Maine: Dunkin’ Donuts apologizes for banning Somali social justice activist from store after altercation

This is a classic case about how change happens!

Businesses, eager to prostrate themselves out of fear once confronted by an angry demanding refugee like Hamdia Ahmed, quickly make news by backing down when activists for Muslim immigrant rights cause a stir.  The message to the public: be silent.

Hamdia Ahmed
Social justice activist Hamdia Ahmed 

Even as it is clear, when you do a little reading about Hamdia Ahmed, that she has a pattern of stirring up controversy, her latest stunt in Portland is now being spread widely through gullible national media outlets painting her as innocent as a dove while staring down racist Americans.

Thanks to MaineFirst Media for the tip. (See their more detailed story.)

Here is a story from Wednesday from the Portland Press-Herald which is pretty straight news, but when you read the newer articles at national news outlets you will see that her social justice advocacy and past history of creating controversy has been downplayed or not mentioned at all.

A Dunkin’ Donuts store owner met Wednesday with a Portland college student and activist who called out the business on social media after a store employee refused to serve her Somali-speaking family and then called police following an argument in the drive-thru lane.

Hamdia Ahmed, 20, said she felt that the employee discriminated against her and two relatives for speaking Somali as they waited to order coffee at the St. John Street Dunkin’ Donuts on Monday afternoon.

Ahmed said she and her relatives drove to the coffee shop around 12:30 p.m. and waited for a store employee to ask for their order. As the family chatted in Somali in the car, a woman’s voice crackled through the speaker and admonished them for yelling, Ahmed said.

“All of a sudden we heard a woman say, ‘stop yelling, stop yelling,’ ” Ahmed said “We’re like what’s happening. We’re just having a conversation. We were talking in Somali. She told us she’s not going to take our order and for us to leave and she was going to call the police.”

You know there must be more to the story.  Chatting in Somali caused the clerk to refuse them service?  Give me a break!

Ahmed, a refugee from Somalia who arrived in the United States more than a dozen years ago, has emerged in recent years as an outspoken anti-racism social justice activist and organizer.

After the argument in the drive-thru lane, Ahmed said she parked her car and went inside the store to speak with someone.

A store employee called Portland police, and after an officer spoke to Ahmed and store employees, the police issued Ahmed a no-trespass notice barring her from returning to the store for a year. The officer listed the cause of the no-trespass notice as “disturbance – yelling at staff.”

Miss Maine 2
Ahmed made the news also this year as the first hijab-wearing contestant in the Miss Maine pageant.  She said everyone there treated her just like every other American girl. So much for her latest stunt to prove that Americans are racists.     https://therefugeecenter.org/hall-of-fame/the-story-of-hamdia-ahmed-the-first-miss-maine-pageant-contestant-to-wear-a-hijab/

I repeat: Ahmed and her family members must have been doing a lot more than chatting in Somali!

The company later issued a statement:

“Dunkin’ and our franchisees are committed to creating a positive customer service experience for all of our guests,” the company’s emailed statement said. “The franchisee who owns and operates the store has confirmed he has met with the guest, sincerely apologized to her for the poor experience and is working on providing additional customer service training to his store crew.”

“I appreciate their apology but what I really wanted to get out of the meeting is I want training for their workers,” Ahmed said. “Because they can’t treat people like that, and the police should have never been called.” [Would that be shariah-compliance training?—ed]

Ahmed, a University of Southern Maine student who has been an outspoken anti-racist activist in Portland who does not shy from public demonstrations and discussions about race, said she felt compelled to speak up and publicize her encounter through social media.

“I can’t just ignore stuff like this because that would mean I’m allowing it to happen,” she said.

Ahmed had a similar encounter in September at an Old Port Starbucks, where she said an employee laughed and rolled her eyes at her when she asked for the employee to check the alcohol content of a vanilla flavoring, News Center Maine (WCSH) reported. Ahmed, who is Muslim, abstains from alcohol.

Starbucks apologized to her after the encounter, a response she said was “adequate.”

More here.

If Ahmed thinks her Dunkin’ Donuts publicity stunt will somehow improve relations between immigrants and Mainers she is naive.  But, then again, maybe that isn’t her goal at all.

This post is filed in my ‘Stealth Jihad’ category for obvious reasons!

New readers might want to look through my huge Maine archive.

Caught! Somali man living in Vermont used false identity to get in to US as a refugee

Not surprising of course, but what is surprising is that he is actually being prosecuted.

You can bet this wouldn’t be happening if Hillary was President!

