How Racist Anti-Immigration Rhetoric Is Perpetuated Throughout US History

Originally published on Lefty Cartoons and cross-posted here with their permission.

As we all know, history repeats itself. We tend to make the same mistakes, fight the same wars, and believe the same misguided falsehoods over and over again. One example is the rampant problems of xenophobia, racism, and other forms of discrimination against groups that are not like us.

Throughout history, the exclusion of marginalized groups has been taken to the point of erecting physical barriers to keep them out. And while this is often justified as an act of self preservation, we can’t ignore that the people building the walls are the most often the socially privileged and powerful.

So how can this be? How can a marginalized group pose such a threat to the well-being of people who benefit from systematic privilege? The truth is, they can’t. These barriers are not built as “self-preservation.” Rather, this trend of “nativism” is rooted in racism and oppression.

Check out this comic from Lefty Cartoons to see just how apparent this trend has been throughout history.

Nativism Marches On

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Barry Deutsch is the Portland-based author and cartoonist of Ampersand, a political comic with a generally progressive sensibility. A new Ampersand comic appears in every issue of Dollars and Sense Magazine. Barry attended Oberlin College in Ohio in the late 1980s, the School of Visual Arts in New York City in the 1990s (where he took classes from comics legend Will Eisner), and graduated from Portland State University several years ago. While at PSU, his political cartoons won the Charles M. Schulz Award. His current comics project is my comic book Hereville, a fantasy adventure comic about an 11-year-old Jewish girl. Check out his blog and follow him on Twitter @barrydeutsch.