Anti-immigrant groups rally base, urge Congress to block relief

Do nothing. Obstruct everything.

That seems to be the plan of national and state-level anti-immigrant groups who, earlier this week, began driving calls demanding that Congress block executive action on immigration and vote no on the administration’s border bill.

The anti-immigrant movement is actively trying to prevent any political resolution to address panic over the arrival of Central American refugees. Instead, they are exploiting the humanitarian crisis to further inflame right-wing populist and xenophobic sentiment. In so doing, they are attempting to block not just legislative action but also administrative relief that could slow deportations and protect millions of undocumented immigrants.

NumbersUSA, a beltway anti-immigrant group that pushes one-click activism, first made the call to its membership on Monday. Their email was echoed by national right-wing groups like the Tea Party Patriots and the Eagle Forum, in addition to state groups like Californians for Population Stabilization, NC Listen, the Tennessee Freedom Coalition and the Dustin Inman Society of Georgia. All echoed Sessions initial demand:

“Congress must foreclose any possibility of these unlawful executive actions before congressional funding is granted,” said Sessions in a July 25 statement. “This is an essential precondition.”

In an email sent Monday, NumbersUSA founder and president Roy Beck explained the importance of leveraging the border bill to block administrative relief:

“We have to get their [members of Congress] attention right now to remind them that whatever they do on the Border Surge will have a direct effect on whether Pres. Obama issues a new amnesty for millions of illegal aliens (as Administration sources keep promising) during August.”

This approach may seem odd at first. After all, the president’s proposal would expedite deportations and remove legal protections for children established in 2008 by a bipartisan law. It would seem that such a bill would satisfy these nativist groups.

But the anti-immigrant movement is not really looking for legislative action to address the humanitarian crisis at the border – despite using it to energize their membership. Instead they are rallying their base using talking points designed play well with far-right groups and inflame anti-Obama sentiment.

On Tuesday, William Gheen of Americans for Legal Immigration PAC asked supporters to tell members of Congress to “Stop the Illegals!” and not to “pass any border funding bill!” And, as noted by Right Wing Watch, Gheen recently told World Net Daily that executive action would be equivalent to martial law:

Obama doesn’t have the constitutional authority to declare any such amnesty for any group of people, and any declaration is a declaration of dictatorship and a form of martial law.”

Gheen and Americans for Legal Immigration PAC have been a link between beltway nativist organizations and more extreme groups. Gheen is, himself, quite extreme and prone to outrageous conspiracy theories. In recent protests against young Central American refugees, Gheen partnered with Overpasses for America, a group focused on impeaching Obama; and the Oath Keepers, a right-wing group that advocates overthrowing the government.

And while such bigoted groups may yell the loudest – they certainly do not speak for all of us. As they pull the national conversation in the direction of racist hysteria, we must speak out. We cannot afford to remain silent.

Lauren Taylor is a field organizer at the Center for New Community.

Image Source: London School of Economics and Political Science (CC)

 

Geller uses pro-Israel demonstration to push anti-Muslim message

In a recent blog post, anti-Muslim activist Pamela Geller labeled Democratic Rep. Eliot Engel a political “opportunist” for turning up to a pro-Israel rally on July 21 in New York City. Incidentally, Geller seized the very same opportunity to spread her own intolerant message.

As it always has, Geller’s staunch support for Israel runs parallel with her disdain for Muslims and Islam. So it is no surprise that she used the demonstration as a platform to spread her anti-Muslim propaganda.

“I urge you to stand with Israel today, for if you don’t, the devil will be at your doorstep tomorrow,” Geller told the crowd.

Geller was among hundreds of protesters who showed up on New York’s streets in support of Israel’s ground assault on Gaza. The three-week-long conflict, which has already resulted in the deaths of thousands of Palestinians, including hundreds of children, and more than 50 Israelis, has sparked protests on all sides of the issue. The organizers for last week’s demonstration, however, saw fit to invite the known firebrand Geller to address the crowd.

To drive her point home, Geller chose to incorporate her notorious message that equates Muslims with savages.

“In any war between the civilized man and the savage, you support the civilized man, you support Israel, defeat jihad,” she told the crowd.

Author Nathan Lean describes this tactic and agenda in his book The Islamophobia Industry. Lean writes, “The issue of Israel is closely linked to the issue of Islamophobia.” He also documents the ways “pro-Israeli magnates” have financially supported the Islamophobia industry and shows how the prevailing anti-terrorist agenda has “allowed Israel to push forward with its brutal policies against the Palestinians.”

