“No borders, no walls, sanctuary for all!” “No ban. No wall. No borders at all.” Those are slogans of the Democratic Socialists of America. You can watch videos on the organization’s website and Facebook pages in which the DSA agitators are chanting the slogans as they invade a Washington, D.C.-area restaurant to harass Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen while she is eating dinner, or as they invade and block federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) offices. The Democratic Socialists of America, which for decades had been merely a festering carbuncle on the extreme left of the Democratic Party, now has spread its infection throughout the entire party structure.
Following the election of Donald Trump in 2016, the DSA has enjoyed spectacular growth, recruiting legions of outraged Berniecrats from the failed Bernie Sanders campaign, as well as hordes of “Resistance” militants from the Hillary camp. The DSA, reportedly, has mushroomed from 7,000 members and 15 local chapters in 2000 to 44,000 members and hundreds of chapters in 2018. It has seized the open borders/no borders cause, which until very recently was only seriously proposed by such elements of the extreme Left as the Communist Party USA, the Revolutionary Communist Party, and La Raza (The Race), the ultra-radical Mexican irredentist group that seeks to reclaim the American southwest as “Aztlan” or “Mexifornia.”
The current campaign to do away with our borders is centered on the frenzied effort to “Abolish ICE!” Democratic politicians and candidates nationwide have jumped on this bandwagon, apparently convinced that this will be a winning strategy for the November elections.
But for the issue to be an electoral game-winner, they have to convince the majority of Americans that they are correct. And to convince the majority they are correct, they have to overcome the obvious implications, as was noted by commentator Glen C. Simmons: If you defeat border security, then you defeat national security. If you defeat national security, you defeat peace, justice, and security — and the American dreams of equal treatment and freedom can no longer exist.
To that we add that “no borders” equals “no nation,” which equals “world government” — and centralized governments have never, ever, offered the opportunities to the common man for wealth and personal freedom that America has offered.
But Democrats have been getting on the no-border locomotive because they are under the impression that the electorate will then support them. Several high-profile, media-driven events have aided this perception.
First and foremost has been the months-long furor orchestrated by the abolish-the-borders agitators and their media enablers over the Trump administration’s “separation of children from parents” policy. It made no difference to the propagandists that the Trump administration’s “abuses” in this regard entailed arrest and incarceration procedures that were little different from those employed during the Obama administration. No similar rent-a-mob action and orchestrated media coverage were directed at Obama on this issue, of course; all the organized outrage has been reserved for Trump and the Republicans.
The second event came on June 26 with the stunning upset victory in the Democratic primary for New York’s 14th Congressional District. Unknown “community activist” Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez toppled longtime incumbent Representative Joe Crowley, chairman of the House Democratic Caucus and one of the most powerful Democrats in Washington. Many had proposed him as a likely replacement for Nancy Pelosi as House minority leader, and (they hoped) House speaker, should the Democrats retake the House. Typical of New York City Democratic pols, Representative Crowley hewed to the left, earning an abysmal 20-percent voting record in the current Congress in this magazine’s Freedom Index. But Crowley was not left enough for the DSA, of which Ocasio-Cortez is a member. Her DSA comrades swarmed into the streets of Queens and The Bronx to knock on doors and hand out her campaign literature. The Deep State media, which has gone overboard gushing about her “populist” campaign, has ignored her DSA and communist support, while hyping her telegenic “star quality” as a “millennial activist” and a “Latina progressive.”
Since the 14th District is overwhelmingly Democratic, Ocasio-Cortez is now safely assured of winning in November. She has wasted no time in making the No Borders/Abolish ICE theme one of her signature campaign issues. In fact, the day before the primary vote, she was down on the U.S.-Mexico border protesting the Trump administration’s immigration/border policies. Appearing on the far-left Democracy Now! television program the day after her primary triumph, she called for a new militancy, urging activists to “mobilize” and “occupy” all ICE offices, airports, and the whole border, as a means of resistance to the “rising fascism” of the Trump era. “Our nation is in a moral crisis,” said Ocasio-Cortez, and “the moral character of the United States is at stake.” Hence, she says, “We have to have a rapid response.… We have to occupy all of it. We need to occupy every airport. We need to occupy every border. We need to occupy every ICE office.”
