Maine Town Manager Under Fire for Islam Comments

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Tom Kawczynski. (Photo: Screenshot form Facebook)
Tom Kawczynski (Photo: Screenshot form Facebook)

The town manager of Jackman, Maine, is facing calls for his dismissal after it emerged he supports voluntary racial segregation and opposes Islam.

Tom Kawczynski founded the group New Albion, which believes in promoting “traditional Western values emphasizing the positive aspects of our European heritage.”

“I believe in all people, living as they choose, in free determination,” he wrote in one post on his New Albion website. For the people of New England, our folk are white people of European ancestry and ideas, emphasizing the value of work, communing with nature and a society based upon order. While I am not an absolutist on race understanding, the many complications created by the American system, I do believe to the extent we voluntarily separate, the happier every group will be as they regain self-determination.”

He told the Bangor Daily News:

“We are pro-white without being anti-other groups in terms of their racial identity. But we … oppose the idea of bringing people in from the outside that come from different cultures. I would say unequivocally that I see Islam as fundamentally incompatible with Western civilization.”

In another post on New Albion he wrote, “I think Islam, a religion that explicitly espouses no separation between church and state and whose founder married a prepubescent girl, doesn’t fit well with the Western idea of free expression and personal liberty for all peoples.”

Aside from the question of a white racial consciousness, which Clarion Project does not support, Kawczynski’s error stems from misunderstanding the diversity within Islam. He is treating it as though all forms of Islam are the same in a way people rarely do with Christianity.

For example, it would make no sense to treat an traditionalist Catholic who thinks the pope is God’s representative on earth and that the Bible should only be read in Latin the same as a Unitarian minister who thinks that the Trinity is just a metaphor through which we draw closer to the unknowable divine life-force, even though they are both Christians. So, too, it makes no sense to compare a Muslim adherent of the Wahhabist Saudi establishment who thinks it’s immodest for women to drive to a progressive Muslim spiritual seeker who thinks being gay is just another expression of Allah’s love and mercy.

When Kawcynski talks about Islam as “a religion that explicitly espouses no separation between church and state,” he thinks he’s talking about the whole faith, when in fact his criticisms only apply to some interpretations.

Kawcynski said he will not quit his government position, despite the media furor surrounding him.

See Clarion’s full statement on anti-Muslim bigotry.



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Elliot Friedland

Elliot Friedland is a research fellow at Clarion Project.