Update - March 17, 10:11 pm:

A March 17 Huffington Post article: How The Trump Campaign Could Evolve Into Organized Violence, In 6 Steps, states:

"Right now, most of the Trump rally violence, even against protesters, has been disproportionately directed against people of color.

Globally, the pattern is often the same: Immigrants are targeted first, then other minorities. Finally, the violence turns directly against whatever communist, socialist, conservative, liberal or progressive opposition exists.

The Huffpost article continues:

"The more Trump succeeds politically, the more brazen he and his supporters are likely to become, said Jeffrey Herf, a historian of fascism at the University of Maryland.

'If Trump succeeds against all expectations in getting the Republican nomination, and against even greater expectations, wins the presidency, he will not become a more reasonable man.' Herf said. 'it is the kind of thing that feeds his ego and his sense of being absolutely right. It is the kind of thing that could lead to midnight raids to deport Mexicans en masse.'"

The above is not simply speculation. Midnight raids to carry out mass deportation of 12 million Mexican and other minority immigrants are something that Trump has already promised to carry out if he is elected. What reason is there to think that he would not keep his word?

My original post follows:

This post will continue and update my January 8 comment dealing with the connection between anti-immigrant rhetoric and violence or hate crimes. This topic is even more timely now in view of the cancellation of a Trump rally in Chicago on March 11 because of the likelihood that it would have led to violent clashes between supporters of Donald Trump, who has now become America's leading inciter of animosity against immigrant groups such as Latinos, Muslims and, most recently, even foreign skilled and professional workers (see my March 11 post). and protesters against him.

The cancellation of a political rally by a major party's leading presidential candidate due to the threat of violence is unprecedented in America. It raises questions about whether Trump's now well documented actions in inciting his own supporters to violence against real or perceived protesters at his rallies bears a resemblance to violence at political rallies that took place in Germany and Italy during the 1920's by authoritarian parties which later on seized power in those countries, using as a symbol (at least in Italy), the ancient Roman icon of rods bundled together and known in Latin as faxces.

In my January 8 comment, I introduced an August 24, 2015 article by Jonathan Greenblatt, National Director and CEO of the Anti-Defamation League, which was established over 100 years ago to fight prejudice against Jewish immigrants and has since been in the forefront of combating bigotry against all minorities. In his article When Hateful Speech Leads to Hate Crimes: Taking Bigotry Out of the Immigration Debate, Greenblatt makes the following comment:'

"The words used on the campaign trail, on the floors of Congress, in the news, and in all of our living rooms have consequences. They directly impact our ability to sustain a society that ensures dignity and equality for all. Bigoted words and words laced with prejudice are building blocks for the pyramid of hate."

Greenblatt continues:

"Biased behaviors build on one another, becoming ever more threatening and dangerous toward the top. At the base is bias, which includes stereotyping and insensitive remarks. It sets the foundation for a second, more complex and more damaging layer: individual acts of prejudice, including bullying, slurs and dehumanization."


In the above quote, Greenblatt is referring to the use of inflammatory and degrading anti-immigrant terms which have been used by many of our politicians and commentators, such as "illegal aliens", "illegals" and "anchor babies". As Greenblatt points out, these dehumanizing terms, which once used to be rejected by mainstream media, have now resurged.

He does not mention Donald Trump and his rhetoric against Mexican immigrants as "criminals" and "rapists", and Greenblatt's article predates Trump's call for a ban on all Muslim immigrants and his recent charges that a large number of Muslims everywhere are consumed with "hate" against America, groundless accusations which take the potential for anti-immigrant violence and hate crimes to an entirely new, and dangerous, level.

Greenblatt also states that the ADL has announced a new initiative to strengthen hate crimes laws around the country, as will be discussed in more detail in Part 3 of these comments. At the same time, Donald Trump has stated that he wants to weaken America's laws against torture, as reported in my recent post on this topic.

Which kind of America are we moving toward - one which offers stronger legal protections from hate crimes against immigrant minorities, or one which would weaken the laws protecting immigrant minorities from torture or, possibly, other forms of violence used against them?

Part 3 of this series will look at the status of hate crimes laws in America, including the definition of what is a hate crime. It will also look at the question whether there are any legal prohibitions against incitement to committing a hate crime, as in the case of a 78-year old white Trump supporter who knocked down a black protester at a Trump rally and then, on nationwide television, threatened to kill the protester if he ever met him again.
Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. For more than 35 years, he has been helping mainly skilled and professional immigrants from many parts of the world and diverse ethnic or religious backgrounds obtain work visas and green cards.

Roger's email address is algaselex@gmail.com