Texas Eagle Forum’s leaders like to pretend that they champion traditional family values and good Christian morals. But the state affiliate of Phyllis Schlafly’s right-wing outfit has no problem smearing entire classes of people with falsehoods and distortions. Gay people are often among their biggest targets. But the October edition of the group’s newsletter, The Torch, includes a good example of how TEF also targets undocumented immigrants. The piece was written by the co-founder of The Remembrance Project, a Houston-based anti-immigration organization. She also leads the Houston Eagle Forum chapter.
Illegal immigration is a problem in America, but demonizing undocumented immigrants as murderers and monsters is appalling. Yet that’s what the Torch article does. The article bizarrely declares that “the racism perpetrated by illegal invaders upon Americans of all ethnic backgrounds is real.” It also includes this:
“It is estimated that 25 Americans or legal residents die each day at the hands of illegal aliens. We must demand justice for American citizens, not ‘social justice’ for illegals.”
That would be a horrifying statistic — if it were true. But according to the Southern Poverty Law Center, the stat is a made-up number from a six-year-old Internet essay by U.S. Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa. King is one of the most extreme anti-immigrant voices in America today. King said he “extrapolated” the number from a General Accounting Office report. But as the SPLC explains, King came up with the figure only by wildly distorting what the GAO report actually said. (Read the SPLC’s full account here.)
The SPLC says King’s phony “statistic” has been repeated hundreds of times. Add another one to the total, this one from Texas Eagle Forum — supposed defenders of truth, God and country.