Illegal Immigration, Santa Muerte, and Religious Fear-Mongering

Jason Pitzl-Waters —  September 9, 2011 — 183 Comments

Last year I warned that intensifying polarization over the issue of illegal immigration was leading to the demonization of Santeria and related syncretic faiths practiced by immigrants. Since then things have only gotten worse, especially in Arizona where a series of draconian lawsincluding one tailored to eliminate public school classes that are seen as too Mexican-focused, have deepened divisions. It didn’t have to be this way, many prominent conservatives, including George W. Bush, Orrin HatchCharles HagelRichard Lugar, and John McCain once supported compromise legislation like the DREAM Act, and  large swathes of Americans (including conservatives) support establishing a path to citizenship. I note this because I don’t think finding solutions to immigration issues has to be partisan, and that politicians who employ “kick ‘em all out” rhetoric are unwittingly feeding something ugly that they may not be able to control. I say this as preface to a startlingly ugly editorial in the Telegraph by conservative historian Tim Stanley, who frames illegal immigration not simply in terms of economics or crime, but as a religious war with a “Mexican death cult.”

Santa Muerte

“…the debate about illegal immigration isn’t just about competition over jobs or lingering white racism. Many Americans share the European fear that mass migration is subverting their democratic culture from within. In the same way that exotic cells of Jihadists have established themselves in London and Paris, criminal gangs motivated by bloodlust and kinky spiritualism have been found living in the suburbs of Boston and Atlanta. One of its many manifestations is the cult of Santa Meurte. […] Tens of thousands of Mexicans living in America venerate Santa Muerte and have no association with crime. Nor is the cult purely ethnic: in North California, the Santisima Muerte Chapel of Perpetual Pilgrimage is tended by a woman of Dutch-American descent. But the prevalence of Santa Muerte imagery among drug traffickers injects an interesting cultural dimension to the debate over illegal immigration. It accentuates American fears that the drug war in Mexico is turning into an invasion of the USA by antidemocratic fanatics.”

While Stanley does include the disclaimer that many Mexicans who venerate Santa Muerte aren’t criminals, that is more than counter-balanced by connecting Santa Muerte to Muslim extremism over and over again.

“The goal of these groups is to undermine democracy and govern autonomous secret societies through family, blood and religion. […] in Mexico, family and religion filled the vacuum left by the failure of socialism.”

I would recommend not reading the comments section of this editorial as it makes the most heated debates here at The Wild Hunt look like happy playtime, but there was one comment I thought was worth mentioning from R. Andrew Chestnut, author of the forthcoming book “Devoted to Death: Santa Muerte, the Skeleton Saint” from Oxford University Press.

“The more “vicious threat” we face than Santa Muerte worshipers is our own insatiable demand for the methamphetamines, marihuana, and heroin supplied by the narco cartels. Moreover, Santa Muete (Saint Death) is a more complex folk saint than the demonic Grim Reapress of your piece. She aslo has many devotees among Mexican law enforcement.”

Indeed, if there’s a spiritual war being waged, it’s internal, not external.

“In secret meetings that draw on elements of Haitian Voodoo, Cuban Santeria and Mexican witchcraft, priests are slaughtering chickens on full moon nights on beaches, smearing police with the blood and using prayers to evoke spirits to guard them as drug cartels battle over smuggling routes into California. Other police in the city of Tijuana, across the border from San Diego, tattoo their bodies with Voodoo symbols, believing they can repel bullets.”

The worship of Santa Muerte is a complex thing, not easily used as proof of some sort of larger constructed “Mexican death cultists vs. United States Christian values” meme, and certainly not limited to being a “narco-saint”.

The authorities have condemned Santa Muerte as a “narco-saint,” worshipped by drug traffickers, cartel assassins and dope slingers. But the worship is more a reflection of contemporary Mexico, says the anthropologist J. Katia Perdigón Castañeda, the author of “La Santa Muerte: Protector of Mankind.” The cult is an urban pop amalgam, New Age meets heavy metal meets Virgin of Guadalupe. It is no accident that it is also cross-cultural — that the centers of worship are the poor, proud heart of Mexico City and the violent frontier lands of Laredo, Juarez and Tijuana. The cult borrows equally from Hollywood and the Aztec underworld. Altars, necklaces and tattoos honoring Santa Muerte also make appearances in Mexican American neighborhoods from Los Angeles to Boston. “The believers may be drug dealers, doctors, carpenters, housewives. The cult accepts all. No matter the social status or age or sexual preference. Even transsexuals. Even criminals. That’s very important, that the cult of Santa Muerte accepts everyone,” Perdigón told me, “because death takes one and all.”

