Losers and Suckers
Can anyone seriously doubt that Donald Trump called World War I Marines “losers” and “suckers,” as reported on Thursday by Jeffrey Goldberg in The Atlantic? Or that he wondered aloud why anyone willingly serves in our military? And that he didn’t want wounded veterans participating in a parade?
No, and here’s why:
These comments follow logically from Trump’s own words.
1. Though his most well-known “loser” is probably former Senator and POW John McCain, he has also described many others this way: Bill Kristol, Chuck Todd, Jeb Bush, Karl Rove, Marco Rubio, Rihanna, Seth Meyers, Tina Brown, and a host of unnamed Twitter users.
2. He’s disparaged the military before. He called James Mattis “the world’s most overrated general”; he said that General John Kelly, his former chief of staff, “misses the action and just can’t keep his mouth shut”; and he bullied Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman for his impeachment testimony, calling Vindman “very insubordinate” and someone who “did a lot of bad things.”
3. “Suckers” is another one of Trump’s words. It’s a concept he fears. “Why is the United States always the sucker?” he said in February, opining that Europeans take us for granted. And when he announced troop withdrawals from Germany in July, he said, “We don’t want to be the suckers anymore.”
4. He has no understanding of military service. As Nancy Pelosi said on Friday, “Every day Trump makes clear that he does not comprehend what it means to sacrifice for one’s country — as he consistently puts his own interests ahead of our national security and those who defend it,” citing his refusal to stand up to Vladimir Putin. I would add his praise for Chinese dictator Xi Jinping, his coddling of Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, and his sending troops to build the border wall.
5. Finally, why wouldn’t Trump want wounded veterans in his parade? Recall his 2015 mockery of New York Times reporter Serge Kovaleski’s disability, or consider Trump’s derogatory comments on women’s “ugly” faces. Clearly he disdains anyone who doesn’t meet his standard of appearance.
Though General Kelly could confirm The Atlantic report if he were willing to speak out, we don’t really need him to. Donald Trump’s history of insults echo from one week to the next. His language and behavior pollute the office he holds, and for this reason alone we should vote him out.