Close
Date TimeJuly 21, 2019
Voice
Trump’s Omar Comments Erode Our Sense of Citizenship
‘Send her back!” they chanted, meaning Representative Ilhan Omar, the Somalia-born Jew-hating weirdo elected to Congress by the ghastly fruitcakes who run things in Minneapolis. President Donald J. Trump, elected president by the ghastly nut cutlets who run things in much of the rest of the country, basked in the chant, glowing like a gopher sauntering forth from Chernobyl — he was, in effect, hearing his own daft words shouted back at him ecstatically, and he has a real weakness for that sort of thing.Much has been made about whether the episode and Trump’s words inspiring it were racist; my own view is that Donald Trump is incapable of being a racist in the traditional sense of that word, because racism is derived from a perverted and misapplied sense of loyalty, a sentiment from which President Trump is manifestly immune. What is more interesting — and more troubling — is what the exchange says about our eroding sense of citizenship.The American Revolution was the process by which our Founding Fathers elevated themselves from subjects to citizens, and citizenship is the foundation of the American identity. You can become an American because you can become a citizen — you can move to Poland or China, but you cannot become Polish or Chinese, no matter how long you live there, no matter how the state classifies you, no matter how well you learn the language, even if you make a really mean bigos or niu za tang. America is not an idea or a collection of documents, but neither is it a closed ethnolinguistic set. It is a nation in which relations among the people and between the individual and the state are defined by the terms of citizenship.Citizenship is a precious thing. To be a citizen is more dignified and more honorable than to be a subject. When the Romans lost their republic and slid into empire, it was not democracy they were losing — they never suffered from that particular superstition — but their status as citizens. There were things the Roman state could not do to a Roman citizen — crucifixion, for example. The state had to respect the citizen because the citizen was the building block out of which the republic was built. The conversion of the Roman republic into an empire under god-emperors was a catastrophe for the Roman citizen — not only politically but also culturally and spiritually and, eventually, economically. God-emperors are not traditionally real big on property rights and due process.The idea that Ilhan Omar could — even as a matter of mass-dunderhead rhetoric — be treated as a non-citizen because the president and his admirers do not like her politics (which are quite unlikeable) does violence to the idea of citizenship per se. In that much, it is fundamentally and literally un-American.It is not the worst act of violence committed against the concept of citizenship in recent years: That particular distinction belongs to Barack Obama, who unilaterally arrogated to himself (and his successors!) the power to order the extrajudicial killing of American citizens in conditions that, once the legalistic mumbo-jumbo is penetrated, amount to “whenever and wherever the president damned well feels like it.” In principle and as a matter of citizenship, there is no meaningful difference between Barack Obama’s ordering the assassination of Anwar al-Awlaki — “the Osama bin Laden of Facebook,” they called him — and Donald Trump’s (hypothetically) ordering the assassination of a political critic in Reno. The pretext of “national security” will cover a multitude of sins.Ilhan Omar became a U.S. citizen when she was a teenager. (As Jake Tapper wryly points out, she has been a citizen longer than the president’s wife has.) Maybe it was a mistake to let her into the club — I am open to the argument that we should be far choosier about whom we offer the honor and dignity of American citizenship. I might even ask some pointed political questions: Are you a Communist? Are you a Jew-hating weirdo? But we didn’t do that. Ilhan Omar is a citizen and must be dealt with as one.“Oh, they’re just being puckish!” comes the inevitable response. “It’s a high-spirited response to how genuinely awful Ilhan Omar is! They’re just trolling the Democrats and the media!” That may be the fact, in which case — grow the hell up. Ideas have consequences, even half-formed and half-understood ones.“We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies.” So said Abraham Lincoln in much more difficult times than these. We should resist the urge to treat our presidents as god-emperors, but Lincoln testifies to the fact that presidential words matter.Alas, so does Donald Trump.

Related Stories
Meet The Man Walking 400 Miles From Glasgow To London To Protest NHS PrivatisationMeet The Man Walking 400 Miles From Glasgow To London To Protest NHS Privatisation
Trump gives thumbs up in photo with El Paso orphanTrump gives thumbs up in photo with El Paso orphan
Utah State Student Killed Herself After Eight Months of Racist Attacks—and the School Did Nothing, Suit ClaimsUtah State Student Killed Herself After Eight Months of Racist Attacks—and the School Did Nothing, Suit Claims
Trump rally crowd chants send her back after president attacks Ilhan OmarTrump rally crowd chants 'send her back' after president attacks Ilhan Omar
Aliens, 10,000-year-old UFOs and gravity waves: What do we actually know about Area 51?Aliens, 10,000-year-old UFOs and gravity waves: What do we actually know about Area 51?
