The Jewish Anti-Defamation League is now targeting anti-immigrant sentiment
The Anti-Defamation League of New England, saying that hostility toward immigrants represents a growing form of intolerance, is making the fight against anti-immigrant sentiment a significant focus of the 60-year-old organization.
Leaders of the ADL, which is known primarily for its efforts to combat anti-Semitism, say they are alarmed at the animus toward immigrants that seems to be surfacing as the debate over securing the country's borders intensifies.
Andrew Tarsy, regional director of the ADL of New England, said recent events in immigrant communities around Boston demonstrate the urgency for more activism.
"We fight against bigotry in all forms," Tarsy said. "It has become clear both in the extremist world and even in the mainstream that the conversation about immigrants is laced with bigotry."
The efforts will take several forms: events to reach out directly to immigrants; advocacy on state and local immigrant issues; monitoring hate activity in communities; and meeting with police chiefs to alert them to possible tensions in their communities over immigrants.
On Thursday, the ADL will host its first immigrant-themed Passover Seder titled "Nation of Immigrants." The dinner for 800, including hundreds of immigrants, will highlight Passover traditions that celebrate the exodus of Jewish people from slavery in Egypt and feature readings of stories of immigration throughout the dinner.
The readings will include passages from the Book of Exodus and Mexican labor activist Cesar Chavez.
ADL leaders hope they will raise awareness of the immigrant experience among the organization's members while promoting understanding between Jews and immigrants.
"The story of Passover is: We were slaves, and then we were free," Tarsy said. "And you need to tell that story in every generation and appreciate that freedom. It's an insight into other human conditions, like immigration, the journey to be part of a diverse America, where we respect differences."
Earlier this month, the ADL held a youth congress, in which 800 high school students discussed the way the debate over immigration was playing out in their schools. Some immigrant students told their own stories of harassment and discrimination.
Tarsy said there has been an upsurge in anti-immigrant activity nationally among organizations such as the Ku Klux Klan. The ADL here received reports in the last week of hate literature about immigrants being distributed in Taunton, Easton, and Brockton by another group, he said.
In Massachusetts, the influx of tens of thousands of new immigrants has led to tensions in some communities. The ADL, among the most influential civil rights organization in the region, has been working alongside immigrants' rights groups to stem the expansion of state and local powers to enforce immigration laws, such as former Governor Mitt Romney's push to authorize State Police to arrest people who are here illegally.
So being against illegal immigration is "bigotry" in the minds of the ADL? I wonder if the ADL thinks that keeping Palestinians out of Israel is "bigotry"? Somehow I don't think so.
Told You the JEWS Are Behind Forcing America to Accept Immigrants - Wake Up People