RECAP: Why Did Trump Behave With So Much Negligence In Case of Sargent Johnson?
By: Kaitwan Jackson
In the wake of President Trump improperly recognizing the death of African-American Gold Star Sargent La David Johnson, much uproar from the Republican party has ensued. A phone call from President Trump to the grieving widow left the family shattered at the President Trump’s clear disregard for Sargent Johnson’s life. Congresswoman Frederica Wilson took it into her own hands to let the public know of the unmannerly things President Trump said to the family. Many officials are appalled by Congresswoman Frederica Wilson’s actions in reporting the phone call President Trump made to the grieving wife of Sargent Johnson.
Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson has gone as far as saying, “I think there are people just looking for something to complain about.” These people he is talking about are the family, friends and those that want due respect for Sargent Johnson; but for some reason Secretary Carson cannot understand this sentiment. He is one of the many that discredit the Congresswoman’s actions, when in fact she has played a pivotal role in the Sargent’s life since his childhood. With her organization, she helped provide Sargent Johnson and his family with life skills and support. As well, she was a close family friend to the Johnson’s and kept in regular contact with them. But the GOP seems not to understand her close connection to the family, and rather label her as “stirring the pot.”
Chief of Staff John Kelly is also opposed to the actions of Congresswoman Frederica Wilson. Kelly’s son was also killed in battle, and he relates to the significant loss of a loved one in combat, but he definitely does not relate to the disrespect the Johnson’s have faced. Chief of Staff Kelly said, “It stuns me that a member of Congress would have listened in on that conversation,” as if Congresswoman Wilson was eavesdropping. With the state of the current political atmosphere of the US, it is satisfying to see the political officials taking interest in the injustices facing the American people. Maybe this is another Republican tactic to bring shame upon the Democratic Party, using Congresswoman Frederica as the problem-starter.
But the confusion surrounding the story is why did President Trump felt no need to organize a respectful sentiment to the family? The widow claims President Trump failed to use Sargent Johnson’s name, and instead referred to him as “guy.” The President even went as far to say, “he knew what he signed up for;” as if a grieving wife would want to hear that.
In a recent speech with the press, President Trump attempted to justify his actions, and deflect the negativity as the result of the media. He referred to his Ivy League education as validity for his benevolence and good morality. He even claims, “the press creates a different image of Donald Trump.” However, his claims that the media are the ones continuously slandering his name conflict with his continuous use of the media to display his opinions.
There is slim chance that President Trump will apologize to the grieving family, because he may see no flaw in his actions. But a young widow in North Carolina has provided substantial evidence that President Trump does carry the capacity to offer sincere condolences. When Michelle Black’s husband died in Niger, she received a phone call from President Trump, and she said the “President has been caring to me, my family.” In this case, Black’s deceased husband was a Caucasian Gold Star special forces soldier; of similar rank to Sargent Davis. This prompts the question of why this soldier’s family was grief was handled more carefully by President Trump. Not to blame it on race, but let’s be real, race could be a very real factor.
President Trump has claimed he has “receipts” of the encounter, but so far nothing has surfaced. As he continues to defend the sincerity behind his message, one would expect him to provide factual evidence that he did not say the things the family is claiming he did. This story has dragged on when a simple apology to the family would have sufficed. Who knows, an apology might have helped President Trump appear more human, and have his public approval increase.