“A lot of people speak about the greatness of our constitution, to the exceptional ways in which American society is set up. But they rarely speak to all of that being an idea, and its actualization is the work that we all have to be engaged in. We have to continue to persist in asking for America to live up to what it says on paper.”
– Rep. Ilhan Omar, episode 194 on Talk Easy with Sam Fragoso
Growing up Black in this country, Angela Davis taught Rep. Ilhan Omar that you must be “internally liberated to fight for external liberation”. As the first Somali-American elected to Congress, Omar has routinely fought for that external liberation. She joins us today, from Washington, to discuss the passing of George Floyd and her father (5:55), the challenge of making police reform a bi-partisan issue in Congress (11:18), the valuable mistakes made in her first term in the House (15:44), her refusal to “assume the posture of the good immigrant” (21:25), how she’s handled the personal, xenophobic comments from President Trump (24:55), why she continues to reinvest in the youth (32:10), and what she hopes America will look like in the years ahead (40:15).
- Visit her personal website to learn more about her.
- Listen to her speech at George Floyd’s memorial.
- Purchase her memoir This Is What America Looks Like: My Journey from Refugee to Congresswoman.
- Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.
- In Minnesota? Resources to vote here.
Illustrations by: Krishna Shenoi.
Music by: Dylan Peck