|Somalians: Coming to a Whitopia near you soon!|
In terms of immigration and cultural integration, a decade isn’t a very long time, but a great deal has happened. Ten years is enough time for the city’s Somali population to grow to nearly 10 percent of the total population, making Lewiston perhaps the only city in the country where the largest minority group is Somali.
At the same time, Lewiston had high vacancy rates in its downtown as well as at Hillview, a public housing project composed of three-, four- and five-bedroom units off Sabattus Street, said James Dowling, Lewiston Housing Authority's executive director.
Portland housing officials approached Lewiston with the idea of giving Somali families who could not find space for their families in the larger city the option to settle farther north. Lewiston agreed, and so did Bile and the two other families.
While they were drawn by the availability of housing, they quickly found that Lewiston had other attractive features.
In Maine’s second-largest city, they found the community nestled in a mid-winter lull. There was snow on the ground. They were surprised; it was the first time they had seen it. The streets were quiet and mostly devoid of traffic, and the population seemed mostly older, Bile said. It was safe for the children. The crime rate was low. City officials were willing to work with them. For Bile and the other families, Lewiston seemed like a place where they might, for once, find peace.
Migration to Lewiston
Driven by word of mouth, the number of Somalis arriving in Lewiston continued to grow throughout 2002. “Day after day, week after week, Somali people came,” Bile said.
It is impossible to tell how many Somalis came that first year, but city General Assistance records show that 443 Somalis applied for financial aid for the first time (but did not necessarily receive it) in 2001. By June 2002, the Somali population was estimated to be 1,000.
By 2010 the city’s black or African-American population had grown to 3,174, according to the U.S. Census. That figure does not distinguish between blacks born in America and immigrants from African nations or, for that matter, from the large percentage of children born in this country to Somali refugee families. But it likely under counts the ethnic Somali population.
Generally, city officials estimate that the size of Lewiston’s Somali population today is somewhere between 3,000 and 5,000. Hussein Ahmed estimates that the number is closer to 6,000.
Lewiston’s Somali community is composed almost entirely of “secondary migrants,” as they are known in the language of refugee and immigration experts. Like Bile, they were originally placed elsewhere by refugee resettlement agencies and have chosen to move here.
Many had been placed in the inner-city slums of larger cities rife with drugs and crime. A significant number arrived from the Atlanta area, including suburban Clarkston, which suffered “prejudice, police brutality, and a small community of roughly 7,000 that was shattered under the pressure of a broken refugee resettlement system,” according to a report issued by the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations in 2010.
Lewiston’s Somalis came from roughly 100 cities in 35 states, said Phil Nadeau, the city’s deputy city administrator, who has been involved with the community since the first arrivals.
Public tension surfaces
As more Somalis moved into Lewiston, signs of strain began to show.
Lewiston’s white-picket-fence complexion meant that Somalis, with their darker skin and traditional Muslim-influenced clothes, stood out.
So when recent Somali arrivals began using the parks and shopping in corner variety stores and applied for General Assistance, people remembered them. And they were especially likely to remember if there was something amiss, such as a misunderstanding between a Somali shopper and a cashier.
The public tension increasingly focused on finances, and access to social services became the key flash point when public officials discussed the city’s work with the refugee community. Residents called officials like Sue Charron, the director of social services, and Nadeau, almost daily to complain about Somalis getting benefits that the callers felt belonged to local natives.
The questions and complaints continued, dominating discussion at a May 14, 2002, public meeting to discuss immigration, and grew and morphed until a set of myths became codified in local conversation: Somalis didn’t work; they exhausted local welfare coffers, received free apartments and cars and walked out of supermarkets with loaded carts shouting, “Government pay!”
Responding to the public concern, Mayor Larry Raymond penned an open letter in October 2002 that asked Somalis to advise friends and relatives considering moving to Lewiston that the city’s schools and social services were nearly exhausted.
“This large number of new arrivals cannot continue without negative results for all. The Somali community must exercise some discipline and reduce stress on our limited finances and generosity,” he wrote.
The response to the letter, from Lewiston’s Somali leaders, as well as national and international observers, was largely scathing. Almost overnight, the media descended on Lewiston to cover the surprising growth of the Somali population and the backlash against the letter.
Why, again, are we bringing any refugees into America, let alone allowing Somalis to overwhelm a city like Lewiston? Talk about reverse colonization. White people - tax-slaves - have one purpose in Black-Run America (BRA): to provide safe communities for refugees, immigrants, or Section 8 Voucher holding citizens the opportunity to live in, and eventually exhaust all social capital (utilizing government aid like TANF/Welfare and EBT/Food Stamps) in the area, overwhelming the once pristine community and turning the environment into the exact same scenario these refugee, immigrants, or Section 8 Voucher holding citizens fled from.