President Trump Is the Latest Critic of Facebooks LibraPresident Trump Is the Latest Critic of Facebook's Libra
Robert Mueller tells Congress his report did not exonerate TrumpRobert Mueller tells Congress his report did not exonerate Trump
Creator of ‘Storm Area 51’ comes forward after Facebook page takes offCreator of ‘Storm Area 51’ comes forward after Facebook page takes off
Tensions Between Bernie Sanders and MSNBC Boil OverTensions Between Bernie Sanders and MSNBC Boil Over
The Squad revives feud with Pelosi: Be aware when you single us out that were women of color'The Squad' revives feud with Pelosi: Be aware when you 'single us out' that we're 'women of color'
Latest News
Jidenna: 85 to Africa – Classic Man takes it back to the sourceJidenna: 85 to Africa – Classic Man takes it back to the source
Why Disasters Like The Amazon Rainforest Fire Are Relevant To Us Here In The UKWhy Disasters Like The Amazon Rainforest Fire Are Relevant To Us Here In The UK
Were Still Confused About Women Wanting Sex – Or So This Study SuggestsWe're Still Confused About Women Wanting Sex – Or So This Study Suggests
5 Cute Animals To End The Week: Ugly Betty The Dog Inundated With Offers Of A Home5 Cute Animals To End The Week: 'Ugly Betty' The Dog Inundated With Offers Of A Home
What Happened The First Time I Returned To My Hometown After TransitionWhat Happened The First Time I Returned To My Hometown After Transition
What I Wish I Knew About Finding Love Again After My Marriage EndedWhat I Wish I Knew About Finding Love Again After My Marriage Ended
Banned at home but thriving abroad: Chinas social media campaignBanned at home but thriving abroad: China's social media campaign
Tears, fear as Russian students jailed over opposition protestsTears, fear as Russian students jailed over opposition protests
Is Obama the real reason Trump cancelled his Denmark trip?Is Obama the real reason Trump cancelled his Denmark trip?
Taylor Swift: Lover review | Alexis Petridiss album of the weekTaylor Swift: Lover review | Alexis Petridis's album of the week
Leaders
Donald-TrumpDonald Trump
45th President of the United States of America
Mike-PenceMike Pence
Vice President of the United States
Theresa-MayTheresa May
British Prime Minister
Angela-MerkelAngela Merkel
Chancellor of Germany
Emmanuel-MacronEmmanuel Macron
President of France
Justin-TrudeauJustin Trudeau
Prime Minister of Canada
Nancy-PelosiNancy Pelosi
Speaker of the United States House of Representatives
Barack-ObamaBarack Obama
44th U.S. President
Vladimir-PutinVladimir Putin
Russian President
Shinzo-AbeShinzō Abe
Prime Minister of Japan
Related Stories
Meet The Man Walking 400 Miles From Glasgow To London To Protest NHS PrivatisationMeet The Man Walking 400 Miles From Glasgow To London To Protest NHS Privatisation
Trump gives thumbs up in photo with El Paso orphanTrump gives thumbs up in photo with El Paso orphan
Utah State Student Killed Herself After Eight Months of Racist Attacks—and the School Did Nothing, Suit ClaimsUtah State Student Killed Herself After Eight Months of Racist Attacks—and the School Did Nothing, Suit Claims
Trump rally crowd chants send her back after president attacks Ilhan OmarTrump rally crowd chants 'send her back' after president attacks Ilhan Omar
Aliens, 10,000-year-old UFOs and gravity waves: What do we actually know about Area 51?Aliens, 10,000-year-old UFOs and gravity waves: What do we actually know about Area 51?
President Trump Is the Latest Critic of Facebooks LibraPresident Trump Is the Latest Critic of Facebook's Libra
Robert Mueller tells Congress his report did not exonerate TrumpRobert Mueller tells Congress his report did not exonerate Trump
Creator of ‘Storm Area 51’ comes forward after Facebook page takes offCreator of ‘Storm Area 51’ comes forward after Facebook page takes off
Tensions Between Bernie Sanders and MSNBC Boil OverTensions Between Bernie Sanders and MSNBC Boil Over
The Squad revives feud with Pelosi: Be aware when you single us out that were women of color'The Squad' revives feud with Pelosi: Be aware when you 'single us out' that we're 'women of color'
Latest News
Jidenna: 85 to Africa – Classic Man takes it back to the sourceJidenna: 85 to Africa – Classic Man takes it back to the source
Why Disasters Like The Amazon Rainforest Fire Are Relevant To Us Here In The UKWhy Disasters Like The Amazon Rainforest Fire Are Relevant To Us Here In The UK
Were Still Confused About Women Wanting Sex – Or So This Study SuggestsWe're Still Confused About Women Wanting Sex – Or So This Study Suggests
5 Cute Animals To End The Week: Ugly Betty The Dog Inundated With Offers Of A Home5 Cute Animals To End The Week: 'Ugly Betty' The Dog Inundated With Offers Of A Home
What Happened The First Time I Returned To My Hometown After TransitionWhat Happened The First Time I Returned To My Hometown After Transition
What I Wish I Knew About Finding Love Again After My Marriage EndedWhat I Wish I Knew About Finding Love Again After My Marriage Ended
Banned at home but thriving abroad: Chinas social media campaignBanned at home but thriving abroad: China's social media campaign
Tears, fear as Russian students jailed over opposition protestsTears, fear as Russian students jailed over opposition protests
Is Obama the real reason Trump cancelled his Denmark trip?Is Obama the real reason Trump cancelled his Denmark trip?
Taylor Swift: Lover review | Alexis Petridiss album of the weekTaylor Swift: Lover review | Alexis Petridis's album of the week
Leaders
Donald-TrumpDonald Trump
45th President of the United States of America
Mike-PenceMike Pence
Vice President of the United States
Theresa-MayTheresa May
British Prime Minister
Angela-MerkelAngela Merkel
Chancellor of Germany
Emmanuel-MacronEmmanuel Macron
President of France
Justin-TrudeauJustin Trudeau
Prime Minister of Canada
Nancy-PelosiNancy Pelosi
Speaker of the United States House of Representatives
Barack-ObamaBarack Obama
44th U.S. President
Vladimir-PutinVladimir Putin
Russian President
Shinzo-AbeShinzō Abe
Prime Minister of Japan
Sweden drops probe of man in ASAP Rocky assault case
French submarine lost in 1968 found at last in Mediterranean
Putin gives Russian citizenship to Novatek's finance chief, a U.S. national
Fox News host presses WH adviser Stephen Miller on 'Send her back!' chant at Trump rally
Courteney Cox posts 'epic' pool video: 'This is the best video of all time'
Chelsea Clinton announces birth of third child
NY Cops Gave Jeffrey Epstein A Pass While Making More Than 7,000 Arrests For Similar Offences
Trump, first lady pay their respects to late Justice Stevens
‘Definitely not in any trouble’: UFC champ Jon Jones fires back at strip club battery claims
Tom Brady is being dad-shamed after diving off a cliff with his 6-year-old daughter
Sure, Boris Johnson is funny. But has he ever done a job well?
