Thursday, January 10, 2008

FAIR and friends

By Capt. Fogg

Lou Dobbs is quick to argue that his obsession with illegal immigration centers on the illegality and not the fact of immigration or the ethnicity of the immigrants, although I haven't heard a peep out of him about Canadian immigrants or the need to close the northern border. Indeed, many of the illegal immigration opinion shouters take great pains to tell us that they are only concerned that laws are being broken even though the near hysterical reaction to the very thought of Spanish being spoken within our borders is visible everywhere and calls their dispassionate pose into question. Are we looking at racism carefully cleaned up, shaved and passed off as reason?

Dan Stein, president of FAIR or the Federation For American Immigration Reform has appeared on Lou Dobbs' television show more than a dozen times, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center and many times on other news programs. His organization, the largest anti-immigration group in the US, has been called on by Congress to testify about immigration more than 30 times and has been instrumental in shooting down immigration reforms. Are these people voicing reasonable concerns about immigration policies and the effects on the US of immigrant labor or are they something else? Is it fair to look at FAIR and friends a little closer?

Stein has been communicating about immigration policies with a Belgian political party that has been banned from that country by their Supreme Court for their racist views.FAIR's Western Field representative, Joeseph Turner has created and been the head of an anti immigrant group whose rallies were frequented by neo-Nazis; people Turner refused to disassociate with his group.

The founder of FAIR, John Taunton, was an outspoken critic of Latinos and Catholics and a proponent of eugenics, a selective breeding program developed by Adolph Hitler. Stein calls him" a remarkable figure in American politics." FAIR has accepted $1,200,000 from the Pioneer Fund to promote the racial stock of the original colonists (presumably not those from Spain or Africa.) It's for such reasons as this that SPLC has added FAIR to it's list of hate groups.

It's not surprising that people with notions about an ethnically pure United States should try to dignify the enterprises of such people or cover up their slimier aspects. The facade of avuncular sincerity of people like Dobbs is quite convincing, but then it's part of a long American tradition of pretending that slavery and then segregation and religious discrimination were really reasonable policies well thought out by reasonable men. That's not to say that we don't have a problem; it is to say that when you listen to someone's statement of a problem and to the solution he offers, it's a good idea to know who stands behind him and what their real agenda is.

(Cross-posted from Human Voices.)

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