This was not the first time New Yorkers had been exposed to this blatant anti-Muslim message. In 2012, Geller’s organization the American Freedom Defense Initiative purchased ad space to display the “savage” message in subway stations all over the city. The group has since exported the ads to other major cities nationwide.

This was also just an extension of Geller’s framework. For years, Geller has been vocal in her belief that there is a grand Muslim plot to conquer Western society, especially from within.

The minute they welcomed Geller to speak for them, the protest organizers lost any credibility they may have had. By doing so, they allowed her the opportunity to undermine true dialogue around the Middle East conflict and carry forward her message of hate and intolerance.

Texas Gov. heeds nativist calls, deploys National Guard to border

Gov. Rick Perry, right, and Sean Hannity.

Given his recent predilection for spinning the ongoing humanitarian crisis into political capital, an announcement last week from Texas Gov. Rick Perry almost seemed inevitable. In recent weeks, he has significantly increased his media presence and his latest move looks to continue this trend of opportunism and gamesmanship.

Last week, Gov. Perry announced he would deploy 1,000 National Guard troops to support Border Patrol agents in processing the large numbers of families and children fleeing violence being apprehended at the U.S.-Mexico border.

“I will not stand idly by while our citizens are under assault,” Perry told reporters.

Perry recently went on a patrol of the border with right-wing media personality Sean Hannity where the two were photographed wearing bulletproof vests and posing with a machine gun. Perry was also kicked off a national television broadcast after espousing conspiracy theories. Widely considered to be a 2016 Republican presidential candidate, Perry has also spent considerable time in the important primary state of Iowa – where he has attended events alongside the virulently anti-immigrant Rep. Steve King (R-IA).

Naturally, Rep. King supports Perry’s decision – so do many other House Republicans. Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, the architect of Arizona’s notorious anti-immigrant legislation SB 1070, has similarly called on utilizing the National Guard in recent media appearances. Far-right activists in Texas including Maria Espinoza, Larry Korkmas and failed Congressional candidate Katrina Pierson — all of whom are affiliated with the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) – participated in a press conference at the Texas State House featuring calls for National Guard troops on the border. For its part, FAIR also called for increased border militarization in a July 8 press release demanding Congress “[r]equire and fund the deployment of the National Guard so that Border Patrol and ICE agents can do their jobs and protect our country.”

There is, however, an issue with what Gov. Perry and many within the anti-immigrant movement support: It likely won’t solve any of the issues Border Patrol officials currently face. H. Steven Blum, former head of the National Guard under President George W. Bush, recently noted to The Washington Post that National Guard troops are limited in many ways and “[m]erely sending the Guard to the border is not a panacea for the myriad complex problems of the current situation”

Surprisingly, even Mark Krikorian of the anti-immigrant Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) noted Perry’s announcement was little more than political posturing when he tweeted, “Not sure Natl [sic] Guard will do much good at TX border, but Obama made dumb political mistake not sending them before Perry.”

Rather than thrust himself into the national spotlight and get a leg-up on his potential 2016 opponents, Gov. Perry should direct his efforts to ensuring those fleeing violence in Central America are treated humanely and their rights under U.S. law are respected. All of our elected officials should.

Why isn’t Washington think tank firing staffer who said Obama should be ‘hung, drawn and quartered’?

Steinlight in Florida 07/15/14Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) wants us to know that it does not, in fact, support the president being “hung, drawn and quartered.” But that doesn’t mean the anti-immigrant think-tank will apologize for its senior policy analyst saying President Obama deserved the punishment (which ends in death by the way). Instead, Center for Immigration Studies’ Executive Director Mark Krikorian responded to the controversial remarks by saying that they were “ill-advised” and “impolitic rhetoric.”

Here’s exactly what Stephen Steinlight said to the Highlands Tea Party in Sebring, Florida on July 17 (to loud applause I might add):

“We all know, if there ever was a president that deserved to be impeached, it’s this guy. All right? And I wouldn’t stop. I would think being hung, drawn and quartered is probably too good for him.”

Here’s a handy Wikipedia explanation of what it means to be hung, drawn and quartered:

Convicts were fastened to a hurdle, or wooden panel, and drawn by horse to the place of execution, where they were hanged (almost to the point of death), emasculated, disembowelled, beheaded and quartered (chopped into four pieces). Their remains were often displayed in prominent places across the country, such as London Bridge. For reasons of public decency, women convicted of high treason were instead burned at the stake.

