On Wednesday night, the country watched as President Trump agitated a crowd gathered in Greenville, North Carolina, to chant “send her back” in regard to Rep. Ilhan Omar. The crowd, sadly, obliged.

This is not who we are as a nation. We are a nation of immigrants, a melting pot befitting our national motto, “e pluribus unum” — out of many, one. Demonizing an elected official — who came to America as a refugee — to suggest she is not one of us sets a dangerous precedent. To see where this leads, look no farther than China’s concentration camp system, where between one and three million Uyghurs are detained, abused and forced to abandon not only their faith but their culture, as part of the Chinese Communist Party’s quest to create a homogenous ethnic Han society.

I urge all Bristolians, regardless of party, to condemn the rhetoric of hate and to reject efforts by some to claim that some citizens are not, in fact, American.

Out of many, one.

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