President Joe Biden announced his plan to award America’s highest civilian honor last week to the likes of deceased Senator John McCain, Gold Star father Khizr Khan, and US soccer star Megan Rapinoe.
The decision to name, McCain, Khan, and Rapinoe will likely be viewed as a slight against President Trump. Both established themselves as outspoken critics of the former president during his time in office.
Megan Rapinoe famously declared in 2019 that the US Women’s Soccer team was “not going to the f*****g White House” if her team won the world championship, a statement directed at the former president.
Trump openly fought back against Rapinoe at the time, calling her the “woman with purple hair” and calling the US Women’s Soccer team a group of “leftist maniacs”.
John McCain’s feud with the ex-president was also well recorded. Donald Trump took a pot shot at McCain at one point during the 2016 Presidential primaries, suggesting that McCain couldn’t be considered a “war hero” because he had been captured and tortured by the Viet Cong. McCain had frequently accused Trump of being a puppet of Russian President Vladimir Putin.
McCain also played a pivotal role in the dissemination of the fake Russian Dossier used against Trump in that election cycle. Former British spy Christopher Steele was indirectly paid by the Clinton campaign to hand off the sketchy document to McCain while he was meeting foreign dignitaries in London and prompting him to take it to the FBI so they couldn’t easily trace it back to Hillary Clinton.
Another recipient of the Medal of Freedom was Khzir Khan. Trump also had a long-standing feud with the Khan family after they gave a speech at the 2016 DNC where Khzir criticized the former President for not properly honoring his Muslim soldier son by mocking prisoners of war and suggesting a travel ban on anyone of the Muslim faith.
Others who will be awarded are Richard Trumka of the AFL-CIO, of the Olympic Gold Medalist Simone Biles, Congresswoman Gabby Giffords, actor Denzel Washington, Sister Simone Campbell, who runs a Catholic social justice organization, Dr. Julieta Garcia, president of University of Texas at Brownsville, Father Alexander Karloutsos, former Vicar General of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, Sandra Lindsay, a New York nurse who took the first COVID vaccine, civil rights advocates Diane Nash and Raúl Yzaguirre, former Wyoming Republican Sen. Alan Simpson, and Brigadier General Wilma Vaught, one of the most decorated female generals in U.S. history.
It’s hard not to see a pattern amongst multiple people on this Medal of Freedom list as staunch, anti-Trump allies. Do you think half of them would have ever been named on their own or were they only picked for the public rebuke of the former US leader?