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Islamophobic legislator insults Muslim-Americans with bigoted beliefs

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OKLAHOMA CITY -- Biographies of German dictator Adolf Hitler often contain a story about a time during the latter part of the Second World War when the Fuhrer’s personal train was situated in a station where a train of wounded soldiers from the Russian front passed by his personal car and he saw them from his window.

Shortly thereafter, an order was issued that the blinds in Hitler’s car were to remain drawn at all times so that he would not have to see the effect that his war policies were having on individual German soldiers. And one wonders if Oklahoma State Rep. John Bennett (R-Sallisaw) ever stop to consider how Oklahomans of the Islamic faith were hurt by his Facebook posting about how Oklahomans should be suspicious of people who call themselves “Muslim-Americans” and that the Koran calls for the killing of Christians.

One of the leader of the local Muslim community, Dr. Imam Imad Enchassi posted an anguished reply on his Facebook page that conveys the sadness and hurt he feels as a result of Bennett’s statement.

And the people that Bennett is urging us to be wary of can be found throughout the Oklahoma City area. They can be seen reading EKG printouts in hospitals and clinics, cooking tasty food in restaurants, and teaching and studying at local universities and colleges. Some of their family members are interred in the red soil of Oklahoma.

Muslims are grateful to the state for the opportunities that they have had here. The vast majority of Oklahomans of other faiths who have had contact with the state’s Muslims have been impressed by their decency, warmth, and devotion to the work ethic. Their faith requires that they donate a certain percentage of their income to charity and that they help the less fortunate and to be honest in their dealings with others.  The majority of Oklahoma’s Muslims adhere to those requirements .

They are heir to an ancient civilization that is credited with great advances in science and bringing both algebra and Aristotle to Europe.

The state’s Muslims want to be accepted by their fellow Oklahomans, and it must be difficult for them to explain to their children comments of the type made by Bennett. The Council on American-Islamic Relations and its Oklahoma chapter have publicly condemned the actions of the ISIS radicals in Iraq and Syria.

Rep. Bennett purports to be a Christian, and one wonders if he is familiar with admonition contained in the Bible that “He that troubleth his own house shall inherit the wind.”

Read more about Red Dirt Report's views on Rep. Bennett's views here.

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About the Author

Bill O'Brien

Bill O'Brien is an attorney based in Oklahoma City.

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About Red Dirt Report

Red Dirt Report was launched July 4, 2007 as an independent news website covering all manner of news, culture, entertainment and lifestyle stories that affect and interest Oklahoma readers and readers outside of our state. Our mission is to educate, promote civic engagement and discourse on public policy, government and politics. Our experienced journalists provided balanced in-depth coverage of news stories that affect Oklahomans. Our opinion/editorial stories come from a wide range of political view points. We carry out our mission by reporting, writing, and posting news and information. read more

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