While most Americans view illegal aliens as uninvited law-breakers who have jumped to the front of the line to take American jobs and place an unwanted burden on American social services, much of the mainstream media, with the support of liberal elites and the business-first Republican lobby, continue to paint illegal aliens as noble, sympathetic victims of the fascist Trump regime who strive only to put bread on the table and whose illegal entry and employment, far from having inconvenienced anyone, have rather expanded the economic pie, making us all better off.
In this narrative — which is reinforced daily by a drumbeat of horror stories of mothers and fathers being ripped from their children’s arms by Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents — the rose-colored lens through which illegal aliens and their protectors are viewed contrasts with the black lens used for viewing President Trump, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, and especially ICE itself.
In many stories the comparison of ICE to Nazis, storm troopers, Gestapo and brown shirts is implicit. Sometimes though, as in a recent treacly and almost comically sanctimonious CNN article describing a "safe house" for illegal aliens in "suburban California," all the dots from Los Angeles to Auschwitz are neatly connected.
The safe house in this case is an apartment that shelters an illegal alien mother (unnamed) and her two daughters that are on the run from ICE. The husband of the family was recently deported for two counts of illegal reentry (a felony) and the mother and daughters then abandoned their home and began living in shopping malls. It is not stated why the mother considered herself an imminent target of immigration enforcement, but the anguish of her situation is palpable.
"She begged friends for couches. The three of them spent hours, day after day, in malls, trying to figure out where they could sleep next. The mother, who trained in culinary school, was feeding fast food meals to her daughters."
The apartment where they eventually found a safe haven was leased on their behalf by an unnamed "Jewish woman" from a home of "much privilege" who became involved through an "interfaith rapid response network of churches, synagogues and mosques." The network and its safe houses, at any one time, shelter "dozens" of illegal aliens who are running from ICE.
According to the article, for the woman, the link from the present to the history of World War II is strong:
"I grew up in the time where the Holocaust was not so far behind me," says the woman. "There was always that awareness, as a Jew, that it's possible to be kicked out of a country where people thought they were home. And many of those people didn't make it"
Now anybody who has read "Schindler’s List," particularly anyone of Jewish descent, can be forgiven for leaping at any chance to play the heroic "righteous gentile." "First they came for the illegal aliens and I did not speak out."
It’s the stuff of an invigorating fantasy. And this Jewish woman of "much privilege" doesn’t even need to actually live under the same roof with the illegal aliens. She just has to sign the checks, visit the safe house and hold hands with the woman she would normally be instructing to pick up the groceries and vacuum the living room floor.
And fantasies are such that the weak-minded can give themselves an emotional payoff even while ignoring certain logical inconsistencies, such as that the Jews were not "kicked out of a country where [they] thought they were home." Rather, they were taken away and exterminated. It is a pathetic soul indeed that gets off on the idea that they are saving someone from the gas chamber when in fact they are only saving them from having to give their children Big Macs and fries for dinner.
Worse than that, however, for anyone — especially a Jew — to identify Trump as Hitler and ICE as the Gestapo for the sake of their own psychodrama is to demean the actual evil of the Holocaust and the meaning of those millions of lost souls — something that actually deserves to be held sacred.
ICE is pursuing its constitutional duty to locate aliens who have unlawfully entered or remained in our country and to remove them as efficiently as possible. To the legions of "less privileged" supporters who elected Donald Trump, the men and women of ICE who suit up and risk their lives every day are not Nazis. They are heroes.
Michael Stopa podcasts with Todd Feinburg every week at the Harvard Lunch Club Political podcast, HarvardLunchClub.com. Stopa is a lifelong Republican who ran for U.S. Congress twice in Massachusetts. He was a delegate for Donald Trump at the Republican National Convention in 2016. In real life, he is a nanophysicist who has taught graduate chemistry at MIT and directed a computational nanoscience research program at Harvard. He is the proud father of four beautiful children, two of whom are in college and draining his wallet. To read more of his reports — Click Here Now.
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