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Immigration Law Criticized for Religious Discrimination

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Debate over the controversial McCarran-Walter Immigration Act has been marred by name-calling which tends to obscure the real issues, Harry N. Rosenfield, former U.S. Displaced Persons Commissioner, told a meeting of church groups, labor groups and of representatives of many other community organizations, arranged today by the local chapter of the American Jewish Committee.

Racial, religious and nationality discrimination in the present immigration law had already hurt American prestige throughout the world, and created “a field day for Communist propaganda,” Mr. Rosenfield stated. He urged that Congressional leaders and President Eisenhower press for immediate revision of the McCarran-Walter Act in accordance with the recommendations and findings of the Presidents Commission on Immigration and Naturalization, which issued a report in December 1952 calling for major changes in the Act including the abandonment of the national origins quota system.

“The National Council of the Churches of Christ, the National Lutheran Council, the National Catholic Welfare Conference, the Synagogue Council of America, and the labor, business and other groups which disagree with the wisdom of the national origins system or other aspects of the present law, are just as loyal and patriotic as the American Legion and the Daughters of the American Revolution which support the Act,” Mr. Rosenfield said.

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