Over the weekend, the media exploded – not with news of Hillary Clinton lying again about her emails, or Barack Obama’s train wreck economic recovery, but with Donald Trump’s response to the Khan family. The Khan family – Khizr Khan and his wife Ghazala Khan – appeared on stage at the Democratic National Convention, where Khizr spoke about his son, slain soldier Captain Humayun Khan, and ripped Trump in the process, saying that Trump’s Muslim immigration policy would have barred him and his son, and that Trump had “sacrificed nothing.”
Trump, incapable of forethought or decency, immediately fired back by suggesting that Ghazala had stayed silent because of religious sexism, and said, “I think I made a lot of sacrifices.”
Here are the lessons to be learned:
1. Trump Is An Idiot. As always, Donald Trump is a fool. He said that the Khan family doesn’t have a right to attack him – which, if he’d ever read the Constitution, he’d know is untrue. By contrast, here’s how George W. Bush responded to Cindy Sheehan making similarly provocative claims about him after her son was killed in Iraq:
Part of my duty as the President is to meet with those who’ve lost a loved one. And so, you know, listen, I sympathize with Mrs. Sheehan. She feels strongly about her –about her position. And I am – she has every right in the world to say what she believes. This is America. She has a right to her position. And I’ve thought long and hard about her position. I’ve heard her position from others, which is, get out of Iraq now. And it would be – it would be a mistake for the security of this country and the ability to lay the foundations for peace in the long-run, if we were to do so.
That was not Trump’s response. And he’s being pilloried for ripping the Khan family. Ardent Trump supporters praise him for fighting back – his special, magical friend Roger Stone has even been tweeting out the conspiracy theory that Humayun was a secret jihadi.
But this is typical Trump. He isn’t moderating. He isn’t swiveling. He can’t change who he is. And he’s a clod.
2. The Media Have Destroyed Their Credibility. As mentioned, George W. Bush gave a respectful and proper response to Cindy Sheehan in 2005. That didn’t stop the network media from running over 100 stories about Sheehan vs. George W. Bush. The same news media currently (rightly) saying that Trump is unfit for office said the same about Mitt Romney, whom they termed racist, sexist, bigoted and homophobic. They have no credibility left. As Jonah Goldberg has written, the media cried wolf with every Republican for the last twenty years. They can’t now cry wolf and expect anyone to hear them.
3. The Media Will Defend Gold Star Families…Unless Hillary Attacks Them. It’s also worth noting that this weekend, Hillary Clinton essentially called the families of the Benghazi fallen liars. Those families said that Hillary lied to them about the source of their children’s murder – she claimed a YouTube video was responsible. Here was her response on Sunday: “As other members of families who have lost loved ones have said, that’s not what they heard. I don’t hold any ill feeling for someone, who, in that moment, may not fully recall everything what was or wasn’t said.” This is nonsense. No family has come out and said that the Woods and Smith Gold Star families are lying. The media, naturally, didn’t cover Hillary’s slander of these Gold Star families at all.
4. None Of This Should Have Any Impact On Policy. The media seem to suggest that because Humayun Khan died in service to America, therefore giving greater scrutiny to Muslim immigrants to the United States is unjustified. That’s foolishness. The Khan family made an emotional appeal, not a logical one. The people who killed Humayun Khan were Muslim, too. We want more Muslims like Humayun in the United States and fewer like those who murdered him.
Trump isn’t getting better. The media aren’t getting better. Hillary isn’t getting better, because nobody holds us accountable.
What an awful election.