Sunday, April 09, 2006

The "threat" of Illegal Immigrants.

Today’s Meet the Press, (here's the transcript) illustrates the point I made in the previous post. One of the guests was Rep. J.D. Hayworth, (R-AZ), author of "Whatever It Takes: Illegal Immigration, Border Security and the War on Terror" who said that:

This is first and foremost and always about national security in a time of war, and the longer we neglect our borders, north and south, and our ports of entry, the more our nation is in peril.
As for the other Republican Representative, Bonilla (R-Tx Rep), he raised the flag-waving issue. A very American (patriotic) theme indeed.
Well, I think when you come here and wave a Mexican flag in our face in a country that’s giving a lot of these people an opportunity that they’ve never had before, I think a lot of Americans are insulted, whether they’re first-, second-, third-, fourth- or fifth-generation Americans.
Democratic Representative Gutierrez from Illinois answered rightfully that there’s also a lot of Irish flags on Saint Patrick's Day [and nobody complains ] and we can look at it as a celebration of diversity.

Now, I have no particular solution for “illegal immigrant” problem but I find this dicussion a load of crap. Whereas illegal immigration is becoming a universal theme in the West, using words like “terror” with “immigrants” as in Hayworth's book, or claiming that waving a flag is insulting is inappropriate. In fact it is sheer propaganda based on people’s irrational fear of “the other”, whatever is different. That's nothing new. That's how the Nazis got elected. And more recently, it worked for Iraq... so why not?

Here's how Bonilla put it:

But again, to dealing with border security, is an issue that—it’s like having a fire in the back of your house that you need to put out first before you talk about who, who you’re going to let in the front door.

The funny thing is that Europe and the US have similar problems and some of their political leaders on both continents address those important issues too often with bigotry, jingoism and racism. Not a very constructive method, now is it?

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