Editorials like Stanley’s do nothing more than feed fear and hysteria, creating further roadblocks to addressing illegal immigration in a constructive ways by framing the problem as war for the religious soul of America itself. Reinforcing that immigrants, illegal or otherwise, aren’t simply “taking our jobs” they are something truly “other,” and not to be trusted. This leads to anti-immigration sentiment manifesting in ways that targets the very beliefs (or at least assumed beliefs) of immigrant groups (illegal or not). This leads to profiling, and ultimately, hate crimes. By saying that some illegal immigrants might be secret death-cultists who are just as bad as Muslim extremists, you tar all immigrants with suspicion and fear. A point that’s acknowledged by Stanley in his editorial.

“Sadly, Mexicans seeking work get caught in this existential drama and are either swallowed up into the gangs or demonised in the US for crimes they have not committed. Nevertheless, Americans of every ethnicity are legitimately concerned about their country being poisoned by a criminal subculture that blends political corruption with ritualised murder. Europeans should not be so quick to judge their transatlantic friends. Americans face a vicious threat of their own.”

Nevertheless, nevertheless, nevertheless. Repeat it like a mantra until the guilt of harming the innocent along with the guilty fades from the waking mind. Don’t think about the followers of Santa Muerte or other “cults” practiced by immigrants that will now be seen as suspicious simply because they believe as they do. Even if they have a visa, or are second, third, or forth generation United States citizens. Even if they pay the same taxes and have the same worries, we now must worry if they are secretly in league with “antidemocratic fanatics.” This kind of editorial is dangerous tinder for fires that aren’t easily put out, once lit. Fear-mongering of this sort does nothing to solve the problems posed by illegal immigration, or of drug trafficking, all it does is create something new to worry about.

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Jason Pitzl-Waters

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  • G Redford

    “Nevertheless, nevertheless, nevertheless. Repeat it like a mantra until the guilt of harming the innocent along with the guilty fades from the waking mind.”

    I particularly liked this sentence.

  • Baruch Dreamstalker

    The agonizing irony is that if there were no Santa Muerte religion there would still be a shooting drug war in Mexico, with violence seeping across the border like a poorly bandaged wound, as long as the USA treats recreational drugs as criminal tools.

    And before anyone challenges the germaneness of today’s post, which happens with gloomy regularity every time Jason covers Afro-Latin-Caribbean Paganism, be it noted that the Christocentric/xenophobic panic so successfully provoked by Tim Stanley can spill over onto other Pagans — another poorly bandaged wound.

  • Tara

    I agree that inflammatory editorials like this only give anti-Mexican racists more ammunition and fan the flames of hate. Living in Texas, I really get sick of Americans who act like the very existence of Mexico, the Mexican people and the Spanish language is a personal insult to them. These idiots don’t need more imaginary reasons to justify their ignorant hatred.

  • Anonymous

    Bless you for your work, Jason.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_7T7JYFPQSTL6RDWCLR2HMKVRXE John Medellin

    Thank you for covering this, Jason. The devotees of La Santa Muerte are often demonized in America, not only because of the current racial tensions, but also because of the American fear of death. La Santa Muerte is a complex figure and she is not as dark as many paint her. I covered her and her worshipers on my own blog a while back. (http://www.thedailyapostate.com/2009/05/most-holy-death.html) I, myself, am a Mexican practicing Druidry, but when I look to the communities who celebrate and practice the traditions native to my heritage it makes me sad that they are so often covered with such a broad, ugly stroke. Thanks again.

