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‘I can’t see how devoting our resources to counting cars in citizens’ driveways or investigating how much turkey and dressing they’ve purchased is for the public good’

Another three sheriffs from upstate New York said they won’t be enforcing far-left Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Thanksgiving coronavirus restrictions on gatherings in private residences, the New York Post reported.

What’s the background?

Cuomo announced new restrictions last week in response to the COVID-19 surge, saying gatherings in the state would be limited to just 10 people, including at private residences.

“New York follows the science,” Cuomo said of his decision. “We know indoor gatherings and parties are a major source of COVID spread. To slow the spread, NYS will limit indoor gatherings at private residences to 10 people. This limit takes effect Friday at 10 p.m.”

But Cuomo didn’t say how the new restrictions would be enforced, leaving those decisions up to local authorities — and Fulton County Sheriff Richard Giardino apparently took the Democrat at his word.
“With regard to the Thanksgiving Executive Order, the Fulton County Sheriff’s Office will NOT be enforcing it against our County residents,” Giardino wrote in a Facebook post.

“Frankly, I am not sure it could sustain a Constitutional challenge in Court for several reasons including your house is your castle. And as a Sheriff with a law degree I couldn’t in good faith attempt to defend it Court, so I won’t,” the sheriff added. “Who and how many people you invite in to your home is your business, unlike outdoor gatherings which may receive a police response if disorderly or other violations of public nuisance laws occur.”

Giardino later added that he trusts his residents to use their best judgment while still urging them to take precautions when around those who are particularly vulnerable to the coronavirus.

Three more sheriffs enter the fray

And now joining Giardino is Washington County Sheriff Jeff Murphy who said there won’t be any Thanksgiving enforcement of Cuomo’s restrictions, the Post reported, adding that Saratoga County Sheriff Michael Zurlo said Monday that goes for his jurisdiction as well.

“I can’t see how devoting our resources to counting cars in citizens’ driveways or investigating how much turkey and dressing they’ve purchased is for the public good,” Zurlo said in a news release, according to the paper.

Erie County Sheriff Tim Howard said his office would also ignore the indoor gathering limit, the Post reported.

Giardino also said in an interview with the Albany Times Union that Cuomo is “scaring the hell out of people.”

“People have common sense. They are not going to jeopardize family members. They are not going to jeopardize close friends. Most people respect the masks,” Giardino added to the Times Union. “Basically, as a lawyer, former DA and judge, if I got brought into court, I can’t justify it constitutionally. The threat is not so great that we should be limiting who they can have for Thanksgiving.”

What did a Cuomo adviser have to say?

Cuomo adviser Richard Azzopardi reacted by saying, “We urge everyone to continue to be smart and act responsibly. We know this makes people unhappy, but better unhappy than sick or worse,” the Post reported.

Author: Dave Urbanski

Source: The Blaze: Three more NY sheriffs tell Gov. Andrew Cuomo to get stuffed over his Thanksgiving COVID-19 ban

‘At least Hitler improved the daily life of his followers, had discipline, and required more of himself to gain the respect of his followers’

A Yale University-affiliated forensic psychiatrist suggested in a now-deleted Monday tweet that President Donald Trump is worse than Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler.

What are the details?

Dr. Bandy Lee began her Twitter post by seemingly extending an olive branch: “Donald Trump is not an Adolf Hitler.”

Phew! Finally a voice of reason.

But what she had to say next suggested that, to her, Trump is not like Hitler because Hitler actually had redeeming qualities: “At least Hitler improved the daily life of his followers, had discipline, and required more of himself to gain the respect of his followers. Even with the same pathology, there are varying degrees of competence.”

Lee soon deleted the tweet, acknowledging later Monday that it rubbed many the wrong way:

“Okay, I have taken it down, since it has upset so many people and was not provoking thought but the opposite,” she wrote. “Of note, my statement was about how little Donald Trump believes he needs to do to retain his followership, NOT to minimize Adolf Hitler’s atrocities.”

She added:

Trump ‘spellbinds his followers’

It wasn’t the first time Lee made a Trump-Hitler comparison on Twitter:

She then added:

“Needless to say, we are seeing the same phenomenon here,” Lee concluded, “and every day that Donald Trump has exposure to the public, he spellbinds his followers ever more deeply, as mental health experts are precisely the ones banned from comment.”

