Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn) got slammed on social media after posting a tweet criticizing passengers on a flight for singing Christian songs.
The video was shot/posted by Jack Jensz Jr., the founder of Kingdom Realm Ministries, on an EasyJet commercial flight between Georgia and Philadelphia on Easter weekend. The video featured a man identified as a man from Singapore named Jonathan Neo playing the worship song, “How Great Is Our God.” Jensz wrote on the Instagram post that he had requested permission from the pilot before the song. Jensz and his team have been in Ukraine since the second day of the war, providing medical supplies, food, humanitarian aid, and praying with refugees.
Some passengers happily joined in, clapping hands and singing along, while others seemed annoyed. Similarly, the video drew mixed responses on social media. Perhaps the most visible response came from Ilhan Omar.
“I think my family and I should have a prayer session next time I am on a plane,” Omar tweeted. “How do you think it will end?”
I think my family and I should have a prayer session next time I am on a plane. How do you think it will end? pic.twitter.com/5696Erwsl5
— Ilhan Omar (@IlhanMN) April 17, 2022
The Church of Satan sided with Omar commenting on a different video tweet, saying, “This is terrorism.”
Many were quick to respond, correcting Omar’s assumption that Muslim prayer and Islamic displays of religiosity would be targeted. First Amendment rights in the U.S. permit Muslims to pray during air travel, with many airports having dedicated prayer rooms. No federal law prohibits prayer or music on flights, provided that safety procedures are followed.
Jose Castillo, a Republican candidate running for Congress in Florida, was quick to point this out, tweeting, “In America, Muslims can & do pray in public. If she wants a country where Christians aren’t allowed to do the same, Ilhan Omar should go back to her own country.”
Cicely Davis, who is running in the GOP primary to challenge Omar for Minnesota’s Fifth District seat, pointed to Islamic national airlines like Qatar Airways, which play Muslim prayers over intercom systems before takeoff, including on U.S. flights.
Rep. Vernon Jones, who was formerly a Democratic politician, was critical of Omar’s response. “Why do you hate Christians, Ilhan?” Jones tweeted. “If the freedom of religion we enjoy here in America disturbs you, feel free to pack your bags and head back to Somalia, Sudan, or wherever you’re from. Take your brother with you.”
Political commentator Steven Crowder noted that Omar had not commented on the three mass shootings that took place in South Carolina and Pennsylvania over Easter weekend. “What’s worse: a mass shooting or singing on a plane?” Crowder tweeted. “Ilhan Omar only felt a need to comment on one of these.”
Omar did not take kindly to the criticism, tweeting, “And the original snowflakes had a complete and glorious meltdown.”
Omar has been criticized for making anti-Semitic statements. In June last year, Omar compared Israel and the US to the Taliban and Hamas. In November 2020, she accused Israel of ethnic cleansing. In March 2019, Omar came under fire for perpetuating an anti-Semitic trope by accusing American Jews of having an “allegiance to a foreign country.” In 2019, Stop Antisemitism voted Omar “Antisemite of the Year.”