A Look Back at 'Immigrant Heritage Month'

It's not all valedictorians and brain surgeons.

By Mark Krikorian on June 30, 2016

National Review, June 30, 2016

Today is the final day of "Immigrant Heritage Month," a PR gambit started by Facebook founder and billionaire Mark Zuckerberg to facilitate his importation of cheap foreign labor.

The tentacles of the mass-immigration octopus have seized on it as yet another opportunity to make the case for amnesty, unlimited immigration, and ineffectual enforcement. President Obama devoted his weekly address earlier this month to it, saluting a certain Ann Dermody from Ireland, who " worked hard, played by the rules, and dreamed of becoming a citizen," a dream finally realized in March.

Having addressed a number of citizenship swearing-in ceremonies myself, I'm delighted to welcome Ms. Dermody into the American people. But the president explicitly pointed to her experience as a justification for a Schumer–Rubio-style amnesty and immigration-surge bill. This tactic of pointing to successful individual immigrants — legal or illegal — as justification for the latest Chamber of Commerce/La Raza " comprehensive reform" chicanery is widespread. (It came up repeatedly when I did NPR's Diane Rehm Show yesterday.) Successful outliers are highlighted to suggest that they are the norm.

Two can play that game. To be clear, I don't actually believe that individual immigrants who are bad delegitimize immigration, any more than good ones justify it. But in the spirit of Immigrant Heritage Month, here are some things that happened over the past 30 days that should be set alongside the immigrant valedictorians and brain surgeons:

June 1: A Somali war criminal is discovered working as a security guard at Dulles International Airport outside Washington, D.C. Yusuf Abdi Ali had gamed the immigration system for decades: He was in the U.S. for military training when the regime he served was overthrown in 1990. He then fled to Canada and received refugee status there. When Canadian authorities discovered who he was in 1992, they deported him back to the U.S., where he applied for asylum in 1993. He later withdrew the asylum application because he got a green card in 1996 through marriage to a U.S. citizen (also from Somalia). In 1998 he was arrested for lying about his past on his immigration applications, but had his deportation case thrown out on a technicality. He then disappeared, until he was found again this month by CNN.

After Ali's most recent discovery, the airport authority said Ali passed " the full, federally mandated vetting process in order to be approved for an airport badge, including a criminal history records check by the FBI and a security threat assessment by the TSA."

June 2: Mexican flag-waving, U.S. flag-burning rioters physically attack Trump supporters in San Jose, Calif.; some chant " Make California Mexico Again."

June 4: A Boston Globe investigation finds that 30 percent of criminal aliens released by ICE in New England go on to commit additional crimes, including rape, attempted murder, and child molestation. This came to light only because the newspaper sued to get the names of the released criminals and then pored over local court records to find those who had re-offended.

June 6: A Haitian illegal alien is sentenced to the maximum 60 years for murdering Casey Chadwick, a 25-year-old Connecticut woman. Jean Jacques committed the murder just five months after completing a prison sentence for attempted murder in a separate case. Instead of deporting him upon completion of his sentence, ICE let him go because Haiti didn't want to take him back. An Inspector General report, also released during Immigrant Heritage Month, details how and why he was released.

June 12: Omar Mateen, a U.S.-born child of Afghan immigrant parents, kills 49 people and wounds 53 others in Orlando in the deadliest terrorist attack in the U.S. since 9/11, saying he was inspired by ISIS and wanted to stop U.S. bombing of " his country" (presumably Afghanistan). As a high-school sophomore, Mateen cheered in support of the hijackers during the September 11 attacks. A registered Democrat, Mateen married an Uzbekistan-born woman whom he met in 2008 through Myspace and separated from four months later, in what could have been a case of marriage fraud. Mateen's father, who almost certainly came here via the refugee-resettlement program, expresses support for the Taliban.

June 13: A Honduran illegal alien is charged with murdering five homeless people in an arson fire. Johnny Josue Sanchez was arrested by the Border Patrol in 2012 after he infiltrated the country. As required by President Obama's policies, he was simply let go " after agents determined that he had no previous immigration violations or criminal history," according to the Los Angeles Times. He had also been arrested by the LAPD for domestic violence and drug possession, but also released.

June 21: An illegal alien attempts to assassinate Donald Trump. Michael Steven Sandford, a British citizen who had overstayed his visa and was living in his BMW, attempted to grab a police officer's gun to shoot the candidate. His father had actually contacted the U.S. embassy in London asking for help in getting him to return to the UK, but was told they couldn't do anything.

June 25: Local media report that Facebook billionaire Mark Zuckerberg is building a six-foot-high rock wall to prevent people from illegally entering his Hawaii beach property. Earlier this year, he criticized Donald Trump's proposal to build a wall on the Mexican border to stop illegal immigration, saying, " I hear fearful voices calling for building walls and distancing people they label as 'others.' . . . Instead of building walls we can help build bridges."