OK, you say, but Ocasio-Cortez and her cheering section are a tiny, noisy coterie of hard-left overwrought subordinates who have hijacked a small part of the Democratic Party; they don’t represent the majority of registered Democrats. Au contraire! The party’s leadership says otherwise. Following her surprise victory, Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez joined the hosanna choir proclaiming Ocasio-Cortez to be “the future of the Democrat party.” (Emphasis added.) Representative Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), who is the deputy chair of the DNC and formerly served as chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, is also on board the bandwagon. Ellison, a Marxist Muslim and one of the most radical members of Congress, says that not allowing foreign people to enter the United States at will is “an injustice.” At a May Day parade in Minneapolis this year, he wore a T-shirt emblazoned with the slogan, “Yo no creo en fronteras,” which translates from Spanish into “I don’t believe in borders.”
Following the Ocasio-Cortez upset, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, and other Democrats rallied behind the “Abolish ICE” banner. Actress Cynthia Nixon (Sex and the City), running a hard-left insurgent campaign to replace liberal-left New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, denounced ICE as “a terrorist organization.” On July 12 Representative Mark Pocan (D-Wis.) introduced a bill, H.R. 6361, in the House of Representatives to abolish ICE. Eight House Democrats have signed on as cosponsors: Pramila Jayapal and Adam Smith of Washington; Adriano Espaillat, José Serrano, Nydia Velázquez, and Yvette Clarke, all from New York; Earl Blumenauer of Oregon; and James McGovern of Massachusetts.
The third epic event that launched the Democratic stampede into the open-borders corral was a political stunt staged by communist agitators on Independence Day. While thousands of Americans and foreign visitors journeyed to Liberty Island on July 4 to see the Statue of Liberty, Therese Patricia Okoumou and members of the Revolutionary Communist Party and Rise & Resist went there to wreck the sightseers’ holiday plans — and to send a message. While her comrades unfurled an “Abolish ICE” banner, Okoumou, a hard-left activist from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, climbed up the pedestal and nestled into a fold of Lady Liberty’s green, copper-covered robe.
In an instant, the unknown activist became Therese Patricia Okoumou the global folk hero, catapulted to stardom by glowing saturation coverage from both the liberal-left “mainstream” media and “progressive” social-media platforms. A Google search currently yields more than 173,000 entries for her, including thousands of news stories, many of which were top-of-the-fold, front-page articles with huge photos and prominent top-of-the-hour broadcast leads. When Okoumou was arraigned in federal court on July 5 to face charges of disorderly conduct, trespassing, and interference with government agency functions, she came as a rock star, pleading not guilty, and blowing kisses to a courtroom packed with worshipful fans who cheered her and called out “Patricia, we love you!”
It did not matter to the adoring media mob that Okoumou had spoiled what for many July 4 visitors was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to visit the Statue of Liberty. Nor did it matter to them that her propaganda stunt had posed a “substantial danger” to the lives of the police rescue team. (According to NYPD Emergency Service Unit Detective Brian Glacken, Okoumou initially threatened to push them off the statue as they climbed up to retrieve her. That’s more than a 50-foot drop onto concrete. Yep, that’s pretty serious; deadly serious.) Nor did the press gaggles see fit to mention Okoumou’s previous run-ins with the law, her history of squabbles and lawsuits with employers and neighbors, or her ties to the Revolutionary Communist Party (RCP), a violent Maoist sect that openly preaches the virtues of, and the need to recreate, Communist China’s murderous Cultural Revolution here in America. Even when a few so-called journalists interviewed fellow protester Jay W. Walker (who refers to himself as Okoumou’s “comrade”), they somehow invariably failed to mention that he is a nationally known, high-level RCP agitator/spokesman. All of these facts were easily accessible to the media mavens who swarmed all over the Okoumou story. But obviously, mentioning any of these facts would have tainted the adulatory narrative they were committed to weaving about her and her pristine-pure “cause.”
