Donald Trump’s retweet of an Islamophobic image mocking Islam and Muslims will further endanger American Muslim and Sikhs, the U.S.’s largest Muslim group has said.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) was referring to Trump’s retweet yesterday of a photoshopped image of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, with Pelosi wearing a hijab and Schumer wearing a turban.
“The corrupted Dems trying their best to come to the Ayatollah’s rescue. #NancyPelosiFakeNews,” the tweet from the unverified account read.
CAIR noted that Sikh men who wear beards and turbans as part of their faith are often targeted by bigots who mistake them for Muslims.
Nihad Awad, CAIR National Executive Director, said: “Today’s childish, undignified and offensive retweet of an Islamophobic photoshopped image of Speaker Pelosi and Senator Schumer further endangers American Muslims, Sikhs and members of other faiths who wear recognisable religious attire and are increasingly targeted by bigots nationwide.
“President Trump has repeatedly targeted Islam and Muslims with bigoted rhetoric and Islamophobic appointments and policies such as the Muslim Ban, which media reports say is soon to be extended to other nations.
“Americans of all faiths and backgrounds must speak out against this promotion of religious hatred by the occupant of the Oval Office. Such bigotry is not normal and must never become acceptable.”
On Monday White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham told Fox News that the president shared the image as a way to show that Democrats side with terrorists.
“I think the president is making clear that the Democrats have been parroting Iranian talking points and almost taking the side of terrorists and those who are out to kill Americans,” Grisham said.
“I think the president was making a point that the Democrats hate him so much that they are willing to be on the side of countries and leadership of countries who want to kill Americans,” she continued.
Pelosi, along with most Democrats, has criticised Trump’s unilateral decision to order the killing of Qassem Soleimani, Tehran’s top general. She has also led the House’s successful vote on articles of impeachment against the U.S. president.
On Friday, the House also passed a measure seeking to limit Trump’s military actions against Iran.
Pelosi had not issued a response to Trump’s tweet, but when asked during her ABC interview on Sunday about Trump’s habit of attacking her on social media, she said every attack the president made against her is a “boost.”
Democrats are not alone in slamming Trump for his Iran policy. An ABC News/Ipsos poll taken over the weekend found that 56 percent of all Americans disaprove of Trump’s handling of the situation with Iran.