WASHINGTON, DC – On Thursday, the White House will host the “United We Stand” summit, focused on “the corrosive effects of hate-fueled violence on our democracy and public safety.”
In advance of the summit, on a press call held earlier today, advocates and experts highlighted how white nationalist conspiracies and rhetoric about “replacement” and “invasion” have fueled some of the most dangerous examples of hate-fueled violence, as we have seen in recent years in Buffalo, El Paso, Pittsburgh, Charlottesville, and elsewhere. Unfortunately and despite the proven dangers, Republican candidates and elected officials have been mainstreaming these same vile and dehumanizing lies and conspiracies throughout this election cycle, as America’s Voice has tracked.
“On the eve of what I call an open war against migrants and an intentional immigration distorted narrative, our southern border has been infused by racism and white supremacy. On August 3rd, 2019 in El Paso, Texas, a young white man carried out one of the worst terrorist attacks against Latinos and Mexicans in recent history. America is supposed to be a nation of immigrants, and the symbols of our country, the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island are supposed to represent that promised land and a future of hope. But now our southern border, especially Texas, is quite the opposite: it’s a promise of poverty, criminalization, hate, and militarization. At the BNHR we believe that we need to change that narrative and challenge it. We need to create our own successful narrative that is safe for border communities but also that reconstructs the face of immigration, that is why we are building this concept of the New Ellis Island,” said Fernando García, Executive Director of Border Network for Human Rights (BNHR).
“All across the country, Republicans are using fear and scapegoating immigrants as their main tactics to try to win votes. Senate candidates in states with large Latinx and immigrant populations are pushing the dangerous “Great Replacement Theory.” Not to mention far-right Latina candidates like Monica De La Cruz and Mayra Flores who are running for Congress in Texas and relying on the endorsement of many who have pushed this dangerous rhetoric and lies about immigrants,” said Juanita Monsalve, Senior Marketing and Creative Director at United We Dream Action. “As an immigrant myself, I know how dangerous this kind of rhetoric is not just for immigrants, but for people of color as a whole. This rhetoric has real life consequences. We saw this play out earlier this year in the shooting at a grocery store in Buffalo, New York, and in 2019 at a shooting in El Paso, Texas. In both instances the shooters were motivated by, and parroted this anti-immigrant rhetoric.
Republicans are using every opportunity to try to divide us, pitting neighbor against neighbor. But whether you have been living here for decades, or are a new immigrant, everyone has a right to be free. Instead of trying to divide us, politicians should be working to make sure we have a immigration system that treats people with dignity and respect.”
“Five years ago, Americans were horrified as neo-Nazis with torches stormed Charlottesville chanting ‘Jews will not replace us.’ Yet today, the same conspiracy theories have become wholly normalized on the right – fueling a cycle of extremism and violence that threatens communities across this country and our future as a multiracial democracy,” said Amy Spitalnick, Executive Director of Integrity First for America, which successfully sued the organizers of the Unite the Right violence. “Successfully grappling with the crisis of hate-fueled violence requires us to directly confront the mainstreaming of this far-right extremism in our politics and society, and advance comprehensive, evidence-based prevention and accountability.”