The gentleman portrayed above shouted hate at Muslim women repeatedly, poisoning a Portland celebration of Ramadan Friday evening. He then proceeded to kill two men who tried to protect women from this hate attack. Today Tulsi Gabbard noted this tragic event and called the murdered men heroes.

Trump inevitably

The immediate response was to wonder whether President Trump had anything to do with ginning up the hate that led to the attack.

Before it took place, Atlantic ran a piece noting that Trump temporized in referring to American American as "Muslims in America." People thought back to Trump's beginnings as a serious presidential hopeful. He then engaged in a relentless attack on President Obama and his alleged Muslim connections.

It gets worse

If one digs down into the Trump file it is not hard to connect the dots and conclude that Trump is knee-deep into anti-Islam theories. His principal advisor Steve Bannon has written more than once expressions of profound anti-Islam conviction. Both men have been supported by Pamela Geller, a Manhattanite who is an avowed enemy of all things Islamic.

Shia-Sunni

The most nefarious conclusion that has been drawn regarding Trump's trip abroad is that he is trying to set the two great tribes in Islam against one another, creating a conflict whose end cannot be imagined. Certainly giving a speech advocating Sunni power against Shia Iran is at least borderline nefarious.

The Portland murders

Though not all are inclined to blame Trump for the attack, there is a general view among Muslims and other observers that Trump's campaign was based in part on stoking anti-Islamic sentiment.

In the wake of Friday's attack, the Center on American-Islamic Relations said, "President Trump must speak out personally against the rising tide of Islamophobia and other forms of bigotry and racism in our nation that he has provoked through his numerous statements, policies, and appointments that have negatively impacted minority communities." The speaker was Nihad Awad, the center's executive director.

The heroes

Tulsi Gabbard was not the only one to name the murdered men heroes. They are 53-year-old Ricky John Best and 23-year-old Taliesin Myrddin Namkai-Meche. Micah David-Cole Fletcher, 21, was also stabbed but his injuries were not deemed critical.

Practically the only positive to be wrested from this sad and sordid event would be a shift in public awareness -- to see those who are defending the hated as the real heroes of our time.

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