Refugees, which is it: Meatpacker laborers or helping the "oppressed?"

Ali Noorani of the National Immigration Forum tries both arguments in USA Today.

ali noorani twitter
Ali Noorani on twitter: @anoorani

I wasn’t planning to post on one more hysterical story about Trump refugee numbers being low and thus decimating the refugee contractor industry, but I can’t resist mentioning one little bit of the story entitled:

Refugee admissions to U.S. plummet in 2017

Before I get to Noorani, Mark Krikorian summed it up with this:

“Elections have consequences,” said Mark Krikorian, executive director of the Center for Immigration Studies, which advocates for lower levels of legal and illegal immigration. “This is what he said he’s going to do, and he’s doing it.”

Readers, for years and years, refugee advocates pretended they have nothing to do with the global meatpacking industry and its ‘need’ for cheap migrant labor, but now even savvy DC operatives like Noorani trot out the argument feigning concern for Midwestern economies.

Ali Noorani, executive director of the National Immigration Forum, which has advocated for a higher refugee cap, said many Midwestern cities depend on refugees to work in the meat-packing and poultry plants that sustain their struggling economies.

Okay and if that establishment Rightwing argument doesn’t float your boat, he moves on to moral duties, historic roles and oppressed people so he can hit the Leftwingers too:

As more migrants are fleeing their homelands, Noorani said now is the worst possible time for the U.S. to retreat from its historic role as a “moral beacon” for the oppressed.

“There are ways to help refugees get to places of safety and begin a new life that serves the American interest,” Noorani said. “Past administrations have been able to do that. This administration is not that so interested.”

American interest? Or global meatpackers’ interest (subsidized by US taxpayers)?

Dakota Provisions
Photo credit: Me

This “new life to serve American interests” was on full display in a Washington Post story (hat tip: Melanie) the other day about a South Dakota turkey plant and how it gets its migrant laborers (this time plane loads from Puerto Rico to join the refugee labor force, but they have to pay back their airfare out of their paychecks!).
It made me sick, especially because I traveled to Huron in the summer of 2016 to see how that plant, Dakota Provisions, was changing (forever) the city of Huron.
Is this what Noorani thinks “serves the American interest?”  Grover’s interests maybe?

If I ever stop writing this blog, I’m writing a modern day “The Jungle.”  It is long overdue!

I can happily skip eating turkey!

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