I have grown accustomed to well-funded open-borders groups sending hecklers to call me a "white supremacist" every place I speak.
But I was still a little surprised when I spoke to a Black grassroots group recently to have all the African Americans there also accused. It now looks like pro-amnesty groups are willing to label as racist anybody who advocates for less immigration.
It kind of makes me laugh. But it really is despicable, because the ridiculous efforts to silence our side are not the work just of fringe activists but of the largest pro-amnesty organizations of America. These groups not only spread the same lies and libelous characterizations, but they orchestrate the McCarthyism tactics of intimidation and marginalization.
BLACK AND WHITE TAXPAYERS FIND COMMON GROUND
I was one of five panelists at a meeting of People For Change, a grassroots group in Prince George's County, Maryland -- probably the premier majority-Black county in America. Three of the speakers were Black and I was one of two White speakers. The moderator and leader of People For Change was Black, as are most members of that organization. Also present were members of a mostly-White grassroots organization called Help Save Maryland.
All of us were agreed in our concern for what large-scale illegal immigration was doing to costs for taxpayers and to services for the needy in Prince Georges County and in the whole state of Maryland.
Our calls for mandatory verification to keep illegal aliens out of jobs, and for the use of the SAVE system to keep them out of most public benefits, drew enthusiastic applause from the crowd.
BLACK AMERICANS WHO STAND UP FOR JOBLESS BLACKS OVER ILLEGAL ALIENS ACCUSED OF ACTING LIKE THE KKK
When the panelists were finished and the floor microphone was opened for questions, a middle-aged white woman stepped up and said:
I have always wanted my whole life to see the unity of Black and White workers.
It seemed like she was really impressed to see such a rare display of Black and White solidarity, comity and integration that was evident in the room that night. But she quickly continued:
But this thing is more like a Klan rally.
The shocked audience groaned and then jeered her attempt to make a pro-illegal-immigration speech, finally allowing her to ask the panel a pointed question.
A number of Black citizens expressed amazement that they had for the first time in their lives been compared to the Ku Klux Klan. "I don't think I've ever been to a Klan rally before," one African-American man deadpanned after giving his name at the microphone and before asking his question.
Interspersed among the citizens asking questions about how to reduce the illegal population in the county, several more white women took to the microphone to accuse the Black citizens in the audience and the leadership of conspiring with the worst dregs of American society against the oppressed undocumented peoples of their community.
Despite the attempt by the white open-borders women to use race to divide the Americans in the audience that night, I saw no sign that any Black or White citizen grew any less resolute about their common cause to fight illegal immigration -- and to fight the local government efforts to encourage and reward illegal immigration.
Perhaps the most popular panelist was a Black woman who was fired from her county job for refusing to break the law to give unsanctioned benefits to illegal aliens.
Also, a big crowd-pleaser was dynamic Washington DC mayoral candidate Leo Alexander who said that Black Americans owe no apology to anybody for saying that the skyrocketing unemployment among fellow Black citizens has a higher priority claim than the needs of illegal foreign workers.
As strange as was the whole encounter, I have to say that it fits with nearly 20 years of experience I have had in which Black and Hispanic Americans who oppose illegal immigration come under the most withering attacks by the high-immigration activists. Even though Black and Hispanic workers are suffering by far the worst unemployment and are most directly affected by high immigration, it continues to take a lot of courage for U.S. citizens within these communities to speak up for themselves on immigration issues. The predominantly white high-immigration advocates' ridicule and condemnation of Black and Hispanic opponents of high immigration is unrelenting.
My summary of the evening would start with the opening sentence of the open-borders agitator: "I have always wanted my whole life to see the unity of Black and White workers." But my second sentence would be: "And I saw it at the immigration forum in Prince George's County."
ROY BECK is Founder & CEO of NumbersUSA