A group of U.S. military veterans – all of whom are immigrants – have begun responding to hateful, anti-immigrant posts on social media with short video statements personalized for the original poster.
The campaign, Vets Fight Hate, is a project of the New York ad agency Wing in partnership with the Southern Poverty Law Center.
In a video on its website, Vets Fight Hate shows how it identifies “haters with a large group of followers” on social media and replies with video messages from veterans emphasizing both their service and their identity as immigrants. “I served in the U.S. Air Force and fought for you, your family and people I don’t even know,” one immigrant says. “I risked my life for a free and inclusive country.”
About 11 percent of all U.S. veterans come from an immigrant background, according to the group’s website.
Vets Fight Hate has compiled a series of videos from the veterans, both in response to specific tweets and more general videos that can be used more broadly. You can follow the campaign on Twitter.
“We’re proud to partner with Vets Fight Hate on this innovative program and hope it’s just the start of a larger campaign,” said Wendy Via, SPLC chief communications officer. “The way to respond to hate is with positive messages that reveal the humanity and dignity of those who are being vilified. This campaign counters hate by illustrating that immigrants love this country, too, and are willing to sacrifice for it.”