Texas Agriculture chief Sid Miller lambasted by Trinity University professor, others

Letter to the Editor published in the Dallas Morning News

Re: “Ag chief not sorry for ‘bomb’ image — Anti-Muslim Facebook post shared by a staffer, says Miller spokesman,” Tuesday news story.

Earlier this week, the Facebook account for Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller posted an image that apparently called for the United States to drop an atom bomb on “the Muslim world.” While Miller has denied responsibility, he has also refused to apologize.

Miller’s refusal to apologize is troubling. By not addressing the hateful content of the post, he is implicitly condoning xenophobia and violence against Muslims. As a Sikh American who is often targeted in such misguided violence, I can tell you firsthand that it matters when people of influence, like Miller, send the message that it is OK to blame entire communities for the actions of certain individuals.

I believe that we can and should hold our government officials to a higher standard. They represent those of us who elected them, and therefore they should be representing the values we hold as Texans and as Americans. In this country, we respect one another regardless of cultural backgrounds or religious beliefs. And we certainly do not tolerate the type of hateful bigotry exhibited by Miller. As a nation and as a state, we are better than that.

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