Somali American is not synonymous with terrorist

TryingMyBestsquareFarhana Khers, executive director of the group Muslim Advocates, said of U.S. anti-terrorist security measures, “They seem to focus on Muslim communities, which account for only a small fraction of terrorist activities in the U.S.” Yet, they never talk about increased employment opportunities or after-school programs for Whites after a White person commits an act of terrorism.

Through my writings, members of our local Somali community have contacted me. I asked one individual, “What is this [security focus on Somalis] all about?” His answer, “Money — it’s about money, about job security.” I think he’s on to something.

Andres Luger, the U.S. attorney for the District of Minnesota said, “All of this requires money. I hope the $15 million will be split among the pilot cities.” The $15 million is to “support community-led efforts to counter radicalization.” Luger gets job security, national exposure, and millions in funding for criminalizing local Somali Americans.
“Abdisalam Adam is a public school teacher and Iman from St. Paul and a model for how the White House and U.S. law enforcement hope to avoid an American version of the Charlie Hebdo attack in Paris,” (Washington Post). Amazing that they don’t see the racism in their approach.

They connect the Paris killings to the Twin Cities not from evidence that someone was planning such an attack, but simply because Minnesota has the largest U.S. population of Somali Americans. They apparently assume that our Somali community could produce such an attack based on their religion and skin color, not on evidence that anyone is actually planning to use violence.

A Star Tribune article recently declared, “The time has come for Minnesota Somalis to mitigate terror connections. They need to separate themselves from the roiling politics of their homeland and engage with America.” This puts the entire Somali community on trial and on the hot seat. They must see this as acceptable since local analyst Jamal Abdulahi wrote the editorial.

The article had a photo of an Al-Shabab video threatening the Mall of America. Abdulahi says, “The threat on MOA presents a moment of clarity for Minnesota’s Somali-Americans.”
Yes, it does. If you are a Somali American, the threat to the MOA will be connected to you, even if you had nothing to do with it. This is why a group of local Somali Americans took a trip to the MOA to eat, shop, and enjoy the mall, after the threat to the mall.
Sad that they felt the necessity to take such action — to inform their fellow citizens, “We mean no harm, no need to fear us. We are just here at the mall for the same reasons you are, to eat, shop and enjoy the mall. Though you see us as different, it is important to continue to show you that we are just like you.”

Frank Erickson lives in Minneapolis.