Capt Chesley Sully Sullenberger pilloried Lara Trump after the president’s daughter-in-law mocked Joe Biden’s stutter during a campaign event last week.
Sullenberger, the famed pilot who landed a plane on the Hudson River in 2009, opened up about his own struggle with a speech impediment in a New York Times op-ed published Sunday.
‘As a small boy in Denison, Texas, I remember vividly the anguish of being called on in grade school, knowing that I was going to have a hard time getting the words out; that my words could not keep up with my mind, and they would often come out jumbled,’ Sullenberger wrote.
‘My neck and face would quickly begin to flush a bright red, the searing heat rising all the way to the top of my head; every eye in the room on me; the intense and painful humiliation, and bullying that would follow, all because of my inability to get the words out.
‘Those feelings came rushing back, when I heard Lara Trump mocking former Vice President Joe Biden at a Trump campaign event, with the very words that caused my childhood agony.
‘Joe, can you get it out? Let’s get the words out, Joe.’
Capt Chesley Sully Sullenberger (left) pilloried Lara Trump (right) in a New York Times op-ed Sunday after the president’s daughter-in-law mocked Joe Biden’s stutter during a campaign event last week
Lara Trump tore into Biden (pictured) during a Women for Trump event in Iowa on Thursday and mocked his stutter by saying: ‘Joe, can you get it out? Let’s get the words out, Joe’
Lara Trump, the wife of Trump organization executive Eric Trump and senior adviser to her father-in-law’s re-election campaign, tore into Biden during a Women for Trump event in Iowa on Thursday.
‘I feel kind of sad for Joe Biden,’ she said, while tearing into the Democratic presidential pool and his debate performance. ‘And you know that’s when it’s not going well for him, right?’
‘Because I’m supposed to want him to fail at every turn, but every time he comes on stage or they turn to him, I’m like, ‘Joe, can you get it out?’ she remarked. ‘Let’s get the words out, Joe,’ she mocked.
‘You Kind of feel bad for him. The problem is that’s their front-runner, guys, Okay?’ she said, earning laughs at Biden’s expense.
She said the Democratic field has ‘zero chance’ of beating her father-in-law, in video clipped by CBS News.
Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh wrote on Twitter that Lara Trump was not referring to stuttering.
‘Biden was a terrible candidate the first 2 times he ran for president & he’s no better this time. He doesn’t know what state he’s in half the time & thinks Thatcher is still British PM. Nothing to do w/speech impediment. Just bad candidate,’ he wrote.
On Tuesday night, Biden briefly stammered during some of his answers on the Democratic debate stage, something he has done occasionally at his public events.
It is a problem he has spoken about openly before, including about his efforts as a teen to overcome the problem and begin a decades-long career in politics that included long speeches in the Senate.
Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh wrote on Twitter that Lara Trump was not referring to stuttering when she made the remarks at the Women for Trump event
Sullenberger shared sympathy for Biden in his op-ed, noting that he attended a fundraiser for the former vice president’s campaign last year but saying ‘this issue goes beyond politics’.
The pilot wrote: ‘Regardless of how you feel about Joe Biden, or his chances of becoming the Democratic nominee for president; whether you are a Republican, a Democrat, or none of the above; whether you stuttered as a child or laughed at one who did; whether as a parent you try to protect your own stuttering child from taunts such as those made by the president’s daughter-in-law; these words come without hesitation: Stop. Grow up. Show some decency. People who can’t, have no place in public life.’
Sullenberger went on to praise Biden for ‘courageously’ speaking openly about his severe childhood stutter and for taking the time to reach out to children currently suffering from stutters.
He described how he overcame his own stutter through ‘much hard work and intense focus’ – revealing how it impacted his miracle plane landing over 10 years ago.
‘The fact that I once stuttered did not keep me from being a successful U.S. Air Force fighter pilot, an airline pilot, or even a public speaker,’ Sullenberger wrote.
‘And on that frigid day in January 2009, when I had to tell the air traffic controller at New York Departure Control that I was about to land US Airways Flight 1549 in the Hudson River, after a bird strike following takeoff caused both engines to fail, my words came out with precision and control, even in the stress of a life-threatening emergency.’
He concluded the opinion piece by offering some advice to anyone disheartened by Lara Trump’s remarks the way he was.
‘You are fine, just as you are. You can do any job you dream of when you grow up,’ he wrote.
‘You can be a pilot who lands your plane on a river and helps save lives, or a president who treats people with respect, rather than making fun of them. You can become a teacher to kids who stutter.
‘A speech disorder is a lot easier to treat than a character defect.’
Sullenberger, the famed pilot who landed a plane on the Hudson River in 2009, opened up about his own struggle with a speech impediment in the New York Times op-ed
He described how he overcame his own stutter through ‘much hard work and intense focus’ – revealing how it impacted his miracle plane landing over 10 years ago
Lara Trump’s swipe came weeks after former White House press secretary Sarah Sanders apologized after mocking Biden’s stutter in a tweet.
‘I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I hhhave absolutely no idea what Biden is talking about #DemDebate,’ she said after mocking his stutter in a December presidential debate.
‘To be clear was not trying to make fun of anyone with a speech impediment,’ she tweeted after her earlier post drew condemnation online. ‘Simply pointing out I can’t follow much of anything Biden is talking about.’ She deleted her tweet.
Biden’s comment which drew Sanders’ ridicule referenced talking talking to kid who stutters and says ‘I-I-I can’t talk, what do I do?’
Biden shot back from his Twitter account at the time: ‘I’ve worked my whole life to overcome a stutter. And it’s my great honor to mentor kids who have experienced the same. It’s called empathy. Look it up.’
Former White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders apologized after tweeting about Biden’s debate performance last month
Biden shot back on Twitter