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“Nothing about this website or any NumbersUSA publication advocates for hostile actions or feelings toward immigrants and other foreign-born people in this country. Our goal is to change immigration policy.”

NumbersUSA CEO, James Massa

From NumbersUSA’s beginning in 1997, we have urged our fellow Americans who are concerned about immigration to refrain from anger toward the foreign-born who live among us. In a quarter-century of speeches across the country and in our videos and publications, we have repeatedly made the appeal that we make to you as you read this: If you get angry about the problems that we show are a result of immigration policies, don’t get angry at immigrants but make your voice heard to the government officials who are responsible for the policies.

NumbersUSA is committed to a civil discussion surrounding an immigration policy that contributes to our civil society. Our approach to this subject arises from a tone set in Roy Beck’s book from the prestigious publisher W.W. Norton & Co. (New York, 1996). Titled “The Case Against Immigration: The Moral, Economic, Social & Environmental Reasons for Reducing Immigration Back to Traditional Levels,” the book included this admonition:

“The task before the nation in setting a fair level of immigration is not about race or some vision of a homogeneous white America; it is about protecting and enhancing the United States’ unique experiment in democracy for all Americans, including recent immigrants, regardless of their particular ethnicity.”

– The Case Against Immigration by Roy Beck (1996)

This is a crucial reason we named ourselves NumbersUSA. It isn’t as some of our critics have suggested that we think of immigrants as numbers rather than as people. No, it is because we don’t want allow for focus on alleged deficiencies in the character and characteristics of these individual people. Rather, we focus on how the sheer numbers of migrants admitted to the United States each year and how those numbers give rise to problems for citizens, already-present immigrants, and future newcomers alike.

If the total number of legal immigrants has burdened vulnerable members of our national community, the individual legal immigrants bear zero blame. As members of our national community, legal immigrants have the same stake in immigration policy as any American. That is why so many legal immigrants and the spouses, parents, and children of legal immigrants are NumbersUSA activists who join in seeking reduced total annual admissions.

Illegal immigration is another matter. Those who have illegally crossed our borders or illegally overstayed their visitor visas indeed HAVE done something wrong and DO deserve some blame for the problems caused by illegal immigration. Yet illegal immigration is also a byproduct of failure to faithfully enforce the law. Lawmakers and lawbreakers are all deserving of human dignity and humane treatment, even as we hold them accountable for their actions.