From Janell Ross writing at The Washington Post:
Bobby Jindal lives in a very interesting and unique political space.
He’s one of many, many men and one woman vying for the GOP nomination in 2016. He’s a young governor but is widely regarded as a withered-though-once-rising political star. He’s the first Indian-American to be considered a serious candidate for the White House, but he shuns that label and believes that every American should strive to live a non-hyphenated experience.
He’s the pro-melting pot candidate in a world in which the American salad bowl is seen as a hipper or at least more inclusive national metaphor. He expresses significant concern about the danger he insists some immigrants can represent in the United States and countries abroad. And this month, all of that may have attracted more attention than Jindal’s formal announcement that he’s running for president.
First, a bit of background.
In January, Jindal took a trip to Europe, gave some speeches and did some interviews. They included the idea that some European countries have mistakenly allowed Muslim immigrants to establish almost autonomous communities in which strict religious laws, known as Sharia, govern life. Some of these places had become “no-go” zones for non-Muslims, Jindal claimed.
Amid criticism that his comments were not only counterfactual but flavored by more than a little bit of influence from people like Pamela Geller, who has long warned of the dangers created by so-called “creeping Sharia,” Jindal doubled down. In a satellite interview from London with CNN, Jindal said:
“I knew that by speaking the truth we were going to make people upset. … The huge issue, the big issue in non-assimilation is the fact that you have people that want to come to our country but not adopt our values, not adopt our language and in some cases want to set apart their own enclaves and hold on to their own values. I think that’s dangerous.”
Then in February, Jindal came to Washington, D.C., addressed an anti-Common Core curriculum organization, and repeated these thoughts.