Rep. Roz Peterson Stares Down CAIR’s Legislative Bullies

Muslim reformers desperately need to be heard in Minnesota. By refusing CAIR's usual bullying attempts to silence them, Roz Peterson provides an instructive example of political courage.

Rep. Roz Peterson last week hosted an appearance by Raheel Raza, a well known Canadian Muslim reformer. In a textbook example of how CAIR (Council on American Islamic Relations) controls not only the media in Minnesota but also the Democrats, Rep. Melissa Hortman summarily labeled Raza an “extremist” and demanded that she be censored from speaking by insisting Peterson disinvite her from appearing at the Capitol.

In one of the better moments of late, Peterson and other Republicans stood fast and refused to be bullied by the allies of terrorist linked CAIR. Raza opposes Islamic extremism while CAIR is a relentless apologist for it despite posturing to the contrary. The Regressive Left is easily played by them while Minnesota media are eager to lap up their dishonest talking points which passes for coverage.

Raza’s appearance went off without any disruption or violence, something frequently the norm when the Regressive Left encounters speech and ideas with which it disagrees. Not a single Democrat attended. For a change, Republicans not only stood their ground but forcefully pushed back against the lies and slander hurled at Raza in an attempt to shut down free speech and open discussion.

Sen. Warren Limmer issued a sterling press release; it was so good I couldn’t believe at first that a Republican had generated it. He noted “Ms. Raza is a practicing Canadian Muslim and an outspoken opponent of radical Jihadism. She is a fierce advocate of women’s rights and has dedicated her life to fighting against the radicalization of our youth. She was recently awarded Canada’s 150th anniversary medal for service to the country, and has been invited to speak to governments around the world, including the U.S. Congress, UK House of Lords, Canadian Parliament, Swedish government, and the United Nations.”

While Rep. Hortman claims her job is to ‘represent diverse views and treat all Minnesotans with respect,’ in the same breath she labels Ms. Raza an extremist and demands legislative leaders rescind her invitation. Rep. Hortman would do well to heed her own advice, listen to those with different life experiences, and respect Ms. Raza’s perspective, rather than attempt to silence her voice.”

For her part, Peterson told the Pioneer Press “I’m an inclusive person and I’m open to talking with anybody. It’s the people’s house. We try to hear all perspectives and listen to people. I wish Minority Leader Hortman would have reached out to me.” Except reaching out isn’t what CAIR and their puppets do: they bully, they name call, they shut down.

The Pioneer Press further reported: “Reached by phone and asked if she was associated with extremist groups Raza laughed. ‘I don’t know where they got their information,’ Raza said, noting that she’s spent decades combating extremism. ‘What I do is exactly the opposite.’”

CAIR is deathly afraid of losing its media monopoly in this state and the appearance of someone like the brave Raza is of particular concern. Our disgraceful local media have deprived all of the oxygen from Muslim reformers by filtering everything Muslim and Islamic through the warped prism of CAIR.

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Hortman’s authority for the slanderous charges against Raza is the discredited Southern Poverty Law Center. Both Democrats in Minnesota and their media allies rotely parrot its approach. The SPLC has branded Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Maajid Nawaz, Ben Carson, and Laura Ingraham, among others, as extremists and leaders of hate groups.

The truth is the opposite, of course, but when was the last time we looked to media for truth? John Stoessl recently released a short video on the corrupt enterprise that is the SPLC, correctly calling it a scam. It is worth watching in its entirety. Rep. Hortman is a member of this fraudulent group.

Is the violent, far Left Antifa group on their list? Of course not. This is really all you need to know.

In a devastating expose, the late Alexander Cockburn, in The Nation of all places, wrote in 2009 that a decline in far right activity was “horrible news for people who raise money and make money selling the notion that there’s a right resurgence out there in the hinterland with legions of haters ready to march down Main Street draped in Klan robes, a copy of Mein Kampf tucked under one arm and a Bible under the other.” He was speaking of the SPLC–”King of the Hate Business”– and Morris Dees, its chief trial lawyer, who he called “the archsalesman of hatemongering.”

Cockburn said that “Dees and his hate-seekers scour the landscape for hate like the arms manufacturers inventing new threats, and for the same reason: it’s their staple.” He didn’t live long enough to see their sickness succeed. The SPLC at the time of Cockburn’s writing had an endowment of 170 million dollars. As John Stoessel points out in his video, that amount is now an obscene 320 million dollars. Manufacturing fake hate and fake hate crimes is lucrative.

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Speaking of manufacturing fake hate crimes, the Star Tribune’s Stephen Montemayor (@SMontemayor) is currently leading his own jihad, premised on the work of the SPLC, as well as the far Left activist group Pro Publico, to bully and shame Minnesota law enforcement into finding more hate crimes by insisting they adopt those groups expansive and meritless definitions. Minnesota consumers of information mostly do not know about these efforts to filter events through a Regressive Left lens. This isn’t journalism, its rank propaganda.

The Star Tribune is CNN in print.

By inviting and standing behind Raheel Raza, Minnesota Republicans successfully stood up to the narrative control of things Islamic and Muslim in Minnesota as previously controlled by CAIR and their minions in the press and DFL. This needs to continue if Minnesotans are ever to have any hope of an honest discussion of forced refugee resettlement that has had enormous negative consequences heretofore declared off limits as per se bigotry.

This success is a template deserving of wider application: pushing back against false narratives, calling them out for the lies that they are and standing fast in what they believe in is a recipe for electoral victory.

If more Minnesota Republicans realized this, I’d feel better about our chances this November.

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In addition to Alpha News, John Gilmore is also a contributor to The Hill. He is the founder and executive director of Minnesota Media Monitor.™ He blogs at and is on Twitter under @Shabbosgoy. He can be reached at Wbua@nycunarjfza.pbz.

Photo credit: Rep. Roz Peterson, Star Tribune

John Gilmore

John Gilmore is an author, freelance writer & former opinion columnist for Alpha News. He blogs at & is @Shabbosgoy on Twitter