Donald Trump mocked New York Times reporter Serge Kovaleski’s disability [“NY Press Club demands apology from Trump,” News, Nov. 29].
Trump’s words and actions are almost always not innocent. They’re calculated, purposeful and pure propaganda. In this case, his “impersonation” at a rally in South Carolina was disgusting, ignorant and unpresidential.
He was playing into, and further advancing, stereotypes and misconceptions about people with disabilities and their abilities to be active, productive contributors to our country — as working professionals, homeowners, leaders, role models, fathers, mothers and meaningful participants in the fabric of American life.
Belittling a respected journalist with a disability, athrogryposis, by trying to imitate the physical manifestations of his condition is an act of bullying and dehumanization to achieve perceived superiority. Then Trump said he didn’t know Kovaleski or his condition, committing a second disgraceful act: lying.
His mockery has offended me, as another person with a disability, as well as Kovaleski and millions of people with disabilities and their families and friends.
John D. Kemp, Roslyn
Editor’s note: The writer is the president and chief executive of the Viscardi Center in Albertson, a network of nonprofit organizations serving children and adults with disabilities.