And, how is this for timing—see my previous post this morning about a retired foreign service officer blowing the whistle on widespread fraud in the UN/US Refugee Admissions Program.

US Marshal badge
Will the long arm of the law find the liars?

Longtime readers may remember our extensive coverage of Somali family reunification fraud first revealed in the Wall Street Journal in 2008 (behind a paywall now).

If you search RRW for ‘Somali family reunification fraud‘ you can find maybe twenty more posts on the topic over the years!

Don’t hold your breath that a large number of the tens of thousands who lied about who they are, will get caught, but this is a start!

See the moves he made that got him caught…..

Continue reading “Caught! Somali man living in Vermont used false identity to get in to US as a refugee”

Maine: Somali refugees charged with welfare fraud

What else is new!  The only thing new is the change in location from Minnesota to Maine and this time it is medicaid fraud and not daycare fraud.

This news is from the Somali capital of Maine—Lewiston—and from earlier this month.

Tip of the iceberg?

From the Sun Journal (hat tip Frank):

PORTLAND — Two men from the Twin Cities charged with welfare fraud appeared in federal court Monday seeking release from jail.

Lewiston like Somalia
No mugshots of Ahmed and Osman that I could find, but figured this older photo would suffice to illustrate the story!

At an afternoon hearing, U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge John Rich III ordered Abdirashid Ahmed, 38, of Lewiston released on $5,000 bond after seizing his passport.

Rich said Ahmed would be equipped with an electronic monitoring device to ensure he does not leave Androscoggin County.

Ahmed was kept Monday night in federal custody at Cumberland County Jail. He was expected to be escorted Tuesday morning to Lewiston and released into the custody of the U.S. Probation Office. He must get permission from that office if he were to seek to leave Androscoggin County in the future, Rich said.

Continue reading “Maine: Somali refugees charged with welfare fraud”

Maine: Battle over female genital mutilation bill raging

Diversity is beautiful alert!

This is one of those great ‘fun’ political debates you will get to have once the population of Muslims, mostly from East Africa, ‘find their way’ to your state. 

Maine, especially Lewiston, is the Somali capital of the East!

The story at the Press Herald is long and detailed, but what you might see as a ‘no brainer’—-making it illegal to subject anyone to this form of abuse, or to take someone out of the country to have it done—isn’t a no-brainer for the Leftwing women and the Southern Poverty Law Center which oppose the bill.

Here is a bit of the story from the Portland Press Herald just to give you the flavor:

 

AUGUSTA — There are parts of the world where it has long been common for adult women to slice away girls’ external genital tissue in a bid to dampen their sexual desires.

Though Maine is a long way from anywhere this has traditionally been a problem, a battle is raging among lawmakers about whether the state ought to have a law specifically barring female genital mutilation.

Safiya Khalid
Safiya Khalid: “It is horrible.” But, here’s what I want to know: if the Somalis in Maine are truly refugees why are they going back to Africa for any reason? Isn’t that the place they claim they were “persecuted.”

The operation to slice off all or part of a woman’s clitoris and labia is prohibited under federal law and is almost certainly banned by existing, broader Maine statutes. In addition, there is no solid evidence that the procedure, also called female circumcision, is happening in Maine.

 

One provision in a bill legislators are considering also would make it a felony to take a girl outside Maine to have someone cut her genital tissue without a medical reason, which is already illegal under federal law.

Safiya Khalid, a Somali-American from Lewiston who serves on the city’s library board, said Friday that “old school” women in her community “wouldn’t risk” having the procedure done on a child in Maine, but some might take their daughters back to Africa for it. She doesn’t know anyone who’s had it done, she said, but she thinks it probably has occurred.

“It’s a horrible experience,” Khalid said of the procedure, which is typically done without anesthesia. “It’s just terrible.”

[….]

Critics of the proposal see it as a thinly disguised attack on African immigrants, especially Somalis who hail from an area where female genital mutilation is widespread, basically a swath from Somalia on the east coast of Africa to Sierra Leone on the west, an area that includes Muslims, Christians and animists.

Kate Brogan
Kate Brogan opposes the measure because it promotes stereotypes of Somalis.

There is an “insidious assumption that members of Maine’s Somali community support this harmful practice,” Maine Family Planning’s Kate Brogan told lawmakers.

[….]

A 2017 survey of the immigrant community in Maine by Partnerships for Health found that 71 percent think the practice is harmful and 82 percent believe it shouldn’t happen. [Do the math based on numbers in next paragraph, this still leaves a couple of thousand Maine immigrants who are fine with the mutilation!—ed]

The issue has particular resonance in the Lewiston-Auburn area given the influx of immigrants in the past two decades from countries where the practice is common. About 7,500 East Africans have moved to Androscoggin County and another 5,000 to Cumberland County in that time, according to the Immigrant Resource Center of Maine.

Some of the women and girls who moved to Maine underwent the illegal procedure in their home countries, though specifics are hard to come by. Khalid said she knows “a lot of friends and people who had it done” to them before coming to America.

[….]

Supporters of the measure, pushed in part by an anti-Muslim hate group, said girls need protection.

What the hell! Act for America is an “anti-Muslim hate group.” 

How dare this reporter and this paper swallow the Southern Poverty Law Center’s propaganda without question! It is a disgrace! Do they not know how discredited the SPLC has become?  Has ACT contacted the paper and asked for a retraction?

I guess we are left to conclude from SPLC’s involvement in Maine—the Southern Poverty Law Center supports Female Genital Mutilation.

See my archive on Maine, here and one specifically on Lewiston, here.

Maine food stamp fraud bust has interesting twist

Halal Market maine
Photo: http://fox23maine.com/news/local/portland-shop-owner-pleads-guilty-to-welfare-fraud

 

Longtime readers know that I’ve had a side interest in food stamp fraud, specifically trafficking in food stamps.  This kind of fraud doesn’t involve purchasing unapproved items with food stamps as you might think, but it’s about selling ones benefits for 50 cents on the dollar.

It works like this: customer comes in with benefits, buys some small item, but the cashier rings up a larger amount.  Customer walks out with half the cash that was rung up. Clerk submits full amount to government for repayment.

It is called trafficking, and the fraud is huge at mom & pop convenience stores nationwide.

You can see my many previous posts on the topic by clicking here.  The vast majority of cases involve immigrant owners/managers of small stores like this one in Maine.

What is different in this Maine case is that the store is a Halal grocery store which says to me that it is very likely that the majority of people participating in the owner’s fraud are people who prefer Halal food.

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Learn more about the case against Daham here:  http://www.pressherald.com/2017/11/27/former-owner-of-portland-market-scheduled-to-plead-guilty-to-federal-welfare-fraud/

And, by the way, there have been cases where customers are arrested and also found guilty of taking part in the scheme to defraud the US taxpayer, will there be some here?

From WGME (Hat tip: Frank) $1 MILLION fraud!

PORTLAND (WGME) – A man accused of running a welfare scam out of a Portland halal grocery is pleading guilty.

 

The market sells meat permissible under Muslim law.

According to federal court documents, Ali Ratib Daham is pleading guilty to federal food stamp and other welfare fraud.

He is also admitting to money laundering and theft from the state’s MaineCare program.

 

Daham is agreeing to a jail sentence of at least 33 months and will pay more than $1 million in restitution to the government.

In exchange, prosecutors are agreeing to drop dozens of other charges in the case.

The plea deal will be considered in federal district court Tuesday. The guilty plea could cause him to be deported.

They never deport these people, and tell me how is he going to repay $1 million when I’ll bet the money was moved abroad a long time ago.

Here is the pitch I’ve made innumerable times: If you are looking for something to do, start a blog on immigrant welfare fraud.  You will have news to post daily and it would be a great service to our country, especially since any real investigative reporters are few and far between.

More on Somalis to Aroostook, ME; Lewiston too crowded

The other day we posted about a delegation of Somalis going to Aroostook County Maine at the invitation of local business leaders.

Here we learn a bit more about the potential move by Somali “Bantu” out of Lewiston. From WAGMTV:

This group of Somali immigrants from Lewiston are at the SAD 1 Farm learning about agriculture opportunities in Aroostook County.

Steven-Rowe-photo1
Former Dem pol, Steven Rowe, head honcho of the Maine Community Foundation is trying to make it happen. http://www.pressherald.com/2015/07/14/former-attorney-general-named-head-of-maine-community-foundation/

Muhidsin Libah says, “there’s overcrowding in the Lewiston area. So we are at the process of looking for another place to resettle.”

Through the help of the Maine Community Foundation and Northern Maine Community college these immigrants are getting the chance to experience all of what Aroostook County can offer them in terms of resettling.

Steven Rowe says, “Aroostook County has lost population and would like to attract more families to this part of the state and we have the Somali Bantu Farm families in Lewiston that are looking for more land to farm.”

The Somalis need housing to accommodate families with TEN members.

Libhah says, “the biggest problem in the Lewiston- area is housing because we are large families.”