Contrast this media treatment with that which invariably greets any group of citizens that ever demonstrates in favor of border enforcement. If not totally ignored, the pro-border folks can rest assured that some industrious media sleuth will dig until he finds that (eureka!) one of the demonstrator’s great uncle’s brother-in-law had a cousin who named her son’s dog “Jeb,” after Confederate general J.E.B. Stuart, thus proving that the demonstrators clearly are xenophobic, KKK racists.
Although many additional events and developments have contributed to the current leftward rush by the Democrats into the arms of the open-borders lobby, these closely bunched, signal phenomena have convinced many that the time is ripe to take this fringe issue mainstream. In the calculus of many Democrat politicos, now is the time to come out of the no-borders closet and openly embrace and proclaim what they have previously advanced under safer, more acceptable labels, such as “comprehensive immigration reform,” a “path to citizenship,” etc.
Bordering on Insanity
Have we really come to the point where the American people will accept the idea that our borders should not exist, that ICE and the Border Patrol should be done away with, and that anyone who wishes to migrate here should be able to do so without restriction? The election of Donald Trump would argue otherwise. After all, building “The Wall” and getting tough on migration/immigration were central planks in his winning campaign. And they energized his base, brought many blue-collar Democrats into his camp, and undoubtedly gave him his margin of victory in 2016. Recent opinion polls also show that most Americans are not supporting the “no borders” nonsense. The latest Harvard-Harris Poll (June 2018), for instance, shows that swing voters are overwhelmingly opposed to proposals to decrease, let alone end, immigration enforcement. Almost three-quarters (73 percent) of swing voters oppose abolishing ICE. The survey reveals that 73 percent of Independents, 59 percent of Democrats, 78 percent of Republicans, 63 percent of Blacks, 50 percent of Hispanics, 68 percent of men, and 70 percent of women oppose disbanding the agency. Even 59 percent of voters who identified as having voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016 opposed the idea. The same Harvard-Harris Poll found that most voters (70 percent) also support stricter immigration enforcement, with the following breakdown: Independents, 69 percent; Democrats, 51 percent; Republicans, 92 percent; blacks, 53 percent; Hispanics, 51 percent; men, 72 percent; and women, 68 percent.
After seeing the results from this and similar polls, the Democratic leadership seems to have realized that they had jumped the gun on this issue. They had lurched too far to the left too soon. So the more sober realists walked back support for Representative Pocan’s bill. They certainly didn’t want a vote on that before the November midterm elections, which could surely dash to bits their hopes for gains in House and Senate seats. What to do? Well, they will continue to do (and to escalate) what they have been doing for decades: replace the uncooperative American voters with imported new ones. The leadership of the Democratic Party recognizes that time and demographics are on their side if they can keep the immigration/migration pipeline flowing full bore. They have known for a long time that their Big Government program doesn’t sell with the American voters, so they are hell-bent on replacing the American voters with new voters who will support their socialist agenda.
Only a few of the Democratic pols say this openly. Representative Luis Gutiérrez (Ill.), for example, told the Chicago Sun-Times in June that he “will be rallying Hispanic voters with an initial … focus on Pennsylvania, Ohio and Florida, with a large Puerto Rican population.” “I am not going to Pennsylvania to recruit back the Trump voters.… I am going to Pennsylvania to create new voters,” Gutiérez said. The blue-collar Democrats who went for Trump — steel workers, coal miners, laborers, factory workers, office workers, farmers, etc. — are being discarded by the Democrats for more compliant voters from Mexico, Latin America, Asia, Africa, and the Middle East.