Jo Swinson elected new Lib Dem leader
‘Fast Furious 9’ Halts Production After Stuntman Injured on Set
Tory MP Wants Boris Johnson To Face Emergency 'Confidence' Vote
Strictly Come Dancing: Oti Mabuse's Sister Motsi Joins Show As New Judge
Jo Swinson Wins Liberal Democrat Leadership Contest
Unions Say Boost To Teachers' Pay Will Actually Lead To Cuts
Jeremy Corbyn Backs Plan To Accelerate Expulsion Of Anti-Semitic Labour Members
'The Lion King' rules and 'Endgame' scores all-time record
How Leonardo DiCaprio Became Hollywood's Last Movie Star
Microsoft invests $1 billion in artificial intelligence project co-founded by Elon Musk
Walthamstow fire: blaze engulfs shopping centre in east London
Tory MP Charlie Elphicke charged with sexual assault
Alan Duncan quits as minister before Boris Johnson arrival at No 10
Carl Beech: Ex-Charity Worker Found Guilty Over Westminster Paedophile Ring Lies
Democrat Wendy Davis of Texas running for Congress in 2020
Equifax to pay $700m over breach that exposed data of 150m people
See Tom Hanks as Mr. Rogers in the first trailer for 'A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood'
Love Island's Caroline Flack Addresses Accusations She Snubbed Francesca On Aftersun
7 Cooling After Sun Products To Take The Sting Out Of Your Sunburn
Carl Beech: Ex-Charity Worker Found Guilty Over Westminster Paedophile Ring Lies
'Storm Loch Ness' Search Party To Find Elusive Monster Prompts Warning From RNLI
Insider says Apple’s iPhone 12 will have a revolutionary new OLED display
Israeli crews demolish Palestinian homes in major operation in east Jerusalem
Huawei secretly helped North Korea build, maintain wireless network: Washington Post
Video Shows Iranian Commandos Rappelling onto British Tanker in Strait of Hormuz
Turkey will launch operation in Syria if safe zone not established: minister
U.S. Army Invests In Studying ‘Hyperfit’ Women Who Pass Its Hardest Tests
Democratic senators head to the border
Love Island Bosses Dismiss Latest 'Fix' Accusations After Old Reddit QA Resurfaces
Top Dem Think Tank Warns Party: You’re Losing Immigration Messaging War to Trump
Bayer could benefit from home advantage in St. Louis Roundup cancer trial: experts
'The Wire' star Sonja Sohn arrested for drug possession in North Carolina
Over 20,000 rally in Moscow as election anger boils over
This Dem Slow-Walked Getting Trump’s Taxes—Now He’s Getting Primaried
Israeli minister boasts his country has been 'killing Iranians'
UK PM front-runner Boris Johnson says trade deal can break Brexit deadlock
Attacks and Beijing's Warnings Fuel Hong Kong Anxiety
Why the New York Times Is In Love with Communism
Trump has not built single mile of new border wall since taking office
More Basra water crises unless Iraq govt fixes 'failures': HRW
I'd Never Used A Menstrual Cup Before – Here's My Bloody Honest Review
Woman Wearing White Jumpsuit Manages Surprising Comeback After Red Wine Disaster
Tessa Thompson's Valkyrie Confirmed As First LGBTQ Hero For Marvel Cinematic Universe
Man Found With Gunshot Injuries In North London
Kenyan finance minister arrested on graft charges
B-1Bs Around the World Nonstop at Mach 0.92: The Legendary 1995 Operation Coronet Bat
Why Pakistan Should End Its Alliance with China
Game Of Thrones Star Nikolaj Coster-Waldau ‘Booed’ By Fans At Comic-Con After He Defends Final Season
Shannen Doherty To Appear In Luke Perry Tribute Episode Of Riverdale
Love Island Villa Invaded By Herd Of Hungry Goats
Tory MP Charlie Elphicke Charged With Three Counts Of Sexual Assault
China says U.S. criticism over South China Sea is slander
Royal Air Force Has Been Forbidden from Dropping Bombs Below 1000 Feet
'Let me guess, you want to nuke them all': Trump constantly baiting John Bolton in front of officials, report says
Trump’s Omar Comments and Our Eroding Sense of Citizenship
Fire At Walthamstow The Mall Sees 125 Firefighters Tackle Huge Blaze
Hong Kong Police Accused Of Failing To Protect Protestors From 'Armed Gang'
Amanda Holden Reveals She Once Auditioned For James Bond Role
Be As Vigilant For Sepsis As Meningitis, Parents Warned, As Hospital Admissions Double
Love Island's Michael And Joanna Share Mightily Awkward Aftersun Reunion
I'd Never Used A Menstrual Cup Before – Here's What Happened When I Did
