“No Hate!!!!! No Hate!!!!!!” …. Those words reverberated in the hallway outside the Prince William County (Va) Board of Supervisors meeting yesterday evening inside the McCoart Administration Building in Woodbridge. Directing their comments to Board Chair, Corey Stewart, demonstrators and speakers voiced their strong opposition to his recent renewed immigration enforcement campaign which many claimed was simply a publicity ploy as he pursues a run for Governor.
Opponents objected to his push for the deportation of those arrested for immigration violations even though many of them were never convicted of a crime. One speaker stated that Stewart wants to deport those who “contribute richly to our community, they are assets.” Another commented “And now Mr. Chairman you have once again seen an opportunity to advance your political self-interest by exploiting fear and ignorance at the expense of our community,”
Whites, African Americans, Hispanics, Muslims, Sikhs joined together in protest against Stewart, who was fired as Trump’s Virginia Campaign Chairman last year. Many speakers were concerned about a return of the campaign of fear that prompted the departure of over 20,000 residents of Hispanic descent from Prince William County which significantly negatively impacted the economy of the County. That effort created great division in the community and even attracted the KKK to support the anti-immigrant effort.
One of the signs quoted from the Bible: “Do not mistreat or oppress a foreigner for you were foreigners in Egypt” (Exodus 22:21). Another sign summed up one of the main fears expressed by the demonstrators on the effects of Stewart’s immigration enforcement campaign: “Stop separating families.” What was clear from the large number of demonstrators in attendance, as one speaker told Stewart: “You have stoked the flames of equality, and inclusion.”