White House press secretary Sean Spicer was accused of working for a fascist by an Indian-American woman as he was out shopping (video below), and in response, he said, "It's such a great country that allows you to be here."
The incident occurred at an Apple Store on March 11, the Daily Mail reported. Spicer was out shopping when a 33-year-old woman named Shree Chauhan approached him and began questioning him.
Chauhan, who is Indian-American and was born and raised in the U.S., recorded the confrontation and posted the video online.
"How does it feel to work for a fascist?" she is heard asking Spicer in the video.
"We have a great country," Spicer responds.
"We have a great country?" Chauhan asks. "Have you helped with the Russia stuff? Are you a criminal as well?
"Have you committed treason too? Just like the president. Have you committed treason too? What can you tell me about Russia?"
Spicer is seen smiling and appears to be trying to avoid the woman.
"It’s such a great country that allows you to be here," he says, before walking away.
Chauhan told the Daily Mail she felt Spicer's comments were "racist." She said she felt as if Spicer was trying to insinuate that she had no right to be in the United States.
"He’s the press secretary for the president of the United States," Chauhan told the Daily Mail. "Don’t tell me what he probably meant because he also works for this administration that has done all of these things."
Chauhan was talking about President Donald Trump's executive order, which bans migrants and asylum seekers from six Muslim-majority countries from entering the United States.
"He could've said, 'Such a great country that allows dissent,'" Chauhan explained. "There’s a lot of ways that could’ve been said.
"To have someone who speaks for the president of the United States tell me to my face that I shouldn’t be here and I was born here -- that is a real thing."
Chauhan also spoke about the surge in hate crimes since Trump was elected into office.
"They’re gonna spin it however they want, but there is a palatable fear that people have in this country and it is warranted," she said.
"Honestly I see what’s happening in this country," Chauhan added. "I see how the Trump administration is curtailing constitutional rights and it's very, very concerning to me as a woman of color and just as a human being and an American.
"I'm a daughter of immigrants. My parents came to this country because they believed in what America is all about.
"And on a regular basis, Mr. Spicer consistently defends the actions -- and I believe unconstitutional actions -- and lies on behalf of this administration."
Chauhan commented more on the video in a blog post for Medium:
I am still stunned by the boldness of having my citizenship threatened on camera.
I was not polite. But when does being impolite mean that I should be thrown out of the United States of America? The country I was born in, the country I was raised in, the country I love despite its flaws.
I have spent enough time with online to encounter rabid Trump supporters. Many of these folks see my brown skin and question my citizenship. They question whether I am here legally. They tell me to leave the country. They have told me to go back to where I came from. To which my snarky reply is often, 'Go back where? New York?'
It’s one thing to have a Twitter egg tell say you do not belong in America, it is quite another to have the Press Secretary of the United States of America do so. I am still astounded. And while I am fearless, I wonder how this administration will use its power to silence ordinary people like me.