Tension is the order of the day when it comes to interactions involving Donald Trump and Muslim-Americans. Indeed, the mutual disdain between representatives of those respective camps was out in the open once again during a tension-filled confrontation at a Trump event in Rock Hill, South Carolina, on Friday night, as reported by CNN.
During Trump’s address to supporters, he touched upon a recurring theme in campaign rhetoric, suggesting that Syrian refugees en route to the United States had been infiltrated by ISIS militants. According to reports from the scene, a woman wearing a hijab – a head covering worn by many Muslim women – stood up in silent protest during the aforementioned portion of Trump’s speech. The woman, identified as 56-year-old Rose Hamid, was joined in her demonstration by Marty Rosenbluth. Both individuals wore gold stars with the word “Muslim” written on them, reminiscent of the badges that Nazis required Jews to wear during the Holocaust.
According to news outlet the Hill, Trump’s supporters quickly turned on Hamid and Rosenbluth, first by enthusiastically chanting Trump’s name and then by booing the pair. In a telephone interview with CNN, Hamid said that one of the people in the audience shouted “You have a bomb!” as the mood inside the venue darkened.
Hamid and Rosenbluth were eventually escorted out of the event by police, who told press that Donald Trump’s campaign had instructed them to remove anyone who caused a disturbance.
The Trump camp has taken a decidedly defensive posture when it comes to protests and disruptions at campaign events. At a Burlington, Vermont, rally on Thursday, Donald Trump instructed security to “confiscate” the coats of protesters who interrupted his speech.
“Throw ’em out into the cold,” Trump said from the podium according to a transcription published by People. “Don’t give him his coat. Keep his coat, confiscate his coat. It’s about 10 degrees below zero outside… You can keep his coat. Tell him we’ll send it to him in a couple of weeks.”
One of the most infamous campaign trail confrontations between Donald Trump and one of his detractors occurred in November when a man affiliated with the Black Lives Matter movement spoke out during a speech by the billionaire candidate. Trump instructed staff to remove the man and during an ensuing scuffle, the protester, Mercutio Southall Jr., fell to the ground and was peppered with kicks and blows. Trump drew criticism when he later mused that people were justified in assaulting Southall.
“Maybe he should have been roughed up, because it was absolutely disgusting what he was doing,” Trump said in comments that were later re-published by the Washington Post. “I have a lot of fans, and they were not happy about it. And this was a very obnoxious guy who was a trouble-maker who was looking to make trouble.”
In another public dust-up, Donald Trump instructed his staff to eject Univision anchorman Jorge Ramos from a stump speech in Iowa back in August. Ramos had allegedly spoken out of turn during a question and answer segment, although Trump’s ongoing feud with Univision might have contributed a bit of additional tension to the situation. Trump eventually allowed Ramos back into the event and even entertained a question from the journalist.
For her part, Rose Hamid denies having had any ill intentions with regard to her conduct at the Trump event in South Carolina.
“I figured that most Trump supporters probably never met a Muslim so I figured that I’d give them the opportunity to meet one,” Hamid told CNN.
Although Hamid wore a shirt that said “Salam, I come in peace” to the Trump rally, the message did not impress the candidate himself. After she was removed from the audience, Donald Trump decried the “unbelievable hatred” that he believes is permeating the present political scene.
(Photo by Scott Eisen/Getty Images)