By Felicia J. Persaud

News Americas, FORT LAUDERDALE, FL, Fri. Nov. 15, 2019: After humiliating losses in Virginia and Kentucky, many in Donald Trump camp and his cronies at Fox News are trying hard to find a plausible reason for their defeat. So again – like with everything else – its time to pull out the Grand ‘Ole ‘Blame The Immigrants’ card.

Fox News host Laura Ingraham was back to peddling the xenophobic scapegoating of immigrants that make right wingers sleep better at nights, by claiming that the reason Virginia turned blue was due to ‘foreign-born’ voters.

But who the heck are “foreign-born voters?” The term connotes erroneously that immigrants who are not US citizens are voting in elections. This is a fake conspiracy theory that the right continues to peddle, and which Ingraham was seemingly pushing subtlety with a wink, wink and a nod, nod to the racists who feel America is turning blue due to brown and black immigrants.

The reality is that once an immigrant goes through the long, arduous and expensive process of becoming naturalized, they are now legally and under the law – U.S. citizens – period! No ifs and buts about it.

All other titles are set aside as you take the 140-word oath as follows:

“I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen; that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform noncombatant service in the Armed Forces of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law; and that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; so help me God.”

The first line makes it absolutely clear that naturalization is a renouncement of your original country and “…all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty …”

Which means the minute you take that oath of allegiance you are no longer considered a “foreign” citizen of another nation, but an American citizen, giving you the right to all the same rights as a native born American including the right to vote in any election if you so choose.

Not as a “foreign born” voter – but as an American!

Public media personalities like Ingraham would do well to first understand the process of immigration and naturalization before engaging in diatribe that only makes them look unlearned.

But worst of all, it’s even more alarming when such diatribe pushes racists and xenophobes, who buy into their fake conspiracies, to violence.  

Take the case of Clifton Blackwell, a Milwaukee man accused of throwing acid last week on Mahud Villalaz, who came to America in 2001 and became a US citizen in 2013. The criminal complaint says Blackwell yelled at Villalaz for parking his truck too close to a bus stop.

“The defendant then stated: ‘Why did you invade my country?’ and ‘Why don’t you respect my laws?’ ” the complaint says.

When Villalaz moved his truck, the complaint says, Blackwell yelled again: “Why did you invade my country?” and then told Villalaz to “Go back, go back (expletive).”

The court document says Blackwell then threw a liquid in Villalaz’s face, which turned out to be acid that cause second-degree burns to the naturalized U.S. citizen.

There is no doubt in my mind that Blackwell was drinking at the well of anti-immigrant toxicity pushed by Donald Trump and the likes of Ingraham. The same well that spouts out poison like “immigrants are taking over” and should “go back where they came from,” the same poison that seeps into the soul of some on the right, poisoning them from the inside with hate, bigotry and xenophobia.

It’s distressing that in 2019, in the United States of America, this is where we find ourselves at this period of our history.  


The writer is publisher of NewsAmericasNow