At last week’s Democratic National Convention, the parents of Capt. Humayun Khan, an American Muslim soldier who was killed in Iraq, offered a strong rebuttal to Donald Trump’s position on Muslims. Of course, Trump responded the way he always does, by attacking Khizr and Ghazala Khan and questioning whether what they said was written by Hillary Clinton’s speechwriter.
On Sunday Trump told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos,
If you look at [Khan’s] wife, she was standing there, she had nothing to say, she probably — maybe she wasn’t allowed to have anything to say, you tell me.
Trump’s attack has created a new rift between him and decent Republicans, and on Monday morning one of them, who has also found himself the target of Trump’s smears, spoke up. In a strongly worded statement Senator John McCain expressed his outrage at Trump’s remarks.
McCain released a statement which reads in part,
In recent days, Donald Trump disparaged a fallen soldier’s parents. He has suggested that the likes of their son should not be allowed in the United States — to say nothing of entering its service. I cannot emphasize enough how deeply I disagree with Mr. Trump’s statement. I hope Americans understand that the remarks do not represent the views of our Republican Party, its officers or candidates.
McCain goes on to remind his party’s nominee that he, unlike Trump, understands what it means to be in the military.
Make no mistake: I do not valorize our military out of some unfamiliar instinct.I grew up in a military family, and have my own record of service, and have stayed closely engaged with our armed forces throughout my public career. In the American system, the military has value only inasmuch as it protects and defends the liberties of the people.
McCain ally Senator Lindsey Graham also issued a statement condemning Trump.
This is going to a place where we’ve never gone before, to push back against the families of the fallen. There used to be some things that were sacred in American politics — that you don’t do — like criticizing the parents of a fallen soldier even if they criticize you.
If you’re going to be leader of the free world, you have to be able to accept criticism. Mr. Trump can’t. The problem is, ‘unacceptable’ doesn’t even begin to describe it.
Khizr and Ghazala Khan appeared on CNN’s New Day on Monday, where they said that Muslims like them are the solution to terrorism. Trump, who was apparently watching, continued his attack via Twitter as they spoke:
Mr. Khan, who does not know me, viciously attacked me from the stage of the DNC and is now all over T.V. doing the same – Nice!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 1, 2016
When asked to respond to that tweet, Khizr Khan showed what a true gentleman he is. Instead of lashing out, which Trump no doubt would have loved, he said:
You solve problems with empathy — putting people together. There are bad people among us [Muslims]. But there are good people among us as well. You gather good people to get rid of bad people.
It seems that Trump is digging himself a deeper hole with each passing day, at least when it comes to the sane among us. Republicans like McCain and Graham, who have never been in love with the party’s nominee, are now putting even more distance between them and him. Could Trump’s campaign implode post-convention? Or are there enough of those “poorly educated” voters Trump says he loves so much to sustain him through November?
Here is what Khizr Khan had to say on New Day:
Featured image via Win McNamee/Getty Images