Steinlight’s suggested punishment is gruesome, violent and disturbingly racist. I’m sure it’s lost on no one that he’s talking about hanging — and butchering — the nation’s first African American president. I’m also sure that “impolitic” is the last word I’d use to describe it. But should we be surprised by this rhetoric given that Steinlight works for a group created by white nationalist John Tanton?

Video of Steinlight’s speech was first uploaded to YouTube by Highlands Tea Party Chairman John Nelson on July 20 (it was removed, but not before Right Wing Watch saved a clip).

Is CIS taking this seriously or trying to sweep it under the rug? According to Huffington Post, CIS officials said Steinlight had been disciplined and instructed to avoid similar rhetoric in the future.

“I reprimanded him and put a reprimand in his personnel file,” said CIS Executive Director Mark Krikorian. Way to stick it to him.

Suggesting that the president should be executed is not just “ill-advised,” it’s inexcusable. Simply “reprimanding” Steinlight is a signal to its supporters that CIS doesn’t find his comments all that disturbing. Steinlight should be fired. Anything less is unacceptable from an organization that calls itself non-partisan.

Jill Garvey is the Executive Director of the Center for New Community 

Cross-post: Signs from a surprising rally in Texas

A View from the Border: Signs from a surprising rally in Texas

by Esther Yu-Hsi Lee, Jack Jenkins | Think Progress

Originally posted on July 20, 2014

MCALLEN, TX — At least 60 advocates braved sauna-like conditions near the Texas border on Saturday to rally across the street from the McAllen Border Patrol Station, showing their support for the influx of unaccompanied Latin American children being apprehended there.

About 57,000 children, mostly from Central America, have been detained this fiscal year by Border Patrol agents, many in Texas’s Rio Grand Valley towns, like McAllen. Studies show that — at least since 2009 — children have been leaving the Central American countries of Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala in droves because of increasing violence and grinding poverty, taking dangerous journeys to the U.S. to seek refuge.

The rally, which was also an interfaith prayer vigil, was meant to counter hundreds of planned “anti-amnesty” protests across the country over the Obama administration’s handling of the surge. Only three people showed up nearby as part of the national anti-immigrant protests. They said they expected others to arrive, but also speculated they may have “gotten the wrong address.”

Attendees at the rally in support of the children brought messages of love, compassion, and sympathy for children for whom they feared a return to Latin America could mean certain death.

Click here to read the full post and see the Top 10 Signs spotted by Esther and Jack.

Read more from Think Progress: They Came To America For Freedom And Opportunity, But Ended Up Trapped In Their Own Home

 

Image Source: Think Progress

Cross-post: 5 things last weekend’s rallies tell us about the nativist right

By Miranda Blue | Right Wing Watch

For weeks now, anti-immigrant groups have been hyping a “National Day of Protesting Against Immigration Reform, Amnesty & Border Surge,” meant to be two days of protests in cities across the country in reaction to the Central American children who are coming to the southern border to flee violence in their home countries.

The protests were a bust. Local news reports and pictures posted on social media show anemic turnout, from about 40 people in front of the United Nations in New York to just three at a McClellan, Texas, border control station who wondered if they had gotten the wrong address.

These small but vitriolic protests, although they didn’t meet the hype of their organizers, tell us everything we need to know about today’s anti-immigrant movement.

1. It’s driven by extremists.

This weekend’s protests were organized by three fringe groups: Make Them Listen, Overpasses for America, and Americans for Legal Immigration PAC.

Make Them Listen is run by activist Paul Arnold, who has close ties to the anti-immigrant front group behind last summer’s rally of extremists on the National Mall .

Overpasses for America is a group led by activist James Neighbors that organizes demonstrations over highway overpasses to call for President Obama’s impeachment. The group went a step further this year when it backed Operation American Spring, an effort meant to flood Washington with protesters and force Obama out of office , which also came up slightly short of expectations .

Overpasses frequently shares images like this on its Facebook page:

The group also uses the platform to share its views on immigrants, including this image and its accompanying caption.

Americans for Legal Immigration is a one-man anti-immigrant hate shop run by North Carolina-based activist William Gheen. Gheen has said that “illegal and violent” means might be necessary to remove President Obama from office and has a long record of virulent anti-immigrant rhetoric . Gheen’s last national action was encouraging his supporters to mail used underwear to undocumented immigrants.

Gheen also has ties to the right-wing militia movement: he personally invited the anti-government group Oath Keepers to join the weekend’s protests.

