Thursday, December 11, 2008

MALDEF CALLS FOR NATIONAL ACTION IN WAKE OF KILLING OF THIRD LATINO VICTIM OF A HATE CRIME IN FIVE MONTHS

As we have reported, hate crimes against Latinos are at record levels.  Today, Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF) President & General Counsel John Trasviña called upon leaders across all communities to unite and speak out against hate violence:

“We mourn and are outraged by the murder in Brooklyn, New York of Jose Osvaldo Sucuzhañay, whose life was violently taken by a group of people, and whose crime, according to witnesses, was motivated by hate-filled bigotry. Only one month ago, 37-year old Marcello Lucero was ferociously beaten and fatally stabbed in Long Island, New York by a group of teenagers who hunted him down simply for being Latino. In July, 25-year old Luis Ramirez lost his life after he was knocked unconscious and kicked in the head by a group of Shenandoah, Pennsylvania teenagers who yelled racial epithets before and during the brutal beating. We extend our sympathies to their families and loved ones. In the past several years, hate crimes against Latinos have risen 40 percent. This is a national epidemic whose growth is spurred each day by hate speech and anti-immigrant sentiment expressed on cable shows, local radio shows and across the airwaves. National legislation, such as the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crime Prevention Act, must be a top priority for Congress and the new Administration, but it is not sufficient to reach the hate that threatens to pervade local communities. This drastic rise of hate crimes against Latinos, not coincidentally, has occurred during the same years in which there has been an explosive rebirth of extremist anti-immigrant rhetoric and measures. The serious topic of immigration has been contaminated by hatred and racism, and has created a toxic climate which fosters and condones violence and civil rights violations motivated by bigotry. In seeking to enact unconstitutional anti-immigrant ordinances, irresponsible elected officials spew inflammatory rhetoric that depicts undocumented immigrants as parasites and the root cause of the nation’s fallen economy. Television and radio personalities spread misinformation and stereotypes that criminalize and dehumanize Latino immigrants. Meanwhile, white supremacist groups are using this anti-immigrant wave to promote their racist groups and promote violent acts against Latinos. Collectively, the messages and norms they seek to establish are that immigrants are less human and less worthy, and do not merit basic human rights protections our Constitution demands. These messages have begun to infect too many Americans, and they are being manifested through violence. Unfortunately, our elected leaders have failed to recognize and condemn this national crisis, the media has largely remained silent, and families have not acted to protect their children from being infected from this hatred. As proven by this year’s historic election, the great majority of Americans have defeated artificial barriers of racism and ushered us into a new era. After over a century of struggle for freedom and democracy irrespective of race, Americans have abolished the disease of racial hatred; however, a virus continues to linger with some, and we must not allow it to proliferate. There are those that may believe that racism and xenophobia will always exist, but it must not exist in our country, in our democratic institutions, in our schools, and in our homes. We must be ever-vigilant, and stamp it out where we see it. MALDEF calls upon our national representatives, faith leaders, educators, and parents to stand up and take immediate action against this national wave of hatred. We again call on Congress and the next President to fix our broken, archaic immigration system to establish national immigration priorities, including community integration that serves the nation’s interests, allows newcomers to work with legal status and protections against exploitation, and safeguards the nation’s communities. Local and federal authorities must prosecute hate crimes to the fullest extent under law. Local officials and media personalities must take responsibility for the consequences of their extremist rhetoric and should spread messages of respect and tolerance. Most importantly, we call on all Americans to unite against this wave of hatred and defeat the hate and violence. It is unacceptable and we must stop it now.”

KJ

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/immigration/2008/12/maldef-calls-fo.html

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Comments

That's more of a screed than I'm used to from him.

'We must be ever-vigilant, and stamp it out where we see it.'

Stamp it out? When I here talk like that I worry that what they want to trample underfoot is the First Amendment.


'The serious topic of immigration has been contaminated by hatred and racism...'

What about ad hominem attacks, accusing opponents of 'hate speech', heatedly throwing around Nazi jargon, etc? They want to keep the topic pure all right--purely limited to those who pretty much agree with them.


'In seeking to enact unconstitutional anti-immigrant ordinances...'

Civil libertarians think a lot of the hate crime laws you want prosecuted to the fullest are unconstitutional.


'There are those that may believe that racism and xenophobia will always exist, but it must not exist in our country'

There he goes again! Americans have the right to be bigots, xenophobes, for no borders, for no immigration, irrational immigration fetishists or irrational immigration scapegoaters. You can hate anything you want for whatever reason or for no reason. It's not up to you, John. We're going to get it all so long as we have freedom. Anyone who claims any idea 'must not exist' sounds like an enemy of freedom.


'serves the nation’s interests'

John, you refer to 'national interest' a lot but you're part of a group which exists to promote the interests of an ethnicity and, despite the 'A' in MALDEF, whether they are American or not--a SPECIAL interest, and not even a purely American special interest. In your 'About Us' section it refers to 'Latinos living in the United States' (which includes non-Americans) as opposed to Latino Americans. MALDEF is thus twice removed from representing the national interest.

Based on your group's mission statement, it is irrelevant whether, e.g., amnesty is in the national interest or not. Because it affects non-Americans of the ethnicity you represent who are living in the U.S., you're going to favor it regardless of whether it's good policy for the nation as a whole. That's why it's ridiculous for Teddy Kennedy to make La Raza and similar groups his 'stakeholders' at the immigration policy making table when they represent a special interest and immigration is a national issue.

Posted by: Jack | Dec 11, 2008 6:25:41 PM

This story is getting old. Today, CNN is covering it in their morning news. The only take-away point is that MALDEF is trying to get into the money-making race-racket just like the Southern Poverty Law Center.

BUT GUESS WHAT?

Since this happened, plenty of Americans have been killed by illegal alien Latinos and Latinas. It makes this one death no more significant than any of the other other under-reported killings of Americans.

How about the three non-citizens who killed and burned to death 83-year-old Lila Meizell a couple weeks back? This was, of course, after they took a $75 check she gave them for yardwork and then forged it into a check for $75,000. Jobs Americans won't do, I guess. http://www.gazette.net/stories/12032008/montnew164722_32485.shtml

And what about the double-murder of an elderly couple in D.C. just a couple of weeks ago? The Spevak's thought they were being friendly by letting an illegal alien Latina into their home. Well, this Latina decided to help her illegal alien Latino friends into the home so that they could rob the couple and strangle and slash them to death. http://www.wtop.com/?nid=596&sid=1528482

None of these murders made the national media, and it seems that when an American is killed by a non-citizen, CNN/MSNBC/FOXNEWS/ABC/CBS just don't care. And neither does MALDEF.

But yet, the anarchists at MALDEF think that "media and radio personalities" are causing people to think Latinos are causing crime. No, MALDEF, it's incidents like these which illustrate that Americans would still be alive if these illegal aliens were not in the country to begin with.

MALDEF's open-border agenda killed this individuals. And for this anarchy group to scream about the sky falling after the death of one Latino... well, it's pretty intellectually dishonest, and ultimately pathetic.

Posted by: J.D. | Dec 15, 2008 7:12:14 AM

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