighted the deeper unease felt by some about using the White House in such a manner.


JVN's Emotional Advocacy

Previously, Jonathan Van Ness has passionately defended trans rights, notably breaking down during a podcast as he discussed the topic. 

Jonathan Van Ness smiling while holding his book "Love That Story" in front of the Good Morning America sign adorned with light bulbs

Source: jvn/X

This emotional plea demonstrated his dedication to advocacy, far beyond his television role.


A Tradition of Celebrity Engagement

The White House often hosts celebrities to draw attention to important causes. 

Cast members of 'The L Word' standing together with smiles at the White House briefing room podium

Source: Wikimedia Commons

An example is when the cast of ‘The L Word’ visited during Lesbian Visibility Week, showcasing the government’s willingness to leverage star power for advocacy.


Capturing Moments at the Podium

Many visitors to the White House, stars or not, seize the chance to snap a photo at the famous podium. 

Jonathan Van Ness making an animated expression while standing at the White House briefing room podium

Source: jvn/X

These images frequently make their way to social media, offering a personal snapshot of their time in a historically significant spot.


VP Harris Celebrates with 'Queer Eye'

Vice President Kamala Harris invited the ‘Queer Eye’ team to the White House, commemorating both the show’s 20th anniversary and Pride Month. 

Promotional image featuring Vice President Kamala Harris laughing with a member of the Queer Eye cast, with text overlay saying "QUEER EYE visits THE WHITE HOUSE."

Source: VP/X

She appreciated their visit with a heartfelt post: “Thank you for a meaningful conversation, for giving my office your stamp of approval, and for being fabulous.”


A Premature Promotion?

During the event, a social media caption accidentally referred to VP Harris as ‘Madam President.’ 

Vice President Kamala Harris laughing in the Oval Office

Source: VP/X

This sparked a flurry of comments and speculation about whether the title was prematurely assigned, highlighting the sensitivity of political titles.


Presidential Duties Abroad

As Vice President Kamala Harris entertained the ‘Queer Eye’ cast at the White House, President Joe Biden was busy at the G7 Summit in Italy. 

Group photo of world leaders and Pope Francis at the G7 Summit in Italy, 2024

Source: POTUS/X

This juxtaposition sparked criticism, with detractors arguing that Harris’s light-hearted event was out of step during a time of significant global diplomacy. 


Viral Attention

Clips of the Queer Eye cast attending the Whitehouse were posted online, including one to Vice President Kamala Harris’ official X account. This post went viral receiving nearly 2 million views.

Kamala Harris posts a video documenting her time with the cast of Queer Eye.

Source: VP/X

“The cast of @QueerEye joined me at the White House to discuss the hard-fought progress the LGBTQI+ community has made in the past 20 years. Thank you for a meaningful conversation, for giving my office your stamp of approval, and for being fabulous,” said Harris.


Planet is Laughing

Many X users descended onto Kamala Harris’ post and other clips of the White House event. There were many types of criticisms levied against the Vice President, with some commenters feeling like the whole ordeal makes the United States government look farcical.

A view of planet Earth seen in black space.

Source: NASA/Unsplash

“We’re the laughing stock of planet Earth,” said X user Vince Langman.


Other Issues

Some commenters were quick to bring up other problems occurring in the country, feeling that such a celebration at the White House was tone-deaf for many Americans who are struggling under current policies.

Biden walks alongside border patrol agents dressed in uniform.

Source: The White House/Wikimedia

“Meanwhile, young women are being r*ped and murdered across the country by illegal immigrants because the border is wide open, and the ‘Border Czar,’ Kamala Harris, is engaging in useless and ignorant crap like this. Shame on you,” X user Vincent Oshana said.


Border Consequences

Others echoed this sentiment, casting blame on Harris for acknowledging TV stars but not victims of recent tragedies.

An immigrant or migrant crosses the Tijuana-San Diego border wall.

Source: © Tomas Castelazo, www.tomascastelazo.com / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 4.0

“While you’re hugging the cast of Queer Eye, moms and dad’s across our country are wishing they could hold and hug their loved ones murdered by illegals you let into this country. You never acknowledge them. You never say their names. You think it will go away. It won’t,” said one X user.


