“Love it or Leave it:” The History of American Nativism

President Trump's “love it or leave it” rhetoric about America isn't anything new — his anti-immigrant tactic is deeply rooted in U.S. history.

Rallying cry for white supremacists

President Trump’s recent attacks fit into a long tradition in U.S. politics, where anti-immigrant nativism has long been used as a campaign tool. Founded in 1817, the American Colonization Society aimed to send free black Americans to Africa as an alternative to emancipation in the U.S. As the pace of immigration accelerated in the 1840s anti-immigration sentiments emerged in force, leading to the creation of the new anti-immigrant party. This hostile reaction extended toward the surge of immigrants from Asia, then to those from southern and eastern European. This resulted in the 1924 Immigration Act, which dramatically limited arrivals to the U.S. with quotas based on national origin. America, love it or leave it, is not a new sentiment nor a radical sentiment, and it certainly is not a racist sentiment. It should remind us of commonly held and enduring founding principles that ought to be uniting us as a free people.

According to Dr. Kendi, we’re seeing this again in 2019 with Donald Trump. “When people from Ireland came to the United States by the millions, in particularly in 1840, what rose in reaction to their immigration was most prominently the Know Nothing Party in the 19th, which was a party that was opposed to Catholics and Irish, and especially Irish-Catholics. And even though the party did not last, it became quite powerful in a short period of time, just as you have a party, a major political party today which in the United States which largely is empowered by this idea that there are certain people who are not American and those are people who we need to quote "send back".”

“America: Love it or leave it” made its way onto bumper stickers and popular songs. It had become rallying cry for white supremacists. In 1968, similar rhetoric helped boost Richard Nixon’s presidential campaign amid racial divisions and civil strife.


07/25/2019 11:58 AM


  • Oja R.
    05/04/2020 17:31

    Your nothing but a trouble maker and I want have a friend that supports your liesss

  • Greg M.
    08/31/2019 22:40

    Trump. On

  • Rick R.
    08/31/2019 12:03

    What an idiot everybody has the right to whine it don't mean everybody wants to listen to it boohoo

  • Stan W.
    08/30/2019 05:17


  • Lino M.
    08/30/2019 02:39

    Brut sucks. Anti-American propoganda aite

  • Tom O.
    08/30/2019 02:26

    if you dont love this country leave it

  • Mark A.
    08/30/2019 01:43

    they need to leave the usa get rid of all muslims

  • Rusty W.
    08/30/2019 01:34

    Regan said .... If you don't love America, your a commie !!!

  • Amandanbruce L.
    08/29/2019 10:54

    Democrats faught to keep slaves, so it's really sick to see some that are Democrats. They don't really know their history at all.

  • Jon G.
    08/29/2019 06:09

    Just wondering why he didnt leave it

  • Marc D.
    08/29/2019 03:51 in all 50 states

  • Billy J.
    08/29/2019 03:17

    And they fall right in line

  • Dennis Y.
    08/28/2019 23:52

    Love it or leave it simple you ain’t happy go make it somewhere else

  • Thomas B.
    08/28/2019 22:20

    Yeap you don't love it laeve. You came here for a reason

  • Jeffrey B.
    08/28/2019 20:02

    Alot crap! I'm american. German/French. I think American. Retired military. Read history. Civil war was south wanted desperate from the North. North control the south. Slavery part of the war. Who started slavery? Look up his name. He was black. Blacks owned slaves. History. People don't talk about that! Amazing Grace was written by a slave driver. History. Racism wont stop till the second coming of Jesus Christ.

  • Joshua T.
    08/28/2019 02:02

    This guy is racist he is baiting the sheeple

  • Stacey F.
    08/27/2019 01:59

    Let me guess it's racist. Every one has a chance to do better if u want. Really want to be equal stop whining and improve yourselfs.

  • Melanie B.
    08/26/2019 21:35

    Too bad Trumps Grandfather did that after wanting to sign patriot letter to Mussolini! If Trumps Father had left after being arrested for his violence towards Americans while a Grand Dragon with the KKK Trump would not be here! So maybe Trump should leave and go where he is happy and people will bow down and kiss his feet and call him King! Go back to Florida after resigning and be with friends! Well some friends are going to jail.... well all of his friends are going to jail! He calls them friends and he knows them well so......go there!

  • Israel L.
    08/25/2019 14:32

    A pesar de que EEUU siempre fue un país de inmigrantes. Estos jugaron un papel.muy importante en el surgimiento y desarrollo como comompotencia mundial

  • Daniel R.
    08/25/2019 11:17

    I wish President Trump would restrain himself from badmouthing the children of New Spain, which is half of the modern US. Very base of him.

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