Donald Trump: The cowardly lion (Twitter: Erik Bergstrom)

When Donald Trump got into trouble as a kid, which happened a lot, his strong-willed father shipped him off to a military school to “teach him discipline.”

We’re not sure that, if anything, Trump learned in that school but discipline was not something that sank in.

Trump is many things: A liar, a con artist, a serial sexual predator, a manipulator and other sordid items but the man who went to military school worked the system to the hilt to make sure he never served his country in uniform.

The 45th President of the United States actively sought five deferments to keep him out of the military during the Vietnam war era and one of those deferments came from a doctor who said he had “bone spurs” in his heels.  That then led to a “1-Y” classification, which left him “unqualified for duty.”

Reported The Washington Post in 2015:

Trump had avoided the draft — and the possibility of being sent to fight in the Vietnam War — by obtaining four separate deferments so he could study at Fordham University and the University of Pennsylvania. With his diploma in hand and his college days over, he was suddenly vulnerable to conscription.

Trump’s exposure to the draft, however, didn’t last long. Two months later, on Sept. 17, 1968, he reported for an armed forces physical examination and was medically disqualified, according to the ledger from his local Selective Service System draft board in Jamaica, N.Y., now in the custody of the National Archives.

An interesting diagnosis for the 6 foot 2 inches tall Trump who, at 180 pounds when he graduated from New York Military Academy in 1964 and played football and basketball without any signs of medical problems.

During his campaign for President in 2015 and 2016, Trump listed various — and often conflicted — reasons for his ability to avoid the draft at a time when the military looked for young men to serve and die in the Vietnam war.

He cited his “bone spurs.”  His campaign said he had a high draft lottery number.  The draft office records simply said a “medical condition.”  His other four deferments came from staying in colleges and universities to obtain education qualifications to avoid the draft.

Trump is not the only recent president to play the system to stay out of the Vietnam war. Bill Clinton used a Rhodes Scholarship and back ordered papers to avoid the draft.  George W. Bush hid out in the Texas Air National Guard, where he often played hooky and did not serve his full deployment.  Barack Obama never served.  The last American President who served was George H.W. Bush, a decorated Navy pilot who was shot down in World War II.

With military service now comprised mostly of an “all-volunteer” population, such service is far more rare than when the draft was in effect in previous wars, including Vietnam.

Navy veteran and former prisoner of war John McCain also has a few things to say about Trump’s lack of service to his country:

One aspect of the conflict, by the way, that I will never ever countenance is that we drafted the lowest-income level of America, and the highest-income level found a doctor that would say that they had a bone spur. That is wrong. That is wrong. If we are going to ask every American to serve, every American should serve.

Trump, during his campaign, criticized McCain for his time as a prisoner of war.

He’s not a war hero. He’s a war hero because he was captured. I like people that weren’t captured.

McCain, the next day, said he wasn’t trying to call Trump a draft dodger.  Too bad, because he is.

McCain is a highly decorated Navy combat pilot whose plane was brought down by a North Vietnamese missile on Oct. 26, 1967.  After a rough ejection that left him with both arms and his left leg severely fractured, McCain’s parachute came down in a lake and he had to use his teeth to inflate his life vest.

When North Vietnamese captured him, they beat and spat on him.  He spent two of his six years in a prisoner of war camp.  When interrogators tried to force him to give up names of fellow pilots, he gave them the names of the Green Bay Packers offensive line.

When his captors learned McCain’s father was an admiral, they offered him release ahead of other prisoners as a propaganda ploy.  He refused and received more severe beatings before finally coming home on March 14, 1973, with other POWs.

John McCain served his country as a hero under duress.

Donald Trump insults his country as a coward.  Bone spurs?  More like a case of being boneheaded, which the dictionary defines as “a foolish or stupid person.”

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Copyright © 2017 Capitol Hill Blue

 

Doug Thompson published his first story and photo at age 11 -- a newspaper article about racism and the Klan in Prince Edward County, VA, in 1958. From that point on, he decided to become a newspaperman and did just that -- reporting news and taking photos full-time at his hometown paper, becoming the youngest full-time reporter at The Roanoke Times in Virginia in 1965 and spent most of the past 55+ years covering news around the country and the globe. After a short sabbatical as a political operative in Washington in the 1980s, he returned to the news profession in 1992. Today, he is a contract reporter/photojournalist for BHMedia and owns Capitol Hill Blue and other news websites.

3 COMMENTS

  1. When learned John McCain is son of an admiral, the North Vietnamese offered him early release for propaganda advantage. Right there, McCain was a true hero. Not because he served, not because he got captured. Unfortunately, the North Vietnamese found Jane Fonda, who offered them plenty of propaganda advantages, and that’s all they needed. While McCain spent time in prision, Mr. Trump busy conning Americans of their dimes and pennies, party with playboy bunnies, and living a luxurious life of a heir. Trump will meet his karma real soon

  2. “Donald Trump insults his country as a coward. Bone spurs? More like a case of being boneheaded, which the dictionary defines as “a foolish or stupid person.””

    I think he is more the narcissistic coward than “…foolish or stupid”.

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