On Friday, a heated debate erupted between conservative commentator Ben Shapiro and Florida director for the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) Hassan Shibly. Fox News host Dana Perino mediated the discussion about controversial comments made by radical activist Linda Sarsour that Americans should partake in “jihad” against President Donald Trump.
Last month, Sarsour exclaimed:
“And I hope that we, when we stand up to those who oppress our communities, that Allah accepts us from us that as a form of jihad, that we are struggling against tyrants and rulers, not only abroad in the Middle East or on the other side of the world, but here, in these United States of America, where you have fascists and white supremacists and Islamophobes reigning in the White House.”
Shibly argued that Sarsour’s comments were misinterpreted since the word “jihad” actually means “struggle for good.”
“She was very clear that it’s our duty as Americans and as Muslims to but forward our best effort and to struggle to speak truth to power, to help the disenfranchised, to stand for the oppressed to matter the cost is of speaking out. And she’s actually paying the price of speaking out and calling out the Trump administration’s attacks on minorities, attacks against woman,” stated Shibly. “Linda is a revolutionary American-Muslim proud hijab-sporting activist and we stand with her, we’re proud of the tremendous work she’s doing.”
Nonetheless, Shapiro, challenged Shibly’s argument.
“I don’t think anybody is claiming that she openly called for violence against President Trump, but jihad means more than “internal struggle” or “struggle for good,” Shapiro said. “We all know there are terrorists all over the world who invoke the word “jihad” as justification for what they do — and Linda Sarsour knows that too. She knows how to make a headline. She’s a radical anti-Semite who has backed terrorists in the past.”
Shibly promptly cut Shapiro off, arguing that Shapiro should not “smear” Sarsour since she was not there to counter his claims
“You just don’t like a vocal Muslim-American woman proudly standing for justice. Don’t smear a woman who’s not here to defend herself,” he exclaimed. “Shame on you.”
Watch the full debate here:
First reported by The Blaze.