An award-winning immigration lawyer, Susan J. Cohen, who has a distinguished record of supporting immigrant rights, has written an opinion piece in The Hill which condemns an immigration proposal put forward by Texas governor Greg Abbott and a number of other GOP governors as "punitive", "harmful" and "mean-spirited". And she is certainly right. See:

She points out that using Title 42 to expel immigrants at the US-Mexican border on what are essentially bogus public health grounds is unjustified. She is also right in calling the Trump initiated "Remain in Mexico" policy (cynically given the Orwellian name "Migrant Protection Protocols"), which the GOP governors also support, "heartless" and "horrific".

But what is the motivation for supporting such patently cruel and inhuman, not to mention illegal border policies, as well as mass immigration detention, which Cohen also justly

The answer is obvious. It is that many of today's Republican political leaders, following the lead of Donald Trump, America's Racist-in-Chief, who recently proclaimed that allowing desperate Haitian refugees into the US to pursue asylum claims in accordance with international law and human rights standards would be a "death wish" for America, are openly appealing to white supremacist voters - evan as Texas and other Republican states manipulate their voting laws and gerrymander their Congressional districts to reduce the electoral power of nonwhite US citizens in every way possible. See, The Guardian (September 5):

Partisan gerrymandering has empowered a hard-right turn in Texas

Therefore it is not enough just to point out that the Republican anti-immigrant agenda is "punitive", "harmful" or "mean-spirited" Stripping legal and human rights away from nonwhite immigrants as been at the heart of the Republican agenda for alt least the past 30 years, if not much longer than that, long before Donald Trump appeared on the US political scene.

Zoltan Hajnal writes as follows in a Daedalus Magazine (Spring, 2021) article entitled:

Immigration & the Origins of White Backlash

"The success of Donald Trump's anti-immigrant campaign surprised many. But I show that it is actually a continuation of a long-standing Republican strategy that has targeted immigrants and minorities for over five decades."

(Sorry, I don't not have a link to this article. Please use Google to access.)

1,900 years ago, the 2nd century AD Roman Emperor and philosopher Marcus Aurelius wrote as follows in his world-famous Meditations:

"Do justice and speak the truth with all your heart."

(Original Greek: Ex holes tes psuches ta dikaia poiein kai talethe legein)

Immigration advocates need to speak the truth about the Republican anti-immigrant agenda. It is "harmful", "mean-spirited" and "punitive" to be sure. This is part of the truth.

But we must also speak the full truth - that the Republican anti-immigrant agenda, as promulgated by Trump and Stephen Miller before Trump was evicted from the White House by a clear majority of American voters in an open and fair election; and as the agenda is being promoted now by Greg Abbot and other Trump-supporting Republican politicians, is racist to the core.

Roger Algase
Attorney at Law
Harvard College A.B.
Harvard Law School LL.B