MSNBC's Ali Velshi honors heroes who died defending girls from an anti-Muslim extremist in Portland

Velshi: “I am Muslim, and today I honor these courageous men ... thank you for defending justice, freedom, and the American way”

From the May 30 edition of MSNBC's MSNBC Live:

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ALI VELSHI (HOST): As we end this show, I need to say something about this Portland stabbing. Here is the story. Two teenage girls were on a train, one wearing hijab, one not. One Muslim, one not. A 16 year-old and 17 year-old, just headed out into the city. All of the sudden, a man started spewing hateful, anti-Muslim slurs at them.

Cue the heroes, Rick Best, Taliesin Myrddin Namkai-Meche, and Micah Fletcher. They were also on that train in in Portland. Rick was a 53 year-old Army veteran, a husband and a father of four. Taliesin was a city employee who had hoped to start a family soon. Micah is a college student, he was on his way to his pizza shop job.

The men heard the bigoted verbal attacks, and they acted. These men stood up for decency. They stood up for freedom. Rick and Taliesin were stabbed to death, killed defending these young women's right to simply ride a train in peace. These men died heroes. Micah was also hurt in the attack, he is recovering at the hospital. All three men stood up in the face of danger, and acted.

I am Muslim, and today I honor these courageous men. Rick, Taliesin, and Micah, thank you. Thank you for defending justice, freedom and the American way. And to the families of these brave heroes, I can't even begin to imagine what you're going through. My sincerest condolences, and to Micah, get well soon, buddy.


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