Aberdeen’s New Americans Task Force—the well-known folks actually discussing practical solutions to help Aberdeen welcome and integrate immigrant workers and their families, not to be confused with the “Americans First, Task Force“, the anonymous hate group plugging Aberdeen into the feckless rantings of the anti-Muslim speaking circuit—briefly discussed the August 11 anti-immigration propaganda session led by itinerant St. Cloud car salesman (and hence immigration and religion expert?) Ron Branstner. New Americans Task Force members say the 160 or so Aberdonians in the audience were misinformed in more ways than one:
Jody Zueger, with Housing Authority, said people felt misled about the lecture.
“They were looking for information instead of a blast of negativity,” Zueger said about the folks she’s talked to.
“It was a lot of misguidance based on fear,” said Jay Hill, with Molded Fiber Glass, who attended Branstner’s talk [Kelda J.L. Pharris, “New American Task Force Members Discuss Branstner Immigration Lecture,” Aberdeen American News, 2016.08.26].
Employers take umbrage at the anti-immigration lecturer’s fear-mongering:
Hill said he was most disgusted by a statement Branstner made about not letting children play with immigrant kids because they carry parasites.
“The people that employ people here were very angry,” Hill said, referring to MFG and other employers with a large refugee or immigrant populations on staff [Pharris, 2016.08.26].
Although the anonymous hate group handed out contact sheets that highlighted Lutheran Social Services, none of the August 11 attendees have been moved to contact LSS to learn more about its efforts to resettle refugees in South Dakota:
Liesl Hovel’s employer, Lutheran Social Services, was named by Branstner. Hovel said Lutheran Social Services never received any phone calls or communication after the lecture [Pharris, 2016.08.26].
True Branstnerites may contend that Hovel was probably ordered by the United Nations not to give dissenters any press. It is more likely that, for all their voluble fury, the folks who attend these Two-Hour Hates are all taking Kristi Noem’s t-shirt to heart: rather than contact Lutheran Social Services or participate in the New Americans Task Force and risk having their narrow, fearful, and misinformed worldviews challenged by plain fact, these angry folks would rather sit there in their wrongness, insulated by Branstner and Breitbart, and be grouchily, self-satisfiedly wrong.