Harris on the Border

Under Joe Biden’s presidential term, border crossings and encounters have drastically increased. This increase has been termed by some as the “migrant crisis” as people from countries south of the US hope to gain asylum by relying on the Biden administration’s more lax acceptance policies.

An agent for U.S. Customs and Border Protection watching the border form his truck.

Source: U.S. Customs and Border Protection/Wikimedia

Harris herself has faced relentless criticism for the border situation given that President Biden had tapped her in the early days of his administration to stem the border migration.


Hypocrisy on LGBT

While some commenters attacking Harris’ video were her usual critics, some LGBT commenters saw the video as a cynical white-washing of Harris’ history with the LGBT.

A person holding both hands together. Each hand has one of the letters for LGBTQIA+ on.

Alexander Grey/Unsplash

“This would be a tiny bit more heartwarming if we all didn’t know that you guys actively destroy the lives of LGBT people who leave your party. Y’all don’t seem to like progress so much when it means that LGBT people have the freedom of choice and opportunity to leave you,” said self-described gay former liberal Brandon Straka.


Complicated History

While Harris has a positive track record of supporting same-sex marriages as early as 2004, some see her as having a complicated history as a prosecutor that has harmed the gay community.

A slice of rainbow cake on a wooden table.

Alexander Grey/Unsplash

“As a prosecutor, Harris’s work has been as an arm of the state fighting to lock people in cages and defending policies that destroyed lives and communities,” wrote attorney Chase Strangio in an op-ed for OUT Magazine. “Now attempting to position herself as a criminal legal system reformer and an ally to the LGBTQ+ community, Harris seeks to rewrite her past rather than own it. But I am not buying it…For now, I am going to trust that Harris’s past tells us exactly what we need to know about her future. And that scares me.”


Social Profit

Some pointed out what they saw as a sad fact that the institutions of power that had oppressed gay rights for so long are now using the gay community for their own profit and social capital.

A rainbow flag featuring several different colors.

Source: Alexander Grey/Unsplash

“All the gays that achieved so much or died for the rights of gay community are pretty much having their movement destroyed by people who want to profit from it socially,” said one X user.


Unequal Treatment

Some online commenters in response to Harris’ post felt that this celebration of TV stars like the cast of Queer Eye underscored a disrespect those in office have for veterans who have sacrificed to keep the country going.

A veteran soldier offers a salute while wearing White.

Source: Sydney Rae/Unsplash

“Imagine if we treated the families of fallen soldiers with 1/10th of the level of this respect,” said X user Eddie Gallagher.


Catering to the Elite

In reaction to the video, some pointed out that this focus on TV celebrities severely misses the mark on what the average American cares about ahead of the general election in November and speaks to an “elitist” culture in Washington.

Kamala Harris smiling.

The United States Senate/Wikimedia Commons

“I’m glad you’re focused on what most Americans are truly concerned about,” sarcastically said one X user. “Never talk to the everyday people. It’s always the elite.. no matter the group,” said another X user.


LGBT Support for Trump

Some commenters asserted that this kind of pandering to LGBT individuals may be one reason for a recent observed increase in support of LGBT people for Trump.

Donald Trump smiling in front of a microphone.

Source: Gage Skidmore/Wikimedia Commons

While the majority of the LGBT community still overall supports Biden, Trump’s support among LGBT members has recently doubled. According to Log Cabin Republican President Charles Moran, Trump received 14% LGBT support in 2016, which became 28% in 2020. Moran recently gave an interview where he hopes to push it to 50% this election cycle.


America’s Opinion of Harris

According to FiveThirtyEight, a site that aggregates the results of multiple polls into an approval rating, a majority of Americans disapprove of Harris.

Vice President Kamala Harris speaks at an event, seated on a stage with a blue background that reads "FREEDOM TO THE". She is wearing a pink blazer and holding a microphone, with a focused expression as she speaks

Source: KamalaHarris/X

A POLITICO/Morning Consult poll from this month found that only a third of voters think Kamala Harris could win an election as a Democrat nominee, including only three in five Democrats.