It’s time to call Donald Trump exactly what he is: racist, sexist, and an outright fascist. We’ve been seeing his disgusting ideology unfold in front of our very eyes since the minute he announced his candidacy for president, and he hasn’t slowed down since.
As if he hasn’t done enough, Trump has taken it a step further by inciting a “send her back” chant against Congresswoman Ilhan Omar at a rally in North Carolina. He stood there in silence, gloating, as his supporters continued to chant. He didn’t intervene, he didn’t stop it. This comes days after his dangerous and racist Twitter rant against Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley, and Rashida Tlaib.
Not only was this chant incredibly racist and dehumanizing, it raises a huge concern for Omar’s safety. White supremacists have been emboldened since the beginning of Trump’s campaign, and there’s no telling how far they’re willing to go.
The President of the United States is creating a dangerous divide. He continues to feed his white supremacist agenda, whilst denying that he is doing so. Trump is literally inciting a dangerous attack on a congresswoman, and Republicans have said nothing, conveniently feeding into the divides he’s creating on multiple fronts. The Republicans continue to sweep his hateful rhetoric under the rug, and their followers continue to look to their behavior as a litmus test of how much they might be able to get away with in terms of their racist, hateful narrative. Why are we allowing this to happen in our democratic nation?
Trump can’t handle the fact that Ilhan is resilient and outspoken, and chooses to speak out against him. She speaks the truth, and fights for what’s right. She does her job. That’s more than we can say for him.
The problem boils down to the fact that Trump can’t handle a strong woman of color. Omar is fearless, yet diplomatic. She’s strong, yet personable. She’s an unapologetically Somali Muslim American. Trump can’t handle the fact that Ilhan is resilient and outspoken, and chooses to speak out against him. She speaks the truth, and fights for what’s right. She does her job. That’s more than we can say for him.
Rep. Omar has handled this situation with grace, with poise. She will not back down and allow this man-child to continue to stir the pot. It’s so easy to run away and hide from a bully, but she has shown true strength. She is truly an inspiration. Never in a million years did I think I could feel represented on such a huge platform, and for that, I’m truly thankful for her.
As a Muslim woman, I’m no stranger to the bully that is Trump. Hearing those chants immediately took me back to the many times I’ve heard someone tell me to “go back home.” I know I’m not alone in this. When a racist individual feels that they can’t control someone, or they feel that they’re completely inadequate by comparison, they will resort to doing or saying the most vile things. They will attempt to break you down, attempt to control how other people see you. It’s completely unacceptable that this type of bullying is coming from someone who holds the most powerful position in the world.
These chants reminded me of a real life American horror story. I hear the chants echoing in my head in an abusive spiral, just waiting for it to startle me from my sleep. But unfortunately, this actually happened. Trump has chosen to launch an attack on Omar’s character to distract from his close ties to Jeffrey Epstein. To distract from the concentration camps his administration is running. To create momentum for yet another one of his racist, xenophobic, sexist campaigns for the presidency. We need to take a stand.
We will follow in Omar’s steps of resilience and stand with her as she faces attack after attack. The same way Minnesota did with their “Welcome Home” chant. That’s the chant we’ll choose to focus on going forward. Ilhan Omar is exactly where she belongs. Within the halls of Capitol Hill, she is home.