Rep. Ilhan Omar Links Trump’s Rhetoric to Mosque Attacks; ‘Fuels Hate Against Muslims’

By Patrick Goodenough | March 25, 2019 | 4:45 AM EDT

Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

(CNSNews.com) – Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) on Saturday linked acts of violence and threats against Muslims to President Trump’s comments, telling a Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) banquet in northern Los Angeles that the president “knows that there are people that he can influence, to threaten our lives.”

Omar also scoffed at demonstrators protesting outside against her provocative comments on Israel and Jews, saying that she and many of those present “can care less about what they have to say, because we know who we are, and where we belong, and what we stand for.”

Omar referenced the March 15 mass shooting at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, in which 50 worshippers were killed. An Australian self-described “eco-fascist” who posted a white supremacist screed online is on trial for murder.

“Many of us were not shocked or surprised,” she said. “Many of us were kind of holding our breaths for a really long time, thinking when will something like this happen?”

Omar then went on to mention threats, including the bombing and torching of mosques, and mentioned the presence of armed protestors at a mosque in Texas in 2015.

“We all kind of knew that this was happening,” she said. “But the reason I think that many of us knew that this was going to get worse is that we finally had a leader, a world leader, in the White House, who publicly says ‘Islam hates us,’ who fuels hate against Muslims, who thinks it is okay – it is okay to speak about a faith and a whole community in a way that is dehumanizing, vilifying.”

Trump, she continued, “doesn’t understand – or at least makes us want to think that he doesn’t understand – the consequence that his words might have.”

Demonstrators protest against the CAIR banquet in Woodland Hills, Calif. on Saturday. (Screen capture: YouTube)

“Some people, like me, know that he understands the consequences. He knows that there are people that he can influence, to threaten our lives, to diminish our presence.”

“But what we know, and what Islam teaches us, and what I always say is that love trumps hate.”

Earlier, Omar referred to protestors outside the hotel in Woodland Hills, Calif. where the CAIR event was being held.

“There are thoroughly fascinating people outside who for so many years have spoken about an Islam that is oppressive, an Islam that lessens and isolates its women, and today they gather outside to protest a Muslim woman who is in Congress,” she said. “I mean, the irony, the irony in that is very entertaining to me.”

Omar said many of the demonstrators had driven a long way, and spent money on signs used to protest her presence.

“But I don’t think many of them realize that people like myself, and many of the people in this room, can care less about what they have to say, because we know who we are, and where we belong, and what we stand for.”

Excerpted remarks:

We are coming off a tragic, tragic nightmare that has happened to Muslims in New Zealand. Many of us know that this is not a one-off incident. Many of us were not shocked or surprised. Many of us were kind of holding our breaths for a really long time, thinking when will something like this happen?

Because many of us have experienced threats in our mosques, in our schools, even for our individual leaders. Many of us have witnessed bombing of – of mosques. Many of us have seen mosques set on fire. Many people a few years ago watched in horror as a gunmen showed up to Irving, Texas at a mosque, threatening Muslims.

So we all, we all kind of knew that this was happening. But the reason I think that many of us knew that this was going to get worse is that we finally had a leader, a world leader, in the White House, who publicly says ‘Islam hates us,’ who fuels hate against Muslims, who thinks it is okay – it is okay to speak about a faith and a whole community in a way that is dehumanizing, vilifying, and doesn’t understand – or at least makes us want to think that he doesn’t understand – the consequence that his words might have.

Some people, like me, know that he understands the consequences. He knows that there are people that he can influence, to threaten our lives, to diminish our presence. But what we know, and what Islam teaches us, and what I always say, is that love trumps hate.

Patrick Goodenough
Patrick Goodenough
Spencer Journalism Fellow

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