Hawaii’s local and federal government, along with President Joe Biden, have faced widespread criticism for their handling of the devastating fire that ravaged Maui, resulting in the deaths of over 115 people and leaving many more missing. Protesters in Maui expressed their displeasure with Biden’s response, holding signs saying “no comment” and even giving him the finger as he passed by. Biden’s lackluster response to questions about the fire while on vacation in Delaware only added fuel to the fire. He appeared uninformed about the situation, mispronounced names, and made inappropriate jokes. The President even went so far as to compare the devastating fire to a small kitchen fire he had experienced in his own home.
A Hawaiian store displays a large sign criticizing President Biden for comparing almost losing his corvette in a small kitchen fire to the catastrophic blaze that razed historic Lahaina Town, claiming over 115 lives and leaving more than 1,000 missing.
"Sorry you almost lost… pic.twitter.com/fE3J1h7qZw
— KanekoaTheGreat (@KanekoaTheGreat) August 24, 2023
This self-centered response understandably infuriated many, leading some to reconsider their support for Biden. A local rental business, the Hawaiian Rent-All Company, placed a sign that read, “Sorry you almost lost your ’67 Corvette in a fire, Mr. President. Maui strong.” This viral sign embodies the sentiment of many Hawaiians who feel that Biden’s response was inadequate and self-centered. The White House has since attempted to backtrack, claiming that Biden did not “hear” the question when he made his initial response. However, this attempt at spin appears insincere and unlikely to rectify the damage caused by Biden’s thoughtless comments.