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Your arguments for immigrant-bashing are so full of fallacies that I feel like a mosquito in a nudist colony -- I don't know where to start. So I'll hark back to the words of Abraham Lincoln, who, as usual, said it best:
"Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that all men are created equal'. We now practically read it asall men are created equal, except African Americans'. When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read `all men are created equal, except African Americans and foreigners and Catholics'. When it comes to this, I shall prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretense of loving liberty - to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure and without the base alloy of hypocrisy."
all men are created equal'. We now practically read it as
Poor Honest Abe -- he wouldn't be able to win a Republican primary for dogcatcher today. He was far too intelligent, too compassionate, and too humble. Most of all, he was too open to growing in this thinking. In Lincoln's short lifetime, he went from being a dyed in the wool racist to, not only ending slavery, but supporting citizenship and voting rights for African Americans -- very radical ideas for his time.
By contrast, if a Republican politician today takes one step away from rigid Tea Party orthodoxy, or dares to have an original thought, or look for common ground with a Democratic colleague or an immigrant, they are promptly excommunicated from GOP.
Old Abe would be brokenhearted to see that the party he helped found is now being run by the narrow-minded Know Nothing bullies he warned us about.
I'll tell you what kind of country it is. It's a country where a pro-Republican foundation is placing billboards in African American neighborhoods trying to scare residents out of voting by threatening to bring voter fraud charges against them. Very classy, huh? Just when you think the Republicans can't stoop any lower in their drive to win at any cost -- can you say Willie Horten? -- they prove us wrong.
Given the fact that brave African American and white activists gave their lives not that long ago to win African Americans the right to vote, the folks behind this belong in a special circle of hell. You really wonder how they can look themselves in the mirror, especially since real cases of voter fraud are rarer than lightening strikes. Unfortunately, the same can't be said for voter intimidation.
Luckily, it looks like this tactic, like so many other ham-handed GOP stunts, is backfiring. It turns out that the folks who live in the targeted neighborhoods don't take kindly to such blatant intimidation. Thanks for the boost to the African American get out the vote effort, Mitt!
Questions I wish the moderator at one of the presidential debates had the guts to ask Romney:
(1) Governor Romney, let me get this straight. Do you REALLY believe that the bank failures and the housing collapse were caused by too MUCH government regulation, instead of too LITTLE?
(2) Governor Romney, what brilliant economist told you that it makes sense to focus on reducing the deficit when the country is teetering on the brink of a depression -- especially after ignoring the issue throughout the previous administration while W frittered the Clinton surplus away?
(3) Governor Romney, you say that, if elected, you would strike a more bipartisan tone. Isn't it true that Republican leaders stated immediately after President Obama was elected, while the country was still in economic freefall, that they wanted him to fail? Is this the type of bipartisan spirit you have in mind?
(4) Governor Romney, isn't it true that the Republicans in Congress have sabotaged almost every move that President Obama has tried to take to improve the economic situation because they were afraid that a better economic situation would help him get reelected? If the shoe were on the other foot, and the Democrats in Congress behaved this way, wouldn't Rush and Ann Coulter be denouncing their acts as unpatriotic and even treasonous?
(5) Finally, Governor Romney, given your frequent flip flops on every issue of substance, isn't it true that your only core belief is your unshakable conviction that you are somehow entitled to be president?
If you want to see the impact of our failed immigration policies, all we have to do is take a look at what is happening right here in Gwinnett. The other night I was driving home from work when I ran into a huge traffic jam. My first thought was that there must have been an awful accident. As I got closer, I saw what appeared to be a DOI checkpoint. OK, I thought, a little inconvenience is worth it for the worthy goal of safe roads. Now I find out, however, that this is part of a strategy of checkpoints for undocumented Hispanic immigrants. In order not to make the racial profiling too blatant, the police go through the motions of checking everyone, but they are really only interested in our Hispanic neighbors.
A few days later, I watched as five police cars staked out the neighborhood convenience store where Hispanic workers often stop on their way to work in a blatant attempt at intimidation.
Does anyone else find this a little bit creepy, not to mention a poor use of police time and taxpayers' money? While our Hispanic brothers and sisters take the biggest hit, we all suffer collateral damage to our freedoms and our consciences. Do we really want to live in a community that is systematically implementing a strategy of ethnic cleansing and that is looking more and more like a police state with every passing day?
