On Monday morning, conservative activist and prominent Trump supporter Kathy Zhu spoke with CNN "New Day" host Alisyn Camerota about Miss World America Organization recently stripping the 20-year-old of the Miss Michigan crown over past "offensive" tweets and her refusal to try on a hijab at a college event in 2018.
“You shouldn’t just take tweets out of context. I think it’s super important to see the full context of the tweet, and the full conversation,” Zhu, a Chinese immigrant who moved to the United States at age five, said in defending her posts to Camerota. “Everything I posted was statistics and my opinions, and I think that, you know, we should be empowering women's voices and not just stripping them of their title only because of their opinions.”
One of the tweets from Zhu highlighted by Miss World America was about black-on-black murder. “Did you know the majority of black deaths are caused by other blacks? Fix problems within your own community first before blaming others,” the post in question reads.
Camerota read the tweet on-air and suggested the tweet had a “ring of racism” to it because Zhu did not highlight white-on-white murder or statistics concerning police brutality.
"Do you see how that could be seen as offensive?" the CNN host asked. "Why would you focus on blacks causing black deaths when the majority of white deaths are caused by white people? This is why people think that this has a ring of racism to it. You didn’t mention the white statistic.”
“Again, this was in response to another person’s tweet talking about how cops kill black people,” said Zhu. Earlier in the interview, the activist said she was responding to a Twitter user claiming “all cops are bad people” and that they “kill innocent black people.”
“This is taken fully out of context,” Zhu repeated. “And if you think statistics and facts are racist, then I don’t know what to tell you.”
“It’s just which ones you highlight, since, you know, you could have said the thing about white people,” countered Camerota, before moving on to a post Zhu made regarding “hijab awareness day” on her former college campus.
"There's a 'try a hijab on' booth at my college campus. So you’re telling me that it's now just a fashion accessory and not a religious thing? Or are you just trying to get women used to being oppressed under Islam?" wrote Zhu in a post which has since been deleted, according to The Washington Examiner.
Zhu refuted the idea that the post was offensive. "I think that it's really rude, to Muslims too, to wear their sacred garment on someone who isn't a Muslim themselves. I wouldn't want to put a Catholic rosary on someone if they aren't Catholic," she told Camerota.
“But that’s not what you said,” the CNN host said. “You said it wasn’t that you felt badly for them, that you weren’t Muslim, it’s that you said, ‘are you just trying to get women used to be oppressed under Islam?’”
Zhu noted that women in some Muslim countries can be stoned for not properly wearing a hijab and suggested we look at the oppression of Muslim women outside of the Western world.
"There are so many women in Muslim countries right now who are being stoned to death because they don’t want to wear a hijab due to their husband's requirement to do so," she said. "I think we should be focusing on that.”
Reacting to her appearance on CNN, Zhu wrote in a tweet:
CNN: why didn’t u talk about white on white crime
Me: bcus it was in response to a person calling all cops horrible people
CNN: ok but why didn’t u talk about white on white crime
Me: as I said, it was a response to another tweet
CNN: ok but y didn’t u talk about white crime