Skip to comments.Don't assume U.S. Hispanics are soft on immigration
Posted on 08/24/2005 5:30:08 AM PDT by Happy2BMe
Don't assume U.S. Hispanics are soft on immigration
SAN DIEGO I glean from my e-mail that some people are convinced that since most immigrants to the United States today come from Latin America U.S.-born Hispanics are somehow ancestrally predisposed to be soft on immigration restrictions.
The assumption is that most Hispanic Americans support a more porous border, weaker immigration laws, expanded benefits and privileges for illegal immigrants, and as much legal immigration as possible.
Mexican Americans, in particular, are assumed to have just one priority in this debate: to sneak in as many of their relatives as they can.
That goes double for Mexican-American columnists. Many readers are furious at me for supporting an open border, amnesty and the issuance of driver's licenses to illegal immigrants. The trouble is, I don't support any of those things and I've written as much many times before.
Still, whenever I write about immigration, I get e-mails that read: "If you could separate your heritage ... you could help all of us do what is necessary."
Or as one put it, sweet as you please: "I think most folks will understand that you are for the Mexican invasion because you are Mexican."
What is mind-boggling is that some of these same people will then turn around and tell you with a straight face that they're not prejudiced and then go even further and insist that there's not a trace of prejudice or other forms of bigotry in the anti-illegal immigration movement.
Here's a news flash: When someone assumes that a whole group of people is, solely because of ethnicity, likely to believe a certain way, that's prejudice.
It is also preposterous. According to every poll taking the pulse of Hispanics in the past decade, this population takes seriously the issue of illegal immigration. That includes Mexican Americans, the one subgroup that you might think because of their ancestors' experience would be most sympathetic to immigrants, even illegal ones.
One of the latest polls appeared in last week's issue of Time magazine, in which 61 percent of Hispanics rated illegal immigration a "serious problem."
Then there was the recent survey put out by the Pew Hispanic Center, which measured the views of both native-born Hispanics and immigrants. It found that a majority of U.S.-born Hispanics (60 percent) support laws that deny driver's licenses to illegal immigrants.
It also found substantial support for the view that the number of legal immigrants admitted to the United States should stay the same (44 percent) or be reduced (16 percent); only 28 percent said the number should be increased. Most native-born Hispanics also said that illegal immigrants help the economy by providing cheap labor (55 percent), but the percentage of those who felt illegal immigrants hurt the economy (34 percent) was not far behind. In every respect, the study says, "native-born Latinos are less enthusiastic about immigration than the foreign born."
So why isn't that message getting through? For one thing, those left-leaning Hispanic advocacy groups only confuse things when they try to speak about an issue on which they don't speak for the majority of Hispanics. Then there's the fact that a lot of Hispanics aren't anxious to identify with the anti-illegal immigration crowd. And it's easy to see why. Some of their proposed cures like stationing the National Guard on the border or scrapping the 14th Amendment so as to deny U.S. citizenship to the U.S.-born children of illegal immigrants are worse than the disease.
But for those familiar with U.S.-born Hispanics, the results of polls and surveys will come as no surprise. This is a community that doesn't take lightly matters of law and order or condone the fact that there are those who break the rules while others follow them. And it is full of people who have been known to, on occasion, resent those who once they get here defiantly, or lazily, refuse to assimilate by learning English and blending into the mainstream the way their parents and grandparents did.
Sound familiar? Like the Irish, Italians, Germans and others who came before them, there are plenty of Hispanics who played by the rules to get here and couldn't wait to become part of society once they arrived. And they're not eager to put up with less from anyone else.
Nor should they have to put up with ignorant accusations from those who criticize what they don't understand.
Not here in New Mexico. The old families have been here for 300+ years and don't like anyone who's showed up since 1847, no matter where they come from.
IMHO American Hispanics fully understand that their way of life if directly threatened by the illegal alien invasion from Mexico.
More of them need to speak out on the subject . .
But for those familiar with U.S.-born Hispanics, the results of polls and surveys will come as no surprise.
This is a community that doesn't take lightly matters of law and order or condone the fact that there are those who break the rules while others follow them.
And it is full of people who have been known to, on occasion, resent those who once they get here defiantly, or lazily, refuse to assimilate by learning English and blending into the mainstream the way their parents and grandparents did.
It's like that for us spanish folks in Florida too. We've been here for 100 years. We just don't like lawbreakers.
If they don't like illegal immigration, then why do they keep electing politicians who support it?
The illegal invasion has EXPLODED just in the past five years.
This issue has nothing whatsoever to do with prejudice of any kind.
A nation must secure its borders. Is there anything hard to understand about that?
There is racial prejudice - that is the nature of man and there is nothing that politics will ever do to correct that.
There is racial prejudice in every movement. LULAC has it. CAIR has it. The ACLU has it. The NAACP has it and of course the KKK has it.
It is wrong. Period.
Racial profiling is wrong also. There is as much racial profiling against the members of the MinuteMan Project for example as any other activist group.
However, the MMP is racially diverse with concerned Americans from every ethnic group in the country actively involved.
That is the difference.
Sure there's a lot of prejudice, but that still doesn't have anything to do with what I said and that is: "A nation must secure its borders."
" Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children's children what it was once like in the United States where men were free" -- Ronald Reagan
In fact, those values may well be the key to Karl Rove's incredibly cynical policy on illegal immigration. I believe he reasons that given the some of the transnational commonalities of "Latin Culture," latinos will become the Republicans of the Future. He also reasons that these huge numbers are illegal now, but of course, will be less so in the following generations.
Where I think Karl and the GOP are way off-base is that they never, NEVER, saw this occurring in a wave of immigration so massive it dwarfs all others that came before it. They were thinking "Italian," 3-4 million folks ...not Mexican, with 30 million, or god help us Brazilian, with enough people to truly swamp us. And I don't believe they ever factored in the growing wave from South America.
THe GOP bent the law to gain a future advantage, and now it's springing back to hurt them badly.
I resemble that remark. And, they're still coming! Bringing things like beans in their chili, tofu, etc., it's an outrage!!!
I'm just here for the green chili! ;)
Just don't contaminate it with Northern Beans or Navy Beans or any kind of beans, and we'll be fine.
Where I live, the Hispanic leaders and business groups have endorsed Republican candidates in all political races except perhaps a few local ones. Generally, if exit polling were done on "3rd generation and back Hispanics" versus "2nd generation and newer Hispanics", you'd see a world of difference. (They're not really even the same group, culturally, IMO). That's the point of the article.
Voting GOP is not necessarily voting against illegal immigration, though. I am sure that there are candidates out their who would be willing to stop illegal immigration if a majority would support doing so. But for some reason, those guys never get elected.
Unfortunately, you're right. But I just wanted to be sure you knew that the hispanics to whom I'm referring aren't necessarilly casting their votes based on who is more "friendly" to illegal immigration. They, like much of America have been casting their votes based on who is more friendly to dry cleaners (if that's the business they're in) or farmers (if that's the business they're in) or the unborn (if that's their chief concern), etc.
I think only an ignoramus would claim there is no prejudice toward Hispanics because of this problem. There is. But I also believe that most real Americans believe our borders ought to be secured -- period. There is no excuse for what is going on. If people, from anywhere, want to come here to work or visit, that is fine, but at least we ought to know who they are, where they are, and that they leave when it is their time to leave. Why the politicians don't understand this, I'll never know.
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