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On Independence Day, many people tuned in to see what President Donald Trump might say during his militaristic “Salute to America” speech.
While Trump probably wanted his message to be remembered for other reasons, it was an incredible gaffe that made headlines the following day.
During his speech, Trump described aspects of the Revolutionary War, missing historical marks in just a few sentences he spoke — including stating that the thirteen colonies, fighting as one nation, took over airports, almost a century-and-a-half before airplanes were invented.
“Our Army manned the air, it rammed the ramparts, it took over the airports, it did everything it had to do, and at Fort McHenry, under the rockets’ red glare it had nothing but victory,” Trump said, per previous reporting from HillReporter.com.
Many people and pundits questioned what exactly had he meant by the statement. On Friday, Trump provided an answer: a faulty teleprompter had caused him to misspeak.
“I guess the rain knocked out the teleprompter,” Trump said, according to a report from Fox News. “I knew the speech very well. So I was able to do without a teleprompter, but the teleprompter did go out and it was actually hard to look at anyway because [there] was rain all over it.”
But that excuse isn’t really an excuse at all. If Trump “knew the speech very well,” why did a faulty teleprompter cause him to talk about airports in the Revolutionary War? Wouldn’t he have known better than to blather on about airports?
Consider the opposite problem: if Trump “knew the speech very well,” and delivered it on a sunny, clear day, with no teleprompter malfunction whatsoever, would he still deliver such an outrageous line?
No outcome from this gaffe and his explanation of it is good for Trump. It reveals that he’s either extremely uninformed or possibly suffering from a mental impairment; or, if he’s lying about blaming the teleprompter, that he’s willing to read whatever is put in front of him, without first putting some critical thought into it.
It may seem trivial, but Americans deserve a better answer from Trump. Perhaps he can demonstrate some semblance of humility for once, and just plainly admit: “I messed up.” It’d be a welcome change from a president who rarely, if ever, admits a mistake.
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Chris Walker is a freelance writer based out of Madison, Wisconsin. A millennial with more than a decade of journalism experience, Chris aims to provide readers with the latest and most accurate news of national importance. Chris likes to spend his free time doing activities in his community with his family.