Vice President Kamala Harris praised a student who accused Israel of committing "ethnic genocide" and encouraged her speech, saying, "Your truth cannot be suppressed."
What are the details?
Harris — who just finished making a speech at George Mason University in order to commemorate National Voter Registration Day — was taking questions from the audience when a young female student who identified herself as "part Yemeni, part Iranian" asked Harris about funding to Israel and Saudi Arabia, the New York Post reports.
Referring to the Palestinian cause, Fox News reported, the unnamed student said, "I see that over the summer, there have been, like, protests and demonstrations in astronomical numbers standing with Palestine, but then just a few days ago, there were funds allocated to continue backing Israel — which hurts my heart because it's an ethnic genocide and a displacement of people — the same that happened in America — and I'm sure you're aware of this."
Harris continuously nodded while the young woman continued to speak her piece and said that she believed money that would otherwise benefit underprivileged Americans was being funneled into Israel and Saudi Arabia.
"I bring this up also because of the issue of how Americans are struggling because of lack of health care, public health care, lack of affordable housing, and all this money ends up going to inflaming Israel and backing Saudi Arabia and whatnot," the student continued. "And I think that the people have spoken very often in what they do need and I feel like there's a lack of listening, and I just feel like I need to bring this up because it affects my life and people I really care about's lives."
"I'm glad you did," Harris responded. "I'm glad you did. And again, this is about the fact that your voice, your perspective, your experience, your truth should not be suppressed."
The Post reported that she continued, "And it must be heard, right? A democracy is at its strongest when everyone participates. It is [at] its weakest when anyone is left out. And that's not only about being physically present, but that your voice is present. … Our goal should be unity, but not uniformity."
Effectively dodging the student's question, Harris later was said to have responded by saying that "healthy debate" in the U.S. is imperative to a strong nation.
"Unity should never be at the expense of telling anyone personally that, for the sake of unity, 'Oh, you be quiet about that thing. You suppress that thing. Let's not deal with that thing.' That's not unity," Harris insisted. "True unity is everyone in that room has a voice. ... The point that you are making about policy that relates to Middle East policy, foreign policy, we still have healthy debates in our country about what is the right path, and nobody's voice should be suppressed on that."
You can listen to the partial remarks in the video below.