Kamala Harris paid tribute to fallen American service members on Sunday after getting excoriated for posting ‘enjoy the long weekend’ on Twitter without mentioning Memorial Day.
‘Throughout our history our service men and women have risked everything to defend our freedoms and our country,’ the vice president tweeted. ‘As we prepare to honor them on Memorial Day, we remember their service and their sacrifice.’
Harris did not do anything for Memorial Day over the weekend, but usually the president and vice president make some sort of tribute on Monday – the official federal holiday to commemorate those who gave their lives as part of the U.S. armed service branches.
President Joe Biden gave 10-minute remarks at the Veterans Memorial Park near the Delaware Memorial Bridge in Wilmington on Sunday. First he attended a church service at St. Joseph on the Brandywine and visited his son Beau’s grave there on the sixth anniversary of his passing from brain cancer.
Vice President Kamala Harris sent a tweet honoring fallen U.S. service members on Sunday
People visit the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall in Washington D.C. on May 30 where the names of military members who lost their lives during the Vietnam War are listed
The Sunday post from the vice president came after she was excoriated on Twitter for her Saturday tweet included a candid photo of herself smiling with the caption: ‘Enjoy the long weekend’, without mentioning the reason for the federal holiday
Harris also spoke Friday at the U.S. Naval Academy graduation ceremony in Annapolis, Maryland
Harris’ tweet comes amid intense backlash for a post the day prior where she did not mention fallen soldiers, instead telling people to ‘enjoy’ having Monday off.
The post included a candid photo of herself smiling and comes hours after she posted a tweet praising Midshipman Sydney Barber who made history as the first black woman to serve as Brigade Commander at the U.S. Naval Academy.
Harris also spoke at the U.S. Naval Academy’s graduation and commissioning ceremony on Friday during which she called the United States military ‘the best, the bravest, and the most brilliant.’
However, critics were quick to point out that her tweet failed to mention the reason for the long weekend is Memorial Day – a federal holiday observed on the last Monday of May honoring soldiers who died while serving in the military.
Harris’ Saturday tweet came hours after she praised Midshipman Sydney Barber -the first black woman to serve as Brigade Commander at the U.S. Naval Academy
Air National Guard Lt. Colonel Adam Kinzinger blasted her tweet as ‘tone deaf.’
‘Enjoy your freedom purchased by many who died for it. Tone deaf,’ he tweeted.
Sarah Huckabee Sanders said that even her seven-year-old son ‘understands what this weekend is about.’
‘Show some respect for the heroes who paid the ultimate price for our freedom,’ the former press secretary for Donald Trump tweeted.
Beth Baumann, a political reporter and editor at The Daily Wire, tweeted: ‘This isn’t a ‘long weekend.’ It’s a weekend where we honor the fallen.’
Kimberly Klacik, a former Republican congressional nominee, called Harris ‘stupid’ for the tweet.
‘Long weekend? I know many are upset & saying this is disrespectful, but I believe you are really just stupid,’ she wrote.
The Texas Federation of College Republicans posted a document with facts about Memorial Day.
‘It’s just a ‘long weekend’ for this fraud. I have several dead buddies that disagree,’ wrote retired Air Force pilot Buzz Patterson.
Tony Lederer, whose Twitter account identifies him as a Master Chief Petty Officer in the Navy, paired his tweet with a picture of the Vietnam Memorial.
‘Don’t forget why we have a long weekend!’ Lederer wrote.
People on Twitter react to Vice President Kamala Harris’ tweet on Saturday
Another person, using the Twitter account @JR_justJR, posted an image of an image of a woman lying on grave at Arlington National Cemetery with an infant.
‘It is Memorial Day weekend – nor for enjoying – but for memorializing our fallen. Our brothers and sisters, who ‘gave the last full measure of devotion’. Please try to respect that,’ the account wrote.
In a tweet to Rep. Brian Mast, another Twitter user called her tweet ‘disgusting’ while thanking him for his service. Mast, of Florida, retired from the U.S. Army with a number of awards including: the Bronze Star Medal and the Purple Heart.
On Friday, President Joe Biden addressed service members and their families at Joint Base Langley-Eustis in Hampton, Virginia in which he largely praised his son Beau – who earned a Bronze Star Medal for his service in Iraq.
The younger Biden, who attained the rank of Major in the U.S. Army and National Guard, joined the military in 2003 and and deployed to Iraq in 2008 while he was the Attorney General for the state of Delaware.
‘And so, he gave up the seat and had the courage to appoint a fellow who had been a Republican attorney general as attorney general while he — while he went. The proudest thing he ever did — proudest thing he ever did,’ Biden said.
‘And he — he spent a year in Iraq. And it was — it was one of the great honors of his life to do it. Won the Bronze Star, the Conspicuous Service Medal, and other awards — like many of you have — but he never, ever talked about it.’
Later in the speech, Biden thanked members of the military and told them he ‘sincerely’ supports them.
‘So my message to all of you is quite simply: Thank you. Thank you. Not ‘thank you for your service’ — just thank you for who you are, because it’s contagious. Thank you for choosing a selfless service to your country,’ Biden said.
In another part of the speech, he said: ‘I always want you to know — always — that the issues you and your family are facing, we need to know how we can support you better. I mean it sincerely from the bottom of my heart: support you better.’