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The Anti-Immigrant Lobby

El Diario/La Prensa, Editorial, Staff Posted: Feb 04, 2009

For several years, organizations across the nation have rallied for sensible and humane immigration reform. But a persistent minority continues to work to undermine real policy reform.

This minority has no interest in compromises. Its anti-immigration agenda is driven by an ugly nativist, xenophobic movement that blames immigrants for every problem under the sun, that has in the past attacked Catholics and Jews as sneaky and blacks and the Chinese as inferior.

The target, this time, is Latinos. Together, Numbers USA, the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) and Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) have worked to distort immigration, intimidate legislators, and scuttle bills. A report issued yesterday by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) shows their racist and xenophobic foundation.

The chief architect of these groups is John Tanton, who doubts minorities can run a civilization, questions the educability of Latinos, and who believes non white immigration is a threat to white America. The SPLC describes Tanton's work with advocates of the racist pseudo science of eugenics and white supremacists.

FAIR, CIS and Numbers USA have tried to distance themselves from Tanton. But SPLC exposes years of interaction and collaboration between them and Tanton.

The nativist movement acts on paranoia that the U.S. is under siege by foreigners who will wreak havoc on the country. Yet U.S. history and overwhelming research show a nation continuously energized by the work of immigrants.

But CIS is interested in anything but studies. Numbers USA is interested in anything but data. And FAIR is anything but that.

Its time for our legislators to stop treating these groups as if they are credible and to see them for what they arefear mongerers who want to derail a 21st century America.

Related Articles:

U.S. Fails to Protect Human Rights of Latinos, Says Civil Rights Group

Spanish-Language Media Decries Long Island Hate Crime

Editorial: Latinos in Danger

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