(NEW YORK) — The grieving Khan family reacted Saturday night to Donald Trump’s latest comments, telling ABC News in an emotional interview that “running for president is not an entitlement to disrespect Gold Star families and [a] Gold Star mother.”
In his first response to a searing charge from bereaved Army father Khizr Khan at the Democratic National Convention that he’d “sacrificed nothing” for his country, Trump told ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos that he had in fact sacrificed by employing “thousands and thousands of people.” He also suggested that Khan’s wife Ghazala didn’t speak at the DNC because she was forbidden to as a Muslim and questioned whether Khan’s words were his own.
“Sacrifice — I don’t think he knows the meaning of sacrifice, the meaning of the word,” Ghazala Khan, mother of slain Army Captain Humayun Kahn said. “Because when I was standing there, all America felt my pain. Without saying a single word. Everybody felt that pain.”
While Ghazala Khan grew visibly upset, her husband, Khizr Khan was livid, urging Trump’s children to “tell him to learn to behave, learn to be decent.”
“Running for president is not an entitlement to disrespect Gold Star families and [a] Gold Star mother not realizing her pain. Shame on him! Shame on his family!” Khizr Khan said, struggling to hold back his anger. “He is not worthy of our comments. He has no decency. He is void of decency, he has a dark heart.”
In response to Trump’s suggestion that Ghazala Khan did not speak at the DNC because it was forbidden by her religion, she said Saturday the real reason she remained silent was her all-consuming grief.
“I didn’t feel anything except the pain,” she said through tears, before pleading: “Mr. Trump feel that pain and you will feel better. Please. I am very upset when I heard when he said that I didn’t say anything. I was in pain. If you were in pain you fight or you don’t say anything, I’m not a fighter, I can’t fight. So the best thing I do was quiet.”
Khizr Khan said he asked his wife of 42 years to speak, but she declined, knowing she would be too emotional.
“I invited her, would you like to say something on the stage when the invitation came, and she said, ‘You know how it is with me, how upset I get,'” he said.
Ghazala Khan went on to say that she’s sorry Trump doesn’t understand their faith.
“I don’t know what type of Islam he has read or heard. I’m so sorry about that, that he has not had any idea what the Islam is,” she said.
“My faith, Islam, has given us strength, all the woman and man are equal in God’s eyes. We are equal, we are the part of our husbands, they are the part of us. We can tell them what to do, they can tell us what to do,” she said, noting she was trying to calm her husband down during his speech at the DNC.
“Our religion tells us to be very peaceful, to love each other, to stay with each other, just don’t say bad things to your neighbor, or anyone. That’s why I was trying to calm my husband down. Don’t say anything about Mr. Trump! That’s his character, not ours,” she said. “We are proud of our religion and our family and our children and this country.”
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