Donald Trump's "Make America Great Again" cap started as a practical solution to the campaign trail photo-ops ruined when the wind on tarmacs would muss up his infamous hair, but the trucker cap has become iconic in the 2016 campaign. The Washington Post cemented the cap's clout Tuesday with its hat generator, which saw the ball cap achieve meme status.
Using the hat generator, anyone can choose either a red-and-white cap or a white-and-gold one, and then decide what they want the cap to say in 28 characters or less. The Post launched the generator after New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio made a spoof cap bearing the phrase "Make America Fair Again," which he wore in an interview Thursday with CNN. Of its decision, the Post wrote:
At first we thought, Man, we can make better jokes than that. We thought, Let's make hats for all the 2016 candidates. And then we thought, Well, actually, maybe we're not that funny. And then we thought, You know who is funny? America. America is funny. I mean, mostly, anyway.
Twitter was up for the challenge and soon after the generator was posted, a flood of memes sprung up on the social media site. Some tweets were critical of Trump ("Straight Outta Wharton," said one), while others lamented the 2016 election season ("Make America British Again," read another cap).
We rounded up some of the best:
— pourmecoffee (@pourmecoffee) October 6, 2015
— Ian Wiggins (@itsWiggins) October 7, 2015
— Dane Rauschenberg (@SeeDaneRun) October 6, 2015
— Brendan Nyhan (@BrendanNyhan) October 6, 2015
— Jim Brenner (@boushdag) October 6, 2015
— Abby Johnston (@ajohnston12) October 6, 2015
— Kris Hammond (@KrisHammond) October 6, 2015
— Erick Sanchez (@erickmsanchez) October 7, 2015
— Jessica Guynn (@jguynn) October 6, 2015
— Sarah Taqvi (@sarahtaqvi) October 6, 2015
The real Trump cap with the signature slogan sold out soon after being added to his campaign site this summer, but the campaign store has since restocked orders. To end his Los Angeles rally Sept. 15, he threw the caps into the crowd. "This is the hottest thing out there," he told the audience.
In the New York Times, his cap was described as a "knowing wink" in a piece about how the merchandise has become the ironic must-have fashion accessory of summer. “The hats are kind of like a keepsake of the summer,” University of Chicago junior Louise Simpson told the New York Times. “It’s a joke that everyone is in on, including Donald Trump.”
Trump has not posted any hat memes to his Twitter account.