On the first anniversary of 9/11, Trump participated in a shameful exchange with Howard Stern and his shock radio team about how best to memorialize the worst terror attack on U.S. soil.
In his appearance on the Howard Stern Show on the first anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Trump joined Stern in joking that the new World Trade Center memorial should be a statue of Trump's then-girlfriend, Melania.
The Sept. 11, 2002, interview has been widely reported as the time Trump made supportive remarks about invading Iraq. But unremarked upon until now is that shortly after those comments, Trump participated in a shameful exchange with Stern and his shock radio team about how best to memorialize the worst terror attack on U.S. soil.
At the beginning of the interview, Stern and Trump bantered about where Melania was (in bed, Trump said) and whether she was naked (Trump thought so, but he wasn't sure).
Later, they discussed what should replace the stricken Twin Towers at the World Trade Center site.
"Maybe we should build a television tower there," Trump suggested.
"Believe me, a statue of your girlfriend would be perfect right there," Stern quipped.
"Well, that would be an idea," an amused Trump replied.
Stern and co-host Robin Quivers joked that no one would fly into a statue of Melania.
As the group laughed at that idea, a Stern intern added: "I'd like to fly into that!"
Trump's performance with Stern is in keeping with his long history of denigrating and disrespecting the tragedy — a history that began with the appallingly self-serving remarks Trump made just hours after the collapse of the World Trade Center.
During a live interview on Sept. 11, 2001, Trump falsely claimed that a building he owned, 40 Wall Street, was "now the tallest" building in downtown Manhattan since the Twin Towers were gone.
Trump has also used the tragedy to boast about television ratings, repeatedly bragging that his interview on "Face the Nation" was the show's highest-rated episode "since the fall of the World Trade Center."
As a candidate, Trump called for surveillance of mosques by telling the racist lie that he had seen "thousands and thousands of people were cheering as that building was coming down."
And in a 2011 interview, Trump was asked by then-Fox News host Bill O'Reilly if there is a "Muslim problem" in the world. Trump replied, "Absolutely! I mean, I don't notice Swedish people knocking down the World Trade Center."
Trump hasn't become any more gracious since assuming office.
In 2017, Trump commemorated the 9/11 anniversary by tweeting a video that exclusively featured video clips of himself, including his observance of a moment of silence on the South Lawn of the White House.
And this year, Trump became the first president to fail to observe that moment of silence at 8:46 a.m., when the first plane hit the North Tower.
Trump has failed a basic test of humanity with his consistent disrespect of our country's shared tragedy. Americans deserve better.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.