NumbersUSA is stirring up a whirlwind of interest, gasping, attaboying and disgust with our national TV ad campaign asking why our government adds another million permanent foreign workers each year while more than 3 million Black Americans who want a full-time job can't find one.
I drove up to Baltimore -- a stronghold of Black unemployment -- early this morning to do some TV interviews about why we are doing this.
OUR AD IS 'GUTTER POLITICS'?
One group alone (the pro-amnesty PAC called Immigrants' List) is accusing our ad of sowing "division and fear" and described it as "incendiary" and "gutter politics, pure and simple." The word "evil" also seems to be showing up a lot on the internet as proponents of high immigration react to the ad that has been playing before and after the debates and at other times in various locales across the country.
I believe what has the open-borders forces far more worked up than usual is that our ad comparing the numbers of unemployed Black Americans and the numbers of new immigrant workers each year challenges the long-cultivated image that high immigration is THE compassionate and moral policy.
Most advocates of high immigration pose as especially concerned about our country's ethnic minorities and about the poor. But when we cite unemployment statistics for America's minorities while noting how many foreign workers are being added to compete with them, that really threatens the whole facade of morality that has been built around immigration policies that are disproportionately hurting the poor, especially poor minorities.
Here's the ad:
HIGHLIGHTING THE WORST UNEMPLOYMENT
Why are we focusing on Black Americans even though we are concerned equally for all Americans regardless of race or ethnicity?
A key point is that U.S. House Republican leaders, and U.S. Senate Democratic leaders, and Pres. Obama have shown no sign of interest in protecting 20 million Americans in the broader "U6" unemployment category from unnecessary competition from either legal or illegal immigration. They have shown zero interest in any of the bills that would at least have reduced the numbers and the competition.
So, to try another way to get the attention of the politicians, we are highlighting the worst unemployment in America. It isn't just that Black Americans have the worst jobless rates but that the problem often is so geographically concentrated that it brings down whole communities.
When I told a TV station in Baltimore this morning that 20% of Black Americans who want a full-time job can't find one, I also noted that the situation is far worse for those who are under the age of 30.
The unemployment rate for younger Black Americans is:
- about 25% for those with some college,
- about 40% for those with a high school degree,
- more than 60% for those without a high school degree.
Keep in mind that this doesn't count all those who have totally left the labor market. The jobless rates are for those who WANT a job. They WANT to work. They WANT to provide for themselves and not depend on others and the government. But their government insists on importing around a hundred thousand new foreign workers each month instead.
In our ad, a Black father says he is tired of the stereotype that unemployed people like himself don't want to work. Some of our opponents are saying the ad is racist in having the father ask why the government brings in a million new immigrant workers a year while 3 million Black Americans are unemployed.
The fact is that we could run a similar ad with an Hispanic American, dealing with jobless rates that are nearly as bad as for Black Americans. And we could also run an ad for White Americans whose jobless rate is not nearly so astronomical but is unacceptably high, nonetheless. What we want to know is how people will react to the worst numbers out there. Can they really justify why they support bringing in another million immigrant workers next year? Can they do it from a basis of moral superiority?
You can see why they are becoming so angry about these ads.
ROY BECK is Founder & CEO of NumbersUSA