SPLIT SCREEN: Republicans Spout Hate While President Biden Condemns Rise in Antisemitism and Islamophobia
October 20, 2023
At a time when President Biden has been uniting the country and supporting our allies abroad, MAGA Republicans have spent the last two weeks doubling down on their shameful, Islamophobic rhetoric.
In President Biden’s Oval Office address last night, he called out rising antisemitism and Islamophobia.
The Hill: “President Biden on Thursday used an Oval Office address to condemn Islamophobia and antisemitism in the aftermath of the killing of a Palestinian-American boy and amid broader concerns about rising violence after terrorist attacks in Israel.”
President Biden: “Here at home we have to be honest with ourselves. In recent years, too much hate has given too much oxygen, fueling racism, a rise in antisemitism, Islamophobia, right here in America. It’s also intensified in the wake of recent events that led to the horrific threats and attacks that both shock us and break our hearts. … We can’t stand by and stand silent when this happens. We must without equivocation denounce antisemitism. We must also without equivocation denounce Islamophobia. And to all you hurting, those of you who are hurting, I want you to know I see you. You belong. And I want to say this to you: You’re all America.”
After his speech last night, President Biden spoke with the mother of a six-year-old Muslim boy who was senselessly killed in Illinois last weekend.
NBC News: “In prime-time remarks to the nation Thursday night, President Joe Biden made a point of singling out Wadea Al-Fayoume, the 6-year-old Palestinian American boy viciously stabbed to death Saturday in what authorities have charged as a hate crime.
“‘His name is Wadea,’ Biden said. He went on to condemn the attack, said America shouldn’t stand for Islamophobia and addressed the Arab and Muslim communities suffering under the weight of hate. He also took a moment to tell Israel ‘not to be blinded by rage’ as it carries out its retaliation in Gaza.
“Immediately afterward, he called the boy’s family, speaking to his father and uncle. The White House said the president and the first lady expressed their condolences to the family and their commitment to speaking out against anti-Palestinian, anti-Arab and anti-Muslim bigotry.”
Instead of uniting the country, Donald Trump spent this week building on his long, shameful history of spouting and uplifting hate against Muslims by calling for an even more extreme version of his administration’s failed Muslim travel ban.
The Guardian: “Doubling down on the hardline immigration policies that have long animated his base, Donald Trump on Monday vowed to bar refugees from Gaza and immediately expand his first-term Muslim travel ban if he wins a second term following the deadly attack on Israel last week.”
Washington Post: Opinion: “On Friday, 49 people were killed in a terrorist attack at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand — the country’s worst mass killing since 1943. A suspect charged in the attack was reportedly an anti-Muslim zealot.
“As news of the attack was unfolding, President Trump tweeted a link to Breitbart — a far-right ‘news’ site. Breitbart has published vile anti-Muslim hatred, including calling Muslims ‘rapefugees,’ mocking the notion of Islamophobia, and absurdly claiming that terrorist attacks are ‘an expression of mainstream Muslim values.’ It’s a site where Muslim-hating white supremacists — like at least one of those who allegedly carried out the attack in Christchurch — would find writers who gave them rhetorical ammunition for their ideologies of hate. (Trump has since deleted the tweet.)”
New York Times: “Donald J. Trump belittled the parents of a slain Muslim soldier who had strongly denounced Mr. Trump during the Democratic National Convention, saying that the soldier’s father had delivered the entire speech because his mother was not ‘allowed’ to speak.”
CNN: “Trump’s history of anti-Muslim rhetoric hits dangerous new low”
“On Wednesday morning, President Donald Trump retweeted a series of anti-Muslim propaganda videos shared online by a high-ranking official in the ultra-nationalist UK political group Britain First.”
DeSantis has spewed hateful, Islamaphobic comments in the wake of conflict and destruction in the Middle East.
DeSantis, echoing Trump’s Muslim ban rhetoric: “Bringing people in, in mass numbers, you’re also bringing in the culture that they’re coming from.”
New York Times: “Mr. DeSantis argued on Sunday that it would be detrimental to the United States to ‘import’ large numbers of refugees and would fuel antisemitism, echoing comments he made about people in Gaza the day before that drew scrutiny. At a campaign event on Saturday, Mr. DeSantis said, ‘If you look at how they behave, not all of them are Hamas, but they are all antisemitic. None of them believe in Israel’s right to exist.’”
CNN: “DeSantis’ characterization of Gaza residents is not supported by public polling on the issue. In a July poll by the pro-Israel organization the Washington Institute, 50% of Gazans agreed that ‘Hamas should stop calling for Israel’s destruction and instead accept a permanent two state solution based on the 1967 borders.’”
As UN Ambassador, Haley defended Trump’s cruel and extreme Muslim travel ban.
Politico: “President Donald Trump’s ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, defended the administration’s new travel ban in an interview that aired Thursday, asserting that ‘it’s not a Muslim ban’ and that she would ‘never support a Muslim ban.’”