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Oklahoma: Republican lawmaker poses 'Islamophobic' questionnaire, asks if 'students beat their wives'

Houston: 'Do you beat your wife' was a poser in a questionnaire that Muslims wanting to meet a Republican lawmaker were reportedly asked to fill out. Oklahoma representative John Bennett asked his constituents taking part in the state's third annual 'Muslim Day' on Thursday to fill out the bizarre questionnaire, BuzzFeed News reported.

John Bennett. Image courtesy: Oklahoma state legislature

John Bennett. Image courtesy: Oklahoma state legislature

Adam Soltani, executive director of Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) Oklahoma, was quoted as saying that high school students from Tulsa's Peace Academy visited Bennett's office to either meet with him or schedule a meeting.

Soltani said the students were met by a legislative assistant who gave them a questionnaire, telling them it must be filled out in writing. The nine-part questionnaire included questions such as "Do you beat your wife?"

"I was distraught when (the students) showed me the questionnaire. I wasn't completely surprised by it because obviously we have been challenging Bennett's hate rhetoric for many years," Soltani said. "Nobody should be vetted with stupid, Islamophobic, hateful, bigoted questions before they can meet with their representative."

Bennett, a former US Marine who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, made headlines in 2014 when he made anti-Islam comments on social media. He also said there is no difference between moderate and radical Islam.

The questionnaire was written by anti-Islam group ACT for America — the group's logo and email address were on the sheet of paper. Bennett confirmed to the Tulsa World that three Muslim students visiting his office as part of Muslim Day were given
questionnaires. Bennett told the newspaper that he did not speak to the students personally.

Responding to the news, the Oklahoma Democratic Party called Bennett "an embarrassment to the Oklahoma Legislature". "Why do Republicans continue to turn a blind eye and ignore Bennett's hateful fear-mongering actions?" the statement was quoted as saying by The Huffington Post.

Updated Date: Mar 05, 2017 13:47 PM

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