  • Skye_phoenix99

    “especially in Arizona where a series of draconian laws, including one tailored to eliminate public school classes that are seen as too Mexican-focused” I am saddened to see that the Wild Hunt supports illegal immigration. I support legal immigration, and penalties for illegal activity of any sort including illegal immigration. “Too Mexican-focused?” I disagree, but then I’ve actually taken a look at the material, and I would say it is not Mexican-focused at all. The La Raza studies are hate-focused and advocate criminal activity. I don’t hate Mexicans, but I do hate criminals. Advocating a crime is itself a crime. Aiding and abetting a crime is also itself a crime. Anyone assisting illegal immigration is aiding and abetting criminals. Why is it that advocates of law-breaking such as illegal immigration are so quick to label any attempt to enforce the laws as “draconian?” Maybe so that they can stir up lots of righteous emotion and cloud the real issue? The real issue is, if you follow the procedure for becoming a U.S. citizen then you are an immigrant. If you sneak across the border you are a criminal. So what exactly is draconian? Getting arrested for driving without a valid license – this is one that illegals claim they are targeted for. I am a natural born citizen. Is it okay for me to drive without a license? Is it okay for me to drive without insurance? Is it okay for me to drive drunk? Would the illegal advocates consider it draconian for law enforcement to make ME follow the law? Or is it only people who are in this country illegally who get a free pass? Apparently you think it is okay for these people to violate the law, so I want to know, which laws you think it is okay for me to break. List them out. Can I break any that I just don’t agree with?

    • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

      “I am saddened to see that the Wild Hunt supports illegal immigration.”

      It isn’t just people who “support illegal immigration” who have criticized Arizona’s immigration policies, and to say otherwise is to distort the nature of the debate. But have fun knocking down those straw-men you’re building.

    • Anonymous

      Skye_phoenix99, Well said!

    • Charles Cosimano

      Actually advocating a crime is not a crime in and of itself.

      • Skye_phoenix99

        Suborning criminal activity a.k.a. Subornation of perjury is a legal term describing the crime of persuading another to commit perjury. A person can also suborn prostitution, blackmail, and many other crimes including illegal immigration. It is a crime in and of itself, had you any legal training with the laws of the United States you would probably know that; but, perhaps you are basing your comment on the laws of some other country? Though considering that this discussion is about illegal immigration in the United States it really should only be U.S. law that is referred to.

      • Skye_phoenix99
        • Rhoanna

          That is only about perjury, and can apparently only be committed by attorneys. And I’m not seeing anything in a quick google search about laws regarding suborning other crimes; do you have anything?

          • Skye_phoenix99

            from the Merriam Webster dictionary:
            sub·orn/səˈbôrn/
            Verb: Bribe or otherwise induce (someone) to commit an unlawful act such as perjury.

            Such as perjury, not necessarily just perjury. Anyone can ask someone to lie in court, you don’t have to be an attorney to do that. Further:
            http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/solicitation
            The term solicitation is used in a variety of legal contexts. A person who asks someone to commit an illegal act has committed the criminal act of solicitation.

            I suppose I should have used the term solicitation instead.

            solicitation The criminal offense of urging someone to commit an unlawful act.

    • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

      Also, Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio, and Karl Rove have all criticized aspects of Arizona immigration law. I wonder, do they support illegal immigration too?

      • Anonymous

        Jason, I have no doubt that many Republicans support illegal immigration. It’s a source of cheap labor to many corporations as well as small businesses. Texas and Florida are just two examples where politicians vote against national self-interest to coddle to the ‘la Raza’ types so that they can be re-elected by being seen as illegal-friendly.

        What citizens can do, though, is look for the E-Verify notifications for businesses to ensure that you’re giving your business to a company that follows the rule of law.

    • http://erynn999.livejournal.com/ Erynn

      Last time I looked, everyone who ever emigrated to North America did so without the permission of the native, legal residents who were there first.

      Funny how that works.

      • Oberon Osiris

        You go to war with the army you have, not the army you wish, to paraphrase Rummie! People come here, desparately, for all the reasons that many of our anglo ancestors did.
        We live now, although we *all* came to a country where someone else lived – the Native Indians, we can’t give it back to them (but we should treat them so much better). Likewise, many of the “illegal” immigrants are fleeing horrid conditions in their homeland. Some things really do transcend our sense of law and order. But wait, it gets better. Who knows, in the not to far future, many North Americans (and we don’t own “America”, there is South and Central, so come on) may have to flee to Canada for various reasons. Like political oppression, the turning of the middle class into Neo-serfs, warming, extreme temperatures and the rise of militant Christians who will probably shoot anyone on site, for threatening their sense of ownership and entitlement. I echo Erynn, and suggest the other side is disingenuous at the very least. The illegals are not the ones causing the massive unemployment. I am willing to bet good money that the jobs they do, are still jobs that most unemployed – even long term, would not take.
        But if neo-feudalism takes hold, some of us will be quite happy if we end up cleaning the Rich’s toilets.
        Hey, why don’t we fight the real enemy, instead of letting them divide and conquer us?
        Caught the following on DailyKos: “If liberals really hate America, they would vote Republican”. Sums it up!