The foreign-born replacement voters that Gutiérrez and his Democrat compadres have been creating are coming from two sources: legal immigration and illegal migration. Over the past 50 years, the Democrats have dramatically boosted the replacement strategy from both sources — first, by legislatively increasing the immigration quotas from undeveloped countries, beginning with the 1965 Hart-Celler Immigration Act, and second, by thwarting every effort to control our borders, while at the same time providing the huge, irresistible magnet of jobs and welfare benefits — plus the added benefit of amnesty after amnesty rewarding successive waves of illegal border jumpers with legalization.
It is important to pause here to emphasize an important distinction between legal immigration and illegal migration, as even many critics of our out-of-control borders often fall into the rhetorical trap that the liberal-left advocates have laid on this issue. Playing on the “we are a nation of immigrants” theme, the organized Left and its Deep State media allies consciously, assiduously conflate the migrant-immigrant terms. That’s politically expedient for them: Anyone who calls for reducing the legal immigrant flood or boosting border security to stanch the illegal migrant tsunami can be conveniently disposed of as “anti-immigrant” and a racist, xenophobic bigot. Here’s the thing: An “immigrant” is someone who has gone through the legal immigration process (waiting in line, filling out paperwork, vetting, inspections, attestations, paying fees, etc.). An illegal “migrant” (or “illegal alien,” to use a now-forbidden term) on the other hand is someone who has disregarded and violated our immigration laws by entering the country illegally, or by entering the country legally (on student, tourist, business, or temporary worker visas) and then staying here illegally. It is an insult and a disservice to bona fide legal immigrants to conflate them (and the millions who are waiting in line) with illegal migrants who are thumbing their noses at the immigration process.
Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire
At the signing of the Hart-Celler Immigration Bill into law on October 3, 1965, President Lyndon Johnson solemnly declared: “This bill we sign today is not a revolutionary bill. It does not affect the lives of millions. It will not restructure the shape of our daily lives.”
Senator Edward “Ted” Kennedy (D-Mass.), who had shepherded the legislation through Congress (it is often referred to as the Kennedy bill), reassured America: “First, our cities will not be flooded with a million immigrants annually. Under the proposed bill, the present level of immigration remains substantially the same…. Secondly, the ethnic mix of this country will not be upset…. Contrary to the charges in some quarters, [the bill] will not inundate America with immigrants from any one country or area, or the most populated and deprived nations of Africa and Asia…. It will not relax the standards of admission. It will not cause American workers to lose their jobs.”
“The effect of the bill on our population [in numbers] would be quite insignificant,” Representative Emanuel Celler (D-N.Y.), the act’s cosponsor, promised.
What have been the actual results? In 1995, on the 30th anniversary of the Hart-Celler-Kennedy fiasco, the late Otis L. Graham, professor emeritus of history at the University of California at Santa Barbara, noted that “the assurances of the law’s sponsors were untrue. The number of legal immigrants immediately jumped to 400,000, then to 800,000 by 1980, and reached well over 1 million in the early 1990s, when those given amnesty in 1986 and their relatives are added to the total. Illegal immigrants add 300,000 or more annually, many coming to join legally admitted relatives. Total immigration last year was 1.2 million.” And, of course, it has gotten worse in the 20 years since Professor Graham wrote those words. In addition to the continuing escalation of legal immigration and illegal migration from the usual post-1965 sources, we have seen, over the last few years, a huge spike in asylum applications from all over the world, particularly from Muslim countries.
Many conservative critics of Ted Kennedy, LBJ, and Hart-Celler err by referring to the de facto transformation-by-immigration we are experiencing as the “unintended consequences of liberalism,” implying stupidity on the part of the mass immigration advocates. No, the proponents of leftist “immigration reform” programs — from Hart-Celler to DREAMER, DACA, DAPA, and beyond — knew full well that their plans would completely change and transform America. The 1965 Immigration Act coincided with another effort by the same “progressive” forces to vastly expand welfare entitlements, first to existing citizens and then to new immigrants and illegal aliens. The end result would be a massive remake of our country, as more and more people became welfare-dependent.
