Actor Peter Fonda targeted President Donald Trump’s 12-year-old son Barron in a late-night Twitter rant about the separation of immigrant families at the U.S. border.
“We should rip Barron Trump from his mother’s arms and put him in a cage with pedophiles,” the actor wrote in an all-caps rant that he later deleted. “And see if mother will stand up against the giant a–hole she is married to.”
The U.S. Secret Service told TheWrap that is aware of the tweet but declined to offer any additional comments.
Melania Trump’s spokesperson was quick to denounce Fonda: “The tweet is sick and irresponsible and USSS has been notified.”
It’s more than a protest! 90 million people in the streets on the same weekend works. I can’t be the organizer for they’ll arrest me for conspiracy to commit sedition. This must be like a spontaneous event without seeming to be organized by me and we have to make this happen NOW https://t.co/be9IDUN15c
— Peter Henry Fonda (@iamfonda) June 20, 2018
The tweet drew a sharp response — especially for the involvement of the president’s 12-year-old son since a politician’s underage children are typically considered off-limits for political commentary even without the suggestion of abduction.
“You’re clearly a sick individual and everyone is an internet badass but rather than attack an 11 year old like a bully and a coward why don’t you pick on someone a bit bigger. LMK,” the president’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., tweeted.
Fonda, a two-time Oscar nominee and son of Hollywood legend Henry Fonda, took to Twitter to voice his opinion about the Trump administration’s new zero-tolerance policy for immigrants arriving at the U.S. border which has led to the separation of parents from young children in detention camps.
In another tweet, also deleted, Fonda suggested that protesters “get the addresses of the Ice Agents CBP agents and surround their homes in protest. We should find out what schools their children go to and surround the schools in protest.”
Following the backlash, Fonda apologized for his remarks: “I tweeted something highly inappropriate and vulgar about the president and his family in response to the devastating images I was seeing on television. Like many Americans, I am very impassioned and distraught over the situation with children separated from their families at the border, but I went way too far. It was wrong and I should not have done it. I immediately regretted it and sincerely apologize to the family for what I said and any hurt my words have caused.”
Fonda also tweeted that he wants to get 90 million people on the streets to protest.
People have been railing against the Trump administration policy of separating immigrant families arriving at the U.S.-Mexico border without documentation. Videos and audio clips have been released to show the cage-like conditions in which many of the separated children are being held.
After mounting pressure to end the family separation policy from both Democrats and Republicans, on Wednesday Trump announced he would be “signing something” on immigration to keep migrant families together, the Associated Press reported.
According to the AP, Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen drafted an executive order for Trump to sign that would direct her department to keep immigrant families together after they are detained for illegally crossing the U.S.-Mexican border.