Dr. King said that injustice anywhere diminishes us all. We live in a county that is perpetrating injustice against our neighbors on a massive scale. It is doing this in our names with our tax money. It's about time that we pulled our heads out of the sand and did a little soul-searching. Is this really what we stand for? Is this really the best we can do?
I too commend Rep. Bachmann for her courageous stand. In fact, I urge her to expand her probe and to also investigate the abominable snowman, Bigfoot, the Loch Ness Monster, and the possibility that the earth is flat, rather than round.
I applaud Rep. Bachmann for her keen sense of priorities. It takes true clearsightedness to focus on the really serious threats without allowing oneself to become diverted by pesky but minor problems like the economic downturn, global warming, and gun violence.
Seriously, though, if the Congresswoman has her heart set on investigating nefarious, shadowy forces that infiltrate and corrupt the political process for their own gain while endangering the public safety, I suggest she look elsewhere. I suggest that she expose the way the Koch brothers are trying to buy this election to maximize their profits, the way that private prison corporations are lobbying for Draconian immigration laws that fill their cells and their pockets, the way that the NRA blocks even the mildest, most common-sense restrictions on deadly assault weapons like those used in the Colorado movie theater, and the way that the American Legislative Exchange Council covertly pitches regressive policies on a whole range of issues to receptive legislators.
I guarantee you, the influence peddling you unearth will surpass the most lurid thriller.
Of course, it takes a bit more gumption to go after powerful corporate interests than a lone Muslim woman. There is always political hay to be made by playing on the resentments of those who still haven't got over the fact that we elected a black man as our president.
But I have faith in you, Rep. Bachmann. You can break the mold, stop postering, and investigate a true threat to the public safety, rather than a trumped up one. I know you can do it!
I applaud Chick-fil-A's concern for our moral well-being. Their ownership is clearly uniquely qualified to know what's best for us spiritually.
However, I encourage Chick-fil-A to take this crusade a step further. I am deeply concerned that some of the chickens they are serving may have unwholesome views. How can I be sure that the chickens I and my family are eating are right-thinking Christians? How can I be sure that none of them belong to other faiths, or, even worse, are atheist or agnostic? How can I be sure that none of them belong to unions, or read the New York Times, or listen to NPR, or have had pre-marital sex?
I urge Chick-fil-A to provide its customers with written guarantees that only morally sound, conformist, conventionally thinking chickens are led to the slaughter and end up in my sandwiches.
After all, you are what you eat. I am all for free-range chickens, but if I eat a free-THINKING chicken, I might start thinking myself, and I could end up straying from the straight and narrow road of moral orthodoxy prescribed by our spiritual guides at Chick-fil-A!
Human beings are made in God's image. Assault weapons, which are designed to maim and kill human beings, are not. Elevating assault weapons over the sanctity of human life is idolatry. The NRA, which used to be a sportsmen's organization that supported reasonable gun restrictions before it was hijacked by extremists, has become a purveyor of idolatry.
The kinds of assault weapons used in the Colorado shooting belong in the military. They have no place in civilian life. Making them widely accessible, and even further loosening the nonexistent restrictions on their use, will predictably lead to increasingly frequent repetitions of these tragedies.
These massacres are not acts of God. They are certainly not what our Founding Fathers had in mind. They are a result of conscious choices by gutless politicians -- Democrat and Republican alike -- to elevate political self-interest over public safety and a respect for human life.
Better yet, if the killer hadn't had assault weapons, this wouldn't have happened in the first place.
Every few weeks when one of these tragedies happens, the news media reacts as if it's just an unavoidable act of nature. It's not. It's a completely avoidable result of our country's insane gun laws (or lack thereof). And I've had about enough of it.
Yeah, I know -- guns don't kill people, people kill people. But you can kill a heckuva lot more people a lot faster with an assault weapon than with a knife. Only that kind of firepower allows a maniac to mow down seventy people in seven minutes. Unfortunately, there will always be violent wackos around, but do we really need to enable them to act out their sick fantasies?
