John McCain: American hero

Cally Chisholm

Cally Chisholm

Exactly nine years before Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) passed away, Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.) died from the same brain cancer on August 25, 2009.

Under the Obama administration, flags were lowered five days to honor Kennedy. In the words of U.S. Sen. John Kasich (R-Ohio), I agree that it was “shameful” of President Donald Trump to not honor McCain by waiting until interment. 

Due to public outrage, the flag was lowered back to half-staff. America was still mourning.

I have a lot of respect for the Republican maverick. I don’t agree with everything he has done, but I recognize his tremendous impact on American politics.

McCain impressed me with his dedication to service and ability to do what is right despite what GOP colleagues expected of him. 

In a world where conspiracy theories are believed to be truths, McCain revealed his decency and stopped a woman who asked a question that perpetuated racism against his political opponent Barack Obama.

After losing to Obama in 2008, McCain’s concession speech celebrated the historical nature of the election and acknowledged how it affected African-Americans.

“A little while ago, I had the honor of calling Senator Barack Obama to congratulate him on being the next president of the country we both love,” said McCain to the booing crowd.

Let us not forget who stopped the president’s attempt at repealing Obamacare. It was exciting to watch McCain stand in front of his peers, thumb down, and hearing the shocked gasps echo in the chamber. 

It was one of his last major political acts.

We should remember John McCain for his decency and love of country. No matter your political preference, we must recognize his bravery. He was a prisoner of war and he stood up for what was right in the national spotlight in his role of senator and statesman.

In his final letter to the country, McCain wrote:

“To be connected to America’s causes– liberty, equal justice, respect for the dignity of all people– brings happiness more sublime than life’s fleeting pleasures… Ten years ago, I had the privilege to concede defeat in the election for president. I want to end my farewell to you with the heartfelt faith in Americans that I felt so powerfully that evening.”