Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) criticized President Trump on Wednesday for failing to condemn the recent bombing of a Minnesota mosque.
“The President’s failure to condemn the terrorist attack on the Bloomington Islamic Center is an outrage,” Ellison, the deputy chairman of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) said, according to Bloomberg News.
“It suggests that his oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States, including the right to equal protection under the law, only extends to people who meet certain racial and religious criteria.”
A makeshift bomb ripped through Dar Al-Farooq Islamic Center in Bloomington, Minnesota, early Saturday morning. No one was injured in the attack that did cause significant damage to the imam’s office.
While the president has chosen to remain silent, other public officials have been quick to publicly condemn the attack.
“Silence on the part of public officials at the national level only serves to empower Islamophobes,” Ibrahim Hooper, a spokesman for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, said in a statement calling for Trump to condemn the attack, according to the Los Angeles Times.
“We are wondering why President Trump has not tweeted about this,” Asad Zaman, director of the Muslim American Society of Minnesota, told BuzzFeed News. “He seems to want to tweet about security and terror issues.”
Within hours of the attack, Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton issued a statement offering his “unwavering support” to the Islamic center’s congregation.
While visiting the center on Sunday, the governor said the “terrible, dastardly, cowardly act” was “an act of terrorism.”
“The destruction done to this sacred site is just unthinkable, unforgivable,” he said. “I hope and pray the perpetrator will be caught and prosecuted to the full extent of the law.”
Sen. Al Franken also condemned the attack.
Violence like this has no place in Minnesota and no place in America. https://t.co/tz4FBfxiah
— Sen. Al Franken (@SenFranken) August 5, 2017
On Sunday, the Department of Homeland Security released a statement saying that its acting secretary, Elaine Duke, was “aware” of the explosion.
“The Department of Homeland Security fully supports the rights of all to freely and safely worship the faith of their choosing and we vigorously condemn such attacks on any religious institution,” the statement said. “We are thankful that there were no injuries, but that does not diminish the serious nature of this act.”
New York Times White House correspondent Glenn Thrush tweeted an email statement from the White House Monday, it read: “The President has been and is continuing to be updated and we are monitoring situation for now.”
“While it is fortunate that no lives were lost, and the physical damage is reparable, the FBI recognizes the pain and anger of our communities anytime a place of worship is attacked and we will work hard to hold those responsible accountable,” FBI Special Agent in Charge Rick Thornton said in a statement on Monday.
Salon’s Angelo Young pointed to the President troubling pattern of being “quick to condemn terrorism when it’s committed by Islamic extremists while ignoring anti-Muslim hate crimes.”
Take, for example, two acts of terror that occurred within days of each other.
Trump was initially silent about Jeremy Joseph Christian, the man who on May 26 lobbed anti-Muslim slurs at two teenage girls on a train in Portland, Oregon, then fatally stabbed two people and injured another who attempted to defend the girls. It took days for Trump to comment, and only after he received criticism for his reticence.
But the president spoke out immediately after three men murdered seven people and injured dozens with a van and knives on London Bridge nine days after the Portland attack, going so far as to criticize London Mayor Sadiq Khan, who is Muslim, by taking the mayor’s comments out of context.
Mohamed Omar, executive director of targeted mosque, invited Trump to “come and see — to come and see what happened,” reported BuzzFeed News.
“He is the president of this country, and this happened to us,” Omar told the publication. “He has to come here and at least express his feelings and say this is bad.”
Many on social media echoed his sentiments:
Let's say someone yelled Allahu Akbar while throwing an IED bomb into a populated church in Minnesotta. How would President Trump respond?
— Wajahat Ali (@WajahatAli) August 7, 2017
— Chris Churchill (@chris_churchill) August 7, 2017
The only thing missing from Trump's denunciation of the attack on a Minnesota mosque was a denunciation of the attack on a Minnesota mosque.
— Victor Laszlo (@Impolitics) August 7, 2017
There was an act of domestic terrorism at the Dar Al Farooq mosque.
Your silence is deafening.
— Michael Skolnik (@MichaelSkolnik) August 6, 2017
— Joseph M. Azam (@joseph_azam) August 7, 2017
If a (predominantly white) church or other house of worship were firebombed over the weekend, Trump would've commented by now.
— Imraan Siddiqi (@imraansiddiqi) August 7, 2017