Other groups listed as “participating organizations” in the event included 2 Million Bikers To DC, whose leader wants to repeal all but the first 10 amendments to the Constitution and which deals in racist Facebook images, and Americans Have Had Enough Coalition, which is led by white supremacist Roan Garcia-Quintana .

The largest recent anti-immigrant protests — the attempts to turn back busses of migrant children in Murrieta, California, and Oracle, Arizona — were also populated by anti-government fringe groups. The Murrieta protest, which was organized by activists tied to the Minutemen and the John Birch Society, drew some of the same people who had recently set up shop at the anti-government standoff at the Bundy Ranch.

Click here to read the full post.

Miranda Blue writes for Right Wing Watch.

Five reasons why everyone should continue criticizing ACT!’s Brigitte Gabriel

Anti-Muslim figurehead tired of being criticized for always criticizing Muslims.

On July 16, anti-Muslim demagogue Brigitte Gabriel appeared on a conservative radio show to make her case against being labeled “Islamophobic.” Gabriel was responding to broad criticism that she has received following various appearances during which she has espoused anti-Muslim sentiments.

Gabriel, the president of the anti-Muslim group ACT! for America, was a guest on TruNews radio to discuss how she became the subject of scrutiny after a string of appearances on various news networks including CNN and Fox News. Much criticism, though, has stemmed from her anti-Muslim diatribe during a Benghazi panel hosted by the Heritage Foundation, which was caught on tape and subsequently went viral.

TruNews host Rick Wiles began the show by declaring, “The establishment news media has started attacking Brigitte Gabriel for her comments….”

Wiles was referring to publications such as The Washington Post and The Daily Beast which both featured scathing pieces on Gabriel who during that Heritage panel verbally berated Saba Ahmed, a Muslim woman who had posed a question about all-too-common characterizations of Muslims.

Gabriel explained the criticism to Wiles by saying her detractors were simply intimidated by how “effective” she was in communicating her points. She was right—she was effectively communicating her anti-Muslim beliefs, which spiraled across the political Twitter-sphere that day.

Clearly, though, this point falls deaf on Gabriel, as on the day she unabashedly insulted Ahmed’s identity by demanding to know if she was American (Gabriel is herself an immigrant) as well as charging that the peaceful majority of Muslims are irrelevant because “15-25 percent” are “dedicated to the destruction of Western civilization.”

How she arrived at those numbers is anyone’s guess.

Wiles also took issue with Fox News contributor Tamara Holder, who labeled Gabriel “the most dangerous person in society” during an episode of “Hannity” on June 20.

While Holder’s comments are hyperbolic (it is Fox News, after all), her motivations for saying so are not rootless.

Gabriel and ACT! for America’s mission is to portray Muslims as an omnipresent, monolithic threat plotting to overthrow and to replace the U.S. government with a radical Islamic regime. Further, she and her organization continue to push anti-Muslim legislation such as American Laws for American Courts (ALAC) and to assert time-and-again that Muslims are using secondary school textbooks to proselytize for Islam.

Of course, any attempt by Gabriel to argue against her own contributing to anti-Muslim fervor is moot when one simply examines her long track record of statements and work. In case one needs more, though, listed below are five reasons why Gabriel should continually be criticized for her extremism:

  • Perpetuating the fallacy that all Muslims are Arabs, she has gone on record numerous times calling the Arab world barbarous, arguing for example that “The difference between Israel and the Arab world is the difference between democracy and barbarism.”
  • Gabriel appeared in a video series produced by the anti-immigrant group NumbersUSA in which she expressed, “we need to scrutinize every Muslim running for office,” and warned that Keith Ellison (D-MN) — the first Muslim elected to U.S. Congress — is evidence of how Muslims have infiltrated “every aspect of our society.”
  • To further her idea that Muslims are trying to take over the education system, Gabriel warned they intend to “brainwash the children in our country,” and referred to American universities as “occupied territories.”
  • She has previously claimed a practicing Muslim who believes in the teaching of the Qur’an “cannot be a loyal citizen to the United States of America.”
  • Gabriel once stated Palestinians have “no compassion towards children.”

While some may not categorize Gabriel as the most dangerous person in society, her role in funneling anti-Muslim rhetoric into mainstream and right-wing media should not be dismissed and surely not at her own behest.

