Gary Bauer / Aug. 10, 2016

Athlete, Entrepreneur Claims Victimhood

Ibtihaj Muhammad, the hijab-wearing Olympic fencer, has become a national celebrity. Some commentators suggested that she should have had the honor of carrying the U.S. flag and leading our athletes during the opening ceremonies because she would show our diversity better than Michael Phelps, who is, after all, just another "white guy." How has Ms. Muhammad responded to all the praise and attention? She said in a recent interview that she feels unsafe "all the time" in America because of growing hostility toward Islam.

Ibtihaj Muhammad, the hijab-wearing Olympic fencer, has become a national celebrity. Some commentators suggested that she should have had the honor of carrying the U.S. flag and leading our athletes during the opening ceremonies because she would show our diversity better than Michael Phelps, who is, after all, just another “white guy.”

How has Ms. Muhammad responded to all the praise and attention? She said in a recent interview that she feels unsafe “all the time” in America because of growing hostility toward Islam.

But how is it that a Muslim woman on the U.S. Olympic team doesn’t feel safe in America? (By the way, she is also an entrepreneur with her own clothing line.) How many Christians feel safe in Muslim countries? How many Christians and Jews are on the Olympic teams of Muslim nations?

This constant refrain that Muslims are oppressed in America is ludicrous. Muslims all over the world are rushing to come here — desperate to escape their radical co-religionists. Sometime soon I hope to hear from a high-profile Muslim who is not moaning about how difficult life here is because he or she is Muslim.

Incidentally, a review of Ms. Muhammad’s tweets by Pamela Geller finds that she regularly castigates America for lynchings and other injustices, and suggested that the real extremists in America are “angry, armed and white.”

I’m sure there are Christians all over the world who would gladly take Ms. Muhammad’s place if she wanted to go to the Islamic world, where genocide is taking place against Christians and other religious minorities.

Here’s some unsolicited advice for Ms. Muhammad. At the Olympic village in Rio, there are plenty of examples of how U.S. Olympic athletes should conduct themselves. For starters, no one is talking about how terrible their life is in the country they represent.

Freestyle swimmer Ryan Held broke down during the national anthem. When asked why he was so emotional, Held said, “I’ve heard the national anthem hundreds of times, but as soon as that played it was just something different. The tears just started rolling down my face.”

Or Lilly King, a 19-year-old Hoosier girl, who had to compete against a Russian woman twice accused of taking steroids. After she won the gold medal, narrowly beating the Russian woman, King said, “We can compete clean and still win at the Olympic games.”

There is Kathleen Baker, a female swimmer who didn’t have to overcome an imaginary hate-filled America, but Crohn’s disease. She overcame a debilitating disease to win the silver medal in the 100-meter backstroke.

After winning she said, “I definitely have been through my fair share of adversity. I think it really helps me appreciate the sport even more, knowing that it can be taken away from me… I hope I inspired a lot of people today.”

Here’s the bottom line: Muslims all over the world are doing everything they can to come here. But all too often they and/or their children trash America and claim victimhood status. They are encouraged to do so by radical groups like CAIR and they are being courted by left-wing politicians.

World Vision Update

We have reported on the news that funds from the Christian charity World Vision were being diverted to Hamas. The World Vision report has shocked and saddened a lot of people who have been longtime donors to the organization.

It is important to note that the funds in this case came from donor countries, including the U.S., Australia, Canada and some European nations. World Vision does a lot of good work in Africa and elsewhere. But the problem that has been unearthed in Gaza is not a minor matter. And World Vision is the tip of the iceberg in this scandal.

Groups that monitor non-governmental organizations have been warning for years that relief funds going into Gaza are often diverted from schools into terrorist organizations. The money is not used to feed Palestinian children, but the families of Hamas members.

Avi Dichter, an Israeli parliament member who chairs the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, warned during a recent interview that World Vision “is only a small example” of a much bigger problem. “The fact that the donating world, which is recruited to help refugees and the needy, doesn’t understand that its cash is being pumped for terror uses… it is a naive world to the point of being hideous,” Dichter said.

Proving his point, Israel arrested a U.N. aid worker in Gaza [yesterday] who was using his position to assist Hamas’s terrorist operations.

We have already reported that U.S. tax dollars being sent to the Palestinian Authority were diverted to pay bonuses to the families of jihadists who killed Israelis and American citizens. U.S. law needs to be strengthened, and Americans who support any aid organization, particularly those operating in places like Gaza, run by Hamas, or Lebanon, run by Hezbollah, need to be very careful when making donation decisions.

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