Despite criticism of his comments on a recent trip to London, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal is standing by his assessment of certain Muslim neighborhoods as “no-go zones” for other Britons.
“I knew that my comments were going to rile up people on the left. Whenever you speak honestly about the threat of radical Islamic terrorism, the politically correct crowd does not like this,” Jindal said today on CNN. “I was very clear. No-go zones are areas where people are trying to impose Sharia law, where women don’t feel as comfortable going in without wearing veils from the outside. The police are less likely to go in. The left try to jump on the semantics. I don’t care if you call them sensitive urban zones, the way the French do, or no-go zones.”
“Here’s the bigger point. The bigger point is that Islam has got a problem. Muslim leaders have got to condemn, not just generic acts of violence, but these individual terrorists, saying these fools aren’t martyrs; they’re not going to enjoy a reward in the afterlife; they’re going straight to hell.”
The potential 2016 presidential candidate — Jidal told MSNBC today he’s “thinking about it” — stressed he would “hope and believe a majority of Muslims don’t condone the beliefs of these terrorists, but it’s important for Muslim leaders to condemn the individuals committing these acts.”
“And then for the west, it’s important for officials to insist people coming into our countries assimilate and integrate. We don’t want to give people the same freedom we give to everybody and allow them to use those freedoms to undermine our freedoms. And that’s a dangerous trend. You’re seeing it in Europe, and it could happen here in America if we’re not careful,” Jindal continued.
The concept of “no-go zones,” he clarified, doesn’t “mean by law you’re not allowed to go in those; it’s not like there are fences around these neighborhoods.”
“But the point is, is that women who are outsiders don’t feel as comfortable going in. They feel if they’re not veiled, they’re not welcome there. The police will tell you. The police have said this. That they get lower reports of serious violent crimes. There are attempts by the local communities to impose as much of Sharia law as they can,” the governor said. “Absolutely, you see these areas in the U.K. and in France, and the reality is, you get second-, third-generation immigrants there that don’t consider themselves parts of those society. Now to their credits, the French prime minister and others are speaking out against the threats of radical Islamic terrorism. Our president doesn’t like to use those words.”
“Here in America, here’s the threat I see. I’m not saying we’ve got those zones here, but I’m saying if we continue to insist on hyphenated Americans, if we don’t view America as a melting pot, if we refuse to teach about America as an exceptional country with English as our language, we risk going down the path that Europe has gone where they don’t insist on assimilation and integration.”
Two weeks ago, the Council on American-Islamic Relations issued an open letter to Jindal and other potential Republican presidential candidates stressing that “Islamophobic fear mongering during the 2012 campaign did not translate into a nomination for GOP presidential hopefuls Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Tim Pawlenty, Rick Perry, and Rick Santorum.”
“CAIR advises that by not giving a platform to Islamophobia, holding accountable those candidates that do use their campaigns to foster anti-Muslim sentiment and making a concerted effort to engage Muslim voters, your campaign and the Republican Party will be closer to its presidential aspirations.”
Jindal was specifically accused by CAIR of “Muslim bashing” with his “decision to repeat the already discredited no-go zone allegation.”