“It’s visceral, and scary, and it affects how people live, work and pray. It makes me afraid for my family,” Ansari writes. “It also makes no sense.”
Referencing the Orlando attacks, the comedian and actor writes about the Muslim American community’s struggle to distance itself from terrorists and constantly ward off Islamophobia. He quotes Trump who said on the campaign trail that Muslims “know who the bad ones are.”
“The overwhelming number of Muslim Americans have as much in common with that monster in Orlando as any white person has with any of the white terrorists who shoot up movie theaters or schools or abortion clinics,” Ansari writes.
In one anecdote, Ansari recalls being called a terrorist while crossing the street, before he was a recognizable public figure. Tying the experience back to Trump, the actor writes, “The vitriolic and hate-filled rhetoric coming from Mr. Trump isn’t so far off from cursing at strangers from a car window.”
In the piece, Ansari also calls for gun control, and expresses frustration about what he perceives as contradictory safety precautions. “Despite sit-ins and filibusters, our lawmakers are failing us on this front and choose instead to side with the National Rifle Association. Suspected terrorists can buy assault rifles, but we’re still carrying tiny bottles of shampoo to the airport.”
Ansari wrote, “Trump wants to ban Muslim immigrants like my parents. I wrote a piece for @NYTimes telling him to go f— himself,” while posting the article on Twitter.