Dean Obeidallah (Daily Beast) reports on and bashes Trump's responses to the most moving speech at the Democratic convention.
I didn’t think it was possible for Donald Trump to say anything more despicable than he has already served up in this campaign. But this weekend the GOP presidential nominee did just that twice.
First, he went after Ghazala Khan, the mother of U.S. Army Captain Humayun Khan who had received a Purple Heart for bravery after being killed in Operation Iraqi Freedom. And then stunningly Trump equated his work as a businessman as being a “sacrifice” akin to the sacrifice made by the brave women and men who have served in our nation’s armed forces.
With respect to Mrs. Khan, Trump was asked by Maureen Dowd on Saturday what was his reaction to ”the poignant appearance of Muslim lawyer Khizr Khan and his wife” at the DNC. Did Trump respond by acknowledging Captain Khan’s sacrifice or offer words of support for these Gold Star parents? Nope, instead he answered with one sentence: “I’d like to hear his wife say something.” (How would his wife saying anything change in any way Capt. Khan’s sacrifice or his parents’ loss?!)
And then Trump doubled-down as he always does when facing criticism for his rants.
And then Trump upped the criticism of Mrs. Khan in an interview with George Stephanopoulos scheduled to air Sunday morning: “If you look at his wife, she was standing there. She had nothing to say. She probably, maybe she wasn't allowed to have anything to say. You tell me.”
In reality, Mrs. Khan was on the stage Thursday night because her husband asked her to be there to offer him moral support. As Mr. Khan explained in a joint interview Friday night to MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell, his wife of 40 years provides him strength, noting, “I’m much weaker than her.”
Mrs. Kahn added emotionally that she didn’t want to speak at the DNC because, “I cannot even come into the room” where a photo of her late son is located without crying.
Mrs. Khan then, with her voice breaking from emotion, shared the words she had told her son before he was deployed to Iraq: “Be safe. Don’t become a hero for me—just be my son. Come back as my son.” Adding as she began to sob, “But he came back as a hero.”
Trump equates his shady business deals to Captain Khan's sacrifice
Just as jaw dropping as Trump’s refusal to praise the service of Captain Khan and his vile attack on Mrs. Khan, was Trump equating his experience in business as being akin to serving in the U.S. military.
Stephanopoulos asked Trump to respond to Mr. Khan’s speech Thursday calling on the GOP nominee to visit Arlington National Cemetery and “look at the graves of brave patriots who died defending the United States of America.” Khan noted that in contrast, Trump had “sacrificed nothing.”
Trump’s reaction was simply stunning: “I think I've made a lot of sacrifices. I work very, very hard.”
My fellow veterans, I hope, will not shrug this one off.
"For anyone to compare their 'sacrifice' to a Gold Star family member is insulting, foolish and ignorant. Especially someone who has never served himself and has no children serving," Paul Rieckoff, the founder and CEO of Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, said when asked about Trump’s statement.
Trump feels like a "very brave soldier ..."
... for avoiding sexually transmitted diseases when he was hooking up with models.
But this is not the first time Trump has belittled the service of veterans by equating his billionaire lifestyle to the challenges faced in the U.S. military. In 1997, Trump claimed his playboy years where he was hooking up with models was his own “personal Vietnam” because he had to avoid getting herpes and other STDs. Trump even remarked that the fact he was venereal disease free made him, “feel like a great and very brave soldier.” Let's also never forget when he mocked Senator John McCain for being captured.
And Trump actually had an opportunity to serve in the U.S. military during the Vietnam War. Instead he avoided by claiming he had a “medical disability.”
That’s very curious given that while in college Trump played baseball, tennis and squash. And last year Trump’s doctor released a letter describing Trump’s health as “astonishingly excellent” and “extraordinary.” Trump apparently is one of those rare people who are healthier at 70 than at 22.
Mr. Khan made a powerful plea Friday night to Republicans to put principle over Party and not support Trump. If Trump’s latest comments don’t cause that to happen, either Trump supporters believe Party comes first or they simply have no principles.
That is correct. Principles have been consigned by Trumpists to the scrap heap of political correctness. We are in an age in which one-half of our population adores the pompous demagogue who craps on veterans. Being a Vietnam era veteran, it's as much personal as politics.