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November 12, 2015 3

Anti-Immigrant Activists Make Common Cause With Extremists

In a col­umn this week for the National Review, Mark Kriko­rian, head of the anti-immigrant think tank Cen­ter for Immi­gra­tion Stud­ies, attempted to defend Kansas Sec­re­tary of State Kris Kobach from crit­i­cism by the South­ern Poverty Law Cen­ter and oth­ers for hav­ing attended an anti-immigration event with racist ties by por­tray­ing the event as innocuous.The event, The Social Con­tract Press Writ­ers Work­shop, was held in Wash­ing­ton, DC, in late October.


Mark Kriko­rian

How­ever, the Work­shop does have ties to extrem­ists. To demon­strate this, one need look no fur­ther than one of the key fig­ures behind The Social Con­tract Press itself: Wayne Lut­ton. Lut­ton, the edi­tor of the Press’s main pub­li­ca­tion, The Social Con­tract, for many years has been a promi­nent fig­ure in the white suprema­cist movement.

While not edit­ing The Social Con­tract, Lut­ton sits on the board of the New Cen­tury Foun­da­tion, a white suprema­cist “think tank” run by Jared Tay­lor of Amer­i­can Renais­sance, a white suprema­cist web­site. Both the Foun­da­tion and the web­site pro­mote ideas of alleged racial dif­fer­ences in intel­li­gence, sup­port the notion of a “white iden­tity,” and oppose mul­ti­cul­tur­al­ism and diver­sity. Lut­ton has also spo­ken at Amer­i­can Renais­sance con­fer­ences, as well as con­fer­ences of the bla­tantly white suprema­cist Coun­cil of Con­ser­v­a­tive Cit­i­zens. In addi­tion, Lut­ton has served on the board of the Charles Mar­tel Soci­ety, which pub­lishes the racist and anti-Semitic jour­nal Occi­den­tal Quar­terly.

Attend­ing the Writ­ers Work­shop was not the first time Kobach has turned a blind eye towards the extrem­ist ties of some of his fel­low anti-immigration activists. In 2012, for exam­ple, Kobach par­tic­i­pated in an anti-immigration panel at the Con­ser­v­a­tive Polit­i­cal Action Con­fer­ence along­side Robert Van­der­voort, the head of the anti-immigrant group Pro-English but also the for­mer head of the white suprema­cist Chicagoland Friends of Amer­i­can Renaissance.

Anti-immigrant agi­ta­tors all too fre­quently give a pass to extrem­ists, so long as they share the same anti-immigrant views. Indeed, the fact that Kriko­rian, in his defense of Kobach, neglected to men­tion Lutton’s extrem­ist ties is not surprising—because Kriko­rian turns the same blind eye him­self. Kriko­rian not only spoke at  The Social Con­tract Press Writ­ers Work­shop this year, but in 2013 he also con­tributed an arti­cle to Lutton’s publication.

The real­ity is that Lutton’s Press serves as a bridge between extrem­ists and more osten­si­bly main­stream fig­ures in the anti-immigrant move­ment. The Social Con­tract fre­quently fea­tures white suprema­cists along­side anti-immigrant fig­ures in its pages. Its Writ­ers Work­shop often invites main­stream but prob­lem­atic fig­ures to its events. The Kansas Sec­re­tary of State is one such figure.

Kobach is known for his anti-immigrant views and has drafted some of the harsh­est anti-immigrant laws in the nation. He also has pro­moted the con­cept of self-deportation, the idea that states should put in place poli­cies and prac­tices that make life so dif­fi­cult for undoc­u­mented immi­grants that they will leave the United States “voluntarily.”

Through its jour­nal and con­fer­ences, The Social Con­trast Press tries to main­stream big­otry by fea­tur­ing well-known anti-immigrant fig­ures to give their venues an air of legit­i­macy. But when fig­ures such as Kobach and Kriko­rian lie down with the Press, they only show how immod­er­ate they them­selves are.


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February 5, 2014 0

ProEnglish Attacks Super Bowl Ad Promoting America’s Diversity

The anti-immigrant group Pro­Eng­lish is ask­ing its activists to con­tact Coca-Cola about an ad the cor­po­ra­tion aired dur­ing the Super Bowl depict­ing peo­ple of dif­fer­ent eth­nic­i­ties singing “Amer­ica, the Beau­ti­ful” in a num­ber of dif­fer­ent lan­guages.  Pro­Eng­lish claims the ad “directly under­mined the spirit of national unity ‘Amer­ica, the Beau­ti­ful’ was intended to fos­ter.” The group went one step fur­ther, claim­ing Coke should “pro­mote civic unity, not disunity.”pro-english-liberty-bell-adl

ProEnglish’s attacks on the Coca-Cola Cor­po­ra­tion should be seen in light of its nativist agenda and xeno­pho­bic ori­gins and ties. John Tan­ton, the racist archi­tect of the modern-day anti-immigrant move­ment, founded Pro­Eng­lish in 1994. Tan­ton once wrote, “I’ve come to the point of view that for European-American soci­ety and cul­ture to per­sist requires a European-American major­ity, and a clear one at that.” Tan­ton remains on the Pro­Eng­lish board to this day and though the orga­ni­za­tion is based in DC, it remains a “self-governing project” of Tanton’s Michigan-based umbrella anti-immigrant orga­ni­za­tion, U.S., Inc.

The goals of Pro­Eng­lish are to pass English-only bills at the local and state level as well as to make Eng­lish the offi­cial lan­guage of the United States. These laws are often divi­sive. They limit access to the full range of gov­ern­ment rights and ben­e­fits for immi­grants resid­ing in the United States. These laws also do not include steps to estab­lish pro­grams where immi­grants can learn Eng­lish. ProEnglish’s agenda divides com­mu­ni­ties in the United States over the issue of immigration.

The organization’s staff and activ­i­ties are also prob­lem­atic.  ProEnglish’s exec­u­tive direc­tor, Robert Van­der­voort, 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. Pro­Eng­lish spon­sored a panel at the 2012 CPAC con­fer­ence in Wash­ing­ton, D.C., fea­tur­ing a num­ber of racist speak­ers includ­ing Peter Brimelow, founder of the racist anti-immigrant web­site VDARE and John Der­byshire, a racist for­mer National Review con­trib­u­tor who spoke at the 2013 Amer­i­can Renais­sance con­fer­ence. Later in 2012, Pro­Eng­lish sent a let­ter to House and Sen­ate lead­ers in oppo­si­tion of the issue of Puerto Rican state­hood. A num­ber of racists signed the let­ter includ­ing John Vin­son, a found­ing mem­ber of the League of the South (LOS), a racist neo-Confederate orga­ni­za­tion. Vin­son was cred­ited with draft­ing the “Kin­ism State­ment,” a set of guid­ing prin­ci­ples for a mod­ern white suprema­cist inter­pre­ta­tion of Chris­tian­ity called “Kinism.”

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