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July 9, 2014 9

Michigan Anti-Immigrant Activist Behind Central American Child Protest

tamyra-murray-immigration

Tamyra Mur­ray

On Mon­day, July 7, anti-immigrant activists took to the streets in the small town of Vas­sar, Michi­gan, to protest the pro­posal to trans­fer chil­dren and moth­ers flee­ing vio­lence in Cen­tral Amer­ica to their town. The protest resem­bled the ones in Mur­ri­eta, Cal­i­for­nia, which received national atten­tion due to the ugly cli­mate and extreme rhetoric gen­er­ated by the protesters.

The orga­nizer of the protest in Vas­sar was Tamyra Mur­ray, a long-time anti-immigrant activist with numer­ous extreme anti-immigrant ties. Mur­ray announced her plans to hold a protest on her Face­book page and encour­aged activists to join her. Her protest announce­ment also con­tained the same extreme anti-immigrant rhetoric voiced by Patrice Lynes, the orga­nizer of the Mur­ri­eta protests. Mur­ray wrote, “What dis­eases are being imported into the US that have already been erad­i­cated here? Many of these ‘chil­dren’ belong to dan­ger­ous gangs and drug cartels.”

Before the protest, Mur­ray announced that anti-immigrant activists from across the state of Michi­gan would be in atten­dance. The same was the case in Mur­ri­eta, where a num­ber of anti-immigrant activists flocked to join the protests from all over South­ern California.

Mur­ray is a state advi­sor for the extreme anti-immigrant group Fed­er­a­tion for Amer­i­can Immi­gra­tion Reform (FAIR). She is a reg­u­lar attendee at FAIR’s annual “Hold Their Feet to the Fire” event in Wash­ing­ton, D.C. In 2011, Mur­ray spoke at an anti-immigrant “Pro­tect Amer­i­can Jobs Rally” in her home state of Michi­gan. Anti-immigrant politi­cians with ties to FAIR also spoke at the event. In Sep­tem­ber 2013, Mur­ray, along with FAIR field rep­re­sen­ta­tive Robert Naj­mul­ski, was listed as a speaker at a “Cit­i­zens Ris­ing Against Ille­gal Immi­gra­tion” event in Chester, Ohio.

Mur­ray is also a liaison/public speaker for U.S., Inc., a Michigan-based extreme anti-immigrant umbrella orga­ni­za­tion founded by racist John Tan­ton, the founder of the modern-day anti-immigrant move­ment. Tan­ton also founded FAIR in 1979. U.S., Inc. runs a num­ber of “projects” includ­ing Tanton’s pub­lish­ing house, the Social Con­tract Press, which pub­lishes racist books, such as Jean Raspail’s Camp of the Saints, and sells books by racists such as Sam Fran­cis, Wayne Lut­ton and Peter Brimelow.

Despite efforts by the anti-immigrant move­ment to por­tray the protests in Michi­gan and Cal­i­for­nia as spon­ta­neous responses by res­i­dents, the evi­dence sug­gests that in both cases, long­time anti-immigrant activists with close ties to the move­ment played a major role in both events.

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June 30, 2014 1

Children Suffering On Southern Border Fodder For Anti-Immigrant Voices

The plight of Cen­tral Amer­i­can chil­dren flee­ing vio­lence is being used as yet another excuse for inac­tion on humane and sen­si­ble immi­gra­tion reform that Amer­i­cans crave. border-detention-center-humanitarian

While Pres­i­dent Obama responded strongly to the sit­u­a­tion by send­ing a mes­sage to fam­i­lies in Cen­tral Amer­ica not to risk send­ing their chil­dren to the United States,  anti-immigrant groups and the politi­cians that fol­low their cues are using this human­i­tar­ian cri­sis to argue that the bor­der is out of con­trol and that sen­si­ble reform should be delayed.  

The anti-immigrant move­ment and some right wing media dis­miss the high mur­der rates, gang vio­lence, and poverty that drive these migrants to the United States and attempt to use this dire human­i­tar­ian sit­u­a­tion to cre­ate a cli­mate of fear around immigration.

The uptick in extreme anti-immigrant rhetoric around the issue has focused on por­tray­ing immi­grants as a pub­lic health haz­ard. On June 20, William Gheen of the extreme anti-immigrant group Amer­i­cans for Legal Immi­gra­tion PAC (ALI-PAC) claimed that the chil­dren are com­ing to the U.S. “in dis­ease and gang infested hoards.”  D.A. King of the Georgia-based anti-immigrant group Dustin Inman Soci­ety (DIS) asserted on June 9 that refugees are “swarm­ing the bor­der and bring­ing dis­ease.” On June 12, James Kirk­patrick, an author for the extreme anti-immigrant web­site VDARE, recently voiced his con­cerns about chil­dren car­ry­ing what he called a “diverse mix of excit­ing mul­ti­cul­tural diseases.”

