One thing about white conservatives: They do not like it when simple truths about white American prejudice get pointed out. They really just can’t seem to handle it without huffing and puffing and blowing a “you just hate America” strawman argument in our faces. It’s why asking righty-whites to think even the least bit critically about racial and cultural dynamics in the U.S. automatically translates to their ignorant definition of critical race theory. It’s why, in their minds, any acknowledgment of racial disparity is “race-baiting” unless they’re the ones bringing it up in the name of white grievance.
And it’s why Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) couldn’t point out the simple truth about Muslims, Christians and airplanes without Republicans getting their cross-bearing underwear in a bunch.
On Saturday, Omar posted a video of Christians on a flight making a public show of singling Christian songs along with a man standing up with his guitar and leading the mile-high chorus line. All Omar did was ask a simple question.
“I think my family and I should have a prayer session next time I am on a plane,” she tweeted. “How do you think it will end?”
All Omar did was point out that a large group of Muslims would not have been able to stand up on a flight and engage in any ritual celebration of Islam without making white people uncomfortable and likely being made to stop what they were doing. That’s all it took for a mighty rain of white tears to fall in response to her tweet.
And nobody cries white tears like Black conservative lapdogs for white nationalism—which is why GOP candidate and perpetually confused negro Vernon Jones was one of the first to sound off against Omar because, in his mind, her tweet about anti-Muslim bias translates to “I hate Christians.”
“Why do you hate Christians, Ilhan?” Jones asked. “If the freedom of religion we enjoy here in America disturbs you, feel free to pack your bags and head back to Somalia, Sudan, or wherever you’re from.”
Republican candidate Jose Castillo also took to Twitter to get outraged on behalf of Christianity and essentially tell Omar to go back to Africa.
Notice that the first instinct both Jones and Castillo had was to echo Donald Trump telling “Squad” members to go back where they came from despite the congresswoman all being U.S. citizens (and Omar hasn’t lived in Somalia since she was eight years old) because conservative “Christians” can’t even defend Christianity from allegations of bigotry without being bigots themselves.
And Castillo is really just playing around in people’s faces by tweeting that in America, “Muslims can & do pray in public,” and that if Omar “wants a country where Christians aren’t allowed to do the same” she “should go back to her own country.”
First of all, Omar didn’t say Christians shouldn’t be allowed to celebrate Christianity on a plane, she simply pointed out that Muslims couldn’t do it without there being an issue.
Listen: In America, Cassius Clay risked losing his boxing career simply by letting it be known publicly that he practices the Muslim faith and changing his name to Muhammad Ali. After 9/11, being outwardly Islamaphobic was as acceptable as raisins in potato salad in the white household. Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene filmed herself ranting about an “Islamic invasion” of the U.S. government because Muslims were being elected to office and that didn’t hurt her one iota in being made a legislator. Greene also claimed Congress members weren’t official unless they were sworn in on the Bible. She also joined Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) in referring to Omar and other Muslim members of Congress as the “Jihad Squad.” Hell, Barack Obama spent his entire presidency fending off right-wing allegations of him being a Muslim—as if practicing Islam were a crime that should disqualify one from the presidency.
So, I’m going to need Vernon Jones and other white people to stop pretending displays of Islam are received the same way Christian displays are. I also need them to stop acting like Christianity is under attack in a nation where 65 percent of the population still identifies as some denomination of Christian. (To be fair, that number is down from the nearly 80 percent who said they identified as Christian just a few years ago. It’s almost as if Christians are making Christianity less popular every year. I wonder why.)
Fox News predictably reported that Omar “expressed outrage” at Christians singing on a plane because, in the conservative mind, a Black Muslim woman making a simple observation is akin to rage.
Of course, there were also cooler heads on Twitter who weren’t ridiculously alarmist and fragile in responding to Omar’s harmless tweet.
Once again, we’re reminded who the true “snowflakes” are.
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