Resisting False Choices & Getting to a Truly Humane Immigration Policy

Big Money is wrapping exploitative policies in the patina of human rights and tolerance.

In the debate over immigration, interest groups like the Chamber of Commerce would have us believe that there are only two positions: Either you are a tolerant and good person who supports "reform" or you are an evil racist who wants to build a wall at our southern border. Likewise, genuine xenophobes and racists would have us believe you are either a patriot who supports "border security" and wants to preserve "our culture" (read: white culture) or you hate America and are a traitor.

These are (obviously) oversimplified frames, and for a reason: Racists want to polarize the debate on nationalistic terms, and Big Money interests want to use immigration "reform" - most prominently through a so-called "guest worker program" - to create a permanent underclass of immigrants to economically exploit.

IMHO, this latter strategy is most dangerous, because whereas racists/xenophobes are pretty open about their xenophobia (and whereas polls show most Americans want tolerance in our immigration policy), Big Money is wrapping exploitative policies in the patina of human rights and tolerance. 

David Sirota is a veteran political strategist and author of Hostile Takeover, a New York Times bestseller about the corruption of both political parties.
Sign Up!
Get AlterNet's Daily Newsletter in Your Inbox
+ sign up for additional lists
Select additional lists by selecting the checkboxes below before clicking Subscribe:
Election 2018