A liberal Muslim immigrant came out as "silent secret Donald Trump voter" because she said she is tired of people labeling Trump supporters as ignorant and racist.
"...I felt like this entire election year, we have just silenced so many people," former Wall Street Journal reporter Asra Nomani told CNN on Nov. 11.
Nomani, who co-founded the Muslim Reform Movement, first announced publicly that she had voted for president-elect Trump as president in a Nov. 10 op-ed in The Washington Post, in which she wrote that she had been leaning toward the billionaire businessman throughout much of the election.
Though she disagrees with some of his rhetoric and policies, she said she was unable to support Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton out of distrust for her business dealings and fear that she would go too soft on "the influence of theocratic Muslim dictatorships."
"Yes, I want equal pay," she wrote in the Post. "No, I reject Trump's 'locker room' banter, the idea of a 'wall' between the United States and Mexico and a plan to 'ban' Muslims. But I trust the United States and don't buy the political hyperbole -- agenda-driven identity politics of its own -- that demonized Trump and his supporters."
Nomani told CNN that the U.S. has largely avoided discussing terrorism and fears of incoming refugees "for the sake of political correctness."
"If people would hear out the concerns and fears that others have about the issues to refugees and extremists, I think we could find a path that's in the middle," she told CNN. "But unfortunately, what happens is that this liberal honor brigade shuts down all conversation, calls you bigot or racist or Islamophobe if you dare to speak your own concerns."
She also called on Democrats and Republicans to "move to the middle" to agree upon national solutions that she said will "protect national security as well as human rights."
"Even now the idea of speaking out as somebody who voted for Trump is earning me all sorts of lovely labels like 'idiot' and 'f---er' and all these other ideas that I think violate liberal values of free speech and self-determination," Nomani explained. "So I spoke out because I also believe we have to stand up for the dignity of all people and Trump voters are human beings, too."