It's a Mother Jones article from 2004 that highlights the insanity of the situation, punctuating with a frightening exclamation point that the Minority Occupation Government is seriously dedicated to electing a new people (The New Yankees, by Maggie Jones, April 2004)
Groups of Somalis headed out in every direction—to Kansas City; San Diego; Portland, Maine; Dearborn, Michigan—in search of the right home for their community. On the Internet they learned that Maine's crime rate was favorably low—the state ranked 46th in the nation in overall crime while Georgia was 13th. But the only Maine city with a sizable immigrant population was Portland, where low-income housing was scarce and "the post office had 'Wanted' posters for sex offenders," says Ali. So the Somalis headed 45 minutes north on I-95 to Lewiston, a town of 36,000 with good schools and affordable housing. A few refugees had already settled there, after being relocated from a Portland homeless shelter to Hillview, a Lewiston housing project with clean, if basic, three- and four-bedroom townhouse apartments three miles from downtown. "I remember seeing one of the apartments," says Fatuma Hussein, a mother of four who now runs a Somali women's organization in Lewiston. "They were better and nicer than Portland."
Lawrence Auster made mention of the importation of crime to Lewiston that came with the "Great Somali Wave of 2002" back in an entry at View from the Right in 2009. Well, CNS News (CNSNEWS.com) published a hard-hitting article on July 25, 2012 that dared to expose the importation of "crime that normally only Black people in America will commit" courtesy of Somali refugee (Minnesota Sheriff Reports to Congress on Growing Somalia Gang Threat in Hennepin County, by Penny Starr):
Soon, word about Lewiston traveled to Atlanta and to New Orleans. It spread to Nashville and to Chicago. A Somali website, www.hiiraan.com, posted articles about the town, and the news even reached the refugee camps in Kenya. By the summer of 2002, 40 to 50 Somalis were arriving in Lewiston every month; today, about 1,200 Somalis call the town home. And while Minneapolis, Atlanta, and Columbus have much larger Somali communities, no other small city has seen as big an influx of Somalis migrating from other cities.
The sheriff of Hennepin County, Minn., told the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security on Wednesday about the threat of Somali gangs in his jurisdiction.
“I have been asked to testify today about the specific emergence of Somali gang-related issues we are having in my county,” Rich Stanek said in his prepared testimony.
Stanek represented the National Sheriffs’ Association at the hearing on “America’s Evolving Gang Threat.” He also serves on the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s inter-agency Threat Assessment and Coordination Group and is president of the Major County Sheriffs’ Association.
Stanek said Minnesota is a “designated U.S. Refugee Resettlement Area,” with a Somali population ranging from 80,000 to 125,000 in the state. As a result, Stanek said, while the African population in the U.S. as a whole is about four percent, 18 percent of the Minnesota population is African because of the large Somali presence.
Stanek said he wanted to “state for the record” that most Somalis are “law-abiding citizens” who contribute to the community, but those who have joined gangs are committing crimes across the state.
“Somali gangs are unique in that they are not necessarily based on the narcotics trade as are other traditional gangs,” Stanek said, adding that “turf” is also not a motivating factor in Somali gang criminal activities.
“Gang members will often congregate in certain areas, but commit their criminal acts elsewhere,” Stanek said. “Criminal acts are often done in a wide geographic area that stretches outside of the Twin Cities seven county metro area.
“Their mobility has made them difficult to track,” Stanek said.
Stanek listed five “typical crimes” committed by Somali gang members, including credit card fraud, cell phone and gun store burglaries, and witness intimidation. The fifth type of criminal activity is tied to international terrorism, Stanek said.None of these Somalis in any city of the United States should be in the country, if the government was actually concerned with creating a strong future for the nation's actual citizens. It is not. Minneapolis once was a city with one of the lowest crime rates in America and the highest standard of living; social capital (the necessary building-block for building strong communities) was at a premium. Enter the Somali refugees and the importation of crime that the city needed if it was to compete with other vibrant cities in the diversity lottery.
To even say anything negative about the United States Refugee Resettlement program makes you enemy of the state, for the new state that Peter Brimelow calls the "Minority Occupied Government" is 100 percent dedicated to abolishing whatever vestiges of the Historic Majority Populated America that is left.
And the Republicans? They'd gladly welcome any member of the Somali refugee resettlement program (preferably from Lewiston) to speak at the GOP Convention and share a stage with Allen West, Star Parker, Herman Cain, or Alan Keyes. They'd probably promote them to the front of the party.
Ten wonderful years of Somalians in Lewiston. Even more years of Somalians in Minneapolis. And only a few more years until a member of this community becomes the next "Great Black Hope" for the feckless GOP, in yet another embarrassing maneuver to outflank the Democrats (a party kept alive by monolithic Black voting and the continued growth of the immigrant population in America) on "diversity" and "inclusion."