Ten legit public policy questions to ask Ilhan Omar
Every American citizen has the right to ask public policy questions from his lawmakers in the public sphere. Lawmakers also have the right to answer or refuse. Ms. Ilhan Omar is not an exception because she is a Muslim. Our Congress is not a safe zone for Muslims or any other group.
Here are my ten questions:
1. Why don't you defend the rights of Muslim women in Somalia and other Muslim-majority countries?
2. Why don't you talk about the violation of women's rights by enforcing sharia in some Muslim nations? Here is a list for you to fight while you are enjoying equal rights in the U.S.: female genital mutilation, male guardianship, child marriage, banning women from holding high-ranking judiciary and administrative positions, banning female singers' voices from the radio, television, and CDs and audiocassettes, segregation of the sexes and gender apartheid stretched to every aspect of public life, denial of the right to obtain custody of their children from certain ages if divorced, and considering women as half-human in court procedures.
3. In your ideal country, could women choose what to wear, where to go, and what to do?
4. Why don't you talk about religious oppression in Iran under the Islamist regime? Is the Islamist regime legitimate? What do you think about obligatory hijab in Iran? If your Muslim comrades are in power in a city, a state, or the whole country, do you believe that you should obligate women to wear the hijab? Is the hijab sharia-based or tradition, personal choice or family obligation? Why don't you defend Iranian women who protest the obligatory hijab and are prosecuted?
5. If Palestinians are Muslims, and you feel obligated to defend their rights, why don't you speak about the rights of Muslims under authoritarian regimes in China (Uyghur), Russia (Chechnya), and Iran? Who in our Congress should defend their rights? Are you aware that Muslims' religious rights are violated by these regimes?
6. Do immigrants owe America something, or does America owe them because they moved here? Should immigrants appreciate the generosity of the American people, who gave them refuge when they had to leave their parents' country, or they are victims of their new country?
7. If a married woman has committed adultery in a Muslim community in the U.S., do you believe that that woman should be stoned to death, or she is free to go? What about honor killing?
8. Is interest forbidden (haraam) or legitimate?
9. Last week, a female Iranian lawyer was sentenced to 44 years in prison just because she did her job. The E.U issued a statement and asked for an immediate review of her sentence. Why are you and the Democratic Party silent about her case?
10. Why don't you as a Muslim who enjoys American freedom condemn the brutality of the Taliban, ISIS, and the Iranian Islamist government against women? Do women have the right to be free?
Majid Mohammadi is an expert on Islam and the Middle East. Iran's Islamist Regime in Shambles is one of his latest books.