Their average families consists of almost 10 people. Libah says adequate housing where lead is not an issue is important.

Somali Bantus: What you need to know:

They are not the same as the so-called Somali “skinnies” and they became Muslims to save themselves when Arabs enslaved them hundreds of years ago.  Wikipedia has a good discussion about them. (And since there is so much discussion about slavery in America these days, I thought you might like to know something about Muslims enslaving Africans.)

I was especially interested in the fact that Tanzania wanted to take the Somali Bantu refugees nearly two decades ago, but the UN stymied the plan and sent them to the US instead.

Here are some snips from a long Wikipedia report:

The Indian Ocean slave trade was multi-directional and changed over time.

To meet the demand for menial labor, black Africans from southeastern Africa captured by Arab slave traders were sold in cumulatively large numbers over the centuries to customers in Morocco, Libya, Somalia, Egypt, Arabia, the Persian Gulf, India, the Far East and the Indian Ocean islands.[2][3]

From 1800 to 1890, between 25,000–50,000 black African slaves are thought to have been sold from the slave market of Zanzibar to the Somali coast.

Screenshot (783)

[….]

In the 1840s, the first fugitive slaves from the Shebelle valley began to settle in the Jubba valley. By the late 1890s, when Italians & British occupied the Jubaland area, an estimated 35,000 former Bantu slaves were already settled there.

The Italian colonial administration abolished slavery in Somalia at the turn of the 20th century by decree of the King of Italy. Some Bantu groups, however, remained enslaved until the 1910s in the areas not totally dominated by the Italians, and continued to be despised and discriminated against by large parts of Somali society.

[….]

Unlike Somalis, most of whom are traditionally nomadic herders, Bantus are mainly sedentary subsistence farmers. The Bantus’ predominant “Negroid” physical traits also serve to further distinguish them from Somalis. Among these phenotypic characteristics of the Bantu are kinky (jareer) hair, while Somalis are soft-haired (jilec).[19] Bantus are also shorter, darker and more muscular, with broad facial features.[6]

The majority of Bantus have converted to Islam, which they first began embracing in order to escape slavery.

[…]

In 1999, the United States classified the Bantu refugees from Somalia as a priority and the United States Department of State first began what has been described as the most ambitious resettlement plan ever from Africa, with thousands of Bantus scheduled for resettlement in America.[27] In 2003, the first Bantu immigrants began to arrive in U.S. cities, and by 2007, around 13,000 had been resettled to cities throughout the United States with the help of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the U.S. State Department, and refugee resettlement agencies across the country.

[….]

Prior to the United States’ agreement to accommodate Bantu refugees from Somalia, attempts were made to resettle the refugees to their ancestral homes in southeastern Africa. Before the prospect of emigrating to America was raised, this was actually the preference of the Bantus themselves. In fact, many Bantus voluntarily left the UN camps where they were staying, to seek refuge in Tanzania. Such a return to their ancestral homeland represented the fulfillment of a two-century old dream.[27]

While Tanzania was initially willing to grant the Bantus asylum, the UNCHR did not provide any financial or logistical guarantees to support the resettlement and integration of the refugees into Tanzania. The Tanzanian authorities also experienced additional pressure when refugees from neighbouring Rwanda began pushing into the western part of the country, forcing them to retract their offer to accommodate the Bantus.

[….]

By the late 2000s, the situation in Tanzania had improved, and the Tanzanian government began granting Bantus citizenship and allocating them land in areas of Tanzania where their ancestors are known to have been taken from as slaves.

There is a lot more to learn, here.

Alert to Mainers: Local community college prez wants Somalis to move to Aroostook County

….to work in agriculture.

Will they dig potatoes? Aren’t there machines to do that work?

And, why is this an issue for a community college? Govt. grants? More students? What?

From Mainebiz:

Northern Maine Community College and Maine Community Foundation are partnering to bring Somali immigrants to Aroostook County to explore agricultural opportunities.

Officials from the college and foundation were joined Saturday by 45 Somali immigrants, including children, from southern Maine on a tour of farm operations in Aroostook County held on Saturday.

NMCC Pres. Timothy Crowley

The purpose of the tour is to introduce the Somalis to smaller-scale agricultural prospects in the region.

This effort stems from ideas germinated at a March 2016 conference at the college in which local business and civic leaders spoke about being more proactive in the face of a continuing decline in Aroostook County’s work force.

See more here.

For new readers, see my huge Maine archive by clicking here.

One of my top posts of all time is about how Somalis got to Maine in the first place—Maine, the welfare magnet.