What does “radical Islamic terrorism”, the buzzwords for Donald Trump, have to do with Khizr and Ghazala Khan? Let me put it another way. What does “radical Islamic terrorism”, the buzzwords for Mr Trump’s divisive, racially and religiously charged campaign for US president, have to do with the parents of a man who died while fighting one of America’s wars?
Here’s what (and this is not a pleasant thought):
- the dead soldier, Captain Humayun Khan, was the Muslim son of Muslim parents
- the dead soldier, Captain Humayun Khan, was the Muslim son of Muslim immigrant parents to America
- Khizr and Ghazala Khan don’t fit into Mr Trump’s apparent notion of what constitutes the ideal American veteran family
- In Trumpland, because the Khans are Muslim, the words “radical Islamic terrorism” must be appended to all mention of them or their dead son. No matter that they are law-abiding people and their son was like them
Make no mistake. These views are shared by some people, enough Americans to still give Mr Trump’s candidacy a respectable presence in the opinion polls as we head towards the November 8 US presidential election. Trump-supporters don’t seem to care about the storm of protest over their candidate’s hardline rejection of the Khans and their dignified grief.
Consider this tweet from a Trump-supporter late on Sunday night:
“One patriotic Muslim soldier DOES NOT excuse the unending savagery unleashed by Islam around the world. #Trump2016”
How does that add up?
One patriotic Muslim soldier cannot excuse radical Islamic terrorism.
It doesn’t add up. It’s a false equation.