 

VIDEO: Stephen Steinlight of CIS says public execution “too good” for Obama

On July 17, Center for Immigration Studies Senior Policy Analyst Stephen Steinlight spoke to The Highlands Tea Party in Sebring, Florida. There, he expressed a desire not only to impeach President Obama but also to have him publicly lynched.

In discussing House Speaker John Boehner’s plans to sue the President, Steinlight lamented that “there’s no court that’s going to stop Obama from doing anything.” He then added,

“We all know, if there ever was a president that deserved to be impeached, it’s this guy. Alright? And I wouldn’t stop. I would think being hung, drawn, and quartered is probably too good for him.”

Video of Steinlight’s speech was first uploaded to YouTube by Highlands Tea Party Chairman John Nelson on July 20 (it has since been removed). Based on the video’s introduction, it also appears CIS gave Nelson permission to use its logo for the video.

This is not the first time Steinlight has made bigoted and racially charged statements before Tea Party and other far-right groups. He has previously claimed Hispanic immigrants will bring about “the unmaking of America.” In March of this year he also proposed a moratorium on Muslim immigration because “Muslims believe in things that are subversive to the Constitution.” As bigoted as these statements are, they are not as extreme as a leader within the anti-immigrant movement calling for the lynching of the first African-American President of the United States.

CIS has a long track record of standing firmly behind Steinlight, who is infamous for issuing racially and ethnically charged remarks beyond what’s above (here, here, and here).

Furthermore, as this summer House Judiciary Chairman Rep. Bob Goodlatte has called two committee hearings at the behest of CIS and its research, Steinlight’s remarks again raise serious questions about elected officials who entertain the group’s work and/or maintain close ties with its principals.

Sheriffs’ participation in FAIR’s Border Tour deviate from responsibilities

Local sheriffs should be impartial peacemakers, not anti-immigrant spokespersons

In its 2012 annual report, the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) noted that it was expanding its outreach efforts to law enforcement officials:

“Our commitment to educating the American public and promoting citizen awareness and involvement across the country is a continuing focus. This year, we expanded our outreach to law enforcement — specifically county sheriffs — in order to educate them about illegal immigration and its impact on the communities they serve.”

FAIR’s efforts that year included organizing a controversial “National Sheriffs Border School and Tour” in El Paso, Texas. In El Paso, many sheriffs from across the country were not only exposed to FAIR and its anti-immigrant agenda, but also likely returned to their jurisdictions inspired to advocate for the harsh enforcement policies FAIR so vehemently supports. FAIR’s latest law enforcement outreach effort occurred last week when it organized a four-day “fact-finding mission” for seven sheriffs from five states to observe Border Patrol facilities processing apprehended children fleeing violence from Central America.

While FAIR’s border trip seems to be an obvious attempt to advance its agenda during a humanitarian crisis, it also comes during a year in which many municipalities and sheriffs across the country are rebuking the burden of federal immigration responsibilities. From areas spanning from Oregon to Philadelphia, local officials are choosing to no longer honor immigration authorities’ requests for ICE detainer holds. In addition to straining sheriff department staffs and resources, in some cases honoring such requests have been found by federal courts to violate detainees’ constitutional rights.

Unsurprisingly, most of the sheriffs participating in FAIR’s border trip last week subscribe to the anti-immigrant movement’s view that all levels of law enforcement should fervently enforce federal immigration statutes. By travelling to the border with FAIR, these sheriffs continue to align themselves with – and validate the motivations of – a movement that has had no qualms exploiting the present crisis of children fleeing violence for political gain.

North Carolina’s Rockingham County Sheriff Sam Page was one of the seven sheriffs touring the border last week. His involvement was expected given his history with the anti-immigrant movement. Page travelled to El Paso with FAIR in 2012 and has been a regular attendee of FAIR’s annual media event in Washington DC, “Hold Their Feet to the Fire.” During the 2013 installment, he participated in a press conference organized the stridently anti-immigrant Sens. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) and David Vitter (R-LA). Shortly after that conference, Page signed a letter to members of Congress along with other sheriffs and law enforcement officials in opposition to immigration reform. That letter was facilitated by National ICE Council President Chris Crane, who himself has worked closely with Kris Kobach and NumbersUSA.

Sheriff Tom Hodgson of Bristol County, Massachusetts similarly signed Crane’s anti-reform letter and has attended FAIR events. Hodgson has made additional trips to the nation’s capital to oppose immigration reforms. During an October 2013 press conference – again organized by Sen. Sessions – Hodgson disparaged undocumented immigrants for supposedly “creating public health hazards” and “public safety concerns.”

