Following the election of Donald J. Trump, the Left went into a veritable frenzy – from predicting that president-elect Trump will rule like the worst dictators in history to organizing mass protests not just of his comments, but of the election itself. To what specific end? No one knows. Yet, he has not governed for one day.
While I am a life-long conservative and was not a Trump supporter, and did not vote for him (choosing instead to write my choice in), I take serious and concerned pause at the tone of the far left in the wake of the election. While I certainly had problems with the tone and content of some of the president-elect's comments during the election, including about Muslims, I see the left's ratcheting up of fear and hysteria with outright fabrication of various policies as symptomatic of the deeper pathology within their camp; namely, the use and manipulation of minority and marginalized identity groups to further their cause. Even some camps within the left itself, in its own post-mortem autopsies, is beginning to question the harm of its blind adherence to identity politics.
Yet, the dominant identity politic of its establishment moves on. One alarming part of this collectivist manipulation is the empowerment of those within minority communities who have a track record of actually harming people within the communities they claim to represent.
Keith Ellison, the Democratic Congressman from Minnesota, is one such individual. Well known for being the first Muslim elected to Congress, he has enjoyed accolades from liberal groups for his selective endorsement of causes, from LGBTQ rights to reproductive choice to Obamacare.
Since the election, rumors that Congressman Ellison is being eyed to chair the DNC have become widespread. The rumors are especially potent given the abject failure of "establishment Democrats" and the endorsement by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) of Ellison's run the leading non-establishment figure of the Left. The timing of this possibility - a possible Muslim chair of the Democratic Party under the Trump administration – is not insignificant.
First, to be clear, a Muslim being in the position is not the issue – if the individual were a real reformer, the entire country could take pride in a success that wouldn't be possible in many if not most Muslim-majority societies. Unfortunately, Congressman Ellison is no reformer – he is, unfortunately, an established adversary of reformers – and not a true advocate of universal human rights. It is further concerning to me to see otherwise right-minded individuals come out in support of Ellison as DNC party chair.
Congressman Ellison has surged to prominence – and maintained it – in part due to his alliances with hardcore American Islamist organizations like the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), the Muslim American Society (MAS), the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA), and others. Further, Ellison has consistently attacked reformist Muslims – viciously and dishonestly. Unfortunately, the congressman's behavior – including toward the very community he is purported to represent – makes him a poor choice to represent anyone, much less to chair a major political party.
Worse, his allegiance to Islamist groups makes him a dangerous choice in elected office. By selecting Ellison, as Noah Rothman notes, the DNC would be "embracing its inner radicalism." Ellison's history ranges from the radical extreme when he was spokesperson a for the virulently anti-semitic radical head of the Nation of Islam, Louis Farrakhan to the more deceptively moderate yet radical Islamist sympathizer raising vast sums of monies for Islamist causes and investigated by the House Ethics Committee for traveling to Saudi Arabia on the dime of the Muslim American Society a group the Chicago Tribune dubbed as the American arm of the global Muslim Brotherhood.
Despite his moderate façade, Congressman Ellison is a close ally of Islamist CAIR and other American Islamist groups responsible for advancing a malignant agenda and marginalizing reformist Muslims focused on universal human rights, including gender equality and freedom of speech and conscience. While Democrats and progressives may think that their consideration of Ellison goes against the failures of the establishment, the truth is that they would be empowering an even more malignant domestic and global establishment - the Islamist establishment.
Ellison, a frequent speaker and fundraiser for organizations who advance real bigotry and prop the theocratic regimes of Saudi Arabia and Qatar and Iran, is as establishment as it gets in American Islamist circles. While Hillary Clinton's foundation accepts funds from foreign governments who carry out the most horrific human rights abuses and terrorist attacks of our time, Congressman Ellison is their man on the Hill.
Congressman Ellison's attacks on Muslims who defend universal human rights go back for at least a decade. He has repeatedly accused me in major media of fomenting anti-Muslim bigotry and demonizing my own faith of Islam, going so far as to call me an "Uncle Tom." He has also demonized other Muslims who speak out against radicalism, including Somali-American leaders who have participated in public demonstrations and concrete efforts against the recruitment of their community's youth by radical groups.
Further, Ellison has repeatedly allied with Islamist leaders like those within CAIR – an organization which has been known to refuse assistance to LGBT Muslims – all the while courting support from the left, including from the gay community. The fact that his district and surrounding areas have been a major source of jihadists traveling to Somalia and Syria has never shaken him from his denials about political Islam and its common pathway towards radicalization. In fact CAIR's Minnesota chapter has repeatedly obstructed the Department of Homeland Security's CVE (Countering Violent Extremism) programs in Minnesota claiming discrimination while clearing the path for further Islamist radicalization and grievance narratives.
Ellison has denied his misbehavior, his ill-treatment of other Muslims, and his Islamist ties. Unfortunately for him, much of this is on record – including his assertions that I encourage non-Muslims to attack and "go after" Muslims – simply because I reject the "Islamic state" and seek reforms that will actually protect Muslims and non-Muslims and advance peace and universal human rights.
One need only conduct a cursory investigation of Congressman Ellison's track record in order to determine that he is not the individual to bring the DNC out of its disastrous current situation. Rather, when the party finally realizes its terrible mistake, he will have already secured its further demise and radicalization.