The plan was laid out in the May 1966 issue of The Nation, by the husband-wife professorial team of Richard Cloward and Frances Fox Piven. Entitled “The Weight of the Poor: A Strategy to End Poverty,” it has become known as the Cloward-Piven Strategy to socialize America. The subtitle for the article, now considered a socialist classic, states, “A mass strategy to recruit the poor onto welfare rolls would create a political crisis that could result in legislation that brings an end to poverty.” Cloward and Piven paid homage in their article to Saul Alinsky and his Marxist cadres at the Industrial Areas Foundation. They made plain that their objects included “outright redistribution of income” and national legislation for “a guaranteed annual income” for all. “It is our purpose,” they said, “to advance a strategy which affords the basis for a convergence of civil rights organizations, militant anti-poverty groups and the poor.” They proposed to build “mass influence” for socialist objectives by recruiting millions into permanent government dependency. Under an expanded welfare plan, “mass influence is cumulative because benefits are continuous,” they argued. “Once eligibility for basic food and rent grants is established, the drain on local resources persists indefinitely,” Cloward and Piven wrote.
With the entitlement mentality deeply and widely entrenched, it is easier to radicalize and mobilize large numbers of activists to push for bigger and more costly programs. This will break local and state budgets, causing a “political crisis” that forces the national government to take over.
The Nation, the oldest socialist publication in the United States, celebrated its 150th anniversary in July 2015 by reprinting the Cloward-Piven “Weight of the Poor” manifesto. In her new introduction to the essay, Frances Fox Piven wrote that by the mid-1960s the “movement” had begun to focus on “the new migrants.” Whereas immigrants in earlier generations faced expulsion if they became a “public charge” during the five-year probationary period following their naturalization, migrants and immigrants today not only face no such consequences (even though the public charge provisions are still on the books), but are enticed and encouraged to go on the public dole.
The data show that the welfare bribe is very effective; immigrants who vote tend to reliably reward the Democrats, who promise them (and deliver to them) the most taxpayer dollars. Together with ACORN (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now), Cloward and Piven helped pass the 1993 Motor Voter Act, which the organized Left has used to register millions of new immigrants and illegal aliens to vote. The radical couple stood behind President Bill Clinton as he signed the legislation at the White House.
Far-left Democratic strategists John Judis and Ruy Teixeira, coauthors of The Emerging Democratic Majority, have been jubilantly predicting for the past two decades that the immigration/migration waves of the post-1965 era are reshaping America in a way that will soon make it impossible for Republicans to get elected. Their gloating is echoed by many other political analysts, activists, and demographers on the left who see this demographic shift as the key to their voter replacement agenda. They see California, where “progressive” Democrats have attained virtually absolute control, as glorious proof of this demographic trend. And they hope to see it replicated across the entire country. In order for that to happen, they have to keep the immigration/migration spigot running full blast.
How Many, How Fast, From Where?
In 2012, the Gallup poll organization found in a global survey that 150 million adults from around the world want to move to the United States. “About 13% of the world’s adults — or more than 640 million people — say they would like to leave their country permanently,” Gallup reported. “Roughly 150 million of them say they would like to move to the U.S. — giving it the undisputed title as the world’s most desired destination for potential migrants.” The massive Gallup undertaking involved interviews with 452,199 adults in 151 countries representing 97 percent of the world’s population. Keep in mind that the 150 million mentioned above represents only the adults who said they want to come here; each of those could be expected to bring several family members besides.
