It is no secret the Religious Right detests the idea of immigration reform. After all, borders, they say, are set by God and should not be crossed without permission. Unless, you know, America has to go kick some a** for God somewhere in the world. Then it’s okay.
In response, we try to remind them that we are a “nation of immigrants.” This is a point I have made here as well in response to Fischer’s frequent ethnic nationalist rants.
Because we are. All of us, or are parents, or our grandparents or their parents etc, all the way back to the first settlers, came here from somewhere else. This is just a simple, indisputable fact. Some came willingly, some because they were brought here, like African Americans, to be slaves to those who came here willingly (and Fischer has already said the whole slavery thing is Islam’s fault.)
Fischer didn’t respond well to the idea that we are a nation of immigrants yesterday. In fact, he melted down in a big way trying to wrap his mind around it.
Watch courtesy of Right Wing Watch:
That’s another thing that kinda bothers me about that whole ‘Native American’ thing. You know, this ‘nation of immigrants’ business. You know we’re not – we are not – a nation of immigrants. Eighty-five to 87% of the people that live in the United States were born here. You know what that makes us? It makes us native Americans. We are Americans by birth.
Which only goes to show he is missing the point entirely.
So we are natives, he says. But according to Fischer, Native Americans are not natives. They’re not natives because they immigrated too. Watch him try to wrap his head around this:
You know, National Geographic had this big story. Now some evidence that the Native American tribes, the Indian nations migrated here from Eurasia as well as from Asia. The thinking all along has been that they migrated here from Asia. They came to American soil from Asia. Now they’re saying, well it was also from Eurasia. Well what does that mean? I mean, they don’t even stop to kind of contemplate the significance of that. It means that Native American tribes are immigrants too!
Sure, they arrived here too, from across the Bering Strait, but it was so many thousands of years ago – about 15,000 to be exact – that they had already been here for thousands of years when the first Europeans arrived to settle.
Which brings up the question: if we’re natives because we were born here, as he just said, then why are Native Americans who were born here going back those 15,000 years, not natives? Didn’t he just contradict his own objection of a moment before?
You wonder at this point if Fischer actually wrote any of this down before speaking, or even thought about it, because it almost seems he argued himself into a place no Right Wing crazy wants to find himself: a world of facts. This is the point at which Fischer seems to lose it, having a fit of cognitive dissonance right there for all to see as “realities” collide.
If we’re a nation of immigrants, to use their expression, that has to apply to the Indian Nations that were here when European settlers arrived. Everybody here is an immigrant. Everybody here is a descendant of those who immigrated to these shores.
That’s the point liberals have been repeatedly making as their contribution to the public discourse on the immigration question. Hello? Statue of Liberty? Ellis Island?
Isn’t that game, set match?
Don’t count on it. Fischer and his friends hate Native Americans too. According to Republicans, multiculturalism is “raping” the West, and that’s what this is really about – about protecting right white privilege by rooting out all the “brown people” who make life so difficult for them and cut into their profits. Let’s be clear about that.
After all, isn’t it the Lakota Nation now standing between them and their Keystone XL profits? Money God want them to have?
As Tom Tancredo has said, “No more of this multiculturalism garbage…the cult of multiculturalism has captured the world [and is] the dagger in the heart [of civilization].”
I guess if civilization is to be defined as white people doing what racist white people already do. If you have any questions about what that is, look to America’s reservation system. Look at Ferguson, Missouri.
But if we are all immigrants, a conclusion Fischer himself just came to, then why are white people the only good immigrants?
And to go back to Fischer’s original argument, if we’re not all immigrants, then how is it that people whose ancestors have been here 15,000 years are NOT natives, and people who are just now arriving are NOT natives, but people whose ancestors have only been here for three or four centuries at most ARE natives?
Fischer has been down this road already, trying to justify his irrational racism:
If…there is a moral and ethical basis for our displacement of native American tribes, and if our westward expansion and settlement are in fact consistent with the laws of nature, nature’s God, and the law of nations, then Americans have much to be proud of.
So we “Anglo-Saxons” have a right to have immigrated here. Native Americans do not have this divine sanction and so apparently should never have been here and therefore have no right to complain that we took all their land, and today’s Latino immigrants have no right to be here either, because they are now crossing borders created by God.
Thus there was a “Goldilocks” zone that was just right, when the Chosen People were allowed in. Everything before and after represents a violation of “the law of nations” and “nature’s God.” (And remember, “natural law” has been used against not just Native Americans and Latino immigrants, but against gays and also against non-Christians.) Everyone who doesn’t belong here, who can’t be grandfathered in through some sort of “Goldilocks Exemption” must be “vomited forth,” in the Old Testament sense (Lev 20.22-25; Jer 3.2-3).
Convert or die or face God’s wrath. This applies not only to Muslims but for Fischer, also to those Native Americans he was having such trouble with yesterday.
No need to go to Syria or Iraq to fight ISIL. We have our own here. And we thought they were bad as Talibangelicals. We had no idea. And Fischer has already admitted to being in “theological accord” with ISIL.
This is why it is amusing to see someone like Fischer come up against the world of facts, and this is why his response is an epic rant. It’s no easy matter to make a rational-sounding argument in favor of something that is inherently irrational, as Fischer just found out.
But if we’re stuck with them, they are also stuck with us. Take heart from that, my friends.
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.