This weekend members of Sunflower Community Action held a peaceful rally outside of Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach's home. Kansas families came together there to draw attention to the need for common sense immigration reform. Kobach's response was to remind the public of his right to bear arms. A threat that is way outside the mainstream and is reminiscent of another Kansas official who famously advocated shooting immigrants from helicopters.
Kobach, a national figure in terms of anti-immigrant rhetoric and policy, has a choice. He can continue to stoke fear and hate or he can acknowledge that he has gone too far and apologize for his extreme and threatening comments.
While Kobach doesn't have to like that people chose to assemble outside his home, he does have to live with how he responds. He could recognize that his brand of hate-mongering is motivating people to go to significant lengths to bring an end to statements and policies that create division and fear. And he could and should apologize for making references to bearing arms as a response. Instead he has chosen to escalate. He's done this by going on Fox News and on Glenn Beck's radio show and called hardworking mothers, fathers, and their children names, compared the protestors to the KKK, and said in reference to the rally that "It's important we recognize there's a reason we have the Second Amendment."
Kobach said his children would have been horrified by the sight of 300 people protesting on his front lawn. Chances are that his children will grow up to be horrified that their father promoted racial fear and violence. He can be the man who made mistakes, but was able to acknowledge those or he can continue down a path that history will judge as one of extremism, and hatred.
Join me in calling for Kris Kobach to apologize and urge him to stop playing into racial fears and stop promoting the separation of families now.