“Concerned about America’s huge carbon footprint? Then you should be concerned about immigration.”
No, this is not a spoof produced for Saturday Night Live. Sadly, it is a real ad from a group called Californians for Population Stabilization. The ad, currently running on MSNBC points the finger at immigrants to the U.S. for increasing carbon emissions in the U.S., leading to “environmental degradation.”
The claims are, of course ridiculous, and fear-baiting. The “research” they reference is flawed, and biased. There are no “facts” here—only fear-induced hate.
Throughout history, hate-filled xenophobic groups have turned those who seem “different” into the enemy. And “immigrants”—because of their different cultural, racial, and language difference are often in xenophobe’s favorite victim.
While the word “immigrants” today is used as shorthand for “illegal Mexican immigrants,” newcomers to our shores have been targeted throughout our history—in the form of the Irish, Italian, and Polish immigrants as they passed through Ellis Island at the turn of the previous century; to the Vietnamese, Chinese, Cambodian and other Asian immigrants who escaped dictatorial regimes for decades; and of course, the Africans who were brought here as slaves. In short, all of us are immigrants—we were all “new” to this country at one point in our family’s history.
So, if the Californians for Population Stabilization wants to blame American’s large carbon footprint on immigrants, go ahead—as long as they understand (and make it clear to their audience) that they’re pointing the finger at all of us—all Americans, including members of this hate-filled xenophobic organization.