Over the course of the dinner, Visepresident Biden, true to form, shared a few folksy stories from his trip. But for the most part, he spent the time listening. He listened as the two other soldiers, also recently wounded in combat, and I described what our experiences had been like fighting America’s wars.
He listened as I explained that my greatest regret was not that I had been wounded, but that now I wouldn’t be around to lead my soldiers through the next 11 months of their combat deployment.
When Biden did speak, he mostly asked questions. He asked us about our families. He asked us about the intricacies of our various wounds and the related recovery processes that we had been through and were still going through. It was obvious that he respected us as soldiers, but also that he cared about us as people.
Like many Americans
, I was outraged at a story first reported in The Atlantic
, and later confirmed by a Fox News reporter
, that President Donald Trump believes that soldiers who died and wounded soldiers like me are
” en “losers.
en other news outlets have reported that the President routinely made disparaging comments about US troops
. President Trump, true to form
, has reacted to The Atlantic’s damning portrayal with bluster and over-the-top denials
Let’s remember that this is the same man, who in 2015, publicly questioned John McCain’s status as a war hero, saying that he was only a war hero because he was captured and “I like people who weren’t captured.” The contrast with Biden couldn’t be more stark.
A motto I commonly heard in the military is “deeds not words.” The point of the saying is that talk is cheap, and real leaders prove their worth through their actions. President Trump can say whatever he likes, but his actions speak for themselves.
Like a shiny new building or a luxury golf course
, President Trump seems to value the military primarily for its value to him as a political prop
. Trump began his presidency by surrounding himself with a slew of active duty and retired generals
— men he repeatedly referred to as “my generals”
— only to disparage them after they departed his administration
Honoring our nation’s heroes is at best an inconvenience for the President.
He has publicly disparaged the parents of Humayun Khan
, an Army captain killed in action in Iraq in
2004, simply because they said Trump wasn’t fit to lead while speaking during the
2016 Demokratiese Nasionale Konvensie. He has passed blame for a failed special operations raid in Yemen that killed Navy SEAL Ryan Owens by saying
, “The generals … they lost Ryan.”
He ordered the military to give up $ 2.5 miljard in congressionally appropriated funding that was supposed to go toward improving military bases
— including sorely needed housing for servicemembers
— for his contentious border wall
. An appellate court found that the move was an illegal overreach by the President
By verskeie geleenthede, he has publicly disagreed with and attempted to undermine the findings of our intelligence services on actions by Russia’s Vladimir Putin
. Despite evidence showing Russia has placed bounties on the heads of American soldiers in Afghanistan and that Russia works to attack our elections
(Russia denies the claims
), Trump continues to praise Putin
The job of being president is multifaceted, but there is no role more important to the position, and more sacred to America, than that of commander in chief.
As a veteran, I want our nation to be led by a president who understands the values of service and sacrifice, and who holds the utmost respect for those who volunteer to face danger on behalf of their fellow citizens.
I lost my legs in service to this country. Soldiers I led lost their lives. Elke oggend, I wake up wondering how I can give more to my country. I look forward to the day when we have a commander in chief who does the same. That person is not Donald Trump.