‘Like Talking to a Toddler': Veteran Whose 14-Year-Old Was Killed in Santa Fe School Shooting Slams Trump's Response

The parent of one of the students murdered in the Santa Fe, Texas high school massacre was not impressed with President Donald Trump's Thursday visit. Trump flew to spend some time with the victims' families before heading on to a fundraiser in Dallas.

Trump repeatedly referred to the Santa Fe shooter as "wacky," Army veteran Rhonda Hart told The Associated Press. Hart's 14-year old daughter, Kimberly Vaughan, was killed during the massacre.

“Maybe if everyone had access to mental health care, we wouldn’t be in the situation,” she says she told the president.

Hart also suggested to Trump that schools employ veterans as "sentinels," to keep watch over the students.

“And arm them?” Trump asked her.

She replied, “No,” but said Trump “kept mentioning” arming classroom teachers. “It was like talking to a toddler,” Hart said.

Before taking off for Texas Trump told reporters, "we’re going to have a little fun today."

MSNBC's Steve Benen notes that if Hart's "reaction to meeting Trump sounds familiar, it’s because we’ve seen quite a few reports like these."

After the mass shooting in Parkland, Fla., for example, Trump called Samantha Fuentes, a student who’d been shot and was left with a piece of shrapnel lodged behind her right eye. “Talking to the president, I’ve never been so unimpressed by a person in my life,” she said after the conversation. “He didn’t make me feel better in the slightest.”

Around the same time, Trump hosted an event at the White House on school shootings, where he clutched talking points that had apparently been written for him. One of them read, “I hear you” – suggesting he needed to be reminded of this.

Before that, Trump reached out to Sgt. La David T. Johnson’s widow, Myeshia Johnson, after he was killed in Niger. When their conversation didn’t go well, the president ended up feuding with Ms. Johnson via Twitter.

#story_page_ below_article

Understand the importance of honest news ?

So do we.

The past year has been the most arduous of our lives. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to be catastrophic not only to our health - mental and physical - but also to the stability of millions of people. For all of us independent news organizations, it’s no exception.

We’ve covered everything thrown at us this past year and will continue to do so with your support. We’ve always understood the importance of calling out corruption, regardless of political affiliation.

We need your support in this difficult time. Every reader contribution, no matter the amount, makes a difference in allowing our newsroom to bring you the stories that matter, at a time when being informed is more important than ever. Invest with us.

Make a one-time contribution to Alternet All Access, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.

Click to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card
Donate by Paypal

Don't Sit on the Sidelines of History. Join Alternet All Access and Go Ad-Free. Support Honest Journalism.