Letter to Jim Hagedorn - A Request for Dialogue

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Jim Hagedorn has been elected to the 1st Congressional District of Minnesota (CD1). Below is the letter requesting a meeting and ongoing dialogue with Mr. Hagedorn regarding his anti-Muslim statements. Showing your support for this effort by attaching your name will make the message even stronger and, hopefully, encourage Mr. Hagedorn to listen to our concerns in person.

Dear Mr. Hagedorn,

Congratulations on your election to Congress for the 1st Congressional District of Minnesota. I would like to arrange a meeting with you in person to discuss concerns many of your Muslim constituents share regarding your statements on Islam and Muslims. The goal of this meeting is to create open communication between your Congressional role and the Muslim community of CD1.

Your campaign website contains many statements that use fear-mongering tactics against the Minnesota Muslim community, such as “Minnesota has a terrorist recruiting problem from East African refugees brought into the United States under the current immigration and screening process.” You have also referred to Minnesota Muslims as “Islamic supremacists”.  These statements are problematic because they portray all Somalis, indeed all Muslims, living in Minnesota as potential terrorists and threats to our safety. We are not terrorists. We are your constituents.

The use of misconceptions and stereotypes on Islam have potentially harmful consequences for ALL of Southern Minnesota. Perpetrating false information of an entire group of Minnesotans conjures fear, hatred, and even acts of violence such as, the bombing of the Dar Al-Farooq Islamic Center in Bloomington in August of 2017. During this past summer, our mosque here in Rochester was desecrated with bacon. In the aftermath of the Tree of Life Synagogue terrorist attack that claimed the lives of eleven Jewish Americans and wounded several others, I am sure you can recognize the consequences of fear and hatred in our country. As a mother of two young children, I want nothing more than their safety and freedom to practice their religion without fear. I wish the same for all of our children, no matter their religion.

Far too often opinions of Islam and Muslims are sought from those whom are openly against the religion. That is why I want to offer you a chance to hear directly from the Muslim community you represent. I, Regina Mustafa, along with the individuals and organizations attached to this letter, kindly request a reply so we can arrange a time for a meeting. True understanding begins with conversation.

Thank you for your time. I look forward to your response.


Regina Mustafa


Community Interfaith Dialogue on Islam (CIDI)