Yeah, I know, if we all had guns, we could shoot down the perpetrator. But somehow that never happens in real life. Not a single one of the recent massacres has been prevented that way.
Yeah, I know, if guns are criminalized, only criminals will have guns. But in real life, distinctions aren't that clear-cut. The guy who just want on a rampage in Colorado did not have a criminal record.
I'm all for freedom. But what about freedom from fear? What about the freedom to let our kids go to college or a park or a movie without having to worry about them getting shot up? Without having to be afraid that their or our lives could be snuffed out by a random and completely preventable act of violence.
Folks, this was NOT what our Founding Fathers had in mind. Former Chief Justice Rehnquist -- hardly a bleeding heart liberal -- is on record as saying that the notion that the Founding Fathers sanctioned unrestricted gun ownership is an outrageous fraud perpetrated by the NRA. And there is no way the Founding Fathers could have foreseen the type of weapons used in that Colorado movie theater and the carnage they can wreak. They must be turning over in their graves to hear this freedom to kill being proclaimed in their name.
I'm sick of gutless, politically correct politicians and reporters who kowtow to the NRA and won't call a spade a spade. We don't have to keep letting this happen. It's not inevitable. It's a choice. It's elevating blind ideology and cynical political calculations over public safety and human life. And God help us if we don't do something about it before the next deranged loner gets his hands on a gun.
I hate to break it to you, but if your only argument for extreme immigrant-bashing policies is that they are the law, you are in a pretty feeble position.
Slavery and Jim Crow were also the law in their day. Folks who protested against these policies were branded lawless agitators and dangerous fanatics. Nowadays we put the "law-abiding citizens" who went along with or actively supported these policies in the same category as war criminals who claim that they were "just following orders."
If you want to see where our immigration policies lead, look at the case of the Georgia journalist from El Salvador who is currently facing deportation. Here is a man who clearly faces a well-founded fear of persecution in his country of origin -- extreme rightist forces in El Salvador have threatened his life. In addition, it seems pretty obvious that he is being singled out for his exposes of our government's abuses against immigrants. After all, deportation is a convenient and highly effective way to silence a reporter.
Trying to deport this guy seems like a pretty serious attack on the First Amendment. I was under the impression that this was an important part of the U.S. Constitution that might take precedence over immigrant-bashing. I keep waiting for principled conservatives to speak out against this outrage.
But I guess I'm being naive. I guess that nowadays the politically correct interpretation of the First Amendment is that it only applies to corporate "speech" -- not the voices of pesky dissidents that the Founding Fathers actually intended it to protect.
Maybe we should have deported our county commissioners instead of hardworking immigrants. Based on recent revelations, our county leadership appears to have the skills to flourish in the climate of corruption and drug trafficking in Mexico -- the very conditions that immigrants from that country are fleeing.
One crucial first step is to bar the private prison industry from running detention centers and from lobbying and giving campaign contributions to state legislators. The industry is a walking conflict of interest, and is corrupting the making of immigration policy in Georgia and other states.
Finally, even Supreme Court Chief Justice Roberts, who is hardly known as a liberal do-gooder, just joined a majority of the Supreme Court in ruling that enforcing immigration laws is primarily a federal function, not a state one.
The bottom line is that powerful economic interests benefit from getting cheap labor from undocumented immigrants who are expendable and have no legal protections from exploitation. As usual, our politicians' response is to blame and punish the victims. After all, going after the true culprits would actually require some gumption and thought -- commodities which are in short supply in the Georgia Capitol and the U.S. Congress.
Economic growth and cultural dynamism in this country have always been driven by immigrants, including in many cases undocumented immigrants. The derogatory term "wops," which was applied to Italian immigrants, stood for "without papers." In today's globalized economy, this is truer than ever. We can't expect to force other countries' borders open to our investments and exports while sealing our borders off from the rest of the world.
As for folks who get offended overhearing a few words of Spanish -- relax! It's a beautiful language, and easy to learn. I used to live on the border, and greatly enjoyed hearing people switch back and forth from English and Spanish in the same sentence without even being aware of it. And the people who lived there were some of the most patriotic people I've ever known, with high rates of military service. I'd rather listen to Spanish conversation than English hate-speech any day.
Last login: Saturday, March 30, 2013