To Trump the only extremism that matters is Islamic extremism

It’s been nearly a week since a self-described fan of Donald Trump walked into a mosque in Quebec City and opened fire, killing six worshipers. Trump’s Press Secretary, Sean Spicer, called it “a terrible reminder of why we must remain vigilant and why the President is taking steps to be proactive instead of reactive when it comes to our nation’s safety and security.”

Spicer’s statement left the press corps baffled. He seemed to be suggesting that a far-right, ultra-nationalist, white supremacist, radicalized by social media into murdering Muslims, somehow proved Trump’s position on the need to focus on the threat of Islamic terrorism.

But let’s pretend, for a moment, that facts actually matter, especially when it comes to the safety of American citizens. Here are the facts about terrorism in the United States:

  • Americans are almost seven times as likely to be killed by a white extremist than by an Islamic one, according to one study.
  • Citing a 2013 study, the New York Times notes: “Right-wing extremists averaged 337 attacks per year in the decade after 9/11, causing a total of 254 fatalities.”

 [From CNN article by Reza Aslan, author of “Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth”]

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