I’m very proud of our Tennessee delegation! From The Tennessean:
CLEVELAND — A controversial Dutch politician who is an outspoken critic of Islam was invited to the Republican National Convention by a sitting Tennessee state senator and Donald Trump delegate, drawing criticism from Tennessee and national Muslim advocacy organizations.
Geert Wilders, founder of the right-wing Party for Freedom — who told The Tennessean he could become the next prime minister of the Netherlands — is attending the convention thanks to an invitation from state Sen. Bill Ketron, R-Mufreesboro.
Ketron said the controversial figure, who has been an outspoken critic of Islam and has called it the “ideology of a retarded culture,” is his friend.
“Muslims are not necessarily my problem, but Islam is. Islam and freedom are not compatible,” Wilders told The Tennessean at a Monday morning Tennessee delegation brunch, hosted by Gov. Bill Haslam and U.S. Sens. Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker.
Several Tennessee delegates were excited to see him, as he shook hands and took pictures with many attendees, including Corker, who is chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
In addition to his anti-Islam stance, Wilders is a supporter of the recent vote by the United Kingdom to leave the European Union, vowing to push for a similar “Brexit” vote in the Netherlands in order to further push to end the union’s open-border policy.
He is often criticized by immigrant-rights organizations around the world who believe his views are extreme and inciting fear.
“The Republican Party should not be importing foreign anti-Muslim bigots at a time when it should instead be addressing the growing Islamophobia within its own ranks,” said Ibrahim Hooper, communications director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim advocacy organization.
After stopping through Nashville on Sunday before joining the state’s delegation in Cleveland, Wilders said Monday that one of his key political focuses is stopping the spread of Islam.
Firebrand Dutch lawmaker Geert Wilders, seen here in April.
(Photo: Peter Dejong, AP)
“Islam is a problem. I’m not talking about the people, I have nothing against the Muslims. Not all Muslims are terrorists, unfortunately in Europe all terrorists are Muslims,” Wilders said, adding that he would like to see a full ban on immigrants from Islamic countries, which is similar to a plan floated by Trump, presumptive Republican presidential nominee.
“I just said to my friends here in Tennessee at this lunch, imagine Mexico would be an Arab country, or Syria or whatever, and jihadists would flow all the way. It would be different,” he said.
“We have an enormous problem with the Islamization … People are fed up with governments not acting as they should, maybe a little bit like here, the blue-collar people who pay most of the price and get not what they really want, which is security, safety and a good life for their families.”
Wilders’ policy stance has gained him significant notoriety and some fans in Tennessee, including Ketron and state Sen. Mae Beavers, R-Mt. Juliet, the state delegation’s chairman for the Republican National Convention. She called Wilders someone who has “been a friend of some good Republicans in Tennessee.”
“He’s actually come and spoken to some of us Republicans at dinners and things about the circumstances in his country to warn us about what can come if you just have immigration you can’t control,” said Beavers, who has praised Trump’s proposed ban on Muslims.
By having Wilders as a guest of the delegation, Beavers said it would provide a “clearer view of where our country could go if we don’t do something immediately.”
“All he’s trying to do is sound the alarms here in this country to keep it from happening as what’s already happened in his country,” said Ketron, who has also hailed a ban on Muslims.
When asked what Muslims in Tennessee would think of his stance, Ketron said, “I have a Muslim who’s one of my best friends who lives in Nashville. He runs a very successful business. He’s not radical. However, those who truly follow the books of Sharia become radicalized because they want world domination.”
Ketron has sponsored several bills in Tennessee aimed at Islam, considered derogatory by advocacy organizations in the state.
In 2011, Ketron sponsored the “Material Support to Designated Entities Act,” which, according to the Associated Press, was a “watered-down” version of a bill that would have made it a felony to follow some versions of Shariah, an Islamic code.
At the time, Ketron said the legislation, which was given approval in both chambers and signed into law by Gov. Bill Haslam, was intended to stop home grown terrorists.
"A controversial Dutch politician" … In reality, "A very brave and patriotic Dutch politician..".
"…founder of the right-wing Party for Freedom…" . In reality – "…founder of the patriotic Party for Freedom…".
".. his anti-Islam stance.." . In reality, "… His objections to Islamisation..".
"… immigrant-rights organizations…who believe his views are extreme and inciting fear". = "Islamophiles and Dhimmis…who steadfastly ignore the ubiquity and intensity of Muslim hate speech, incitement and open threats of mass murder against non-Muslims qua non-Muslims, whilst accusing Wilders of extreme views and of inciting fear."
Caption of picture – "Firebrand Dutch lawmaker Geert Wilders..".
What it should have said, "Brilliant and brave Dutch lawmaker, Geert Wilders."
Wilders said, "Not all Muslims are terrorists, but unfortunately in Europe, all terrorists are Muslims."
He could perhaps have said, "…most terrorists are Muslims, and what is more, it is impossible to determine, ahead of time, just which apparently-non-aggressive Muslims (or the offspring of same) will or won't suddenly Go Jihad on the surrounding Infidels."