The rest of the story

As it turns out, Lee has been at the helm of an anti-Trump locomotive since his election in 2016, despite her lack of involvement in political matters to that point.

A Yale News profile from earlier this year noted that Lee has “spearheaded a movement to shed light on what she believes is the dangerous mental condition of the president. She has organized a coalition of mental health experts similarly concerned with the president’s mental state, and in October 2017, she published ‘The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump,’ a book of essays by numerous mental health professionals assessing the president’s mental aptitude.”

The News added that in December 2019 Lee and two other mental health professionals sent a petition to Congress — signed by 350 other health professionals — saying Trump’s mental fitness was on a downward trend and that he had the “real potential to become ever more dangerous, a threat to the safety of our nation.”

The American Psychiatric Association reaffirmed in March 2017 its support for the Goldwater Rule — which says “member psychiatrists should not give professional opinions about the mental state of someone they have not personally evaluated,” the paper said — in large part as a response to psychiatrists like Lee speaking out about Trump’s mental health.

But Lee hasn’t been an APA member since 2007 and isn’t held to its ethical guidelines, the News said, adding that she said the APA’s Goldwater Rule reaffirmation actually was an attempt to “silence psychiatrists” and described it as “alarming and unacceptable.”

The paper also reported that to Lee, the president’s mental state overshadowed all other public health issues because “all other issues would be influenced by whether or not we could discuss and manage the critical emergency [that was] the president’s mental health.”

Author: Dave Urbanski

Source: The Blaze: Trump is worse than Hitler, Yale-affiliated psychiatrist — who’s been targeting president since 2016 — suggests in now-deleted tweet

A pregnant woman was arrested in front of her children for “incitement” over her Facebook post about a planned protest of the COVID-19 lockdown in the Australian state of Victoria, 7News reported.

What are the details?

Video shows police entering her home in Miners Rest, which is northwest of Melbourne, on Wednesday afternoon, telling her she’s under arrest, and placing handcuffs on her, the station said.

Image source: YouTube screenshot

Groups of anti-lockdown protesters have marked this coming Saturday for a series of planned protests across the country, 7News said. But the station added that others also have been arrested for incitement, including a 76-year-old man.

Regional Victoria is under stay-at-home orders, ABC Ballarat reported, and gatherings are banned.

The woman says on the video that she wasn’t aware she was breaking the law by advocating for the protest on social media.

“I wasn’t breaking any laws by doing that,” she’s heard saying to an officer.

“You are, actually, you are breaking the law,” the officer replies. “That’s why I’m arresting you.”

Image source: YouTube screenshot

In the clip, the woman offers to take down her post.

“I’m happy to delete the post,” she said. “This is ridiculous. … My two kids are watching. I have an ultrasound in an hour. I’m happy to delete the post.”

But the police officers nevertheless executed a warrant and seized computers and mobile phones, including the one that recorded the incident, 7News said.

Image source: YouTube screenshot

The handcuffed woman is in tears by the end of the clip.

Image source: YouTube screenshot

What did police have to say later?

A Victoria Police spokeswoman told the station that a woman had been arrested and charged.

“Victoria Police is aware of a prohibited gathering which is planned for Ballarat on Saturday,” the spokeswoman said. “Any gathering of this nature is in blatant breach of the Chief Health Officer’s directions and puts Victorian lives at risk. Police executed a search warrant at a Miners Rest address this afternoon and a mobile device was seized. As a result, a 28-year old female has been charged with the offense of incitement and has been bailed to appear at the Ballarat Magistrates Court on 25 January 2021.”

The spokeswoman added the following warning, according to 7News: “Those still thinking of attending the protest in Ballarat on Saturday can expect a swift and firm response from police.”

Author: Dave Urbanski

Source: The Blaze: Pregnant woman arrested in front of kids for ‘incitement’ over Facebook post promoting COVID-19 lockdown protest in Australia

Rioting resulted in a burned car lot and garbage trucks as well as vandalized businesses

Cellphone video captured the moment a law enforcement officer fell face-first on a Kenosha, Wisconsin, street, apparently after being hit in the head with an object Sunday night amid violent outrage over a police-involved shooting of a black man hours earlier.

