Washington, DC - An increase in U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raids around the country and the recent White House executive order on immigration has kept immigration at the forefront of national debate. With far too much regularity, we hear report after report of ICE stakeouts at church homeless shelters or of the Dreamer, whose DACA status had expired, but nonetheless spoke out on behalf of undocumented immigrants and was taken in to custody by ICE raids.
These recent happenings under our new president have incited fear among members of the Latino community and other communities of immigrants. As we have said before, “Our leaders must welcome the immigrants who have made their way here — not just for humanitarian reasons but for economic ones, too.”
The Trump Administration has given a platform to the alt-right’s hateful immigration agenda, and tapped into and mobilized this audience with one dog whistle after another However, what many of us have ignored is that many of these groups, however fringe we thought they were, actually laid the foundation and provided a platform for President Donald Trump.
The leaders of these organizations admit that they have only recently been given a seat at the table, despite many years of advocating their views and building their operation. In fact, Roy Beck, President of NumbersUSA, gleefully highlighted his organization’s newfound status under the Trump Administration saying, “We have been in the wilderness for 20 years under the Clinton, Bush, and Obama Administrations. It doesn’t matter the party. And yes, now we are in the room.”
In a recent article by Hazel Trice Edney in the Atlanta Daily World, she rightly notes that the administration’s actions of the nomination of Attorney General Jeff Sessions, the infamous wall, and the travel ban have all been applauded by these right-wing hate groups such as NumbersUSA, Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), and Center for Immigration Studies (CSIS) who “make up the network that lay the foundation for this vitriolic movement.”
Over the last decade, these extreme anti-immigration groups have received a staggering $20 million from the Foundation for the Carolinas to fund this network, according to its tax records. For example, just in 2015, Roy Beck’s Numbers USA, received $3 million from the Foundation.
The Foundation, however, has been quick to deny responsibility for its ties to these organizations. In a subsequent article by Edney, “Major Charity Distances Itself from Donations to Controversial Groups,” she details an attempt by the Foundation to distance itself from the grants.
The foundation’s funding of this shadowy network has been virtually unreported before now, largely because the individual donations are typically buried in tax filings right alongside contributions to organizations engaged in publicly recognized civic projects such as the YWCA Youth Learning Center and the Carolina Opera.
According to the Los Angeles Times, the real proponents of this anti-immigration, hate agenda are mysterious individuals, including Fred Stanback, a wealthy octogenarian in North Carolina, who has been plotting a population control, pro-white agenda all through this little-known non-profit in North Carolina as it’s patron.
The Foundation has funded, given voice to, and enabled this extreme hate agenda by providing a vehicle for these “Anonymous Contributions.” It advertises “Donor Advised Funds,” which allow, in many instances, substantially large gifts “to remain anonymous or to avoid classification under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986.”
In addition, the Foundation’s board reserves “variance power” under its bylaws, which authorizes the board “to modify any condition or restriction on the distribution of funds if in its sole judgment (without the approval of any trustee, custodian or agent), such restriction or condition becomes, in effect, unnecessary, incapable of fulfillment, or inconsistent with the charitable needs of the area served by the Foundation or with the requirements of the code.”
It’s time for organizations like the Foundations for the Carolinas to cut off their ties to Stanback and other extremist donors by refusing to fund these anti-immigration, hate-mongering groups.