Many right-wing and far-right media out­lets are also echo­ing the rhetoric of anti-immigrant groups. A June 22 arti­cle pub­lished on the far-right web­site News With Views bemoaned the “hordes of une­d­u­cated, unskilled and too many dis­ease rid­den com­ing from El Sal­vador, Guatemala and Nicaragua.” Using the metaphors “flood” and “tidal wave” to talk about the chil­dren, Dr. Eliz­a­beth Lee Vliet penned an arti­cle in the conspiracy-orientated right-wing online news­pa­per World Net Daily  on June 17 warn­ing that the chil­dren are car­ry­ing “dis­eases the U.S. had con­trolled or vir­tu­ally erad­i­cated: tuber­cu­lo­sis (TB), Cha­gas dis­ease, dengue fever, hepati­tis, malaria, measles, plus more.”

Aside from the dis­ease rhetoric, anti-immigrant and right-wing media out­lets are also espous­ing other extreme themes. Mack­u­bin Thomas Owens, an author for National Review Online (NRO), penned an arti­cle for the pub­li­ca­tion on June 13 titled, “Camp of the Saints, 2014 Style?” In the arti­cle, Owens called for his audi­ence to read the bla­tantly racist French novel Camp of the Saints in the wake of the human­i­tar­ian issue. Camp of the Saints tells the story of Indian immi­grants com­ing to France by boat and tak­ing over the coun­try by vio­lent means.

This mes­sage is not only big­oted and dehu­man­iz­ing to these chil­dren; it dis­tracts from the crit­i­cal fact that the real solu­tion to this human­i­tar­ian cri­sis is to reform our bro­ken sys­tem.  Only a func­tion­ing immi­gra­tion sys­tem can truly fos­ter orderly migra­tion and allow author­i­ties to deter­mine which chil­dren are eli­gi­ble to come to or remain in the U.S. and which are not.

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February 21, 2013 3

Anti-Immigrant Umbrella Group U.S., Inc.’s New Website Reveals Organization’s Influence

The anti-immigrant umbrella orga­ni­za­tion, U.S., Inc., founded and run by racist John Tan­ton, the pri­mary archi­tect of the modern-day anti-immigrant move­ment, recently estab­lished a web­site for the first time in its 31-year his­tory. The web­site pro­vides fur­ther insight into how the orga­ni­za­tion works and the “projects” it runs.

In an in-depth inter­view about found­ing the anti-immigrant move­ment, Tan­ton dis­cussed why he cre­ated U.S., Inc.: Since I had been involved over the years in start­ing a num­ber of orga­ni­za­tions, each of them a sep­a­rate group which required sep­a­rate account­ing and sep­a­rate fil­ings with the IRS, I got the idea in about 1979 of set­ting up an umbrella foun­da­tion, out of which a num­ber of projects could be run.”

Many of these “projects” founded or nur­tured by Tan­ton devel­oped into some of the lead­ing anti-immigrant groups in the coun­try today, the most notable exam­ple being Num­ber­sUSA. NumbersUSA’s founder Roy Beck worked for Tan­ton for years as the Wash­ing­ton edi­tor of Tanton’s anti-immigrant jour­nal The Social Con­tract (TSC). Beck founded Num­ber­sUSA in 1996/1997 and the group remained under U.S. Inc.’s umbrella until 2002, when it broke off and became an inde­pen­dent organization.

Another “project” for­merly under the U.S., Inc. umbrella was U.S. Eng­lish, a group devoted to mak­ing Eng­lish the offi­cial lan­guage of the United States. Tan­ton resigned as chair­man from U.S. Eng­lish after a news­pa­per revealed a racially charged memo penned by Tan­ton ask­ing ques­tions like “will blacks be able to improve (or even main­tain) their posi­tion on the face of the Latin onslaught?” and “will Latin Amer­i­can migrants bring with them the tra­di­tion of the mor­dida (bribe)?”

U.S., Inc.’s web­site high­lights its cur­rent “projects,” includ­ing Tanton’s pub­lish­ing house, the Social Con­tract Press, which pub­lishes racist books, such as Jean Raspail’s Camp of the Saints, and sells books by racists such as Sam Fran­cis, Wayne Lut­ton and Peter Brimelow.  Another U.S., Inc. project is the anti-immigrant group Pro­Eng­lish. Bob Van­der­voort, ProEnglish’s exec­u­tive direc­tor, is report­edly the for­mer head of the white suprema­cist group Chicagoland Friends of Amer­i­can Renais­sance, a local chap­ter of the white suprema­cist orga­ni­za­tion Amer­i­can Renais­sance.

In addi­tion, U.S., Inc.’s web­site reveals the organization’s finan­cial doc­u­ments. Each year, it grants funds to anti-immigrant orga­ni­za­tions around the coun­try. Accord­ing to its finan­cial state­ments, U.S., Inc. pro­vided fund­ing for Florid­i­ans for Immi­gra­tion Enforce­ment, Cal­i­for­ni­ans for Pop­u­la­tion Sta­bi­liza­tion and 9/11 Fam­i­lies for a Secure Amer­ica in 2011.

U.S. Inc.’s new site pro­vides fur­ther evi­dence of its impor­tance to the anti-immigrant move­ment. In the past, the umbrella orga­ni­za­tion devel­oped bour­geon­ing anti-immigrant groups and helped them get on their feet; today it con­tin­ues to fund and sup­port well-established anti-immigrant groups around the country.

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