Monday evening, Trump was interviewed by Minnesota news network KSTP about his Twitter video juxtaposing Omar’s comments with a graphic video of the 9/11 attacks. When asked if he had any second thoughts about this exploitative and incendiary tweet — with its concomitant increase in death threats against Omar —  he replied, “No, not at all”.

Having doubled down on his base-riling Islamaphobia, he added that, “She [Omar] is somebody that doesn’t really understand, I think, life, real life. What it’s all about.”  Is Trump right? Oh, please. Ilhan Omar has seen more in a life of 37 years than Trump has seen in nearly double that span.

As long as Omar has been alive, Trump has been jetting between his gilded, Moscow night-club decorated apartment and golf courses.

Meanwhile, Omar was born in Somalia. At eight, she fled the country in the face of war and spent the next four years in a Kenyan refugee camp. Arriving in America at 12, she became a citizen at 17. She graduated from college and was a policy fellow at the Hubert Humphrey School of Public Affairs.

Active in politics, she worked on various local campaigns, was elected to the Minnesota House in 2016, and then to the US House in 2018.

It is safe to say that Omar knows far more about ‘real life’ than Trump.

But she is dark skinned, a woman, Muslim and wears a hijab — so she is from central casting for the role of implacable, foreign Jezebel. And into that role she was quickly cast by conservative fear-mongers, who know how easy it is to whip ignorant, fearful, ill-educated ‘real Americans’ into angry-Christian, white-nationalist, spit-flecked, rage machines.

Trump fueled that mindless fire with further bigotry. Commenting “She’s been very disrespectful to this country. She’s been very disrespectful, frankly, to Israel.” He’s basing this on Omar comments about AIPAC and Israel’s Netanyahu government. But it is not disrespecting either America or Israel to say that there are organizations in the US and Israel that promote the marginalization of Palestinians.

It isn’t just the constitutional right of every America to speak his/her mind — it is a civic duty of the citizen to speak up when he/she sees injustice. And the beauty of it is that you don’t have to be ‘right’. You are just adding your opinion to the market-place of ideas.

But what you cannot do is incite violence — which is what Trump does repeatedly.

And he’s not done. Traveling further down into his dark heart he offers this: “It’s unfortunate. She’s got a way about her that’s very, very bad for our country.” The smear by innuendo, the fact-free flaying —  vague and inchoate. It’s how the Salem witch hunts started.

 And, just in case the slower members of the congregation didn’t get it, he added that Omar was “extremely unpatriotic” and “extremely disrespectful”.

In conservative eyes, Omar’s biggest sin is her apparent dismissal of the 9/11 attacks with her remark “some people did something”. You can read the context and an analysis of that remark here: Rep. Ilhan Omar’s 9/11 Comments in Context. But in short, it was one phrase, from one sentence, in a speech pointing out the Muslim Americans suffer as a group from the actions of any Muslim anywhere.

She decries that Muslim Americans are forced to lead lives surrounded by suspicion and blame because of the propaganda of cynical politicians led by the President — who though pledged to support and uphold the Constitution, doesn’t think it extends to people who it is politically expedient for him to demonize. 

And not unexpectedly Trump adds hypocrisy to his slander. He has been a racist his whole life — including making remarks that have played to anti-Semitic stereotypes, like “I have black guys counting my money. … I hate it. The only guys I want counting my money are short guys that wear yarmulkes all day.”  (A racial twofer). And telling the Republican Jewish conference “is there anyone in this room that doesn’t renegotiate deals?”

The good news is that despite having a President who does not have the talent, intelligence, aptitude, or stability to do the job — that despite his small-minded bigotry and lack of any personal greatness — America is still a great country because Ilhan Omar is free to be elected to represent her constituents. And they are free to reelect her if they like the job she’s doing or, if not, pick someone else in 2020. 

And nobody else’s opinion is worth a tinker’s dam. 


Parents See Their Unvaccinated Child Suffer the Agonies of Tetanus. They Are Still Anti-Vaxxers.

March 10, 2019

While playing a six-year-old boy in Oregon cut his head on some farm machinery. His parents cleaned and stitched the wound. Six days later his back and neck arched and he jaw began clenching. He had to be medevaced to a pediatric hospital where he was diagnosed with a severe case of tetanus. He rapidly declined. At first he was alert. […]

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Really? 2.17.19. Lindsey Graham. Fake emergencies. Patriotism. Gun violence. Limbaugh.

February 17, 2019

Lindsey Graham comes out against education. Margaret Brennan, the host of Face the Nation, asked Sen. Lindsey Graham how he felt about Trump’s declaration of a state of emergency diverting funds from the construction of a middle school in Kentucky to fund his wall. He replied “I would say it’s better for the middle school kids in […]

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Indian River County Schools Ban Pajamas, Parents Horrified.

July 15, 2018

The Indian River County school district in Florida changed its dress code. Here are the new guidelines: “Almost all words and graphics on clothing and accessories, aside from ‘school-approved clubs and activities,’ now are prohibited. However, the code allows print or a logo no larger than 2-by-2 inches. Leggings, jeggings — jean leggings — and pajamas also […]

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Trump’s Appeasement. “If It’s on a Piece of Paper It Must Be True”.

June 13, 2018

Donald Trump tweeted today that America no longer has to worry about nuclear conflict with North Korea because Kim Jong-un has promised to behave. As he tweeted: “Just landed – a long trip, but everybody can now feel much safer than the day I took office. There is no longer a Nuclear Threat from North Korea. Meeting […]

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Gun Apologists Soil Themselves Throwing Mud at Student Marchers.

March 28, 2018

After the ‘March for our Lives’, Rick Santorum made the absurd suggestion the Parkland students were wasting their time marching and that they would be better off learning first aid. In his words: “How about kids instead of looking to someone else to solve their problem, do something about maybe taking CPR classes”. ER doctors quickly pointed […]

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Arming Teachers – Why It’s even Dumber than You Might Think.

February 24, 2018

Donald Trump has come down firmly on the side of arming teachers. Here’s a tweet: Donald J. Trump‏  @realDonaldTrump ….If a potential “sicko shooter” knows that a school has a large number of very weapons talented teachers (and others) who will be instantly shooting, the sicko will NEVER attack that school. Cowards won’t go there…problem solved. Must […]

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Why American English Has a Better Case to Be Considered Standard English than British English.

February 13, 2018

The BBC — an organization which takes language exceptionally seriously — published a piece “How the Americans Preserved British English”. In it, the author posits that there are isolated populations in America that pronounce words more closely to the way they were in Shakespearean England than the British currently do. And that Americans, in general, are more […]

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How Do Evangelicals Get from Jesus to Trump?

January 29, 2018

Why do evangelicals want bakers to be able to deny gay couples wedding cake? They say it is their ‘sincerely held religious belief’. And as justification, they point to biblical verses saying homosexuals are an abomination — or words to that effect. But the same book has laundry lists of other things that are abominations and deserve punishment […]

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