By Joe Guzzardi

The countdown to VDARE.COM’s Fifth Annual Worst Immigration Reporting Award is underway. It comes at a time when a new attack on “Hate Speech”—a.k.a. free speech, the honest discussion of what I’ve called “hate facts”—is looming.

Within the next thirty days we’ll announce who during 2008, among the dozens of candidates, has consistently written the least professional immigration stories on America’s most important topic.

Because we have so many rotten reporters to choose from, VDARE.COM will not bestow its award more than once to any journalist.

And that must disappoint Newsday’s Bart Jones, [e-mail him] the 2006 co-winner with his equally unprincipled colleague Mae Cheng. [e-mail her]

Based on Jones’ coverage of the recent murder of illegal alien Ecuadorian Marcelo Lucero, he could easily qualify were he not an earlier honoree.

If I didn’t know better, I’d bet that Jones’ stories, as well as the entire Newsday treatment of the Lucero incident highlighted by its character assassination of Suffolk County executive Steve Levy, could have been written and edited by La Raza’s Janet Murguia.

I hate to disappoint Jones. So let’s take a moment to have a little fun at Jones’ expense by picking apart his cornerstone sob story. [Lucero’s Family Hosts Mass at Home He Helped Build, Bart Jones, Newsday, November 17, 2008]

Jones, who filed from Ecuador, loves the Mass angle, mentioning it five times in his 800-word story intending to build sympathy for more illegal immigration. (Aside: Newsday still hasn’t recovered from its circulation scandal of two years ago. Advertising revenues remain soft. Company layoffs and buyouts have been ongoing since 2004. Yet, it foots the bill to send a reporter to Ecuador?)

To re-emphasize his point that the Lucero family is religious, Jones also included two references to the deceased’s wake. Religion is one of many common denominators in MainStream Media illegal immigration stories. The objective is to hammer home the message: illegals good; Americans bad!

In addition to the curious coincidence that such a high percentage of immigration stories involve deeply religious illegal aliens, there’s another statistical oddity: the high incidents of critical illnesses among the protagonists.

In the case of the Luceros, Marcelo’s father died of a heart attack and his mother survived a cancer scare.

I know that being cynical about their faith and skeptical about their health makes me appear insensitive, especially to readers less hardened than myself.

The reality is, however, that over the last fifteen years, it has been one of my jobs to read mainstream media immigration stories—first for Californians for Population Stabilization, then for NumbersUSA.Com and now for VDARE.COM

Having now read several thousand putrid stories, I’ve developed a tough stomach. And after a few years, I’ve been struck by the amazing quirk that such a large number of aliens are so religious and so sickly.

Somewhere out there must live an illegal alien who’s a heathen. And with all the free health care they receive, somebody should be in good physical condition.

Back to our “Worst Annual Immigration Reporting” award. Jones’ story caught my eye because since 2003 when we first introduced our contest, the stakes have gotten higher.

Five years ago, we had a two-fold objective:

  • To raise awareness among the general public on just how shoddy immigration coverage is.

     

  • And, helpfully, to educate reporters and editors that better stories evolve from fair and balanced copy.

We did well on the first part of our mission. Every single patriotic immigration reform proponent knows exactly how dismally the media presents our issue.

Of course, on our second goal, the odds against us were too long to achieve total success.

Still, we soldier on.

But today, instead of a didactic crusade, we’re fighting a defensive battle to preserve our First Amendment rights.

Brenda Walker wrote last week about the New York Times and its ratcheting up efforts to squash any immigration points of view it doesn’t cotton to.

The Newsday/Jones/ Lucero case is an excellent example of what we’re up against.

In a follow-up story to Jones’ piece, Newsday reporter Juliann Vachon stacked the deck against Levy [Civil Rights Leaders Denounce Levy, Media After Slaying, By Juliann Vachon, Newsday, November 25, 2008]

To save you time and trouble, I’ll fill you in on the details:  

Murguia charged that Levy has taken:

"…A notably hard line against immigrants in his county, and has been lauded by cable hosts like Lou Dobbs as a folk hero. Suffolk County is a particularly good example of elected officials stoking the fires of anti-immigrant sentiment.

She added that:

“For two years we have urged politicians and members of the media to show some restraint in echoing the damaging rhetoric that demonizes our communities."

Lucero’s murder, Murguia said, is the latest “wake up call.”

Representatives from other “civil rights groups—as they refer to themselves— joined Murguia in her attack on Levy: the Asian-American Justice Center, the Anti-Defamation League, the National Urban League, the NAACP, the Mexican American Legal Defense Fund, Suffolk County Human Rights Commission and the Educational Fund and the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights.

In his defense, Levy made the perfectly logical observation that:

“It is reprehensible that anyone would suggest that the tens of millions of Americans who favor secure borders are necessarily intolerant or bigoted. Since when is enforcing the law seen as something negative and inflammatory?”

But that’s exactly where the argument is. If you speak out against immigration, even illegal immigration, the civil rights groups come after you and the MSM backs them up every inch of the way.

Think about that—self-appointed civil rights groups opposed to free speech!

This isn’t a new trend, but it’s a growing one.

So far, Americans still have First Amendment rights…technically.

Murguia and others like her have done a good job at chipping away at them. The press glorifies her while it marginalizes Levy (and ignores VDARE.COM) for defending our country’s laws.

Today, no American can speak frankly about race, religion, or sexual orientation in the US and keep his job. Multiculturalism demands that every characteristic of any of the ethnic groups must be accepted uncritically or not mentioned at all.

If we aren’t careful, and with the Fairness Doctrine looming, the U.S. might end with soft totalitarianism, up like our neighbor to the north, Canada, or the once-proud Britain and France.

It can happen here. Heaven help us—and America—if it does.