Frederick County, Maryland Sheriff Chuck Jenkins was also a predictable participant given that his ties to FAIR go back to at least 2009 when he spoke at FAIR’s advisory board meeting. Jenkins certainly advocates implementing harsh immigration enforcement measures. Under his watch, Frederick Country is the only county in Maryland that maintains a 287(g) arrangement with ICE. Issues with Jenkins’ department are not solely limited to immigration matters. In 2010, Jenkins said an “Arizona type law” or statewide 287(g) participation would be “ideal for Maryland.”

While these sheriffs and others toured the southern border with FAIR last week, another FAIR-affiliated Sheriff actions in Oracle, Arizona was denounced by editors of The Arizona Republic as “incomprehensibly irresponsible.”

Last Tuesday, Pinal County (AZ) Sheriff Paul Babeu (pictured above, from 2011) might have set a new low in recklessly spinning anti-immigrant sentiment into political opportunity. After passing on information regarding the arrivals of children fleeing violence to nativist protestors who then mistakingly harassed a bus of YMCA campers, only then did Babeu assert his presence on site as a “peacemaker.” Republic editors likened Babeu to a “pyromaniac who torches his own house, then throws himself on the mercy of the court as a homeless waif.”

Whether they are leaving their jurisdictions to tour the border with anti-immigrant organizations or creating dangerous standoffs in their own backyards, sheriffs should not entertain the anti-immigrant movement’s dangerous nativist agenda. As Babeu’s critics wrote earlier this week, it is “a higher order of cruelty — and carelessness — for a peace officer to use his elected office to play on anger and fear.”

Image source: Gage Skidmore

Week in Review: Murrieta organizers’ history, authorities colluding with protesters and more bizarre conspiracies

Colorado Governor’s Race Gets Ugly as Candidates Jump on Anti-Immigrant Bandwagon

Thursday, July 17, 2014  |  Imagine 2050

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper has his eyes on a higher office, and he is betting that picking on children fleeing violence will help him get there. Between jokes with Vice President Biden, and pool with President Obama, he took time to publicly state his opposition to hosting children who have fled the ongoing crisis in Central America. Hickenlooper’s cold comments follow similar statements from his Republican challenger, gubernatorial candidate Bob Beauprez.

It’s clear that both candidates seem to think that closing their state off to young refugees will further their political careers.

Read more

 

Anti-immigrant Arizona sheriff prompts protest against migrant children

Tuesday, July 15, 2014  |  Nativism Watch

An Arizona sheriff with a history of anti-immigrant rhetoric and activism has provided Oracle, Arizona residents with information that helped activists coordinate an anti-immigrant demonstration today. Oracle local Robert Skiba, who plans to protest a proposed site to shelter children fleeing violence in Central America, was told of the plans during a meeting with Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu.

Appearing on Breitbart News Sunday, Skiba recalled his meeting with Babeu and expressed shock before he reportedly told the sheriff, “We will take care of this.”

Read more

 

West: Migrant children are part of Democrats’ plan to boost voter base

Tuesday, July 15, 2014  |  Imagine 2050

Over recent months, the nation was surprised to learn that since October, more than 52,000 Central American children have been detained after fleeing violence in their home countries. What has been far less surprising has been the organized nativist movement’s efforts to politicize the issue and staunchly oppose humane responses to it. And even less surprising has been Frank Gaffney’s constant efforts to vilify the children and push back against policies that would aid them.

Gaffney, founder and president of the Center for Security Policy, has already demonstrated his lack of empathy by deeming these children an invasion. However, in his latest efforts against them, Gaffney proved why he’s worthy of the title of Islamophobia’s “most paranoid propagandist.”

Read more

 

Murrieta protest organizers have history of anti-Muslim activism

Monday, July 14, 2014  |  Imagine 2050

The shameful actions of anti-immigrant protesters who have blocked buses transporting Central American children fleeing violence to a Border Patrol facility for processing have been some of the most explicit public displays of nativism in recent memory. With intimidating chants of “Go back home!” and “U-S-A,” and signs accusing those seeking refuge of being public health threats, the Murrieta protestors have shown they have virtually no regard for the well-being of these children who have made this traumatic journey out of pure desperation.

As is well-documented, some of the organizers of the Murrieta demonstrations have a history of nativist activism that is not limited to demonizing immigrants. Muslims, too, have been a target of their bigoted fervor.

Read more

 

Image source: Los Angeles Times