I know there was talk since shortly after Ilhan was elected, but there seems to be an onslaught lately—from multiple corners—of folks latching on to a narrative that Rep Omar’s congressional district (#MN05) being some sort of “Hotbed of Terrorism Recruitment!!!” With very little attribution/ perhaps a fleeting mention of “a report from her local newspaper”(the Star Tribune, or “The STrib”, for those of you not up on our local press).
As a Minnesotan, imo, this whole “Minnesota is a Hotbed of Terrorism!” narrative is infuriating & 100% racist, fearmongering, bullshit.
This is the STrib article, which covered “The Report” that so many folks loosely refer to, when claiming MN (and *especially* #MN05) are a terrorist-recruitment hotbed:
Thing is, if one actually *reads* the story & report, while it’s a bit difficult to determine exactly how many Minnesotans were involved in the recruitment, the overall number appears to be somewhere between 50-60ish folks.
Those 50-60ish folks (and for the sake of not wanting to under-count, let’s round ALL the way up, and for the sake of easy numbers in the rest of my post, call it 100 people) so, *100 people* represent about POINT ZERO, ZERO, *TWO* percent (0.002%) of the population of Somali people in the state of Minnesota.
It is estimated by the folks at the US Census department, that we have between 42,400 and 55,200 people of Somali descent in Minnesota, or about 1% of all Minnesotans. (Remember this. ONE percent!!! Total! *ALL* of the Somali people here are just 1% of Minnesotans.)
In comparison, Minnesota is a majority White state, 80%, with about 4.4 *Million* White folks.
Racist fools across the country are claiming that Minnesota is somehow a *hotbed* for terrorist recruitment(TM), because we’ve had about 100 (less, many less!) people either get busted for recruitment, attempting to leave the US to participate in terrorism, or in iirc 7 (less than 10, anyway) cases, *actually* leaving the country and participating in terrorist acts.
Racist fools like ☝️that guy. And of course the folks on FOX news & other assorted conspiracy-theory pushers.
Notice, if you would please, that much of the uptick in these stories appears to have happened around the beginning of 2019, even though that STrib article came out in the same time of 2018.
And what NONE of the fear-mongerers point out is that Somali Minnesotans make up 1% of our population TOTAL, meaning that these 100-ish folks involved in terroristic activities/attempted terrorism/*actual* terrorism?
THEY ARE LITERALLY A ROUNDING ERROR, when you consider the ENTIRE population of our state.
Less than 100 people, out of a sub-group of ~50,000. Less than 100 people, out of an *entire* population of 5.611 MILLION.
Is Terrorism bad?
Is the recruitment of people into terrorism bad?
But, Is #MN05 a “Hotbed of terrorism,” “Hotbed for the recruitment of terrorists,” or in ANY rational way the mortal danger these racist asshats are CONTINUALLY portraying it as?
Those WHOLE narratives are just a bunch of Racist, Fearmongering, B.S.
And once one digs into the real demographic numbers in our state, it’s easily seen.
0.002% of a 1% segment of the state’s population.
Statistically insignificant. A rounding error—IF even that. LESS THAN 100 PEOPLE, in a population of over 5.5 Million.
I’d bet, just based on the SPLC’s Hatewatch map, that there are more than 100 people involved in the 12 racist & hate groups that MN has...
My guess is, that those 12 groups have *at least* 10 people per group (probably MANY more, frankly, or they wouldn’t have attracted the notice of the SPLC🤔🤨🧐)
In summary: even though plenty of folks out there are spreading a narrative that #MN05 is a place where “large numbers” of folks have had ties to terrorist activities, the population numbers REALLY do not support that idea. The reality is that a *tiny* fraction of ONE percent of people were involved.
Thank you for coming to my GT/TED Talk.😉
This rant brought to y’all by the fact that the mention in today’s HUFFPO article was at least the 5th or 6th reference I’ve seen in the last few days, that #MN05 is a *magical* hotbed of recruitment. That narrative is complete BS, and 100% fearmongering.
News article from the St. Cloud Times, on the Census & demographic numbers: