Racist Security Marred White House Press Dinner

Seema Jilani accuses guards of being biased against her
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted May 8, 2013 12:40 PM CDT
Racist Security Marred White House Press Dinner
Seema Jilani says security guards showed a bias against her.   (Shutterstock)

As a mere spouse of one of the journalists attending the White House Correspondents Dinner, Seema Jilani was only allowed to attend the cocktail hour beforehand. But when she realized her husband had her keys, she figured she could at least meet him down in the foyer. Security guards refused, saying she needed a ticket—but then proceeded to let numerous white women through without checking their tickets, and in one case offered to escort a woman who didn't have one, Jilani alleges in a Huffington Post op-ed.

When Jilani asked about the disparity, a guard replied, "We have to be extra careful with you all after the Boston bombings." For Jilani, it was a vivid display of the "repugnant, infectious bigotry" lurking in America. "Let's stop this facade that we are a beacon of tolerance. I don't need you to 'tolerate' me," she writes. "All I have ever asked, is to be treated as a human being," and afforded the same dignity as everyone else. "It is not my job to convince you to distinguish me from the violent sociopaths that claim to be Muslims. … It is your job." Click for Jilani's full account. (Read more racism stories.)

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