Volvo Recalls 70,000 Cars Over Fire Risk
Train Commuters Missing Out On £100m Delay Compensation Every Year
Game Of Thrones Star Nikolaj Coster-Waldau ‘Booed’ By Fans At Comic Con After He Defends Final Season
Get a water-resistant Bluetooth speaker with 24,000 5-star ratings on Amazon for $22
Seagull snatches chihuahua from back garden and flies off with tiny dog in its beak
Millions of Barrels of Iranian Oil Are Piled Up in China’s Ports
South Korea detains 6 for illegally entering Japan consulate
Kenyan finance minister to be arrested and charged over graft: prosecutor
2020 Candidates Delayed Paying Staff to Look Richer on Paper
Iran announces arrests, death sentences as CIA spy ring busted
UN nuclear watchdog chief Amano dies at 72
Iran says it arrested 17 CIA spies, some sentenced to death
Walthamstow Fire Sees 125 Firefighters Tackle Huge Blaze At The Mall
This Would Be The Real Price Of A Trade Deal With Donald Trump
Alan Duncan Resigns Ahead Of Boris Johnson Tory Leadership Win
The Puzzling Problem of Vaping
'Apologize to America,' Trump tells Democratic congresswomen
Britain's May to chair emergency session on seized tanker
India counts down to new bid to launch Moon mission
Hong Kong police criticized over failure to stop attacks on protesters
The Waugh Zone Monday July 22, 2019
Walthamstow Fire Sees 100 Firefighters Tackle Huge Blaze At The Mall
Love Island: Anton's Mum Becomes An Internet Sensation After Excitable Aftersun Appearance
Miss Michigan stripped of crown over 'offensive' tweets
Fears over Alaska's shrinking glaciers fuels tourism boom
Asian markets sink as traders consider Fed rate cut
Scientists Create Sombre Monument For Glacier Melted By Climate Change
Fox’s Chris Wallace Confronts WH Adviser Stephen Miller: ‘No Question’ Trump’s ‘Stoking Racial Divisions’
Desperate Appeal After Seagull Grabs Dog From Devon Garden
Robin Williams' Son Reveals 'Helplessness' He Felt Over His Late Father's 'Intense Personal Pain'
Roy Halladay's wife, Brandy, gives emotional speech at Hall of Fame induction ceremony
Whirlpool recalls half a million tumble dryers from UK homes
Prince George Flashes His Missing Tooth in Super Casual New Birthday Portraits: See All 3!
'Big Little Lies' finale explores the cost of keeping secrets
Israeli crews demolish Palestinian homes in east Jerusalem
The Latest: Israel minister says strikes deter Iran
A Definitive Guide To The Best Vegan Beauty Brands Money Can Buy
Amid protests, Duterte to address Congress led by his allies
Britain weighs response to Iran Gulf crisis with few good options
The 3 Moments Parents Will Reach Peak Stress This Summer (And What To Do About It)
I Lost My Sight At 23. This Is What It Did To My Mental Health
Is My Period Normal? How To Know When It's Time To See A Doctor
Susan Collins Faces Re-Election as Standing Erodes in Trump Era
Tear Gas, Attacks and Beijing's Warnings Fuel Hong Kong Anxiety
Citizen journalist among 18 civilians killed in northwest Syria
I Was Devastated After My Kids Left The House. This Is How I Rebooted My Life
Prince George's Birthday: 19 Of His Best Moments As He Turns 6
What I Learned From Being Accidentally Celibate For Five Years
Man killed, wife injured after Tesla runs red light near San Francisco's Union Square
Drug bosses joked about US opioid crisis that led to lives being needlessly lost, leaked emails show
Most Asian markets fall as traders consider Fed rate cut
Aide: Trump criticism of US not same as 4 Democrats' words
Son of Australian police chief found dead in Canada: authorities
Iran's poking at West heightens risks of military missteps
These $27 true wireless earbuds fix our biggest problem with Apple’s $159 AirPods
Papua New Guinea PM won't discuss China on Australian visit
90% of Border Crossers Aren’t Referred for Asylum Interviews
Thousands rally in support of Hong Kong police
More F-35s Are Headed to This NATO Member
Jared Kushner heading to the Middle East for talks
Millions of Barrels of Iranian Oil Are Piled Up in China's Ports
White man denies saying 'Go back where you came from'
Iran probes seized UK-flagged tanker, Britain to hold emergency meeting
Tens of thousands march again in huge Hong Kong anti-government rally
British Airways, Lufthansa suspend Cairo flights
Iceland tops Europe as most expensive
Trump says minority congresswomen should 'apologize to America'
Britain tells UN tanker seizure was 'illegal interference'
U.S.-South Korean military exercise to proceed: top South Korean official
Mueller report shows evidence Trump committed crimes, House Judiciary chairman says
Poll: 78 Percent of Americans Say Toxic Rhetoric Could Inspire Violence
The Air Force Has Sent Stealth F-22 Raptors to Qatar to Deter Iran
Iran says probe into seized ship depends on crew cooperation
F-35s Go to War: Why Israel's Strike on Syria Was so Successful
End in sight for US heat wave that set temperature records
Pakistani hospital hit by female suicide bomber, 9 killed
Booming Philippine Markets Pin Hopes on Duterte for Next Rally
Mexico Says Pompeo Recognizes Progress on Migration Issues
New audio shows UK could not prevent Iran takeover of tanker
Giuliani: If US strikes, we could do serious damage to Iran's nuclear facilities
Immigration Centre Makes £14.3m Profit Despite Allegedly Abusing Detainees
US hotels caught in fight over housing detained migrants
The Latest: Hong Kong police use tear gas on protesters
Original moon landing tapes fetch $1.82 million at New York auction
Biden Leads in CBS Democratic Poll but Faces Enthusiasm Gap
Military studies 'hyperfit' women who pass grueling courses
New German defence chief pledges to speed up race to Nato 2pc spending target
1,700 firefighters battle Portugal wildfires
Anti-Semitic Labour Members Face 'Fast-Tracked’ Expulsion Under New Plan Drafted By Corbyn Allies
Prince George Smiles As He Wears England Football Shirt In Photos To Mark Sixth Birthday
Shannen Doherty Joins ‘Riverdale’ Season 4 in Luke Perry Tribute
Joe Biden compares Trump to segregationist George Wallace
Iran probes seized ship as UK rejects Tehran's version of events
The Orion capsule for NASA's next moon landing is ready to rock
British warship was an hour from tanker seized by Iran in 'hostile act'
Grandfather Seriously Injured After Car Speeds Into Crowds At Cemetery In Dundalk
Libya halts loading at key oil terminal as pipeline closed
The 1 Way Russia Could Help China Build a Nuclear Powered Aircraft Carrier
Hong Kong actor stabbed in mainland China
Brexit Is Dead, Long Live Brexit: How Britain Can Still Finalize Its European Divorce
Is a new US-led war looming with Iran?
Moon back in NASA's court 50 years after 1st lunar landing
France braces for second heatwave amid fears of pollution spike
Saudi Arabia has decided to host US troops: Saudi defence ministry
Horse kicks man in groin at popular Maryland beach
U.S. says Venezuelan plane aggressively shadowed a U.S. military aircraft
Angelina Jolie Joins 'The Eternals' Co-Stars at Comic-Con 2019!
FNC's Chris Wallace: There Is 'No Question' Trump Is 'Stoking Racial Divisions'
Fox News host presses WH adviser Stephen Miller on 'send her back' chant at Trump rally
Good News for Trump and GOP: RNC Stomped DNC In June Fundraising
Trump racist tweets: Democrat Elijah Cummings says constituents are ‘scared’ of president
'Stronger than ever': India set for fresh Moon launch attempt
Trump demands congresswomen he subjected to racist tweets apologise to US and Israel
Ukraine's comedian-turned-president seeks parliamentary majority via rock star coalition
Booker Says He Could Confront Biden on Race at Detroit Debate
Polish city holds first LGBTQ pride parade despite far-right violence
Shane Lowry clinches Claret Jug for first major title
Ukraine's Zelensky looks to consolidate power in parliament vote
Why Trump Won't Bomb Iran
Citizen journalist among 11 civilians killed in northwest Syria
Austria probes ex-leader's staff over shredding evidence
Voice Of America Ignores Reasons For Trump’s Criticism Of Rep. Ilhan Omar
Ivanka Trump and senior Republicans distance themselves from rally chants of 'send her back'
Reports say Sanders' campaign employees are complaining of 'poverty level wages'
Explosion in popularity of hemp products leaves Texas unable to bust marijuana users
10 deals you don’t want to miss on Saturday: Philips Hue sale, $50 Instant Pot, AirPods 2, $8 wireless charger, more
ICE Is Considering Opening A Detention Center In Maryland
Sunday Shows Round-Up: Hammond Out, Brexit Impasse, Iran 'Failure' And Labour Anti-Semitism
Close