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Week in Review: Nativists attack migrant children, Brigitte Gabriel cries foul, Tancredo falls

Karl Schuster • Jun 27, 2014

Nativist lobby invisible, but still present in debate about migrant children

Thursday, June 26, 2014  |  Imagine 2050

At a Congressional hearing Wednesday, immigration hardliners continued to manipulate the ongoing humanitarian crisis into a case for harsh border enforcement. The arrival at the U.S. border of more than 50,000 children fleeing violence – without their parents – has elicited little evident empathy from those who prefer to seize this situation as a political opportunity in the immigration debate.

Missing from the hearing, titled “An Administration-Made Disaster: The South Texas Border Surge of Unaccompanied Alien Minors,” were representatives from any of the Beltway’s major anti-immigrant organizations.  Their agenda, however, was well represented.

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Congressional hearing on children fleeing violence highlights lack of empathy

Wednesday, June 25, 2014  |  Imagine 2050

While immigration hardliners have attempted to spin an escalating humanitarian crisis into an issue of border enforcement, the reality is that it has much more to do with foreign policy, the U.S.’s commitment to child welfare and its willingness to adhere to international protection protocols. Children are fleeing violence and extreme poverty in Honduras, Guatemala, Mexico and El Salvador at a rate that has shocked many Americans and caught the Obama Administration and lawmakers of all stripes by surprise.

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Islamophobes say children fleeing violence are invaders, not victims

Tuesday, June 24,2014  |  Imagine 2050

Many Americans were stunned a few weeks ago when news outlets began reporting that since October, about 47,000 children who fled violence in Central America are being detained after attempting to enter the United States through the Southern border. On cue, the organized anti-immigrant movement was quick to respond with rhetoric attacking the unaccompanied minors. However, it was not alone, and the crisis has now garnered the attention of the movement’s anti-Muslim counterparts.

Leading the charge has been the Islamophobia movement’s “most paranoid propagandist,” Frank Gaffney, who took to labeling the arrival of the children as an “invasion of our border and transformation of our country.”

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With Brigitte Gabriel, what you see is what get 

Monday, June 23, 2014  |  Imagine 2050 

On Sunday, CNN aired an episode of its show “Reliable Sources” that featured a debate between New York-based civil rights activist Linda Sarsour and Brigitte Gabriel, who is the president of a national anti-Muslim grassroots organization.

After the broadcast, Gabriel took to Twitter to complain about her portrayal saying: “@CNNReliable TOTALLY EDITED pre-recorded interview Fri w/ @lsarsour. Disjointed responses COMPLETELY misrepresented.”

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ACT! for America turns Islamophobic Benghazi panel into funding pitch

Friday, June 20, 2014  |  Nativism Watch

The anti-Muslim group ACT! for America is now trying to turn a profit off of their president’s mocking of a Muslim audience member at Monday’s Heritage Foundation Benghazi symposium. In a mass email sent to supporters yesterday, the group says it needs a public relations firm.

The “Islamist lobby” is already getting its collective voice out “through their own powerful PR firms,” ACT! president Brigitte Gabriel claims. “Why can’t we? Are they more committed to their cause than we love our country? Absolutely not.”

Watch here

Nativist warning: ‘Unaccompanied Aliens!’ coming to your neighborhood

Wednesday, June 25,2014  |  Nativism Watch

In a June 19 blog post, Californians for Population Stabilization (CAPS) Senior Writing Fellow Joe Guzzardi warned readers that government officials addressing the ongoing humanitarian crisis at the southern border will adversely affect them – no matter where they live. The blog post, titled “Coming Soon to a Neighborhood Near You: Unaccompanied Aliens!” concludes:

“To readers who have empty buildings or abandoned apartments in your communities, beware. Look out for suspicious-looking feds canvassing your neighborhood. Even if you live thousands of miles from the border, [Health and Human Services] will find you, and whether you like it or not, relocate the migrants among you.”

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Tancredo defeat a (small) step forward

Wednesday, June 25, 2014  |  Nativism Watch

Yesterday in a crowded Colorado Republican primary, establishment candidate Bob Beauprez beat anti-immigrant extremist Tom Tancredo, and in so doing became the GOP candidate for governor. Tancredo, a former Colorado representative to the US Congress, had been doing well in the polls, and beat his rivals in fundraising. But when the critical day arrived, and with hundreds of thousands dollars from his own pocket, Beauprez pulled through. Tancredo conceded just before 8pm last night.

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Image source: Matt Bors/In These Times

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