On October 1, the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) held an event at The National Press Club to discuss (malign) the 50th anniversary of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965.
White nationalist Jared Taylor was in attendance, and small chunk of the event’s question and answer portion was devoted to a question he asked about resurrecting racist immigration quotas that were instituted in the United States during the 1920s, namely the Immigration Act of 1924.
Writing for his website, American Renaissance, Taylor lamented that the ideas posed in his question were not wholly embraced at the CIS panel, but that “it never hurts to plant the idea that whites have legitimate rights, too.”
“I’m not quite sure what’s wrong with wishing to maintain ethnic balance of a country,” Taylor began before asking, “why is that something that was utterly unacceptable if the United States, and bigotry and horrible [sic], but that is routinely practiced without being criticized by virtually every other country?”
Taylor in 2005: “Blacks and whites are different. When blacks are left entirely to their own devices, Western civilization — any kind of civilization — disappears.”
Jerry Kammer and Mark Krikorian, CIS senior fellow and executive director, respectively, responded to Taylor’s question without any condemnation of Taylor’s calls to reinstate racist immigration quotas. Kammer entertained the bigoted premise of Taylor’s question by acknowledging that the 1924 act presents a “fraught” and “complex question” that “brings up so many emotions” before stating his personal opposition to the legislation.
Krikorian, who has previously denied the influence of eugenics on the 1920s immigration laws, dodged the question almost entirely by pivoting the discussion to the influence of the Cold War on U.S. immigration policy.
As the Center for New Community noted in 2013, the 1924 immigration law Taylor defended at the CIS event was influenced by the testimony and counsel of Dr. Henry Laughlin, the superintendent of the Eugenics Records Office who has praised Hitler for “recogniz[ing] that the central mission of all politics is race hygiene.” Laughlin would go on to help found the Pioneer Fund in the 1930s.
Decades later, the Pioneer Fund would provide substantial financial support to Jared Taylor’s New Century Foundation as well as the Federation for American Immigration (FAIR). CIS was founded as a project of FAIR in 1985 and Mark Krikorian was a FAIR employee before becoming CIS executive director in 1995.
The day before the CIS event, Jared Taylor appeared on a radio program hosted by anti-Muslim conspiracy theorist Frank Gaffney, a close associate of Krikorian’s. Gaffney later removed the interview recording from his website after the Southern Poverty Law Center reported Taylor’s appearance. Two days later, Krikorian would appear on Gaffney’s radio program.
While Krikorian and Gaffney are always careful to say they do not endorse Taylor and his white nationalist views, they both gave him a platform last week and that speaks volumes.