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  by  Roy Beck

The news from Raeford, N.C. is so encouraging. Immigration enforcement against the hiring of illegal foreign workers is leading to hundreds of unemployed Black Americans getting jobs and transforming their lives. 

But that is a bad -- even evil -- thing, according to religious leaders like the ones scheduled to go to the White House on Thursday to help decide how to pass an amnesty for illegal aliens this next year.

I don't really think these religious leaders hate the Black American underclass.  But they have abandoned it.

Whether they think about it or not, if these religious leaders are successful , the result will be a stop to the great news happening to jobless Americans in North Carolina and many other places -- and that could be happening to millions of jobless Americans everywhere if the Obama Administration were to make hurting Americans his priority instead of illegal aliens.

RELIGIOUS LEADERS COLLUDING WITH BIG BUSINESS LOBBYISTS

The Associated Press is reporting that religious leaders are joining with business leaders at the White House on Thursday to help plan how to persuade the public to go along with an amnesty for illegal aliens.

Is it just me or does it seem a little icky to have major religious leaders colluding with the big business lobby to ensure a continued supply of cheap foreign labor that will also help keep Americans' wages lower?

Although I don't yet know the identity of these religious leaders, I can be pretty sure that none of them takes the side of business on other issues.  It's just that they have such a preference for immigration over all other values that they are willing to regard business lobbyists as their allies.

HERE ARE THE PEOPLE THE RELIGIOUS LEADERS WANT TO STOP HELPING

Franco Ordonez of the Charlotte Observer is giving us a birds-eye view of who benefits when, instead of rewarding illegal immigration, we enforce the laws against it. http://www.charlotteobserver.com/258/story/884790.html

House of Raeford, one of the nation's top chicken and turkey producers, appears to be transforming its workforce amid a court fight over federal charges that a subsidiary knowingly hired illegal immigrants.

Current and former workers at the company's main plant in Raeford say the firm stopped hiring immigrants in recent months and let hundreds more go for using fake documents.

Once more than 80 percent Latino, the production floor at the Raeford plant is now up to 70 percent African American, workers said.

“Before there were hardly any African Americans,” said Rashida Grace, 19, a line worker who has been at the plant over a year.

In my book, THE CASE AGAINST IMMIGRATION, I write at some length about the way lax immigration enforcement led to the replacement of native-born U.S. workers during the 1980s and 1990s throughout the poultry-processing industry. Until then, about half the workers were white and half were black.

What I found was that most of the U.S. workers who were displaced by the foreign workers were not able to find other full-time jobs in their primarily rural settings. Their incomes dropped sharply and their dependence on government services rose.

I cited many studies that had found the change of the poultry industry to a primarily foreign workforce had lowered real wages.

The re-opening of poultry jobs to U.S.-born workers in rural communities would be a tremendous boon to the severely-underemployed populations that live there.

In the case of Raeford, the underemployed community is primarily Black.  Thus, Black Americans are reaping the benefits of one of the few places where the federal government has put the pressure on a business to obey the law. 

House of Raeford, a family-run business, has operations in the Carolinas and Louisiana, 6,000 employees and nearly $600 million in annual sales.

Isabel Hernandez said she was fired on April 21 for working with fake documents. Hernandez and others described what she saw as an organized effort to push illegal immigrants out of the plant – a few at a time – so as not to draw much attention or disrupt operations.

“It was very regular,” said Hernandez, who worked under another name. “Every seven days they'd let a few go.”

Raeford Mayor John McNeill said he was unaware of changes in the workforce, but welcomed them if it meant more jobs for Raeford citizens.

“If that's happening, that's good,” he said. “With our unemployment numbers, we need local jobs.”

Lamar McCoy, 25, called the changes long overdue. He said several friends and relatives have gotten jobs recently at the plant, including his brother.

“It's been good for the town, especially black minorities,” said McCoy, who worked at the plant about nine months until this summer. “There are lots of poor black men with not many opportunities…. In a small town like Raeford, there are not many jobs.”

Every gain by those Black citizens of Raeford is opposed by the type of religious leaders heading to the Whtie House.

National leaders of the United Methodists, Lutherans, Unitarian-Universalists, Catholics and Jews routinely decry immigration enforcement as racist, inhumane and against their holy scriptures.

According to them, those Black citizens of Raeford have no right to take jobs at the expense of foreign citizens who have broken immigration laws to get them.  According to these national religious leaders, the 8 million illegal aliens currently holding a job should be given permanent right to those jobs.

With unemployment rates among Black less-educated Americans soaring through the roof, any amnesty and any decrease in immigration enforcement is disproportionately harmful to Black Americans.

I am sure these national religious leaders are not intentionally racist.  But, really, is there anybody in America whose actions are more anti-Black in their consequences?

ROY BECK is Founder & CEO of NumbersUSA

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