For the first time in 20 years, the White House did not celebrate the grand finale of Islam’s holy month of Ramadan with a traditional “iftar” dinner.
Instead, President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump issued a statement on Saturday that read:
“On behalf of the American people, Melania and I send our warm greetings to Muslims as they celebrate Eid al-Fitr. During the holiday, we are reminded of the importance of mercy, compassion, and goodwill. With Muslims around the world, the United States renews our commitment to honor these values.”
Since 1996, the Iftar dinner has been held at the White House to celebrate the holy month ofRamadan, which falls on the ninth month of the Islamic lunar calendar.
The holiday started May 27 and ended Saturday at sundown.
The Iftar dinner tradition started under former president Bill Clinton and reached its crescendo under Barack Obama. Trump’s decision to scrap the dinner signifies an entirely new course and attitude toward Islamic culural influences under this administration.
While Obama earmarked millions of dollars in federal DHS grants to support Islamic programs, Trump has pulled back on funding and is allowing these cultural initiatives to fall by the wayside.
Islamic leaders are of course outraged by the loss of political influence under the Trump administration.
Most Americans probably weren’t even aware of the iftar dinner celebration at the White House.
Trump has sent a clear message that the separation between mosque and state is a real one.
(H/T US Herald)