Trump’s Comment About Islamophobia Gets It All Wrong
During the second presidential debate, a question from the audience regarding Muslim-Americans gave Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton a chance to address the ongoing issue of Islamophobia in the United States. When he answered, Trump once again invoked "political correctness" in his response — which was to respond to Islamophobia with more Islamophobia. Basically, Trump's comment about Islamophobia gets it all wrong.
When asked about how he'd help Muslim-Americans in the face of rampant Islamophobia, by a Muslim-American woman in the audience at the debate, Trump responded by saying:
He then cited the December 2015 San Bernardino shooting as an example of what he sees as Muslim-Americans' responsibility to "report" incidents.
Essentially, Trump said that it's the responsibility of Muslims to report terrorism because they are, so far as he's concerned, the ones committing terrorists acts. Trump went on to directly call out Clinton and President Barack Obama for refusing to use the term "radical Islamic terrorist. He concluded by saying, "to solve a problem, you have to be able to state what the problem is, or at least say the name."
muslim person: what are u going to do about islamophobia— jomny sun (@jonnysun) October 10, 2016
trump: oh easy. you muslims have to report yourselves for the terrorists you are
In response to your question about Islamophobia, here's some Islamophobia.— Rebecca Traister (@rtraister) October 10, 2016
A major part of his campaign thus far has been the promise of strict immigration laws. But when asked about it during a Meet The Press interview June, Trump tried to back pedal his immigration stance. "I'm looking now at territory," he said. "People were so upset when I used the word Muslim. Oh, you can't use the word Muslim. Remember this. And I'm OK with that, because I'm talking territory instead of Muslim."
Trump references terrorism during question on solving Islamophobia: "Whether we like it or not, there is a problem" https://t.co/7JXNmW1Xjt— CNN (@CNN) October 10, 2016
After the shooting in San Bernardino, his campaign gave a now oft-quoted (and meme'd) press release calling for a travel ban on all Muslins. Ever since it was released, the internet (particularly Twitter) has latched on to the statement, using the part about "figuring out what's going on" as a means to mock this year's high stakes election season:
I think America might do itself some good if we all turn off the television after this election until we can figure out what's going on. https://t.co/JEKQnzo0RL— Jon Favreau (@jonfavs) October 9, 2016
I'm calling for a temporary ban on everyone over the age of 50 voting in GOP primaries, you know, just until we figure out what's going on.— Brent Woodcox (@BrentWoodcox) October 9, 2016
I'm not saying we should *permanently* ban men from running for office, but for a while, you know, until we figure out what's going on.— Chloe Angyal (@ChloeAngyal) October 8, 2016
As of Sunday night's debate, the release proposing the ban was still available on Trump's campaign website, implying that regardless of what we may have said during the debate, from the perspective of his proposed policies, the ban still stands. And his Islamophobic remarks at the debate seem to prove that he still very much believes it to be true.