Skip to content

Wonders never cease

11 May 2010

… a growing chorus of conservative evangelical leaders has broken with their traditional political allies on the right. They’re calling the Arizona law misguided and are attempting to use its passage to push for federal immigration reform that includes a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants.

The group, which includes influential political activists such as Richard Land, head of the Southern Baptist Convention’s public policy wing, and Mathew Staver, dean of the Liberty University School of Law, will soon begin lobbying Republican leaders in Washington to support comprehensive immigration reform under President Obama.

“Discussion of immigration and government immigration policy must begin with the truth that every human being is made in the image of God,” the National Association of Evangelicals said in a recent resolution backing comprehensive immigration reform. “… Jesus exemplifies respect toward others who are different in his treatment of the Samaritans.”

But evangelical leaders are also working to convince Republicans that the party will lose Hispanic voters — a fast-growing bloc — if they take a strident line on immigration.

The Southern Baptist Convention’s Land said that Hispanics, like non-Hispanic white evangelicals, generally take a conservative approach to social issues like abortion and gay marriage, but that they often vote for Democrats because of the immigration issue.

“Hispanics are hard-wired to be like us on sanctity of life, marriage and issues of faith,” said Land, describing political similarities between Hispanics and white Southern Baptists. “I’m concerned about being perceived as being unwelcoming to them.”                                (CNN)

I’m certain this is good news, but I wonder about that “hard-wired” remark.  It sounds as if Richard Land thinks people’s political and social attitudes are embedded in one’s DNA, or that “all Hispanics think alike” … or that… somehow Latin American immigrants to the United States, unlike every other immigrant group (or any human group) is going to maintain the same customs and attitudes held by their ancestors.

Oh well… it’s a refreshing change from the conservatives who used to carp that Latin American immigrants were either too Catholic or too Marxist.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. Fulano permalink
    11 May 2010 4:43 pm

    You do a disservice when you cherry-pick the news to show only that what happens to coincide with your personal views and report the minority view as if it was the majority view. The bigger reality is AZ 1070 is widely supported in the US, and not just only by white America. The latest poll shots 58% of Americans approve of the law, while only 28% disapprove (that’s a 2-to-1 lead). And 57% of those who don’t live in Arizona want their own state to pass such a law. 29% of Hispanics approve of the Arizona law. Just over half (51%) strongly disapprove of it.

  2. 11 May 2010 6:38 pm

    From today’s Arizona Republic:


    • Favored: 52 percent.
    • Opposed: 39 percent.
    • Unsure: 9 percent.


    • Favored: 76 percent.
    • Opposed: 15 percent.
    • Unsure: 9 percent.


    • Favored: 65 percent.
    • Opposed: 28 percent.
    • Unsure: 7 percent.

    Registered voters

    • Favored: 56 percent.
    • Opposed: 34 percent.
    • Unsure: 10 percent.


    • Favored: 30 percent.
    • Opposed: 58 percent.
    • Unsure: 12 percent.


    • Favored: 21 percent.
    • Opposed: 69 percent.

    Read more:

    Since when does civil rights (or adherence to the International Charter of Human Rights) depend on what polls say?

    Besides, if I chose to report on the Southern Baptist Convention’s position on an issue of public interest, it’s my website.

  3. Fulano permalink
    11 May 2010 8:57 pm


    A persons’s Civil Rights are defined in the law. The law is created by the people through their legislatures. Civil Rights are not what a person in the blogosphere says they are. They are what the people have enacted as laws. Obama won the general election in 2008 with 53% of the popular vote. 58% of Americans approve of AZ 1070. AZ 1070 is more popular than Obama.

    Doesn’t it bother you even a little that your whole cohort has not been able to show even one documented and adjudicated case where anyones civil rights have been violated by the application of AZ 1070, or even since AZ1070 was enacted and is not yet in effect?

    Do your homework. Dig up an arrest record where an Arizona peace officer arrested a person who was stopped for no other cause than the color of his skin, then asked for papers, and deported. You will find plenty of cases where CBP has done that, but they are allowed to do that. Their right to do that was challenged all the way up to the Supreme Court and was upheld. Why would you protest about what you imagine an Arizona cop might do, when CBP already does it every day…and it is PERFECTLY LEGAL?

  4. el_longhorn permalink
    12 May 2010 12:30 pm

    Actually, civil rights are mostly a constitutional construction, not something subject to the whims of any given legislature. Wise men, those authors of the US Constitution. Most importantly, the Constitution guarantees equal protection under the law. Laws that target (either through intent or practice) certain ethnic or religious minorities are inherently suspect under the Constitution. This one is going to have a tough time surviving a judicial challenge.

    And CBP does have virtually unlimited authority to detain and question in the border area (which I disagree with – I didn’t realize that the 4th amendment had an “except for the border area” exception). But the border area does not cover the entire state of Arizona. Thus the powers given to the police are unprecedented.

    And, by the way, polls don’t factor into the constitutional analysis. Even if the racial/ethnic discrimination is REALLY, REALLY popular, it’s still unconstitutional!

  5. Ken permalink
    14 May 2010 2:21 pm

    We all know that if I(a gringo) attempt a crime or commit a crime in Mexico that my residency status will be checked. US citizens in Mexico without proper paper work cannot get a job, get utilities turned on, etc and if apprehended spend time in jail. Why should it be different in the USA?
    I do have the paperwork required to live in Mexico. Why should Mexicans not be required to have US paperwork to live and work in the US? I know you have the proper paperwork to live and work in Mexico. Why should there be a double standard?
    I enjoy reading your blog. I am sorry more gringos don’t get to read of America’s involvement/interference in Latin America. Keep up the good work.


    • 15 May 2010 5:51 am

      In the early 2000s, back when unauthorized residency in Mexico could result in jail time, I was able to rent an apartment and — while the water and electricity was listed in a different name — I had no trouble getting telephone service in my name. During my few “lawful contacts” with the police (once after a car accident in which I was a passenger, and once assisting a robbery victim) the police didn’t ask for any citizenship papers, nor would they. And they wouldn’t be subject to lawsuits for failure to do so. Had I been arrested for something (and a lot of what are regulatory offense in most of the world are criminal offenses in the United States) I would have expected consular assistance at a minimum.

Leave a reply, but please stick to the topic

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: