This Thanksgiving, it’s important to remember all the things President Donald Trump has done for our country since he was elected in 2016.
The president has brought a sense of independence back to working families and has made patriotism cool again while promoting embattled police officers and unifying people around issues such as trade, intervention in foreign wars and criminal justice reform.
But often overlooked is the way Trump has succeeded at times in showing his softer side.
The president is often categorized as brash and arrogant by his critics — many of whom themselves have issues with vanity, honesty and good behavior.
You can tell a great deal about people’s character by what they do when they don’t think anybody is watching them or listening to them.
Trump-bashing CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin, for example, reportedly exposed who he really is to many of his former colleagues at The New Yorker last month on a Zoom call that turned NSFW.
Jeffrey Toobin fired by the New Yorker magazine after indecent exposure investigation https://t.co/8CUOFycYqa
— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) November 11, 2020
Other Trump opponents have been caught on hot mics or still-feeding cameras just recently showing us who they are.
I just combined footage of CNN's Kaitlan Collins asking @PressSec a question about the importance of wearings masks just now and what Collins does with her mask the second she thinks the cameras are off.
Not great! pic.twitter.com/FUNUcZOOTI
— Caleb Hull (@CalebJHull) September 16, 2020
— MediaResearchCenter (@theMRC) November 10, 2020
But a moment last year between Trump and the brother of a police officer killed in the line of duty, which occurred away from the mic, showed us who he is.
The president told Reggie Singh something that displayed his genuine care for people affected by the country’s disastrous immigration policies.
Singh’s bother, 33-year-old Ronil Singh, was murdered by an illegal immigrant in December 2018 after he stopped a car on suspicion of drunken driving in Newman, California.
Trump mourned Singh’s death, with Reggie by his side, when delivering remarks the next month in McAllen, Texas.
“We are deeply moved to have with us Reggie Singh, whose brother, Ronil Singh, incredible guy — I mean, I watched and I’ve rarely felt worse in watching news of our nation than watching your family, and the love that you have for your brother — I could see that, Reggie, the way it came through. It came through loud and clear,” the president said Jan. 10, 2019.
Added Trump, “I watched a family right around Christmas time, and I watched them suffer, and I’d like to ask if Reggie, maybe you could say a few words about your incredible brother, the job he was doing. He was so beloved by the people in the department and beyond the department.”
Singh then spoke, saying, “So Ronil Singh, we are originally from Fiji Islands. He always wanted to be in law enforcement. So, legally, we migrated to America to fulfill his dream to join the law enforcement. After — English is our second language, he worked on that, got his education, applied for a law enforcement agency, and he was asked to get his citizenship. He worked towards that. And he became a cop, K-9, corporal K-9.
“And the way he was killed, what my family is going through right now, I do not want any other family, law enforcement person to go through that. Whatever it takes to minimize, put a stop to it, my family fully supports it.
“At 33 years old, Ronil Singh was cremated, and I had to pick up his remains. It breaks my heart. And no one should ever, ever go through that. Looking at that 5-month-old baby looking for his dad — no one should ever go through that on Christmas Day.”
When Trump and Singh were finished with their public remarks, the president leaned in closer to the brother of the fallen officer and made a comment that was caught by a nearby microphone.
“We’re with you. You know that, right?” Trump said.
He then comforted Singh with a hug.
The moment wasn’t likely intended to be heard by the world, but it was.
It showed that Trump wasn’t simply paying lip service. He cared for the Singh family’s suffering.
The president also made it clear he stands with law enforcement officers who put their lives on the line to keep us safe and he understands the real-world impact of lax immigration policies.
We should all be thankful that we’ve had a president these last four years who has emotional equity in his policy positions and who cares for the people affected by them.
Trump has had to fight tooth and nail for years to get things done on behalf of the American people.
And we know from his actions, both publicly and privately, that people matter to him.
The same cannot be definitively said for so many establishment Washington politicians, or for those who have spent their time these last few years engaged in insincere partisan sniping.