While liberals are still trying to muster outrage at Donald Trump and his proposal to temporarily pause Islamic immigration, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich has gone even further, telling Sean Hannity on Thursday that the U.S. should begin deporting extremist Muslims.
“Let me be as blunt and direct as I can be,” Gingrich said. “Western civilization is in a war. We should frankly test every person here who is of a Muslim background, and if they believe in Sharia, they should be deported. Sharia is incompatible with Western civilization. Modern Muslims who have given up Sharia, glad to have them as citizens.”
Gingrich, who was once considered Trump’s likeliest running mate, made the comments after a terrorist killed at least 80 people at a Bastille Day celebration in Nice, France. He said the U.S. should begin penalizing anyone found logging on to radical Islamic websites.
“We need to be fairly relentless about defining who our enemies are,” he said. “Anybody who goes on a website favoring ISIS or Al Qaeda or other terrorist groups – that should be a felony and they should go to jail. Any organization which hosts such a website should be engaged in a felony. It should be closed down immediately.”
Well, it’s not exactly clear how these proposals would get past the First Amendment, but at least Gingrich has the right spirit. We can debate all day long about which measures we can take to stop the spread of Islamic radicalism and save innocent lives – but we can only have that debate when we have leaders who recognize the root of the problem. Gingrich and Trump may not have all the solutions, but they know who the enemy is. In these troubling times, that’s a significant step in the right direction.
For the next few days, Democrats and other liberals will rake Gingrich over the coals for his specific comments and miss the meat of his message entirely. The point is that we have to start trying new things. We have to stop playing nice. We have to stop pretending that guns are the problem. We have to stop protecting Islam.
People are dying and families are grieving. When we decide to care as much about these victims as we do about Islam’s reputation, maybe we’ll start getting somewhere.