In response to mounting criticism over Donald Trump’s dismissal of the family of a dead Muslim U.S. soldier, President Barack Obama on Monday fired back at the Republican presidential nominee.
Obama’s remarks came at the Disabled American Veterans’ National Conference in Atlanta, and followed statements by Trump appearing to demean the sacrifice of Khizr and Ghazala Khan, whose son Humayun died in 2005 while serving in Iraq.
“No one—no one—has given more for our freedom and security than our Gold Star families,” Obama said on Monday, according to Time. “They represent the very best of our country. They continue to inspire us every day and every moment. They serve of as a powerful reminder of the true strength of America.”
He added that the United States. has to “do everything that we can for those families and honor them and be humbled by them.”
It comes after an interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos, which aired over the weekend. Trump said that he’d made “a lot of sacrifices” in his life – it appeared that Trump, who could only seem to recall his business-related sacrifices, was comparing his struggle to that of the Khan family.
Trump sparked even more outrage by implying during the interview that Muslim faith prevented Ghazala Khan from speaking while standing alongside her husband at last week's Democratic convention. It was a speech that sparked the current firestorm.
During the convention, Khizr Khan took the podium to speak about his family’s sacrifice to the country, criticizing Trump but claiming, “You have sacrificed nothing.”
“Let me ask you, have you even read the U.S. Constitution? I will gladly lend you my copy,” Khizr Khan said. “Look for the words ‘liberty’ and ‘equal protection of law.’ Have you ever been to Arlington National Cemetery? Go look at the graves of the brave patriots who died defending this country.”