“The interests of black Americans are clear: No amnesty, no guest workers, enforce the immigration laws.” So said T. Willard Fair, President and CEO of the Urban League of Greater Miami, past Chairman of the Florida State Board of Education, and Board member of the Center for Immigration Studies.
Was Fair reacting to the current border crisis? No.
He was speaking to a Congressional Committee seven years ago on the impact of mass immigration policies on black communities: “scholars estimate that immigration is the reason for one-third of the drop in employment among black men, and even some of the increase in incarceration."
He posed questions as valid today as then: Which is more likely to help an ex-convict or recovering addict get hired at an entry-level job and start the climb back to a decent life — amnesty and more immigration, or enforcement and less immigration?
Which is more likely to persuade a teenager in the inner city to reject the lure of gang life and instead stick with honest employment — amnesty and more immigration, or enforcement and less immigration?
Historically, Fair is not alone in his concern over the impact of immigration on black Americans.
Titans of black history such as Frederick Douglass, Booker T. Washington, and A. Phillip Randolph all raised concerns.
As Douglass, the black journalist and former slave wrote in 1853: “The old avocations, by which colored men obtained a livelihood, are rapidly, unceasingly and inevitably passing into other hands . . . Every hour sees the black man elbowed out of employment by some newly arrived emigrant, whose hunger and whose color are thought to give him a better title to the place. ”
Fair’s and Douglass’ comments are particularly appropriate in light of the current border crisis due in no small measure to the “Y’all come” message of Obama’s immigration policies.
As black writer Patricia L. Dickson wrote last month in American Thinker: “It appears that President Obama and the Democrat Party are willing to throw Black Americans overboard in exchange for amnesty. In a quest to maintain power, the Democrats have discovered that there are not enough black American voters to keep them in office.”
Forward thinking blacks have been sounding the alarm that blacks are and will be the real losers, not only in the this border crisis, but in the immigration battles ahead.
Last year, several black leaders, including Fair, warned Congress of the harm that the “Gang of Eight” immigration bill would inflict upon black workers: “We are asking that you oppose Senate Bill S.744 because of the dramatic effect it will have on the availability of employment for African American workers.”
Frank Morris, former executive director of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, said: “Increasing immigration levels . . . will flood labor markets with millions more people, leading to higher unemployment, more poverty, and a lower standard of living for many in the black community.”
More recently, in an eight page May letter May 20 to the Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, U.S. Civil Rights Commissioner Peter Kirsanow, a black Republican, said in part: “it is likely that if illegal immigrants are granted legal status, more people will come to America illegally and will further crowd African-American men (and other low-skilled men and women) out of the workforce . . . Giving amnesty to illegal immigrants would only exacerbate this problem facing low-skilled men, who are disproportionately African-American.”
As usual, the Congressional Black Caucus and NAACP are leading from behind and on the wrong side — against the interests of their own constituents.
The Caucus is in favor of amnesty for illegals.
Why? Political self-preservation.
Most of them come from majority-black districts which are becoming increasingly Hispanic putting their futures at risk — just ask Congressman Charles Rangel, D-N.Y., who almost lost his seat to a Hispanic.
As to the NAACP, its former president, Benjamin Todd Jealous, was the keynote speaker at the pro-amnesty rally in Washington, D.C. last year. This is the same Jealous who admitted on "Meet the Press" that black Americans “are doing far worse” than when President Obama first took office.
It’s no wonder that Hispanics have taken the place of blacks as the most coveted — and politically respected — of all minority groups. While blacks are locked at the hip to the Democratic Party and are it’s most loyal voting block — for which they got nothing from Obama — Hispanics are willing to take a look at both sides and ask “what do we get in return”?
They can boast of two governors, both Republican; three U.S. Senators, two of whom are Republican and scores of state legislators many of whom are Republicans — and whom Hispanics respect. Blacks have only one Republican U.S. Senator — Tim Scott of South Carolina — whom black leaders disrespect at every opportunity.
So it is understandable that Hispanics are more politically valued than blacks — even by the black president — just look at which constituencies he caters to!
The caucus, NAACP and others in the black Democratic liberal establishment will not heed the warnings of Fair, Douglas, Commissioner Kirsanow and others and look out for their constituents’ interests.
To again quote Ms. Dickinson: “If black Americans are willing to continue to support the president to their own detriment, their psychosis is worse than I thought.”
Clarence V. McKee is president of McKee Communications, Inc., a government, political, and media relations consulting firm in Florida. He held several positions in the Reagan administration as well as in the Reagan presidential campaigns and has appeared on many national and local media outlets. Read more reports from Clarence V. McKee — Click Here Now.
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