The clip shows the chaotic scene on a residential street: At least two fires and scuffles on front lawns as a crowd mills around a few officers.

Officers then appear to respond to a crashing sound and move down the street in front of a police cruiser when a thud is heard and one officer falls face-first on the street.

Onlookers at first react in shock as fellow officers attend to the injured officer: “He just got bricked! He just got bricked!” one observer exclaims.

Image source: Twitter video screenshot

But when the mob begins to realize that the victim is a law enforcement officer, one person begins to applaud — and then loud cheering and hooting and hollering are heard.

“Yeah!” one person yells after officers drag the injured cop to the sidewalk.

“That’s the police!” another person cries out in apparent glee.

Here’s the clip. (Content warning: Language):

But when the mob begins to realize that the victim is a law enforcement officer, one person begins to applaud — and then loud cheering and hooting and hollering are heard.

“Yeah!” one person yells after officers drag the injured cop to the sidewalk.

“That’s the police!” another person cries out in apparent glee.

Here’s the clip. (Content warning: Language):

Police on Monday morning didn’t immediately respond to TheBlaze regarding the condition of the officer.

What’s the background?

Police shot Jacob Blake near 28th Avenue and 40th Street just after 5 p.m. following a call about a “domestic incident,” WDJT-TV reported.

Cellphone video of the shooting shows Blake walking away from police and getting into an SUV, the station said, adding that one officer is seen holding Blake’s shirt after which seven gunshots are heard.

Content warning: Graphic:

Police said officers provided immediate aid to the man after the shooting, WDJT said, adding that he was transported via Flight for Life to a Milwaukee hospital in serious condition.

The station said Blake’s cousin posted the following on Twitter early Monday morning:

“It should have never happened especially with four or five cops and one guy,” one person told WDJT. “He didn’t have no weapon or nothing… It’s happening everywhere, it’s crazy it’s happening here now.”

Unrest following the shooting continued into the night, and Kenosha County declared a state of emergency curfew that lasted until 7 a.m. Monday, the station said. Early Monday morning WDJT reported seeing burned-out garbage trucks, vandalized businesses, a burned car lot, and authorities blocking the area around the Kenosha County Courthouse.

The courthouse was closed Monday.

The Kenosha Sheriff’s Department and Wisconsin State Patrol were called to assist after the shooting, the station said, and the Wisconsin Department of Justice will handle the investigation.

Author: Dave Urbanski

Source: The Blaze: VIDEO: Mob cheers when cop gets ‘bricked’ in head, falls face-first on Kenosha street amid violent outrage over police shooting

Republican Sen. Ted Cruz called Hadiya Afzal’s tweet ‘hateful & sick’

A Democratic candidate for an Illinois county board has withdrawn from the race after backlash over her tweet saying she laughed repeatedly at a video showing a law enforcement officer hit in the face by a projectile, the Chicago Tribune reported.

What are the details?

Hadiya Afzal, 20 — who won the March primary for the DuPage County board’s District 4 seat — wrote on Twitter, “I’ve been watching this on repeat for fifteen minutes and laughing every single time,” the paper said.

The video in question shows what appears to be an officer at a protest throwing an object off-screen while behind a barricade wall and then recoiling after getting hit in the face by a projectile, the Tribune said.

Republican U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas called Afzal’s tweet “hateful & sick.”

Cruz reacted to a tweet from conservative journalist Andy Ngo who said the video was from the Portland riots, the paper reported. The leftist rioters have been at it nightly for about two months and have been attacking a federal courthouse as well as federal officers using explosive devices and lasers that have left some agents blinded.

What happened next?

The Tribune said that after extensive online criticism, Afzal on Sunday night tweeted: “My post was in poor taste and doesn’t reflect the values I was raised with and hold dear. I do not support or condone violence in any form. I appreciate and support the role that law enforcement plays in keeping our communities safe. I sincerely apologize for the irresponsible tweet.”

But on her Facebook page, Afzal said the attention her tweet generated included “a wave of coordinated racist, sexist, and Islamaphobic harassment against me,” the paper noted.

“I do not condone violence in any form, and indeed have been one of many voices calling for policy changes to our policing problems today,” she wrote, according to the Tribune. “The specific related video showed a federal officer throwing a water bottle at unarmed protesters, unprovoked, and having it returned seconds later. I regret the comment and apologize to any individuals hurt by the remark. I do believe, however, that we must continue to push back against extrajudicial encroachment in municipal matters by the federal government and as a candidate for county board, I only want the safest possible life for every resident in District 4.”

Afzal — who said she is Muslim and wears a hijab — told the paper in a Monday interview that she’s been threatened numerous times, critics have posted the address of relatives, and she was afraid for her safety.

She said she dropped out of the race after a recommendation by the local Democratic Party and didn’t want to be a “distraction” from the November election, the Tribune said, adding that Afzal won a primary and lost the general election for a county board seat in 2018.

What did the local Democratic Party have to say?

Democratic Party of DuPage Chair Cynthia Borbas said in a statement that the party “strongly condemns” Afzal’s original tweet but added in an interview that some criticisms of Afzal “crossed the line” and were Islamaphobic and unacceptable, the paper said.

Democratic precinct committee members will vote in mid-August for a replacement on the ballot, Borbas told the Tribune.

What did the Republican she was to face in the election have to say?
Afzal would have been running against incumbent Republican Tim Elliott for the board seat, the paper said. And while Elliott — a civil litigation attorney — condemned Afzal’s original tweet, he also took issue with many of the comments attacking her, the Tribune noted.

“On all sides, we need to stop this,” Elliott told the paper. “Does everyone want to be judged by the worst or dumbest email they send? It’s destructive, it results in extremism and kills legitimate conversation. It hurts our ability to compromise.”

Here’s an Afzal campaign video when she ran for the board in 2018:

Author: Dave Urbanski

Source: The Blaze: Democratic candidate says she laughed repeatedly at video of officer hit in face by projectile — and withdraws from race amid outcry

The letter Jonathan Lopez wrote to himself declared, in part, ‘we will make sure you never win and your family suffers along with all the other f****** Mexicans in the area!’

A former commissioner candidate for Umatilla County, Oregon, admitted to police that he wrote a racist letter to himself that he had claimed was left in his mailbox, the East Oregonian reported.

What are the details?

The outlet said Jonathan Lopez previously posted a photo of the typed letter to Facebook, stating he’d received the letter but held “no resentment for whomever wrote this.”

The letter — which he said he found June 23 — begins with “Mr. Lopez” and follows with racist statements such as, “Don’t waste your time trying to become anything in this county we will make sure you never win and your family suffers along with all the other f****** Mexicans in the area!” KEPR-TV reported.

The East Oregonian said the letter also contained homophobic and misogynist slurs. There were also subtle threats, such as “Umatilla County kills [redacted] like you and are dumped in the fields and river. That’s why our crops are the best!” The letter was signed, “Sincerely, America!”

Hermiston Police Chief Jason Edmiston on Monday told the outlet that Lopez confessed verbally and in writing to writing the letter. Edmiston added to the East Oregonian that the case would be forwarded to the Umatilla County district attorney’s office for initiating a false report — a Class A misdemeanor in Oregon.

Edmiston told KEPR police had been conducting a criminal investigation for intimidation in the second degree until Lopez admitted to fabricating the letter.

“This investigation is particularly frustrating as we are in the midst of multiple major investigations while battling a resource shortage due to the current pandemic,” the chief told the East Oregonian. “The time spent on this fictitious claim means time lost on other matters, not to mention it needlessly adds to the incredible tension that exists in our nation today. As a lifelong resident of this diverse community, I’m disgusted someone would try to carelessly advance their personal ambitions at the risk of others.”

More from the outlet:

Edmiston said his department was also forwarding information to the district attorney’s office about possibly fraudulent statements in Lopez’s entry in the May 2020 voter’s guide about his background and education. Those claims were also reported in the East Oregonian leading up to the election.

Edmiston also alleged that HPD has learned that Lopez never served in the U.S. Coast Guard as stated, which would be a violation of the 2013 Stolen Valor Act. Lopez has not provided documentation to the East Oregonian to confirm his claim of Coast Guard service when asked.

Lopez ran for a seat on the Umatilla County Board of Commissioners during the May 2020 primary and placed fourth, the East Oregonian said, adding that he’s also a member of the city of Hermiston’s Hispanic Advisory Committee.

Lopez has removed his public Facebook profile, KEPR reported. His website, lopez4umatillaco.com, also was down Wednesday.

Encore, encore!

As TheBlaze has extensively reported, hoaxes perpetrated to draw attention to social issues aren’t uncommon. In June a black man was charged with tagging the campus of Salisbury University in Maryland with racist graffiti five times between last October and February of this year, which authorities characterized as a “hate crime.” Here’s a look at 20 recent hate crime hoaxes.

Author: Dave Urbanski

Source: The Blaze: Hate hoax once again: Former county political candidate admits writing racist letter he claimed was left in his mailbox

‘If we settle for permission, we will never have liberty again’

Stacey Shiflett — pastor of Calvary Baptist Church in Dundalk, Maryland — on Tuesday read from an “intimidating” cease-and-desist letter he said he received from Baltimore County’s Department of Health and Human Services, warning that the church “could be subject to a fine of up to $5,000” if further in-person services were held in violation of executive orders.

Shiflett asked those watching the video to pray for him and the church in light of the developments, saying that he and other church members have had it with not being able to gather.

“We’re not satisfied with teleconferencing and Zoom services,” he said. “We want to go back to church the way God intended, the way our Constitution intended.”

What happened next?

Well, Shiflett went right ahead and not only held a Wednesday night service for 100 attendees in the 600-capacity sanctuary, Fox News reported — but also he tore up the cease-and-desist letter in the middle of his sermon.

“Pharaoh doesn’t get to dictate to God’s people how they worship their God,” Shiflett said with a raised voice. “God’s the one that defines the parameters, God’s the one that communicates his will and his plan for his church — not Egypt.”

Image source: Twitter video screenshot

He then told the congregation that “the Bible says to the New Testament church ‘not forsaking the assembling of yourselves together as the manner of some is, but so much the more as you see the day approaching,’ and the closer we get to Jesus coming back, the more church we ought to be having, not less church!”

Then holding the letter aloft, Shiflett told the powers that be — in a manner of speaking — to let his people go.

Image source: Twitter video screenshot

“So I’m tearing up this cease-and-desist order right here,” he said, “and I’m telling you right now, we’re gonna do it God’s way! … God tells us how to worship him — nobody else gets to do that!”

What’s the background?

Maryland Republican Gov. Larry Hogan last Friday moved from a statewide stay-at-home order to a safer-at-home public health advisory in the continuing fight against the coronavirus, noting that churches and houses of worship “may begin to safely hold religious services, at up to 50 percent capacity, with outdoor services strongly encouraged.”

But the reopening plan also “empowers individual jurisdictions to make decisions regarding the timing of reopenings” — and that spelled bad news for Calvary Baptist, as well as Friendship Baptist Church in Baltimore City, both of which are located in jurisdictions where officials are still adhering to a stay-at-home order that limits indoor services to just 10 people.

But both churches held services Sunday anyway under Hogan’s directive — 50% capacity — and troubles soon commenced. While Shiflett was served notice by county officials, the Rev. Alvin Gwynn, pastor of Friendship Baptist Church, pointed to a police car parked in front of his church that he said was meant to intimidate him and service attendees.

Image source: YouTube screenshot

“The city has no legal standing,” Gwynn told WBAL-TV. “What are they going to do? Have officers come and take body cameras and record you and then go back and talk to their attorneys to see what they can do with them or not? That’s nothing but intimidation.”

‘If we settle for permission, we will never have liberty again’
“Either we have liberty to worship, or we have permission to worship,” Shiflett told Fox News in the aftermath. “It has become abundantly clear that if we settle for permission, we will never have liberty again.”

He added to the cable network that other Maryland churches plan on reopening this Sunday over Memorial Day weekend and that organizers of a ReOpen Maryland freedom rally invited him to offer a prayer at the Friday event.

“We’re challenging our local officials to render the church essential so we can get our doors back open,” he told Fox News.

Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski announced Thursday morning that he would allow retail stores and some personal services to reopen Friday morning, WJZ-TV said, but the story doesn’t mention churches.

Author: Dave Urbanski

Source: The Blaze: Pastor tears up cease-and-desist letter during sermon: ‘God tells us how to worship him — nobody else gets to do that!’

An engineer who knew the murdered researcher was found dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound in a car nearby, authorities said

A University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine researcher “on the verge of making very significant findings” about the coronavirus was found shot to death over the weekend, NBC News reported.

What are the details?

Bing Liu — a 37-year-old assistant professor — was shot around noon Saturday inside his Ross Township home, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported, adding that an autopsy indicated he was shot multiple times, including in the head, neck, and torso.

Ross police believe Liu was shot by another man — Hao Gu, 46, of Pittsburgh — who subsequently entered his car parked about 100 yards away and killed himself, the paper said. Investigators told NBC News that Gu died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Police said the apparent murder-suicide wasn’t connected to Liu’s research, WTAE-TV reported, adding that Gu was an engineer and that the men knew each other on a personal level. The station also said smartphone data shows frequent communication between the two but that the communication is in Chinese as both men were Chinese nationals.

A formal medical examiner ruling on the cause and manner of Gu’s death is pending, the Post-Gazette reported.

Authorities declined to disclose a possible motive for the homicide but told the paper nothing was stolen from his townhouse, there was no forced entry, and no other suspect is at large. Liu had the front and rear patio doors open at the time he was killed because the weather was nice, police added to the paper.

WTAE said Liu’s wife found his body in the couple’s bedroom with a tablet and smartphone. The Post-Gazette said his wife was not home at the time of the shooting and that neighbors said the couple were mostly quiet and kept to themselves.

Ivet Bahar, head of the computational and system biology department in Pitt’s School of Medicine, told the paper the couple had no children, that Liu was an only child, and that both of his parents lived in China.

“He was a very talented individual, extremely intelligent and hard-working,” Bahar said of Liu, the Post-Gazette reported.

Liu’s work

Liu earned his doctorate at the University of Singapore in 2012, the paper said, adding that he came to the U.S. and worked as a postdoctoral fellow at Carnegie Mellon University under renowned computer scientist Edmund M. Clarke and then moved to the university and Bahar’s lab about six years ago.

The university statement said Liu co-authored over 30 publications, including four in 2020, the Post-Gazette said, adding that Behar said he had just begun research on the novel coronavirus.

“He was just starting to obtain interesting results,” she told the paper. “He was sharing with us, trying to understand the mechanism of infection, so we will hopefully continue what he was doing.”

The school of medicine’s statement said Liu “was on the verge of making very significant findings toward understanding the cellular mechanisms that underlie SARS-CoV-2 infection and the cellular basis of the following complications. We will make an effort to complete what he started in an effort to pay homage to his scientific excellence,” the Post-Gazette reported.

Author: Dave Urbanski

Source: The Blaze: Medical researcher ‘on the verge of making very significant’ coronavirus discoveries found shot to death

Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, said he would pick former first lady Michelle Obama “in a heartbeat” to be his vice presidential running mate for the 2020 race to the White House.

What are the details?

In an interview with Pittsburgh’s KDKA-TV that ran Monday, Biden was asked regarding Obama, “If she said to you she’d be willing to be your running mate, would you ask her?”

“Oh, I’d take her in a heartbeat,” Biden replied. “She’s brilliant. She knows the way around. She is a really fine woman.”

The station also quoted Biden as saying “the Obamas are great friends,” but that “I don’t think she has any desire to live near the White House again,” although the latter statements don’t appear on KDKA’s video broadcast.

‘We’re just beginning the process’

Biden — who was vice president under former President Barack Obama — also told the station he’s in the early stages of choosing a running mate.

“In terms of who to pick, we’re just beginning the process,” he also told KDKA. “We’ll shortly be announcing the committee I’ve named to review this and begin to look through the backgrounds of the various potential nominees. And that’s just getting underway.”

‘We should have had a woman president already in Hillary’

Biden added to the station that while he won’t commit to a woman of color as his running mate, he is still committed to have a woman run with him.

The station quoted Biden as saying “I think it’s really important now that we establish once and for all we should have had a woman president already in Hillary [Clinton]” and that “there are a number of qualified women out there,” although the latter statements don’t appear on KDKA’s video broadcast.