We get some idea of the situation from a National Public Radio program in 2006 celebrating new citizens. NPR interviewed Hannah Ndubisi, who was sponsored by her U.S. citizen son, Samuel. “Everybody in the world — I don’t know if you know this — wants to come to the United States of America,” she said. “All you need to do is go to the embassy, any embassy, and see long, long lines of people who want to come here.” NPR also interviewed new citizen Ali from Sudan. “I have my parents, I have sisters, I have brothers,” Ali told the interviewer. “I’m going to apply for them to come here soon — definitely. I hope they will be here soon.”
Immigration Lunacy & Hypocrisy
With the huge numbers of people who want to come to the United States — often from Third World countries — it should be evident to all Americans that to accommodate them under present conditions in this country would be simply impossible. First, the country is broke and can’t afford the welfare they’d receive. Second, we are at a point in time where “becoming an American” is no longer important to immigrants (it is more important to retain traditional culture and beliefs), and the country is already riven with dissent as each racial and cultural group tries to get its government-issued preferences. Third, the country is many hundreds of billions behind in infrastructure repair, without creating loads of new infrastructure necessary for the influx. And there’s more.
Yet Democrats — and globalists in general — are against borders because it’s “just not right.”
These days, when the topic of border security and immigration comes up, whether on social media or in conversation, one is likely to run into reverential citations from Alex Tabarrok, a professor of economics at George Mason University. Professor Tabarrok is the author of an influential 2015 article in The Atlantic magazine entitled “The Case for Getting Rid of Borders — Completely.” According to Tabarrok, “The argument for open borders is both economic and moral. All people should be free to move about the earth, uncaged by the arbitrary lines known as borders.” He is not the only so-called intellectual who is advancing this anarcho-libertarian argument; radical churchmen are pushing this theme from the pulpit, while teachers and professors drum it into their pupils. However, as Bruce Bawer of PJ Media points out, the assertion not only doesn’t pass the smell test — it stinks — it reflects complete hypocrisy by its proponents. Bawer notes that Professor Tabarrok, who is from Iran, “lives, as it happens, in one of these idyllic Virginia suburbs with wide curvy roads and well-kept lawns.” “It’s clear,” he notes “that Tabarrok enjoys having his own space. On the one hand, I suppose it’s easy for some people living in such neighborhoods to enthuse over open borders, because to them it’s a purely abstract idea.” Professor Tabarrok is not likely to be throwing his doors wide open to receive the migrants. He’s not going to get rid of his own borders. Ditto for George Soros, Facebook billionaire Mark Zuckerberg, Oprah, Cher, and the rest of the pampered, privileged Hollywood glitterati who love to virtue signal on this topic. But don’t expect them to invite any of the world’s teeming masses inside their own gated, guarded, gilded mansions.
However, for us regular folks of the great unwashed, who are not members of the Hollywood, Wall Street, or Silicon Valley elite, the consequences of a continued immigration/migration onslaught will prove to be horrendous — economically, politically, socially, morally, and spiritually. We need look no further than the current desperate plight of Europe to see what our fate will be should we fail to take resolute action now.
Although this article has focused almost exclusively on the fact that the Democratic Party has been the main proponent of open borders, it should be said that their radical agenda would never have gotten as far as it has without the constant betrayal by Republican Party leaders. Presidents George H. W. Bush and George W. Bush, Senator John McCain, Senator Jeff Flake, Senator Mitch McConnell, Representative Paul Ryan, and other GOP leaders have repeatedly squished out or sold out on virtually every important immigration issue over the past half century. While ever playing to the Republican base with border security overtures, they have reliably caved in at the critical moments. President Donald Trump has, by far, come closest to facing up to our dire predicament and actually doing something concrete to reverse our self-destructive course. In this, he deserves our thanks and our unstinting support.
Photo: AP Images
This article originally appeared in the August 20, 2018 print edition of The New American. The New American publishes a print magazine twice a month, covering issues such as politics, money, foreign policy, environment, culture, and technology. To subscribe, click here.