The world is honed in on Donald Trump during his trip to the other side of the globe and new reports indicate that his handshakes are starting to take on a life of their own. Trump’s latest handshake with the newly elected president of France today is seen as rather odd and it has spawned some rather weird headlines.
When President Donald Trump and President Emmanuel Macron got together for a talk, the handshake was the first thing they embarked on and that handshake has set social media sites on fire. CNN Politics, via their news site, describes President Trump’s “ever-growing book of weird handshakes” as just spawning a “new chapter” in France today.
The two men shook hands for an extraordinary amount of time, but the one thing that has sparked the interest of the masses is the strength and power that both Trump and Macron exhibited while doing so. Their hands were tightly gripped together for so long that each of the presidents’ hands had white knuckles. They offered a new perspective on “white knuckling” their way through an event. Their handshake is seen in the tweet below. As you can see in the photo from CNN, the two had worked their way up to that facial grimace and serious eye-stare by the time this photo was taken.
The term “white knuckling” is usually used for someone describing a harrowing drive in the car. Holding onto the steering wheel with such a forceful grip because they are in fear of the weather, the bumper-to-bumper traffic, or someone on their tail is usually when you hear the term used in a sentence such as “He was white-knuckling it all the way home.” In Trump and Macron’s case, the two gripped their hands with such powerful strength that their knuckles turned that pasty white color.
Washington Post reporter Phillip Rucker was there and he wrote on Twitter just what he was seeing along with the rest of the crowd in the room. Rucker said, “They shook hands for an extended period of time. Each president gripped the other’s hand with considerable intensity, their knuckles turning white and their jaws clenching and faces tightening.”
Reports today suggest that Donald Trump seems to view the handshake as something more than just a greeting. CNN suggests that Trump “seems to view the handshake as a battle of wills and a battle of power all wrapped up into one.” The Trump handshake seen in France today is just the opposite of what CNN deems his “tug and pull” handshake that Trump has used in the past with people close to him, like Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch and Vice President Mike Pence. Below is a video on YouTube from CNN News showing some of the different handshakes that Trump has exhibited in the past.
During the several short clips in this video, you will hear a body language expert talking about Trump’s different handshake styles. He is describing how Trump goes in for the handshake using a very “submissive” move, but once he gets that hand, he “reasserts his dominance” to the point of almost pulling people off their feet. According to New York Magazine back in February, when the prime minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau, visited the White House and shook hands with Trump, he held his own. New York Magazine writes that Trudeau “one-upped” Trump in the handshake game.” Trudeau fending off the tugging and pulling that has almost become Trump’s trademark handshake has earned the prime minister much praise. His handshake conquest over Trump is seen in the headlines from his native country, as well as in the United States.
As you can see in the clip, some of Trump’s past handshakes have left a look of relief on some of his handshake recipients’ faces once the handshake was over. In one handshake incident with Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch, which is seen in the video, the president almost pulls Gorsuch off his feet. Trump also has a habit of patting the hand of the other person as he shakes hands. His “tug and pull” handshake is quick, unlike the extremely long version of his white-knuckle handshake that was seen today with the president of France.
[Featured Image by Peter Dejong/AP Images]