"Prominent Latino leaders in California on Tuesday played down death threats apparently sparked by the divisive debate over illegal immigration."
Los Angeles Mayor (and former Assembly Leader) Antonio Villaraigosa and Lieutenant Governor Cruz Bustamante have each been receiving "hateful" and "disturbing" threats, though each have refused to give in to terror by stepping up their security or cutting down on their public appearances.
What could have been a calm discussion about immigration policy has lost any hope of being other than the primary wedge issue of the mid-term election season. One side of me is always looking for conspiracies, and wondering if this is all just political slight-of-hand to keep our thoughts away from Iraq and out-of-control gas prices. I want to believe the conspiracy theories only because I don't want to believe that my fellow Californians are really that ignorant and dangerous.
Do they really think that threatening (local) elected officials will have some effect on national policy? Or are they simply the racist slime that's always been there, hiding in their hovels, waiting for a moment when they think the public is ready to accept their filth?
Anybody who thinks that all the fighting, debating, and protesting going on is really about immigration, and isn't about racism is just as ignorant as those making the threats. Look, neither Villaraigosa nor Bustamante are immigrants. Governor Schwarzenegger - who has not been threatened - is.
Americans aren't afraid of immigrants; we have them in all our families. But, a very vocal percentage of Americans are afraid of brown people. Resist their arguments for deportation in the name of "national security:" it's nothing but racism, pure and simple. These threats - horrible as they are - have exposed that truth.
Tags: immigration, national security, current affairs, racism, California, politics