COMMENTARY | Sarah Palin took another verbal shot at President Obama Monday as she wrote about attending the memorial service of slain former Navy SEAL Chris Kyle in Dallas. She said she hopes that the president “pays his respects” to the sniper who pulled the trigger on al Qaeda mastermind Osama bin Laden. And, for once, the former Alaska governor is right.
“We’re surrounded today by American patriots here in Texas — by Chris’ fellow veterans and active duty warriors,” she wrote on Facebook Monday morning. “In honor of them, I hope our commander in chief pays his respects in some gesture of condolence for their comrade in arms who sacrificed so much to keep him and all of us safe.”
At present, it appears that President Barack Obama has yet to make mention of the ex-Navy SEAL’s death.
Kyle was a decorated war veteran, a military man who served five combat tours of duty in Iraq. During that time, he was credited with killing 160 people with his sniper’s rife. He chronicled his service in the book “American Sniper: The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History.” Returning to the U.S., he not only co-authored the book, but also became a reality show star, started his own security company, became an advocate for fellow vets suffering Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, and was a fierce opponent of gun control.
Kyle was killed last week when allegedly disturbed Marine reservist Eddie Ray Routh shot him and another man, Kyle’s neighbor Chad Littlefield, after they had taken him to a shooting range near Glen Rose, Texas. Littlefield was also killed. Although Routh, according to ABC News , left the scene, he was soon apprehended by police.
And Palin’s connection to Kyle? She met Kyle when he was part of the security for the premiere of her movie, “The Undefeated,” in Iowa. And her husband, Todd, worked with the former SEAL on the NBC reality show, “Stars Earn Stripes.”
It is as yet unclear why the Obama administration has not at least issued a statement about the shooting death. One reason could be that Kyle’s death comes in the midst of an ongoing national debate over increased gun control legislation.
Perhaps the president doesn’t want to appear as if he is politicizing the death of Kyle in an attempt to sway opinion in favor of more stringent gun control legislation. But that should in no way stop him from issuing a statement, an acknowledgment of Kyle’s service, especially in lieu of Kyle’s role in ending a chapter in American history.
Some, like the website Twitchy , even question why a singer like Whitney Houston was honored with flags flown at half mast when she died but Kyle was not.
Still, the First Lady, Michelle Obama, attended the funeral of Chicago teen Hadiya Pendleton, who was killed on Jan. 29. According to CNN , the young woman was a victim of gang gun violence. Her death came just a week after she performed at President Obama’s second inauguration.
So it is not often that former Alaska governor is credited for doing or saying the right thing, but she does have a point with regard to Kyle’s death. Will the president “pay his respects” and honor Chris Kyle or will he give his detractors a reason to question his leadership once again, this time as a man choosing to honor only those who have no record of opposing his policies?