Writing on Twitter, Trump blasted both Omar and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for defending Omar after he tweeted a video on Friday suggesting Omar had been dismissive of the September 11, 2001, attacks.
Omar's statement was taken seriously by Speaker Nancy Pelosi who called on Trump to "take down his disrespectful and unsafe video". "But the president should be calling out the congresswoman for not only one time but a history of anti-Semitic comments", she added, accusing Omar's fellow Democrats of "looking the other way".
Under the Twitter hashtag #IStandWithIlhanOmar, Star Trek actor George Takei, wrote, referring to the Japanese attack in 1941 that drew the USA into World War II: "When I was a child, it was Japanese Americans who were vilified as the enemy after Pearl Harbor".
White House press secretary Sarah Sanders speaks during a press briefing at the White House on March 11, 2019, in Washington.
The relentless attacks from the media, particularly from the stable of Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation, was followed by President Donald Trump tweeting what can only be described as an incendiary video, in which footage of the 9/11 attacks on New York City is interwoven with Omar's words; the attacks on the Congresswoman moved from the obtuse and the absurd to the downright unsafe. For far too long we have lived with the discomfort of being a second-class citizen and, frankly, I'm exhausted of it, and every single Muslim in this country should be exhausted of it. CAIR was founded after 9/11* because they recognized that some people did something and that all of us were starting to lose access to our civil liberties. I know that she abides by the Constitution.
"The President's words weigh a ton, and his hateful and inflammatory rhetoric creates real danger".
However, it's not just those attacking Omar who seem to lack context. She wasn't minimizing the tragedy; she was suggesting that what some Muslims did threatened all Muslim Americans' civil liberties. Trump captioned his tweet with: "WE WILL NEVER FORGET!"
Some considered the "some people did something" comment to be disrespectful or flippant language to describe the terrorist attacks.
"Since the president's tweet Friday evening, I have experienced an increase in direct threats on my life - many directly referencing or replying to the president's video", the Democrat from Minnesota said in astatementSunday night.
Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders noted that then-President George W. Bush, a Republican, went to a mosque after 9/11 to assure Muslim Americans that they are not criminals and terrorists.
The White House said Sunday that Trump did not wish any harm in last week's Twitter post about Omar. It remained lower in the feed after Pelosi requested that the video be pulled.
In general, don't criticize a politician because some people might take it too far and threaten her would be a bad rule, one that would make it more hard to hold politicians accountable when they really have earned a good lambasting. Democrats who criticized the president over the tweet defended Omar, with some noting their past disagreements with her. "The bigger question is why aren't Democrats doing the same thing? He's actually speaking out against it", Sanders said on Fox.
"I have had some problems with some of her other remarks, but not with that one", he said.
What further proof other than the relentless attacks on Omar is needed to illustrate that nearly 18 years after 9/11, American Muslims are neither safe from violence nor free from suspicion and blame; whether they are selling hot dogs from a food truck or sitting in Congress.
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