N.C. Sen. Ron Rabin, who represents Lee and Harnett counties in Raleigh, posted a fake anti-Muslim meme to his official Facebook account on Wednesday afternoon, quickly drawing ire from constituents and deleting the post about an hour later.
The meme, which first appeared April 7 on the absolutely bonkers “America’s Last Line of Defense” Facebook page, describes a Muslim school principal named Muhammad al-Salad forcing a Halal menu on students at a West Virginia elementary school. Fact-checking website Snopes debunked the meme the same day, noting that the photograph contains a picture of an entirely different person and that there is no “Pratchett-Kline Elementary School” in Bluefield, West Virginia.
Rabin, however, took the bait.
“Did he advocate for a Passover Seder, Easter ham dinner with ‘hot crosses buns’ or corned beef and cabbage for St. Patrick’s Day?” Rabin wrote, bizarrely conflating nationality with religion. “This is P.C. run amok.”
It didn’t take long for multiple constituents to set the three term senator straight.
“Fake news!” read one, while another commenter wrote “shame on you! This story has no basis in fact.”
The post had been removed by 3 p.m. It’s not the first time a local Republican politician has shared an anti Muslim meme with little basis in fact. In 2017, Lee County Commissioner Andre Knecht shared a meme on Facebook concerning Starbucks, Muslims and bathroom usage.
Rabin, a Republican, is not seeking a fourth term. The district, which encompasses all of Lee and Harnett counties and a portion of Johnston County, will choose between Republican Jim Burgin and Democrat Howard Baldwin in November.