    • Aine

      As someone who participated in the classes under attack (and I’m white, by the way, because people love calling me a dirty illegal Mexican immigrant when they can’t see how damn pale I am), you clearly don’t know anything about what goes on in the classes. They are places that teach critical thinking, close reading, and love. Maybe if you actually visited the classes or talked to those who are or were in them you would know this.

      • Skye_phoenix99

        Is this what you call love?

        Paulo Freire’s Pedagogy of the Oppressed­, with its thesis that students must learn to rise up, in anger and power, against “the man” who’s holding them down.

        One La Raza textbook, Occupied America, includes this sentence:

        Gutiérrez attacked the gringo establishment angrily at a press conference and called upon Chicanos to ‘kill the gringo,’ which meant to end white control over Mexicans.

        Actually, “kill the gringo” means “kill the gringo,”

        Here are a few more quotes from the books:
        “Hard drugs and drug culture is an invention of the gringo because he has no culture.”
        “We have to destroy capitalism and we have to help 5/6 of the world to destroy capitalism in order to equal all peoples’ lives.
        “The Declaration of Independence states that we the people have the right to revolution…the right to overrule the government…”
        “Any country based on capitalism is based on greed…”

        United States Code
        TITLE 18 PART I CHAPTER 115 § 2385 Advocating overthrow of Government
        Whoever knowingly or willfully advocates, abets, advises, or teaches the duty, necessity, desirability, or propriety of overthrowing or destroying the government of the United States or the government of any State, Territory, District or Possession thereof, or the government of any political subdivision therein, by force or violence, or by the assassination of any officer of any such government; or
        Whoever, with intent to cause the overthrow or destruction of any such government, prints, publishes, edits, issues, circulates, sells, distributes, or publicly displays any written or printed matter advocating, advising, or teaching the duty, necessity, desirability, or propriety of overthrowing or destroying any government in the United States by force or violence, or attempts to do so; or
        Whoever organizes or helps or attempts to organize any society, group, or assembly of persons who teach, advocate, or encourage the overthrow or destruction of any such government by force or violence; or becomes or is a member of, or affiliates with, any such society, group, or assembly of persons, knowing the purposes thereof—
        Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty years, or both, and shall be ineligible for employment by the United States or any department or agency thereof, for the five years next following his conviction.
        If two or more persons conspire to commit any offense named in this section, each shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty years, or both, and shall be ineligible for employment by the United States or any department or agency thereof, for the five years next following his conviction.
        As used in this section, the terms “organizes” and “organize”, with respect to any society, group, or assembly of persons, include the recruiting of new members, the forming of new units, and the regrouping or expansion of existing clubs, classes, and other units of such society, group, or assembly of persons.

        You are a liar.

        • Aine

          I’m not a liar, but call me whatever names you want. I’m used to death threats and ‘mean words’, so it’s not new.

          Paulo Freire’s ‘Pedagogy of the Oppressed’ is about how to teach oppressed people and rehumanize them so they can make better choices in their lives that benefit them, rather than being exploited by a system. Have you read the book?

          Whether or not we read ‘Occupied America’ (and we didn’t), what the law is trying to do is censorship.

          Again, you haven’t been to the classes, you don’t actually know the material we use (clearly), and even the material we do use you don’t understand.

          • Anonymous

            So when did illegal aliens qualify as ‘oppressed’? Oh wait, from your perspective Americans must be ‘oppressing’ illegals because we object to them crossing our borders, abusing benefits that are funded by and intended for American citizens down-on-their-luck, stealing jobs from teenagers looking for their first job because illegals work for below-minimum wage. How dare we, right?

