‘It’s important for us to make sure that we are not forgetting the aftermath of 9/11, [when] many Americans found themselves now having their civil rights stripped from them, and so what I was speaking to was that as a Muslim, not only was I suffering as an American who was attacked on that day, but the next day I woke up as my fellow Americans were now treating me as suspect.’
That was Minnesota Democrat Ilhan Omar’s response when asked on “Face the Nation” on Sunday about the criticism she received from a family member of a 9/11 victim on the anniversary of the attacks earlier this week.
“9/11 was an attack on all Americans,” she said. “It was an attack on all of us, and I certainly could not understand the weight of the pain that the families of the victims of 9/11 must feel.”
Nicholas Haros Jr., who lost his mother at the World Trade Center, gave a speech at Ground Zero while wearing a t-shirt showing the words “Some people did something.” Omar had previously drawn criticism for making that comment to the Council on American-Islamic Relations.
“‘Some people did something,’ said a freshman congresswoman from Minnesota,” Haros Jr. told the crowd on the anniversary of the attacks. “Today I am here to respond to you exactly who did what to whom.”
Here’s his speech:
Omar, however, didn’t apologize for her tone.
“I believe that my constituents sent me to make sure that I was bringing in a conversation that others weren’t having, that I was speaking for people who have felt voiceless for a long time,” she said, adding that “new Congress” is “not only diverse in our race, in our ethnicity, in our religion, but we are also diverse in our perspective, in our pain, in our struggles and the hopes and dreams that we have and the kind of America that we want to shape for all of us.”
Watch the full interview: