We wrote last week about GOP gubernatorial candidate Eric Greitens latest campaign stunt – selling bumper stickers that read “ISIS hunting permits 2016.” And how has that turned out? The stickers have sold out and, as Think Progress reports, Missouri Muslims are terrified:
The stickers have proven wildly successful, and the campaign has stated that they are already sold out. But the local Islamic community is expressing fears that while the inflammatory rhetoric is directed at ISIS, it could embolden assaults on ordinary Muslims, especially in the wake of rising anti-Muslim sentiment that includes scores of attacks on Muslim Americans and their houses of worship.
“When [people] get a bumper sticker saying ‘Here’s your permit to attack ISIS,’ and they see a young Muslim lady at Wal-Mart, and they’re like, ‘This is ISIS, I’m going to attack them,’ that’s when the real trouble begins,” Faizen Syed, spokesperson for the Missouri chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, told FOX 2 news.
Betcha didn’t see that coming, eh? But Greitens, who, incidentally, in the past liked to tout his ethical and humanitarian inclinations, isn’t at all bothered by the possible blowback:
Greitens, a former Navy SEAL, insists he is not demonizing the broader Muslim community — just “radical islam.” He says the lack of clarity is due to lack of “strong leaders,” a possible reference to Republican outrage over President Barack Obama’s refusal to refer to ISIS and other terrorist groups as followers of “radical Islam.”
Oh well … as long as you didn’t mean any harm, it’s gotta be okay, right? And anyway Greitens is a Republican so he knows he can blame his bad judgment on somebody else, say, that wishy-washy black Muslim in the White House who insists on the rights of our Muslim neighbors to decent treatment.
But hey, when he’s governor, we won’t see this type of cavalier disregard for the well-being of one already stigmatized class of Missouri citizen. He’ll be more responsible then. Sure he will.