            Skye_phoenix99 is right about Freire and right about La Raza. Your opinions are just one reason why I’m likely to vote Republican in the next election. It’s time for a real change… and I want to see more of what was passed in Arizona spread across the country. Only then will the illegals repatriate themselves to their own countries. And it’ll be more cost-effective than paying for them to be deported. :-)

          • AnonGuest

            sindarintech, Many are going home and/or immigration has slowed – for a very simple reason – the economy currently stinks and there’s not enough jobs here. This is probably due to factory work disappearing as work is sent overseas because it’s cheaper to manufacture there more than anything else. Unemployed people spend less buying homes and paying for new construction. Immigration is often good for an economy, btw. bringing fresh ideas, new jobs, and small businesses.
            If legal immigration was done quickly, afford-ably, and sensibly, then more profits from said work when found would better benefit the US economy rather than be pretty much all sent home, which is often the general purpose for crossing the borders.
            Homeland Security run agencies are so deliberately inefficient it infuriates me with so many people willing to work who are instead unemployed their agency is run so poorly. With computer screening, they can pretty much know who you are immediately and tell if you’ve got a record. Why should it take years to decide someone is trustworthy enough to join us as legal citizens? It’s ridiculous and cruel.

            I don’t think either political party has anything to be proud of in regards to what they’ve done to this economy (though Obama’s just woke up and started feebly trying – good luck to him) nor regarding immigration, where it’s lalallala pretend it away.

            I don’t get why people care if someone adds one more Saint to their shelf. Santa Muerte may be appealed to by those asking to avoid prosecution, but is also appealed to by those wanting healing from disease and many other more clearly kind reasons.

          • Anonymous

            They aren’t “stealing” jobs from anyone. They’re being GIVEN jobs by people who want an easily-abused base of workers who can’t complain and are easily cowed by the threat of deportation.

            They work for below minimum wage because those companies don’t want to pay minimum wage, not because the workers are forcing them to pay low wages. If they lose that workforce, they’ll let the produce rot on the vine before they’d pay Americans a cent more than they pay immigrants.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            re-humanizing ones self through violence against another group is what the Nazi’s did. And since everything i’ve read about and from that book seems to be advocating that…

            Tell me, how human do we think the Nazis?

      • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

        Really? I’ve read over some of the class material, and oh boy was it racist and hate mongering. To read it, you’d think the Pilgrims (a starving, sorry lot if ever there was one) had single handedly started a biological and kinetic war that wiped out all native life on the Americas. And it got worse from there.

    • http://twitter.com/jeux999 Daner Doodle

      As soon as you wrote: “Or is it only people who are in this country illegally who get a free pass?” you lost all credibility anyway. Not for nothing, but just because something is illegal (like marriage between certain individuals) doesn’t mean it’s actually a wrong thing to do; typically it just means judgmental people in power are against minorities.

      Ironically I’m certain you would be bitching about gov’t in any other capacity. I can only assume you applauded Perry’s murder records also.

      • Skye_phoenix99

        Just because I’m against illegal immigration doesn’t mean I support Perry.

    • Robert Mathiesen

      Skye-phoenix99 wrote:

      “I want to know, which laws you think it is okay for me to break. List them out. Can I break any that I just don’t agree with?”

      Of course you can, Skye. You always could. Everyone can, always and everywhere. All it takes is for you to be being willing to take your punishment when you are caught out. If it seems to worth the punishment to break the law, then break away to your heart’s content . . . with my blessing!

      Truly, all punishment ever can do is to keep people from breaking laws too lightly, for trivial reasons.

      Sometimes the punishment actually is the lesser of two evils, even if you know that you cannot escape the punishment. Then you actually *should* break the law. Sometimes, when the stakes are high enough, it can even be evil not to break some particular law.

      Consider my grandmother’s case, back in the 1910s, out in California. She was a young widow with no relatives whatever to help her, and three very small children, in a time when there were no social services, and only a few jobs were open for women. So she got a job as a dime-a-dance girl in a waterfront ballroom dance studio catering to sailors who hadn’t so much as seen or smelt a woman for months. This was about as shameful back then as being a stripper is now. (She always said that her boss, Daddy Rice, was a good man. He didn’t force the girls to do anything but dance with the sailors in the studio, unlike most of the men who owned ballroom dance studios in that neighborhood.) Eventually Daddy Rice got her a job as a bookkeeper for a crooked neighborhood political boss, who also fenced stolen goods, loan-sharked, peddled influence, and probably ran any other line of crime that he could make money at. All the while her children were growing up, she ran that man’s payroll, which also covered a few strong-arm boys and professional killers. So we’re not talking about victimless crimes here, not by a long shot!

