Disclaimer: The subject of the story has had his name changed for the purposes of confidentiality. Information sources for this story include a memo titled: “Is CentraCare Shariah Compliant? Decide for Yourself”, drafted by the subject, the graphics used at his January 2016 presentation, and a series of interviews and email exchanges with Alpha News.
In addition to being a licensed medical doctor in Minnesota, Kevin Johnson is a citizen activist specializing in the education of others about Shariah Law. Johnson offers a presentation he has developed in which he seeks to provide audiences with current, relevant, and broadly accepted information about Islam, and more specifically Shariah Law. Johnson seeks to convey that Shariah Law is a “rigorously developed legal system” and that Islam is a “complete replacement societal system.” He says his interest in the subject stems from growing up in Saudi Arabia and working there for a short time as well. Johnson serves as an educator, with goals of challenging both political correctness and common perceptions about Islam. In seeking to accomplish these goals, Johnson’s employment as a independent contractor physician with CentraCare was ended.
In preparing for and carrying out his presentation, Johnson says he does the following: “I review formal unified statements made by and in the name of Islam that represent the consensus of what Muslims want westerners to understand about Islam and what they say about themselves and their beliefs.” This is “sadly” portrayed by some in the media as Islamophobia, Kevin argues.
Careful review of both the memo Johnson penned as well as his 2016 presentation convey little that is controversial. He cites constitutions, like that of Qatar and Saudi Arabia, as well as analyzes Koran scriptures. Both the memo and presentation are derived from careful observation, scholarly research, and life experiences, but some of his views run contrary to what the mainstream media conveys about Islam and has caused controversy as a result.
In late January, Johnson presented to an audience in a central-Minnesota town, which included state representatives, state senators, and local journalists. The event was private.
Following the presentation, Johnson was notified that his services with CentraCare would no longer be needed. Of note, the ending of the working relationship between Johnson and CentraCare came roughly one week after the clinic advised him they would need him to work “as much as possible for the next six months.” According to Johnson, he had worked with CentraCare for more than 6 years, at 4 different locations, with no disciplinary actions, malpractice suits, or concerns about patient care.
After the abrupt ending of his long term independent contractor relationship with CentraCare, Johnson spoke with the clinic manager at the site he had been working to determine why he was let go. He described the conversation in the following way:
“When I gently confronted the clinic manager in my current location, I was told that it was the topic (of Islam) itself that was the issue, and that it did not fit in with ‘the culture’ they sought to create. I could also tell that the decision had been imposed on her. Indeed, she and I had discussed hosting my presentation in that community only a week earlier.”
Johnson believes that CentraCare “has made a formal decision that it is a higher priority for them to please the interests of Islam than to provide access to care for its patients.”