Niger War Widow Myeshia Johnson ‘Just Looking For Something To Complain About,’ HUD Secretary Ben Carson Says
Myeshia Johnson, the pregnant widow of United States Army Sergeant La David Johnson, has been the target of attacks from the Donald Trump administration as well as from Trump supporters online since she received an insensitive call from Trump about the death of her husband in Niger on October 4. In fact, one Trump-supporting former congressman, Joe Walsh of Illinois, said via his Twitter account on Monday that “we have a right to attack her.”
The latest attack came on Wednesday from Trump administration Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson, who implied that Johnson and her family were somehow being insincere in saying they were hurt by Trump’s remarks.
Trump himself made a point of contradicting the grieving widow on his own Twitter account Monday, after Johnson appeared on the ABC TV program Good Morning America and revealed that in his supposed condolence call to her on October 17, Trump could not recall her husband’s name and could be heard on the phone shuffling through papers to find the name of the slain soldier.
Trump took to his Twitter account shortly after Johnson’s interview aired, declaring that he “spoke his name from beginning, without hesitation!”
Frederica Wilson, the South Florida congresswoman who has been a longtime friend of the Johnson family, was the first to reveal Trump’s insensitive remarks in the condolence call — quoting Trump as telling Myeshia Johnson that her husband “knew what he signed up for” — and Wilson has also been the target of numerous attacks and even death threats.
But on Wednesday, Carson appeared at a public forum hosted by the Washington, D.C., political online site The Hill, and took the opportunity to attack Myeshia Johnson and her supporters yet again, dismissing them as complainers.
“I think there were people who were just looking for something to complain about,” Carson said when asked about Myeshia Johnson and her family’s reactions to Trump’s botched condolence call.
Carson, who like both Johnson and Wilson is African American, went on to make a racially tinged joke about the Johnson family’s response to Trump’s comments.
“If he (Trump) had said, you know, ‘I’m sorry, this is sure a dark day for you,’ they would have said ‘See, he’s a racist, he said a dark day,'” Carson quipped.
The Carson comments were first distributed to the media by the liberal Washington, D.C., research group American Bridge. A spokesperson for the group slammed Carson’s comments as “another example of the lack of sympathy from the Trump Administration for families of American service men and women killed in action.”
“The video clearly shows Secretary Carson channeling Donald Trump and maligning a Gold Star family’s sacrifice,” spokesperson Harrell Kirstein said.
Watch video of Carson’s remarks characterizing Myeshia Johnson and her supporters as people prone to complaining, below.
Shortly after Trump’s remarks to Johnson were made public by Wilson, the widow became the victim of a widespread social media hoax, as numerous conservative accounts on Twitter and Facebook circulated a Facebook post attributed to Myeshia Johnson in which she appeared to attack Wilson and defend Trump. But that post was quickly exposed as fake, and Johnson denied that she had written it.
In fact, in her Good Morning America interview — the only public appearance that Myeshia Johnson has made since her husband’s death — said that she remained “very angry” about Trump’s insensitive phone call to her.
[Featured Image by Joe Raedle/Getty Images]