There is not a single thing that Donald Trump holds sacred. Most Americans view 9/11 as a solemn occasion to reflect on those who lost their lives on that fateful day and a reminder that our national unity transcends petty partisan politics. Donald Trump sees it as just another excuse to sling mud at his political enemies.
On Saturday, former President George W. Bush gave a speech to commemorate the 20th anniversary of 9/11. Regardless of what one thinks of his admittedly disastrous presidency, his remarks were undeniably genuine and heartfelt. Notably, Bush warned of the threat posed by “domestic extremism” and compared those engaged in it to the terrorists who attacked the World Trade Center and Pentagon. Many interpreted his words as a condemnation of the Trump supporters who carried out the deadly January 6th insurrection in Washington D.C.
Trump apparently took offense at one of his predecessors obliquely calling out the MAGA crowd and today he said that Bush “shouldn’t be lecturing us about anything” because the World Trade Center “came down during his watch.” He slammed Bush for starting and then “not winning” the wars in the Middle East and decried Bush for condemning right-wing terror.
“Bush led a failed and uninspiring presidency. He shouldn’t be lecturing anybody!” added Trump.
While there is truth to the claim that Bush’s presidency was a failed one, so was Donald Trump’s. Bush started two ill-fated wars and primed the 2008 financial collapse through his embrace of extreme deregulation. Trump botched the federal response to the COVID-19 outbreak and ended up getting impeached twice, once for leveraging U.S. military aid to Ukraine to dig up dirt on Joe Biden, and once for inciting the Capitol insurrection. Trump doesn’t have a leg to stand on when it comes to criticizing someone else’s presidency.
One shudders to think how Donald Trump would have handled an unparalleled crisis like 9/11. The man is spineless and self-centered. There is no world in which he would have been able to rise above his own profound character flaws to lead the nation through such a dark moment. He likely would have found a way to twist the attacks into some kind of hack partisan fight and would have certainly used them as an excuse to vilify American Muslims. Bush is far from perfect but at least he’s human.
Trump attacks George W. Bush after his 9/11 speech on Saturday and remarks about domestic extremism. “He shouldn’t be lecturing us about anything. The World Trade Center came down during his watch. Bush led a failed and uninspiring presidency. He shouldn’t be lecturing anybody!”
— Manu Raju (@mkraju) September 13, 2021
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This is a staff report from former Occupy Democrats Editor in Chief Colin Taylor or contributor Rob Haffney.