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Wednesday, April 14, 2021

Fallen Soldier’s Widow: ‘Trump Didn’t Even Know His Name’

President Trump.  He’s the guy who ridiculed the disabled reporter.  The same guy who defended the locker room talk about disrespecting women and grabbing their genitalia. The guy who called a congresswoman unattractive in way less flattering terms.

He’s the guy who defended the ‘good people’ in the white supremacist movement.  The guy who told outright lies every day for the first 40 days he was in office.

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He’s “that guy.” Donald Trump.  The 45th president of the United States. The Commander-in-Chief of the U.S. Armed Forces.  But he’s too busy bullying NFL players to take the time to remember the name of a fallen U.S. soldier during a 5-minute call with his widow.

He’s “that guy.”

Trump calls on his followers to ‘drain the swamp,’ but in less than a year he has created a new swamp of out of an overflow of intellectual ridiculousness.  It seems to be his idea of Making America Great Again.

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So, what’s he done now?

According to Florida Congresswoman Frederica Wilson, Trump finally– after 11 days and a lot of criticism– got around to calling at least one of the families of the fallen soldiers killed in Niger on October 4.  The Congresswoman says she was on hand in a car with Myeshia Johnson, wife of the late Sgt. La David T. Johnson, listening via speakerphone to the widow’s conversation with the president when the call came in.  The two women were traveling together yesterday on their way to meet Sgt. Johnson’s body.

Wilson said Trump told Mrs. Johnson that her husband “knew what he signed up for … but when it happens it hurts anyway.” Mrs. Johnson said.

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There is no requirement anywhere that a commander-in-chief have sympathy for fallen soldiers or their families.  Trump says he didn’t do it; that Wilson made the whole thing up.  And he said, in his tweet, that he has proof that Wilson is lying.  But on the other hand this is the guy who always says he has proof of the things he claims, but never ever produces any.  Too bad the call wasn’t recorded.  Still, there have been much worse demonstrations of irregularities with this guy that raise serious questions about his capacity for leadership.

For me, though, what Mrs. Johnson said about her conversation with the president is far more telling about the man and his fitness to be the commander-in-chief than anything else to date.  When the call ended Wilson said Johnson turned to her and said Trump “didn’t even remember [her husband’s] name.”

Let me repeat that:  Trump called the grieving widow of a fallen soldier but couldn’t be bothered to remember the soldier’s name.  Pencil and paper, anyone?

That’s inexcusable– and unforgivable.  How much effort would have gone into getting the dead soldier’s name before calling his wife?  It was plastered all over the internet.

The 25-year-old non-commissioned officer deserved better than that– to at least be remembered for the duration of a 5-minute call by his commander-in-chief.  He was one of four U.S. service members killed– and the only black soldier of the four.  After being declared missing in action he was later found dead and his body shipped back to the United States.

Wonder if he forgot the names of the other fallen soldiers whose families he finally decided to call.

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