OPINION: Meghan McCain: ‘America was always great’
The deeply moving funeral service held last Saturday at the Washington National Cathedral was a badly needed shot in the arm for a deeply and bitterly divided nation.
Speaker after speaker came to the pulpit at this magnificent cathedral to praise the service and heroism of this remarkable man. They included former President Barack Obama and former President George Bush. The speakers were a reminder that America at its best does not have to be divided by party loyalty or labels such as conservative or liberal.
Noticeably absent (and playing golf) was President Donald Trump, who mocked the heroism of McCain, who was tortured as a prisoner of war after his plane crashed in North Vietnam, during a presidential primary debate. “I like people who weren’t captured,” said Trump.
Trump’s daughter Ivanka and son-in-law Jared Kushner attended the funeral, as well as his chief of staff, John Kelly, national security adviser, John R. Bolton, and Rudolph Giuliani, the president’s lawyer and former mayor of New York City.
The highlight of a very moving ceremony came during the eulogy delivered by McCain’s daughter Meghan who spoke in tears about her father:
“We gather here,” she said, “to mourn the passing of American greatness — the real thing, not cheap rhetoric from men who will never come near the sacrifice he gave so willingly, nor the opportunistic appropriation of those who lived lives of comfort and privilege while he suffered and served.”
She later declared: “The America of John McCain has no need to be made great again because America was always great.” The audience then burst into applause, something that rarely happens during a funeral held at the cathedral.
As New York prepares for the upcoming elections, we will do well to remember a hero who placed patriotism and service to the nation above partisanship.
We agree with Meghan. Yes, America was always great and this is, in part, because of courageous people like her father.
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