“I went to the UC Berkeley screening of ‘GrowthBusters,’ the new tongue-in-cheek film that links to the anti-immigrant movement on issues of population. I showed up with fliers that read “Growth Busted! New Film that promotes fear and bigotry,” Minnie McMahon, a concerned Bay area environmental activist, explained to me.
The film she and others were protesting is GrowthBusters, which premiered this fall in both California and in Oregon. In both locations film screenings were directly challenged by folks just like McMahon. Progressive environmentalists and social justice advocates who are actively questioning the link between necessary dialogue on limits to growth and the real interests behind films like GrowthBusters have been passing out fliers at film screenings to raise awareness about the film’s vast and extensive links to the anti-immigrant movement at large.
The film focuses on notions of limits to growth, water shortages, hunger, peak oil resources, and species extinction, but it also focuses on overpopulation as an environmental concern. This angle is where the links to groups—like the Federation for American Immigration Reform—that are a part of the John Tanton Network emerge.
White nationalist John Tanton is the architect of the modern day anti-immigrant movement and founder of the bigoted FAIR. FAIR is one of many groups found listed under “population growth” on the GrowthBusters website. Other anti-immigrant groups similar to FAIR that appear there includeCalifornians for Population Stabilization (CAPS), Progressives for Immigration Reform (PFIR), andNumbersUSA—all of which to varying degrees are active members of the Tanton Network.