Trump Speaks From His Rump
Commentary by Sanford D. Horn
July 19, 2015
My wife and I met Donald Trump at the Iowa Freedom Summit in January. We both enjoyed hearing him speak and appreciated his candor – candor – Trump’s ability and desire to speak without a filter while saying what many of us are thinking.
I write that way, more often than not, because I believe in telling it like it is, like it ought to be, and that tap-dancing is for the stage not the political stump. I ardently agree with Trump on illegal immigration, while not his all-inclusive rant about the entirety of the Mexican population. Illegal immigration is a scourge in the United States and deleterious to the American future as a leader on the world stage. (http://sanfordspeaksout.blogspot.com/2015/07/san-francisco-is-no-treat.html)
I blasted Macy’s, ESPN, and other businesses for summarily dismissing Trump from their rosters because he employed his First Amendment freedom of speech. Don’t shop at Macy’s, I wrote, for their hypocrisy. After all, Martha Stewart, Sean Combs (a.k.a. Diddy), and Justin Bieber are not without controversy and yet they adorn Macy’s ads or have product lines on the retailer’s shelves.
But now, Trump has reached an actual low with his disgraceful remarks about Arizona Senator John McCain, the GOP’s standard bearer in 2008. And while I defend Trump’s First Amendment right of free speech, as I imagine the patriotic McCain would, I take umbrage with his comments critical of McCain the soldier.
Oft-critical of McCain the moderate Republican, and for numerous reasons, the man still served in the United States Navy during the war in Vietnam, and was a POW for five years in the infamous Hanoi Hilton. Trump, who never donned the uniform of his country, slammed McCain. “He’s a war hero because he was captured. I like people who weren’t captured,” Trump ignorantly opined. Trump doubled down when he not only refused an opportunity to apologize to McCain, but called him a “dummy” for finishing at or near the bottom of his graduation class at the Naval Academy.
While a POW in Vietnam, McCain actually had an opportunity to be freed, but turned it down, as his release did not include his fellow prisoners. He remained in captivity with his men enduring unspeakable torture for five years. Mr. Trump, I like people who respect our military heroes and know when enough is enough. Use your freedom of speech to apologize to John McCain, for McCain is representational of all the men and women who wore the uniform in the past and those proudly wearing it now.
This nation is mourning the loss of five members of the United States military, murdered by a domestic jihadist. Trump’s insult of McCain is also an insult to the memories of those recently slaughtered; wounds too raw, too deep to be assaulted by Trump, speaking from his rump.
If Trump seriously wants to be Commander of Chief he had better remember that if not for the men and women in uniform the United States would not have come to fruition as a concept in 1776; would not have preserved the Union during the War of 1812 and the War Between the States; would not have defended itself during the Mexican-American War, and Spanish-American War; would not have defended and aided allies during World War I, the wars in Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan; and would not have saved the world from dictatorial and despotic overthrow during World War II.
Sanford D. Horn is a writer and educator living in Westfield, IN.