The Harmful Impact of Mass Illegal Migration on Black Americans
The effects of mass immigration, whether legal or illegal, on African-Americans (or other minorities) are an inconvenient – even outright embarrassing – subject to the pro-mass-immigration lobby. After all, the lobby misleadingly presents its self-serving agenda as an embodiment of racial justice and equality. While fattening the bank accounts of unscrupulous employers and crony capitalists addicted to cheap foreign labor, the open-borders crowd distracts Americans of all races and ethnic groups with hypocritical boasts of the ever-greater “diversity” that mass immigration supposedly brings. But facts are stubborn things, and the frequently harmful impact of open-borders policies on black Americans are a sad reality.
Now that many proud “sanctuary” cities – such as New York, Washington, D.C., or Chicago – are increasingly feeling the brunt of the Biden Border Crisis, many of their residents are not happy with the largesse showered on new arrivals. Thus, earlier this month, the residents of the Windy City’s South Shore neighborhood, which is more than 90 percent African-American, sued the City of Chicago and Chicago Public Schools over the city government’s decision to repurpose South Shore High School as a shelter for 500 illegal aliens.
In the lawsuit, the plaintiffs point out that the high school has been “an educational facility and a symbol of community pride for decades.” In early May, however, local residents suddenly learned (via text message) that the building would be turned into a migrant shelter. Moreover, the decision had already been finalized without their input or knowledge, or even that of their local alderman. “The lack of community input regarding such a significant and transformative undertaking,” the suit states, “has caused considerable distress and concern among the residents of South Shore. The proposed conversion has the potential to significantly impact the community’s character, infrastructure, and quality of life.”
As the lawsuit makes clear, the overwhelmingly African-American residents of South Shore were left scratching their heads. The neighborhood is “under-resourced and overburdened” while suffering from “high crime rates.” Thus, sheltering a large number of migrants there did not strike residents as the best course of action for them or the migrants.
During a press conference, plaintiff Jimmy Darnell Jones also criticized the push for non-citizen voting across the U.S., asking “[w]hat if that happened here? That would change the mindset of what we, as a black community, need to thrive here in Chicago. That’s a concern of ours.”
Similar demonstrations – by largely African-American or Hispanic residents – took place in New York City against Mayor Eric Adams’ plans to house “asylum-seekers” in school gyms. A key concern was the safety of the schoolchildren given that no one really knows who the newcomers are. Some demonstrators even challenged Adams to house migrants in Gracie Mansion, the official mayoral residence. The mayor has yet to take them up on that suggestion.
A recent report by the Project 21 Black Leadership Network of the National Center for Public Policy Research shows that the problems exposed by the above expressions of discontent are only the tip of the iceberg. The study points out that mass illegal immigration undermines black Americans through increased competition for jobs and housing as well as by fueling the deadly fentanyl crisis and further boosting crime in sanctuary cities. It also warns that amnesty would dilute the black vote. It is therefore difficult to disagree with Project 21’s conclusion that “[i]llegal immigration, with all the disruptions it has wrought, is prima facie evidence that Washington elites are guided by a transformative ideology completely at odds with the needs of ordinary people – and particularly black Americans.”
The report also offers suggestions to fix the problem and deter mass illegal migration, which overlap with policy recommendations FAIR has been making for years: restarting construction of the Southwest border wall, ending sanctuary policies, reforming the Individual Tax Identification Number (ITIN) system, facilitating the deportation of criminal aliens, stopping taxpayer funding for programs that serve illegal aliens, and reinstating the “Remain in Mexico” policy to reduce asylum abuse. While Project 21 argues that such correctives would help the African-American community, the Biden administration is, unfortunately, only adding fuel to the fire.