J.R. Martinez (Brot, ALL MY CHILDREN) wrote an open letter to presidential candidate Donald Trump in response to his recent disrespectful behavior towards military veterans.
After a vet gave him the Purple Heart he’d been awarded and Trump joked how he’d always wanted the medal but this was an easier way to get it, Martinez was compelled to respond, posting a passionate message on mic.com.
“In April 2003, the Humvee I was driving outside of Karbala Iraq, ran over a roadside bomb,” Martinez wrote. “I was trapped inside the burning vehicle for five minutes. I can tell you without equivocation that the one award I did not want to receive was a Purple Heart, but I got one anyway. And I’ll tell you now, I didn’t get mine the easy way.
“So far you seem to have denigrated a prisoner of war,” he mused, “disparaged a four-star general who devoted his life to service, and disrespected the faith and the grief of a Gold Star family. Any one of these actions alone would otherwise disqualify a person auditioning for the role of our Commander in Chief.”
Martinez also confides that his four-year-old daughter, Lauryn, has more empathy than Trump. “When I take her to the park and other children stare at the scars that cover my face and arms,” he wrote, “she takes my hand and encourages me to talk to those young children and explain why I look the way I look.”
Having met Trump before, and feeling as though he genuinely cared about his service and sacrifice for America, Martinez has found it difficult to reconcile that man with the one spouting his current rhetoric. “I respectfully suggest you get a primer on the word sacrifice,” he concluded, “as well as a lesson in human decency.”
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