AUSTIN (KXAN) — State Rep. Molly White (R-Belton) says she didn’t realize what a reaction her Facebook comment last Thursday would cause.
She can say, hindsight’s 20-20.
“I probably would have elaborated a little bit more. I was in a rush, I made the post,” White told KXAN on Tuesday. She also says context can paint a clearer picture.
White says her comment, asking her staff to ask Muslims visiting the Capitol to renounce terrorism, was directed to members of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). They organized the rally at the Capitol.
“This group has been listed as one of the 82 top terrorist organizations by the United Arab Emirates. That sends up red flags,” White said. However, The United States government does not consider CAIR a terrorist organization.
A spokesperson for the group says it is “seeking clarification on its ‘shocking and bizarre’ inclusion on the (UAE’s) list.”
Muhammad Ahmad, the outreach coordinator with Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in Round Rock, says the timing of White’s post was unfortunate.
“It’s unfortunate that it happened on a day when Muslims from Texas were actually trying to do their civic duty and go meet their representatives, which in my opinion, is a great way to show your loyalty to the country and be democratic,” said Ahmad.
Ahmad says this all goes to show how much work Muslims in Texas have to do.
“There’s always people who are going to say negative things, and you can only control your response. And what’s the best response? It’s to dispel any and every misconception you can find,” said Ahmad.
White says she felt supported in her comment, too.
“Not all of it was negative. I had a lot of support,” she said.
She stands by her concerns with CAIR.
“What is concerning to me is when people don’t take the time to find out who is sponsoring groups; who they are, what they believe, why they’re here,” White said.