“I think it is very important that my administration look like the public, look like the nation,” he told the station. “I committed there will be a woman of color on the Supreme Court [but that] doesn’t mean there won’t be a vice president [who’s a woman of color] as well.”

Author: Dave Urbanski

Source: The Blaze: Joe Biden: I would pick Michelle Obama as my vice presidential running mate ‘in a heartbeat’

A CAIR official blasted Trump’s words as a ‘bigoted attempt to use American Muslims as a political football’

President Donald Trump accused Democrats of bias against Christians and Jews — and wondered if coronavirus social distancing policies will be enforced against Muslims during Ramadan.

“They go after Christian churches, but they don’t tend to go after mosques,” Trump said of Democrats during a news conference Saturday.

What are the details?

A reporter asked Trump about his retweet of conservative author Paul Sperry’s Twitter post, which asked, “Let’s see if authorities enforce the social-distancing orders for mosques during Ramadan (April 23-May 23) like they did churches during Easter.”

During Ramadan — a 30-day period which begins Thursday — Muslims don’t eat or drink between dawn and sunset.

Trump replied, “I would like to see that. And, you know, I just spoke with leaders and people that love mosques. They love mosques. And I’m all in favor of that. But I would say that there could be a difference. And we’ll have to see what will happen, because I’ve seen a great disparity in this country. I’ve seen a great disparity.”

The president then turned his attention to Democrats in Congress, particularly freshmen U.S. Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (New York), Ilhan Omar (Minnesota), Rashida Tlaib (Michigan), and Ayanna Pressley (Massachusetts).

“I mean, I’ve seen a very strong anti-Israel bent in Congress with Democrats,” Trump said, adding that it “was unthinkable seven or eight or 10 years ago. And now they’re into a whole different thing between Omar and AOC — I say AOC plus three; add them on. You have — I mean, the things that they say about Israel are so bad. And I — I can’t believe it.”

Omar and Tlaib both have made multiple anti-Semitic statements.

‘They go after Christian churches, but they don’t tend to go after mosques’

Then apparently turning back to Democratic governors who’ve made headlines for enforcing coronavirus stay-at-home orders prior to Easter, Trump said he would be “very interested” to see what happens over Ramadan “because they go after Christian churches, but they don’t tend to go after mosques. And I don’t want them to go after mosques, but I do want to see what their — what their bent is.”

But when a reporter asked Trump if he’s suggesting “imams wouldn’t follow social distancing,” the president said no, adding that he just had a “tremendous” phone call with imams, rabbis, and ministers.

“I am somebody that believes in faith,” Trump also said. “And it matters not what your faith is, but our politicians seem to treat different faiths very differently. And they seem to think — and I don’t know what happened with our country — but the Christian faith is treated much differently than it was. And I think it’s treated very unfairly.”

As it happens, a mosque in New York is reportedly still open for daily prayers amid the coronavirus pandemic — and Muslims are still allowed gather in the mosque’s prayer room for calls to prayer throughout the week.

CAIR blasts Trump

The Council on American-Islamic Relations condemned Trump’s words, saying on Sunday that he promoted a “notorious anti-Muslim bigot’s tweet questioning whether U.S. mosques will be treated differently during the upcoming month of Ramadan than churches were treated during Easter amid the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown.”

CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad said in a statement that Trump’s “bigoted attempt to use American Muslims as a political football just before the holy month of Ramadan was as divisive as it was insulting. Mosques across our nation have already announced plans to remain closed indefinitely because the American Muslim community, unlike President Trump, recognizes the ongoing threat of the coronavirus.”

Awad added that the president’s “claim that American mosques — many of which have been protested, threatened, vandalized and even bombed in the years since he launched his first presidential campaign — receive preferential treatment compared to other faiths is an Islamophobic fantasy. Instead of fanning the flames of bigotry to distract the public from his own failures, the President should focus on combating the continued spread of the coronavirus.”

Here’s a clip of Trump’s news conference via CAIRtv, which called them “incoherent”:

Author: Dave Urbanski

Source: The Blaze: President Trump: Dems ‘go after Christian churches, but they don’t tend to go after mosques’; wonders if social distancing will be enforced for Ramadan

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