Meghan McCain, a daughter of the 2008 Republican presidential nominee, Senator John McCain (R-AZ), is using Twitter to stand up to her party’s 2016 nominee, New York City businessman and brand licensor Donald Trump, according to The Hill. Trump has sparked outrage this week by responding negatively to Khizr and Ghazala Khan, a Muslim American couple who lost their son, United States Army Captain Humayun Khan, in 2004 during Operation Iraqi Freedom — and who appeared at the Democratic National Committee’s 2016 convention this month to nominate former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for the presidency.
Meghan McCain, age 31, invoked Donald Trump’s controversial comments from last summer about her father’s record as a war hero, when Trump stated that Senator McCain is not a war hero because he was captured by the North Vietnamese after his plane was shot down in 1967. Senator McCain, an aviator in the United States Navy, was held as a prisoner of war (POW) until 1973, experiencing many episodes of torture that resulted in permanent physical injury. Trump suggested that his 1967 capture indicates that Senator McCain was an incompetent soldier.
“I like people who weren’t captured.”
Khizr and Ghazala Khan appeared in primetime at the Democratic National Convention to speak out against Donald Trump’s campaign rhetoric that demonizes Muslims, reminding the public that some of his suggestions — such as a ban on Muslims entering the country, or a government-powered database of Muslim residents of the United States — are unconstitutional. Khizr Khan did all of the talking during this one particular public appearance, and Trump chose to focus on that for his response to the couple, suggesting that Ghazala Khan “wasn’t allowed to have anything to say” during their appearance because of her religion, a claim for which he provided no evidence.
Ghazala Khan did speak during a joint interview with her husband on Lawrence O’Donnell’s primetime MSNBC show The Last Word on Friday night.
Ghazala Khan then chose to personally respond in print to Donald Trump’s remarks about her silence during her appearance at the DNC convention, explaining in an op-ed for The Washington Post that she was silent due to the overwhelming grief that still overtakes her, 12 years after the death of her son.
“Donald Trump said I had nothing to say. I do. My son Humayun Khan, an Army captain, died 12 years ago in Iraq. He loved America, where we moved when he was 2 years old. He had volunteered to help his country, signing up for the ROTC at the University of Virginia. This was before the attack of Sept. 11, 2001. He didn’t have to do this, but he wanted to. […] Just talking about it is hard for me all the time. Every day, whenever I pray, I have to pray for him, and I cry. The place that emptied will always be empty. […] Donald Trump said that maybe I wasn’t allowed to say anything. That is not true. My husband asked me if I wanted to speak, but I told him I could not.”
Meghan McCain is not alone when it comes to the McCain family’s righteous anger and hurt in response to Donald Trump’s comments last summer denigrating Senator John McCain’s service. The Hill also reported on Friday that Senator McCain’s granddaughter, Caroline McCain — an avowed Republican — chose to endorse Hillary Clinton instead of Donald Trump in an essay that she posted to Medium, largely due to Trump’s hurtful comments about her grandfather.
Meghan McCain has been unafraid to challenge members of her own party on Twitter before, fielding constructive criticism as well as weathering sexist and derogatory comments. McCain continues to work in the political arena despite these attacks, and maintains an active presence on social media while hosting America Now Radio for iHeart Radio, as well as working as a Fox News contributor and a columnist for Cosmopolitan.
[Image courtesy of Robin Marchant/Getty Images]