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THE PROBLEM IS NOT WITH THE SOMALI COMMUNITY. THE PROBLEM IS WITH OUR COMMUNITY.

February 20, 2014

WARNING: MY HAIR JUST HAPPENS TO BE ON FIRE ABOUT THIS.

For those of you not up to date:  On February 4th the DFL caucus, which was held at the Brian Coyle Center was shut down because it broke out in violence.  Specifically a young woman who was supporting one candidate was assaulted by supporters of another.  She was taken to the hospital and treated for a concussion and sprained neck.

Now if that is all you knew about this you would assume that the following has happened:

1.  The incident has been investigated by the police, the party and each campaign to determine whether violence was committed and by whom.

2.  Once the investigation was complete the individuals who committed physical assault were charged by the police, sanctioned by the party and expelled by the campaigns.

It has been sixteen days and none of this has happened.  How is this possible?  Because it didn’t happen in South Minneapolis or in the Northeast.  It happened in one of the Somali Precincts.  Admit it a click just went off in your head.  “Oh of course”. 

What has happened?  Leading members of our party have treated this as if it’s a problem in the Somali community.  They have said both sides are to blame; it’s due to a language problem; our beloved mayor RT gave a speech to the community saying you’ve come too far to let this happen.  Then when the caucus was reconvened and resulted in the election of delegates these same people call it a victory for democracy.  A VICTORY FOR DEMOCROCY?  The candidate whose supporters committed the violence ended up with more delegates than they would have if the first one had not been shut down by their violence.  Sounds to me like democracy lost.  So how is it a victory for democracy?  It is only a victory for democracy if it was an open question whether this Somali precinct could successfully hold a caucus.  Why couldn’t they successfully hold a caucus?  Because of their language? Their country of origin? Their skin color?  The only question that should have been open is whether these same individuals chose again to commit violence.  Seems unlikely when all eyes are on them. 

HAVE YOU GOTTEN MY POINT YET?  Any leader of our community, the police, the party or the candidates that treat this situation as anything other than a criminal act of assault are letting their inherent subconscious racism color their perception.  (And yes I believe anyone who was raised in this culture is racist.  The question is what you chose to do with it.)

We need to see this.  Not because of how this affects the Somali community but because of how it affects OUR COMMUNITY.  ALL OF OUR COMMUNITY.  Because this is not about the Somali community it is about us.   

If you are interested in the facts please review this excellent piece in MinnPost. http://www.minnpost.com/politics-policy/2014/02/allegations-threats-bullying-follow-cedar-riverside-caucus-brawl 

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