A criminal broke into a campaign office run by Rep. Dean Phillips one day after he said that it’s “unfair” to expect “safety and order.”
“Dear America: It’s unfair and irresponsible to expect law enforcement to maintain safety and order in our cities until we rectify 400 years of racism and oppression,” Phillips, who represents the Third Congressional District, wrote in a Twitter post on August 29.
Dear America: It’s unfair and irresponsible to expect law enforcement to maintain safety and order in our cities until we rectify 400 years of racism and oppression and start investing in communities that have had knees on their necks for generations. Let’s all get to it.
— Rep. Dean Phillips 🇺🇸 (@RepDeanPhillips) August 29, 2020
Just one day later, he condemned criminals who broke into his campaign office and stole his signs out of his supporters’ yards.
“Your disregard for law and stoking of fear and disorder, only increases my resolve,” he said on Twitter. His August 30 post also includes a photograph of what appears to be the door of his Minnetonka campaign office smashed in and propped ajar.
To the thieves stealing campaign signs from my supporters’ lawns across the district and the criminals who broke into our Minnetonka campaign office overnight, the irony isn’t lost on me. Your disregard for law and stoking of fear and disorder, only increases my resolve. pic.twitter.com/2PUwDKon3t
— Dean Phillips (@deanbphillips) August 30, 2020
Several items were stolen, including a computer, according to a campaign aide who spoke with the Star Tribune. Phillips’ campaign manager, Richard Carlbom, also said the campaign is “working with law enforcement and reviewing security footage to identify those responsible,” despite the congressman’s criticism of the police.
Earlier in the week, Phillips said the recent vandalism and looting of businesses in and around Nicollet Mall were “symptoms of the 400-year old disease of racism and oppression.”
THREAD: I love #MPLS and strongly condemn last night’s lawlessness, which only moves us further from justice and peace. I applaud @GovTimWalz & @MayorFrey’s actions to confront it, but these symptoms of the 400-year old disease of racism & oppression must be addressed. 1/5
— Rep. Dean Phillips 🇺🇸 (@RepDeanPhillips) August 27, 2020
He then issued a “clarification” on Sunday night, saying Republicans and Democrats “universally condemn property destruction and violence against human beings.”
“It’s when we get to oppression, racism, injustice, inequity, and 17-year-olds roaming the streets with AR-15s that there appear to be some stark differences,” he said.
The congressman’s frequent claim that racism in America is 400 years old, much older than the country itself, is an apparent reference to the “1619 Project.” This controversial project is an effort by the New York Times to demonstrate that history on the North American continent has been dictated by racism for four centuries.
The 1619 Project is often cited by progressive politicians and social activists but has been condemned by many historians who say it misrepresents the history of America.
Gordon Woods, a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian who studies the American Revolution, says the project gets history “so wrong in so many ways,” per the Wall Street Journal.
Likewise, Dr. Leslie Harris says the project is incorrect to claim that the colonists were motivated to fight the American Revolution in large part to preserve slavery, according to Politico.