There is growing evidence that the backlash against this Spring’s massive demonstrations for immigrants rights has begun. This was not unexpected. But what was not expected is the degree to which presumed allies of the movement would turn against it and cooperate with anti-immigrant forces.
The events of this past few weeks should be proof enough that those once thought to be supportive of immigrants rights are now its most dangerous enemies. One organizations at the center of the reactionaries plan to derail and co-opt the immigrants rights movement is the National Council of La Raza, the NCLR. Flying the flag of bipartisanship and compromise solutions this group is currently holding a convention in Los Angeles.
NCLR has already been exposed by the March 25 Coalition, the group that organized the demonstrations early this Spring. This Saturday the March 25 Coalition staged a picket at the convention (see What's Next for Latino Community on the LA-IMC calendar) to call attention to the double talk and deception of the NCLR.
Also see Exposing NCLR’s Corporate Ties. But it is this Tuesday’s scheduled appearance of Karl Rove, senior advisor to the president Bush, and Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, who praised the vigilante minuteman group, that is most telling.
This Fourth of July saw the city’s first Latino mayor in a parade with the anti-immigrant minuteman. And the next two days July 5th and 6th saw the plowing under of the South Central Farm. That with this Saturday’s police attack on immigrant rights supporters in Hollywood it should be clear to anyone that’s paying attention that the mayor has sold out and is no friend to immigrants or the people he claims to be fighting for. There is a real feeling of betrayal, and it is growing as more become aware of how they have been deceived. There are open calls for MECHA to revoke his membership. The mayor has cut his deal with the devil for the shot at higher office.
Also of note: The recent presidential election in Mexico, an election which many believe to have been stolen, also factors into this and the speculation is that the attack on immigrant rights in the US and the fixing of the election in Mexico are not unrelated events. And the function of NCLR in all this is clear: Stop any viable grassroots movement before it starts.