Des Moines 1st Grader Stars in Profane Trump Videos


If it’s not appropriate for a first-grader to say, then should a presidential candidate be saying it?

That’s the premise for a new YouTube video series Des Moines filmmaker Heather Ryan is producing with her daughter, 7-year-old Piper McNew, in which the elementary school student repeats vulgarities uttered by Donald Trump. So far the series has three videos of McNew-as-Trump: one from the time the candidate mouthed “fuck” while talking about bringing jobs back to New Hampshire from Mexico; and a couple throwbacks to before the campaign, when Trump said laziness was a trait among “the blacks” and referred to the Chinese “motherfuckers” he’d tax at 25 percent. (All three of the videos are embedded below.)

The Informer contacted Ryan Tuesday as she was on her way to pick up McNew to record another three or four Trump videos today. Four others have already been made and just need an edit, Ryan said, and she also just finished preparing a Trump T-shirt and pom poms for her 12-year-old niece to star in additional Trump cheerleader videos for the series.

“Piper is very animated, and she’s also very active politically with me,” Ryan said. “She goes to every political activity that I go to, that our family goes to. You know, some people like sports. We like politics.”

Future McNew videos will feature her quoting Trump on the blood coming out of Fox News host Megyn Kelly’s “wherever,” his assertion he’s so popular that he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan and not lose any votes, his warning about the rapists and other criminals (and some good people) immigrating illegally from Mexico, and Hillary Clinton’s inability to satisfy her husband (said with a wink from McNew for added effect).

For now, Ryan said, the plan is to record as many videos as possible before the end of spring break. There’s no specific number she’s going for: “You know, there’s so many crazy-ass things that he’s said, I don’t know.”

McNew’s cussing is nothing she’ll get in trouble for, Ryan insisted — as long as she doesn’t repeat Trump’s behavior off-camera. “My husband and I are both sailors, so it’s not like [Trump’s profanities] are words she’s never heard,” Ryan said, “but she would never even contemplate saying those words, it would never cross her mind to say those words. They’re not appropriate, and she knows that.”

Previously, Ryan worked as a talent manager for the TLC child pageant reality show Toddlers & Tiaras and one of its spin-offs, Eden’s World. Ryan left Toddlers & Tiaras shortly before its end in the fall of 2013, publishing the tell-all e-book Unleashing a Momster and suing the mother-daughter duo she’d managed for unpaid commissions.

Locally, Ryan is active in a variety of political causes, serving as chairwoman of the East Des Moines Democrats and a member of the gun control advocacy group Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. In 2014, she came on as communications director for former state Rep. Ed Fallon’s Great March for Climate Action, a cross-country march to raise awareness about climate change, “for about two minutes, until I was apparently too outrageous and we parted ways.”

Gavin Aronsen
Gavin Aronsen is an editor and reporter for and founding member of the Iowa Informer. He previously worked as a city reporter for the Ames Tribune, research assistant to investigative journalist Wayne Barrett at the Village Voice, and in various roles at Mother Jones, where his work contributed to a National Magazine Award nomination for the magazine's digital media coverage of the Occupy Wall Street movement. Email: garonsen [at] iowainformer [dot] com.