Civic education or propaganda?

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Last week, the hate crimes discussion that was cancelled 2 months ago was finally held. According to this SCTimes article, “[the] panel discussing hate crimes was held after security concerns led to a two-month delay at St. Cloud State University Wednesday at the Miller Center Auditorium.” Actually, there weren’t any legitimate security concerns, as I’ve written about here.

The myth of security concerns was likely started by the Minnesota Department of Human Rights, aka MDHR. Over 3 hours after the event had gotten cancelled, MDHR issued a statement saying “Hate is not a value in St. Cloud or in any part of our state. Our community deserves better,” says MDHR Commissioner Rebecca Lucero. “I am heartbroken by the attempts to silence discussion on hate crimes. The goal of the forum was to discuss the community we want to create. One that is full of dignity and joy.”

The event was officially announced as cancelled at 1:16 pm. The protesters didn’t show up until after 2:00 pm. Further, the St. Cloud Times wrote “despite the ‘public safety concern’ cited by the human rights department, St. Cloud Assistant Police Chief Jeff Oxton said Wednesday the department received no reports of threats related to the event.

The panel was originally planned to be held Sept. 18 at the St. Cloud Library, but was canceled “due to safety concerns,” according to a release from the Minnesota Department of Human Rights.

On that day, demonstrators with the Freedom Speaks Coalition protested the Council on American-Islamic Relations’ involvement. On their website, the group claims that the Council on American-Islamic Relations is affiliated with terrorist organizations.

Shame on the Times for soft-pedaling that. It isn’t a claim. It’s a finding of fact from “the terror-finance trial against the Holy Land Foundation and its former officials.”

Assistant Attorney General Ronald Weich “included trial transcripts and exhibits ‘which demonstrated a relationship among CAIR, individual CAIR founders, and the Palestine Committee. Evidence was also introduced that demonstrated a relationship between the Palestine Committee and HAMAS, which was designated as a terrorist organization in 1995.'”

CAIR’s reputation as a Muslim civil rights organization is tarnished:

CAIR wasn’t founded after 9/11. It was started in the 1990s. It’s difficult to take CAIR seriously an organization that’s promoted by propagandists like Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib.