Donald Trump: How Dare You Call Me Out For Mocking A Disabled Person (WITH VIDEO)

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Image courtesy Gage Skidmore, available under a Creative Commons-Noncommercial license

Ever since launching his bid to buy the presidency, Donald Trump has demonstrated time and again that he is morally unfit for any political office whatsoever. Well, add another entry to that list. After being deservedly slammed for mocking a reporter who is physically disabled, Trump is screaming that he is the one who should get an apology.

While on the campaign trail in Myrtle Beach on Tuesday, Trump repeated his claim that thousands of North Jersey Muslims cheered the destruction of the World Trade Center on 9-11. As evidence, he has frequently cited a Washington Post article co-authored by Serge Kovaleski that referred to people being detained by immigration authorities after they were seen celebrating the carnage. There’s just one problem–the article only says that “a number of people,” not “thousands,” were detained.

When Trump heard that Kovaleski had told MSNBC’s Steve Kornacki that he never said large numbers of people were celebrating the attacks, he responded in what has become typical fashion. Watch here.

While waving his arms in the manner of a disabled person, Trump sarcastically said, “I don’t remember!” Kovaleski has arthrogryposis, a congenital joint condition that limits his ability to move his arms.

Not surprisingly, the criticism has come in fast and hard.

For its part, The New York Times, Kovaleski’s current employer, rushed out with a statement calling it “outrageous” that Trump would mock Kovaleski in this way. Trump’s response was to spend Wednesday night trolling the Times on Twitter.

Trump also claimed that he didn’t even know Kovaleski–a claim that Kovaleski himself finds hard to believe, since Trump called him “a nice reporter” before launching into his smear. When Kovaleski wrote for the (New York) Daily News from 1987 to 1993, he frequently covered Trump. If Trump expects us to believe he doesn’t remember Kovaleski from that time, he’s even more delusional than we thought.

On Thursday afternoon, Trump issued a statement demanding that the Times apologize to him.

Come off it, Donald. It’s pretty clear that you definitely know who Kovaleski is. You’re not fooling anyone by playing dumb. The Times, and everyone else, was absolutely right to call you out for your disgraceful attack on Kovaleski. And you’re saying that because of that, you’re the one who deserves an apology? If how you run your campaign is an indication of how you will act in office, we should all shudder to think of what a Trump White House will be like. After all, he seems to think that such things as basic standards of decency are just things in his way.

But leaving that aside, we now know that a major-party presidential candidate finds it acceptable to mock disabled people. Even if he wasn’t trying to mock Kovaleski specifically, Trump’s behavior on Tuesday would have gotten him drummed out of the race in a country with a more civilized standard of political discourse. In a sane world, there would have been demands from across the spectrum for Trump to get out of the race–and he probably would have been out of the race before Tuesday was out. But so far, nothing.

While I know that any halfway competent Democrat would destroy Trump in a head-to-head race, episodes like this are why I find it hard to applaud the prospect of Trump actually getting the nomination. It’s not good for the country in the long run to have a major-party candidate who thinks it’s even remotely acceptable to mock the disabled in this way.

Darrell is a 30-something graduate of the University of North Carolina who considers himself a journalist of the old school. An attempt to turn him into a member of the religious right in college only succeeded in turning him into the religious right's worst nightmare--a charismatic Christian who is an unapologetic liberal. His desire to stand up for those who have been scared into silence only increased when he survived an abusive three-year marriage. You may know him on Daily Kos as Christian Dem in NC. Follow him on Twitter @DarrellLucus or connect with him on Facebook. Click here to buy Darrell a Mello Yello.