On July 19, 2017, information was made public about Republican Senator John McCain being diagnosed with a brain tumor following a surgery.
Prior to his political career, McCain served America in the military and was held as a prisoner of war for six years. In 2008, he ran a well fought and very respectable campaign for President against Barack Obama, and though he ended up losing, he took the loss with grace. As a Republican myself, I have a lot of respect for McCain, not because I always agree with him but because of his military history and I think that he stands strong for what he believes in.
When the news broke, I saw multiple threads on Facebook and Twitter from major news outlets and was completely appalled at some of the most liked comments on these posts.
Citizens of this country who do not know this man, who do not respect the fact that he is someone's husband, someone's father, someone's loved one are wishing him the worst. Some are even happy that he was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Politics aside, this is a man who put his life on the line for this country. This is a man who took slander and libel and attacks while running for public office because he wanted to make a change in this country that he loves. There is no reason that these hateful things should be said about this poor man. Here are just a few of the comments that made my stomach flip upside down.
It started with this lovely comment, stating that the only thing sad about McCain's diagnosis is that he wasn't voted out of office prior to it.
Then, a woman stated that it was past time for McCain to go "home". Really classy.
This comment gave me a hint of hope for humanity, and then the reply ruined any glimmer of hope I might have had. According to this angry jerk, McCain is "getting what he gave". Right, okay.
The previous comment was followed up by a wish for McCain to "rot in Hell"!
"Rot in Hell" is apparently a very common wish for McCain among these people, because this was the second comment I found that said it. They also decided to throw in their lack of respect for a prisoner of war. This person probably has never slept without air conditioning before, let alone been a prisoner of war in a foreign country.
"Get him out of Washington D.C." said another angry Facebook user, as if their comments will have any effect on results of elections. McCain tried to "derail Trump" which means that he deserves a brain tumor. Interesting logic, isn't it?
These comments came from people identifying with different parties, and while the negative almost seemed to outweigh the positive, most people did seem to recognize that while we may not agree with someone's politics, they do not deserve an illness that is likely terminal. Comments like the ones that I included in this article are so completely and utterly disgusting.
However, while angry users of the internet who have never held public office may be disrespecting McCain, public figures of all kinds of political backgrounds are sending well wishes to the Senator: including his former competitor, Barack Obama.
Reading President Obama's tweet left me wondering two things. If the man who campaigned against McCain for the nation's most important and prestigious office can send him messages of comfort in this trying time, why are the American people being so completely evil? Also, why do people not realize that in times like this, politics should be put completely aside? I may not have agreed with President Obama about most things, but if he were diagnosed with a likely-terminal illness, I certainly wouldn't be flooding the internet with comments about how I want him to rot in Hell.
Things like this are what is making our country weaker when we should be trying to get stronger. Let's stop wishing death on our Senators and start writing to them, let's try to make our change in the country if we see something going on that we don't like. Let's grow up, stop writing mean and angry things on the internet and try to make a real difference.