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“sacred”? jarhead, please

October 21, 2017

I believe that a Trump unchecked has unlimited potential to fuck things up beyond all repair and recognition.  Ergo, I  have deeply appreciated the efforts of fellow Marine John Kelly to mind the baby.  Until a few days ago.

Kelly had been the calm center of Hurricane Donnie until Trump bungled the condolence call to Myeshia Johnson, widow of  soldier La David Johnson.  Sgt. Johnson was one of four soldiers (including Staff Sergeants Bryan Black, Justin Wright and Jeremiah Johnson) killed in the Niger ambush.

Ms. Johnson and her family, along with U.S. Representative Frederica Wilson — a long-time family friend — were on their way to receive Sgt. Johnson’s body when Trump called.  He was put on speaker phone.  According to Wilson and family members, POTUS did not use Sgt. Johnson’s name.  He did say, however, words to the effect of  “he knew what he he was getting into when he signed up, but it still must hurt”.

Trump swore that those words were suggested by Kelly, who listened to the call on speaker phone along with other officials.  I can see how Trump might have rewritten the first part as he filtered Kelly’s words through his brain, the Swamp Too Deep to Drain.   As former cannon fodder, I agree that Sgt. Johnson likely considered the possibility he might get killed, yet you don’t enlist with that goal.

But I’d wager that “it still must hurt” was an ad lib, like when he reads off a teleprompter, then goes off script with something inane like “and that’s really important”.  Trump usually gets into trouble when he speculates about human emotions, like Sheldon Cooper does.

So the game was afoot and Trump went to his playbook.  He claimed that Obama and other presidents didn’t even make condolence calls, a charge quickly shot down.  He railed about Rep. Wilson “SECRETLY” listening in, even as he, Kelly and others (I’m guessing some other white guys) did the same.

Then he went long.  He had Kelly attack Rep. Wilson.  He called her an “empty barrel”.  He stated erroneously that she had boasted in 2015 about securing funds for a building named after Gerry Dove and Benjamin Grogan, two FBI agents killed in a 1986 Miami shootout.  She did give a speech about working with Republicans to name the building, but she wasn’t in Congress when it was funded.  Nonetheless, Kelly was “stunned” by this non-incident.  And, of course, Trump had to pile-on.

Then it got weirder.  Kelly said that condolence calls should be “sacred”, like women were when he was growing up.  Back when they had equal pay and comprised half of Congress, General?

Then it got even weirder.  Sarah Sanders, Trump’s press secretary, thought she might put matters to rest by saying it was highly inappropriate to question a four-star general.  She has since walked that back.  Sanders is the daughter of former GOP presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee.  He’s an ordained Southern Baptist minister.  I’d love to see her have to do a press conference with her hand on the Bible.

It’s still a fine mess.  The Niger ambush that started it all is beginning to look like the Republican fantasy version of the Benghazi incident.  I hope Kelly will do a 180 and challenge Trump.  I fear he’ll do a 180 and quit.  And I fear that he may have gone over to the Dark Side.  However it plays out, the plot gets more Stygian.



  1. Anonymous permalink
    October 23, 2017 10:55 am

    What does Stygian mean? IT

    • October 23, 2017 4:02 pm

      It means”dark” or “hellish”, a reference to the river Styx. I suppose it could also refer to the Chicago rock band that gave us “Come Sail Away”, “Mister Roboto” and “Too Much Time on My Hands”, but that seems beside the point.

      • Anonymous permalink
        October 24, 2017 11:11 am

        Thank you Word Doc.

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