An anti-illegal immigration rally on Beacon Hill outside the State House on Saturday, July 26 was teeming with protesters.
While Bree Sison of CBS Boston estimated that the gathering drew hundreds of people, Jeff Kuhner, the host of WRKO’s The Kuhner Report, who organized the rally, put the number closer to 10,000 people.
People carrying signs that said “Deport illegals,” and “Americans before illegals” stood just outside the State House from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Kuhner told Boston.com that he himself is a legal immigrant.
Kuhner came to the United States in the 1990s on a work visa as he worked towards a Ph. D. Still a Canadian citizen, he was issued a green card in 2006. Kuhner said he is currently in the process of becoming a naturalized citizen.
“I’ve never seen any kind of a backlash like this before on any issue ever. People in this state are livid. They feel betrayed by the political elite,” Kuhner said of Gov. Deval Patrick’s decision for Massachusetts to offer shelter to unaccompanied minors.
This week, a state official said it remained “unclear” how many unaccompanied minors crossing the nation’s southern border illegally would be coming to Massachusetts and how many could stay in the state longer. The state has offered to house up to 1,000 children at one of two secure facilities for up to four months.
Kuhner told Boston.com that he thought Saturday’s rally in Boston may well become a national story. “We made the Drudge Report.”
“These are not children. When you say child, the implication is 4, 5, 6 [years old]. They’re teenagers – many of them are gangbangers ... If you’re 15, you’re not a child. A child is 12 and under.”
Area journalists reported:
People took to social media during the rally:
Since last fall, more than 50,000 such children have been detained and federal officials have asked certain states to help house them.