GOP congressman says Black Lives Matter movement is 'at war' with Western culture


Rep. Jim Hagedorn believes the nation is under attack from supporters of racial justice.

A Minnesota congressman claimed Tuesday that those protesting racism and police brutality are "at war" with America, its beliefs, and "western culture."

"The Democrat 'Black Lives Matter' Party, along with armies of rioters, are at war with our country, our beliefs and western culture," Rep. Jim Hagedorn (R-MN) wrote in a Facebook post. "Their radical movement is orchestrated and growing. We must never let them take power. We must stand up and defend our county, our nation's identity, our Judeo-Christian values and our American way of life."

Hagedorn was upset about a tweet by activist Shaun King — who has not actually been a Democrat since 2016 — suggesting that statues depicting Jesus as a white European are "a form of white supremacy" and should come down.

The first-term lawmaker's framing of the entire Black Lives Matter movement and Democratic Party as a threat to "western culture" is a dog whistle term for white nationalists. The term is frequently used by racist hate groups as a stand-in for "white."

Hagedorn, whose district is south of the city of Minneapolis, has made it clear previously that he does not support the people protesting against police violence and racial injustice in the wake of George Floyd's death.

"Democrat policies are on full display, destroying lives, businesses and society in the Twin Cities," he complained in a May 29 Facebook post. "Every political authority figure in the chain, from Governor, U.S. Senators, U.S. Congresswoman, the Mayors on down to dog catcher are [Democratic–Farmer–Labor Party] politicians. Instead of protecting people and property, they spent days wringing their hands and effectively patting rioters on the back."

Before being elected to Congress in November 2018, Hagedorn had a long history of sexist, homophobic, racist, ableist, ageist, and classist writings, including a now-deleted "Mr. Conservative" blog.

The list includes a 2002 recommendation that California Republicans nominate "good looking female actresses with nice boobs," a 2002 attack on then-North Carolina Republican Senate nominee Elizabeth Dole as "Bob Dole in drag," and a 2004 essay defending anti-LGBTQ sodomy bans as a prohibition of "two-way traffic in tunnels constructed by God and marked by nature as 'exit only.'"

After a then-Republican congressman called on police to interrogate anyone with a "diaper on his head" back in 2001, Hagedorn praised the Islamophobic comment as "commonsense diplomacy."

He mocked then-Massachusetts gubernatorial candidate Mitt Romney in 2002 for his membership in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, saying the Republican would likely win despite his "failure to move all of his wives and children to Massachusetts."

Hagedorn also approvingly misquoted John Wayne that same year to bash Native Americans, saying "the only good Indian [is] a dead Indian."

His slurs also include calling a triple-amputee war hero a "half-soldier," dismissing an 78-year-old senator as a "cadaver," and mocking rural Alabamians by claiming 98% of them are not part of the state's "intellectual and upper classes (10th grade education/outright ownership of mobile home)."

Hagedorn once even urged that Ronald Reagan's face be added to Mount Rushmore, writing that "room exists if we flatten Lincoln's image."

Hagedorn's office did not immediately respond to a request for comment for this article.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.