Monday, May 17, 2010

Stoking the Flames of Division

You've heard, no doubt, that Los Angeles is boycotting Arizona over their new immigration law which, like our attorney general who seems never to pass up an opportunity to erode our confidence in his judgment and competence, the good people of L.A. probably haven't read.

I wonder if, when California comes hat in hand to the federal government to bail them out of the fiscal mess they've spent themselves into, they'll demand that no Arizona tax dollars sully the offering we make toward sustaining their welfare state. I wonder, too, if Los Angeles will boycott the nine or so other states considering measures similar to the Arizona law.

Perhaps Los Angeles should just secede from the union and become a part of Mexico. I, for one, would not object. Or, borrowing an idea advanced by Hot Air, perhaps L.A. might be persuaded to take in all of Arizona's illegals so Arizona doesn't have to send them back to Mexico and points south. The city fathers of L.A. are so irate that Arizona may be deporting people who shouldn't be in the U.S., maybe they should show how deeply compassionate they are by doing something substantive and volunteering to house, feed, clothe, and educate them themselves. Do you think they will?Neither do I.

At any rate, the president's role in this contretemps has been very disappointing. He should have and could have been a healer in the midst of conflict. He could have talked about how the federal government needs to be more responsive to the needs and frustrations of Arizonans and more responsible in enforcing the law. He could have talked about how immigrants need to obey our laws and enter the country properly. He could have talked about how Americans and legal immigrants could work together to find solutions to this difficult problem. He could have actually read the law before he piped up about it, and pointed out that the worst fears of the Hispanic community about the law are unwarranted. But no. Regrettably, like a good disciple of Saul Alinsky he chose instead to be incendiary and suggest that the people of Arizona were bigots, that the law was irresponsible, and that Hispanics would be oppressed and hassled by the police as a result of it.

His words provided all the encouragement that the left and Hispanics needed to take to the streets and start demanding that Arizona be punished for not allowing itself to be overrun by hordes of poor people and criminals. Now, as a result of the president's demogoguery, we have states pitted against each other, people on all sides are extremely angry with each other, and inter-ethnic hatreds are swelling. Well played, Mr. President.

Anyway, here's Allahpundit at Hot Air suggesting that this episode is actually, if you can imagine it, being manipulated by our leadership for political gain:

[T]he left isn't interested in the facts about this. That was my point yesterday about Holder admitting that he hasn't read the statute. If he reads it then he's accountable for smearing it; better to stay ignorant and smear away for as long as possible and then, when called on it, grudgingly chalk it up to being misinformed. Besides, ever since the law was amended to ban racial profiling, the critique has shifted to how it'll be applied in practice by cops, not how it looks on the page. Even if it's found constitutional - and it very well may be - it'll take months of proper enforcement by Arizona police before that point can be factually challenged. For another thing, there's too much political skin in this game for the hysterics to relax. A Univision poll shows that 67 percent of Latinos oppose the law even though national majorities are strongly in favor. Democrats aren't going to pass amnesty this year so screaming "Nazi!" is their best chance to lock in Hispanic voters for the midterms and beyond. Look at it this way: When you've got the Simon Wiesenthal Center issuing statements deploring the sort of rhetoric being tossed at Arizona, you're way too far into Godwinland ever to make it back out. As a wise man once said, you can't reason a man out of that which he wasn't reasoned into...

At some point people have just got to say that they no longer care what the liberal elites say or think of them. They're going to do the right thing, they're going to enforce the law, they're going to protect themselves and their state from financial ruin, and if Los Angeles and the President don't like it they can go pound sand. We need more people in positions of leadership like, well, like New Jersey's Governor Chris Christie, for example:

Gov Christie calls S-L columnist thin-skinned for inquiring about his 'confrontational tone'

Maybe New Jersey will pass a law like Arizona's. I hope so. I'd love to hear Christie's reaction to a threat from Los Angeles to boycott New Jersey.


None Dare Call Them Radical

One of the reasons so few conservatives have confidence in Attorney General Eric Holder's judgment is that, though he had no trouble calling white America a nation of cowards and the Bush administration a bunch of war criminals, he just can't bring himself to say that Muslim terrorists are radical Islamic extremists, or even acknowledge that the phrase is meaningful:

It really shouldn't be hard to attribute acts of terror by people like the Times Square bomber, the Christmas bomber, or the Fort Hood shooter to Islamic extremism, a term which seems to some Americans to be a redundancy.

Islamists, i.e. the millions of Muslims who embrace or support militant jihad, see themselves as engaged in a holy war against religious infidelity. The Koran encourages them to kill those who refuse to accept the teachings of the Prophet, especially the Jews and whoever supports the Jews. Those who in the 1990s attacked the World Trade Towers, the U.S.S. Cole, and the Khobar Towers, those who hijacked the planes on 9/11, and all those who have come after, share one thing in common - they believe they're doing the will of Allah. They are radical Islamists. Holder's reluctance to admit this is deeply troubling, especially since he leaves us with only a narrow range of possible explanations for his demurral:

He's either very naive, very uninformed, very dumb, or, most troubling of all, very reluctant to impugn people with whom he feels a measure of sympathy. Whichever of these is the case, it's not good.