If you have been paying attention to the news this past week, you have probably heard or read something about a “feud” between President Donald Trump and Representative Frederica Wilson of Florida. Wilson claims that as she and Myeshia Johnson, the widow of Army Sgt. David Johnson, rode to Miami International Airport to meet the body of Sgt. Johnson, Trump made “insensitive” remarks over the phone to his widow, who is a soon-to-be mother of three. Johnson was among the four U.S. soldiers killed in Niger on October 4th when they were ambushed by Islamic militants.
According to Wilson, Trump told Mrs. Johnson that her husband “knew what he was signing up for…but when it happens, it hurts anyway.” Trump, however, denies that he ever said this and claims that he has “proof” that Wilson “totally fabricated” what he said to Johnson’s widow. Wilson stands behind her statements despite criticism of her claims.
So who is telling the truth? Trump has a history of not being very politically correct or sensitive with some of his statements, as I’m sure we are all aware. However, it is also clear that he is a man who truly loves this country and has a “yuge” amount of respect for our servicemen and women. Is it possible that Representative Wilson is simply another anti-Trump democrat trying to bring him down, and therefor did fabricate the story, as Trump says she did? Many people believe so, and are not happy that Wilson is trying to politicize the very recent death of one of our servicemen.
Let’s say for a moment that Wilson’s claim was proven to be true. You could agree that anyone saying a fallen service member “knew what he was signing up for” could be considered “insensitive”, especially if it is said to that person’s loved one only days after their death. It could also be argued, though, that such a statement could be made in innocence; such a comment could be made without careful consideration of how it really comes across or the effect that it may have on the person you are saying it to.
Now I’m not justifying this supposed comment, but I do see how a person could make that sort of remark without giving it enough consideration. After all, it is true that those who serve sign up knowing that they are putting their very life on the line for the sake of this country, and this isn’t some sort of secret to their families, either. My own father served for twelve years, and he knew exactly what he was signing up for. He was willing to potentially put his life on the line because he loves this country and because that was his duty. The risk didn’t stop him. My mother knew the same thing when she married him. She married him because she loves him, and knew that serving this country was not only his job, but his passion. The risk didn’t stop her. Military service is not sugar coated like it is in the movies.
Just playing devil’s advocate. With all of that being said, though, I still had my doubts that Trump would make a comment like that, unless it was completely misinterpreted somehow. Democrats are very good at taking things that people on the right say out of context and giving them wildly false meanings (“I voted for Trump” = “I am a member of the KKK and I hate all minorities”). Myeshia Johnson cleared the situation up on Facebook on October 17th, proving that Wilson did in fact fabricate, or at the very least, greatly exaggerate Trump’s statement.
“I want to set the record straight! I’m getting sick and tired of this so called politician using my husband as a political platform. Even by her own words she did not hear all of the conversation she only heard part of it. This is what actually was said. ‘They know the risk, they know what they sign up for but they still volunteer to put their lives on the line for their fellow Americans. We owe them a debt that can never be repaid.’”
If anyone is being “insensitive” to Mrs. Johnson, it is Wilson herself. She is using the death of her husband to attack President Trump over comments that are untrue. On top of that, Representative Wilson has a poor track record when it comes to voting in favor of our servicemen and women and their families. Not only did she oppose giving burial benefits to the families of fallen soldiers in 2013, but she has also opposed the reform of Veterans Affairs and voted multiple times in opposition to helping veterans and their families receive benefits during government shutdowns.
Representative Wilson could have simply given Mrs. Johnson her condolences and offered to help her however she could. She could have said, “I am so sorry for your loss”, “Your husband was a brave and strong man”, “I am here to support you”, or any number of things, but of course she didn’t. She had to go and do the most disrespectful thing she could have; use a newly deceased soldier’s death as a platform for her to attack the president over false claims. In my opinion, that is a sick and selfish thing to do, and sums up the morality and conscience of members of the Democratic party.
Let the rest of us be better and more respectful than Representative Wilson by remembering and honoring the life, legacy, and ultimate sacrifice made by Sgt. Johnson, and sending our thoughts and prayers to his family as well as the families of his three fallen brothers.