After a Fairfax County School Board member delivered a scathing speech at a high school commencement ceremony, Virginia parents spoke out Tuesday, rejecting the message about students entering a world of greed, racism and White supremacy.
Abrar Omeish, the school board's lone Muslim member, delivered the keynote address before a graduation ceremony for Justice High School in Falls Church, Virginia, on June 7. She warned the graduating – mostly minority – high schoolers that they are about to step into a capitalist world filled with racism, White supremacy and "extreme versions of individualism."
"Our world is overwhelmed with need. We struggle with human greed, racism, extreme versions of individualism and capitalism, White supremacy, growing wealth gaps, disease, climate crisis, extreme poverty amid luxury and waste right next door. And the list goes on," Omeish said, pointing out that the school is on land stolen from the Manahoac people, a Native American tribe.
The president of the student government introduced her, noting that she campaigned for presidential candidate Bernie Sanders and that her father, Esam Omeish, was a "leader and board member of the Dar al-Hijrah Islamic Center" – the namesake of a mosque attended by two 9/11 hijackers in 2001, the radical imam Anwar Al-Awlaki, and Nidal Hasan, the 2009 Fort Hood shooter.
At another point in the address, Omeish told the students in Arabic to remember their "jihad."
"I think it's important for your viewers to know that Abrar Omeish’s comments here are incendiary comments, are not the first example of divisive and anti-Semitic rhetoric," Fairfax County parent Gary Aiken told "Fox & Friends First" on Tuesday.
Aiken said that several weeks ago, Omeish posted "vile anti-Semitic tweets on her social accounts," which were linked to her official "nonpartisan Fairfax County school board page."
"That desecrates the Holy Land and kills Palestinians. And this caused huge outrage among over 250,000 Jewish Americans here in Northern Virginia and it sparked outrage across all political lines and there were calls for her to apologize. She offered no apology. She doubled down on it," Aiken said.
The county school district said in a statement that Omeish's comments were her First Amendment right and that her "personal views … do not reflect the views" of the school board or district.
Aiken said it is "absurd" to say that school board members do not represent the school when delivering speeches within "school functions" like a commencement ceremony.
Also, Aiken said it is "absurd" that no one proofread or pre-approved the incendiary speech.
Former Wall Street Journal columnist Asra Nomani weighed in on Omeish's speech on "Fox & Friends" Tuesday, calling it "depressing."
"It was indicative of this radicalization that is happening within school boards and school districts and schools across the country, from principals to teachers to political operatives like [Omeish]."
Nomani said she knows Omeish "very well" and they are both Muslims.
"She gave that speech but the script was written years ago," Nomani said.
Fox News' Bradford Betz contributed to this report.