A Muslim woman who was kicked off a Southwest Airlines flight in San Diego is holding Long Island Rep. Peter King personally responsible.
And she’s not the only one.
“Irum Abbasi being removed from an airplane is a direct result of the hate-filled rhetoric of Peter King’s hearings,” said Hanif Mohebi, director of the San Diego chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations.
“His hearings translate into this reality for American Muslims,” he added.
Abbasi, a Pakistani native and 31-year-old mother of three who lives in San Diego was on a San Jose-bound flight. Just before takeoff, a flight attendant reportedly overheard her say on her cell phone: “It’s a go” — when in fact she said: “I’ve got to go.”
That prompted the attendant to alert the pilot that she was suspicious. Moments later, Abbasi was escorted off the flight.
“If she wasn’t Muslim and wearing a head scarf this wouldn’t have happened,” said Mohebi. “Peter King is causing this.”
On March 10, King — the chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee — began his first in a series of hearings analyzing the radicalization of American Muslims. The four hours produced high drama and emotional outbursts.
“People are so panicked and paranoid these days, and Peter King is the problem. He’s adding fuel to the fire,” said Nayyar Imam, president of the Long Island Muslim Alliance.
The airline apologized to Abbasi, but Mohebi said he is still considering calling for a Muslim boycott of Southwest Airlines.