Earlier this week on Facebook, Hagedorn shared the chart at the top of this top and this headnote:
Over the past year Minnesota accepted at least 1,837 refugees, almost all from radical Muslim nations. This, in spite of the fact that Minnesota has an Islamic terrorist-recruiting problem. Our national and state government leaders are failing to protect us.
Here's a closer view of that chart:
"1,837 refugees, almost all from radical Muslim nations"? In the chart Hagedorn shared, the country of origin from slightly over one-third of the new residents is Burma. It's a largely Buddhist nation, and the refugees Minnesota has taken in are mostly ethnic Karen.
The Minnesota Council of Churches noted in St. Paul: A New Home for the Karen:
Minnesota is home to the largest concentration of Karen people in the country, but who are the Karen? (The name is pronounced “kah-REN”.) The Karen are an ethnic minority from Burma, though the military government changed the name to Myanmar. Because most refugees in MN still refer to the country as Burma, we do too. . . .
Relationships are central to life in the Karen community. When you visit a Karen family in their home, it is likely you will find neighbors or family already visiting. Another place Karen people gather is at church. The majority of the Karen people in Minnesota are Christian, although of the total worldwide Karen population, about half practice Buddhism and 15 percent practice Animism. Large congregations include First Baptist Church and First Karen Baptist, both in St. Paul. . . .
Karen refugees also live in Worthington, Marshall, Willmar, Austin, Albert Lea and Faribault, according to the Karen Organization of Minnesota.
Not even pop culture has been able to pierce Hagedorn's warped geography. 2012, NBC reported in War has yet to end for the Karen, a Christian minority in Myanmar:
. . . The mostly Christian Karen people have been fighting against Myanmar’s central government for 62 years, which makes this one of world's longest-running – and most brutal – civil wars.
It's also one of the world's great forgotten conflicts. Not even Rambo could change that; his last movie was set here (though filmed in Thailand), with Sylvester Stallone taking on what appeared to be the entire Myanmar Army in an effort to rescue a bunch of Christian missionaries kidnapped by soldiers as they were taking aid to Karen villagers. . . .
Readers can check out the details of the U.S. Department of State's Proposed Refugee Admissions for Fiscal Year 2016 to learn the details about refugee groups coming from other nations.
As for Congressman Walz's position, no one need take Hagedorn's word for it. The Events Highlight's page for Minnesota State University at Mankato includes the following event, Nov. 20: U.S. Rep. Tim Walz to Speak on 'Global Refugee Crisis':
U.S. Rep. Tim Walz will address the “Global Refugee Crisis” from 3-4:15 p.m. Friday, Nov. 20 at Minnesota State University, Mankato in Centennial Student Union’s Ostrander Auditorium in a presentation that is free and open to the public.
Walz’s presentation is the latest featured event in the Minnesota State Mankato Geography Colloquium Series, and it is also the keynote lecture in the University’s Diversity and International Education Week (Nov. 14-21).
Walz’s presentation is sponsored by the Department of Geography, Department of Government, Kearney International Center and Institutional Diversity at Minnesota State Mankato. The geography and government departments are part of the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences at Minnesota State Mankato.
Those who want more information on Walz’s presentation may contact Don Friend, professor and chair of the University’s Department of Geography, by phone at 507-389-2617 or by email at email@example.com. . . .
Walz, a former social studies teacher, gained national attention for his earlier lessons in the New York Times article, High School Project on Genocide Was a Portent of Real-Life Events:
In 1993, when Travis Hofmann was a freshman of 15, he had traveled little beyond the sand hills that surrounded his hometown, Alliance, Neb. He was the son of a railroad engineer, a trumpeter in the high school band, with a part-time job changing the marquee and running the projector at the local movie theater.
In Travis’s class in global geography at Alliance High School, however, the teacher introduced the outside world with the word and concept of genocide. The teacher, Tim Walz, was determined that even in this isolated place, perhaps especially in this isolated place, this county seat of 9,000 that was hours away from any city in any direction, the students should learn how and why a society can descend into mass murder.
Mr. Walz had already taught for a year in China, and he brought the world into his classroom in the form of African thumb pianos and Tibetan singing bowls. For the global geography class, he devised something far more ambitious than what the curriculum easily could have been — the identification and memorization of capitals, mountain ranges and major rivers. It was more ambitious, too, than a unit solely on the Holocaust of the sort many states have required.
“The Holocaust is taught too often purely as a historical event, an anomaly, a moment in time,” Mr. Walz said in a recent interview, recalling his approach. “Students understood what had happened and that it was terrible and that the people who did this were monsters. . . .
So Mr. Walz took his students — Brandon Bell, the wrestler; Beth Taylor, the cheerleader; Lanae Merwin, the quiet girl always reading some book about Queen Elizabeth; and all the other children of mechanics, secretaries and a town dentist — and assigned them to study the conditions associated with mass murder. What factors, he asked them to determine, had been present when Germans slaughtered Jews, Turks murdered Armenians, the Khmer Rouge ravaged their Cambodian countrymen? . . .
When the students finished with the past, Mr. Walz gave a final exam of sorts. He listed about a dozen current nations — Yugoslavia, Congo, some former Soviet republics among them — and asked the class as a whole to decide which was at the greatest risk of sliding into genocide.
Their answer was: Rwanda. The evidence was the ethnic divide between Hutus and Tutsis, the favoritism toward Tutsis shown by the Belgian colonial regime, and the previous outbreaks of tribal violence. Mr. Walz awarded high marks. . . .
As columnist Samuel Freedman points out, the Rwandan genocide began the next year. We point out that refugees settled in Minnesota in the last year have come from Somalia--but also Burma, some former Soviet Republics like Ukraine and Moldova, Congo and other distressed sub-Sahara African nations, Iraq (whose refugees are mostly people who aided American forces there, according to the State Department), Bhutan (the refugees are Nepali), Vietnam and more.
One can predict that Walz will play a knowledge card, while Hagedorn is playing to simple fear--and ignorance.
Photo: Screenshot of Hagedorn's Facebook post.
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