Nativism Watch

There Goes the Neighborhood: March 14, 2016

Imagine2050 Staff • Mar 14, 2016

There Goes the Neighborhood is a weekly series from Imagine 2050 staff highlighting upcoming nativist events.

This week, a prominent anti-Muslim leader speaks in California, an anti-immigrant group holds its monthly meeting in Texas, and a member of the border vigilante Minutemen movement discusses refugee resettlement in Minnesota.

On Tuesday, March 15, anti-Muslim leader David Horowitz will discuss his new book, Progressive Racism, in Los Angeles, California. The event is part of the David Horowitz Freedom Center’s “Wednesday Morning Club,” whose self-described goal is “to foster a dialogue within the entertainment community.” Previously, the Morning Club has hosted notable anti-Muslim activists like Robert Spencer and Andrew McCarthy. Given his own record of blatant anti-Black racism, Horowitz’s new book and presentation should be taken with a grain of salt, to say the least.

Also on March 15, anti-immigrant group Texans for Immigration Reduction & Enforcement (TFIRE) will hold its monthly meeting in Houston, Texas. The featured speaker at Tuesday’s meeting will be newly elected Houston City Councilman Mike Knox. As a former police officer and law enforcement consultant, “Knox will have an interesting perspective on immigration as it relates to gangs and gang culture,” a flyer advertising the meeting reads. Last month, TFIRE sponsored an event in Houston featuring the virulently anti-immigrant Sheriff Joe Arpaio, of Maricopa County, Arizona, and anti-government activist Richard Mack.

Finally, on Thursday, March 17, Minutemen activist Ron Branstner will give a presentation on refugee resettlement in Avon, Minnesota. The event is organized by the Central Minnesota Tea Party Patriots. Branstner previously worked with the border vigilante Minutemen movement in California and Arizona, but appears to have returned to his home state of Minnesota and has given several anti-refugee presentations in recent months. As Bluestem Prairie has reported, Branstner’s nativist activism in Minnesota goes back to at least 2007, with recent events in Minnesota cities including St. Cloud, Wilmar, and Baxter.

At the event in Baxter, Bluestem Prairie also reports that Branstner distributed materials from highly suspect sources. These include handouts produced by the far-right, conspiracy-minded John Birch Society, Tennessee anti-Muslim activist Bill French (A.K.A. Bill Warner), and excerpts from The Heritage Foundation’s defamed 2014 report on immigration co-authored by Jason Richwine.

Additional information on these events and others can be found in the map below. The events scheduled for next week are marked with red stars.

Know of any nativist events not located on this map? Please contact us or fill out this form:

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