      She met her second husband in that organization, a man who had had to go out in the world entirely on his own when he was just 13 years old.

      When her children were finally grown, she went straight. She was an intelligent woman, but also very lucky, and she never got caught or punished.

      She always said, a woman does whatever she has to do to keep her children alive, and there can be no reproach to her for that.

      Shall I blame her for not obeying the law? I would not be here if she had.

      No, rather I shall blame *you* if you maintain that obedience to the law was more important than her children’s survival.

      Every society needs a system of laws, and the *system* deserves respect. Nonetheless, individual laws may be monstrous and brutal, and such laws may deserve no respect at all. In the worst cases, no person who obeys such a law should ever hold his head high again.

      Respect for each and every law, no matter what it is, destroys a society from within. The point of view that *you* have expressed is destroying our society from within even as we argue.

      • Skye_phoenix99

        What part of requiring people coming into this country to follow our immigration laws is monstrous and brutal? What part of the current immigration law is monstrous and brutal? What part of making people pay the price for violating immigration law is monstrous and brutal? Precisely why should the current immigration law not be respected?

        • Baruch Dreamstalker

          Making it a criminal act to transport one’s mother to the hospital in a medial emergency — transporting an illegal alien — is monstrous and brutal. Deporting a young person brought to this country as a small child ignorant that s/he was an illegal, as though the youngster were a deliberate tresspasser, is monstrous and brutal.

        • AnonGuest

          To even start at the beginning to get the legal process going you send 680$ for a filing fee. Then that’s conveniently lost several times by the government agency involved (much like disability is always rejected the first time that’s filed) with each replacement costing 680$. Every part of the process of immigration is either deliberately or neglectfully expensive, inefficient, untrustworthy, and slooooow, which is why immigration lawyers have steady work.

          If someone is poor and desperate to get out of a bad situation, that’s monstrous

        • Robert Mathiesen

          First of all, Skye-phoenix99, I thought I had already made it clear that *no* individual law should ever be respected *just because* it is the law. Every law has to *earn* respect by its content. Some laws do this. *Most laws* do not. They are a necessary evil, but they are evil, not good.

          In the abstract, the idea of law, the *system* of law is essential to a functioning society, and has, IMHO, already earned respect on its own merits.

          But that is very different from saying that laws merit respect. They don’t, not until they have proven themselves *one by one*.

          What laws do merit is fear rather than respect. In the same way as a wild tiger or a vicious dog is to be feared, so laws are to be feared. There is a necessary place in the world for wild tigers and vicious dogs, and it would be a greater evil to exterminate them. But even so, one does not respect them, or offer oneself to them for dinner.

          Why did you miss this point when I made it before? Was it simply so far outside of conventional thought that it did not compute? Or did you simply not believe that anyone could actually mean to say what I so clearly (as I thought) did say?

          (And, of course, I also said that I meant my words to apply to everyone in this country, not just to illegal; immigrants. I do not even require native-born citizens to follow laws for any other reason than fear of the punishment. When laws are sufficiently inhumane, I — for one — actually *require* that native-born citizens and immigrants alike break such laws, and I have only utter contempt for anyone who in such a case would obey the law just because it is the law. That level of respect for law is a toxin within the body politic, an abomination.)

          And second, Skye_phoenix99: What Baruch Dreamstalker and AnonGuest said. In spades!

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            I see what you’re saying, but is not the Law a social contract that is used to maintain order and safety (ostensibly) so that society may function?

            Now, pardon this simple heathen, but, if we do not give the law inherent respect for being the law, does it not make the law meaningless? For while there are many laws one cannot agree with, if you disrespect one law, I would think one disrespects all laws. And if you do not respect the laws, then no one else has too, and if no one respects the laws, what use are they?

            And without Law, what is left but Chaos?

          • Robert Mathiesen

            Here’s how I see it.

            The Law, as a system, earns respect for the reasons you say. When there is little at stake, individual laws that you do not agree with should still be obeyed, not out of respect for those individual laws, but out of respect for Law as a system, as an idea.

            But there are sometimes, from time to time in one’s life, considerations far more important than upholding the smooth functioning of society.

            When so much is at stake, then there may be times when the good citizen knowingly breaks some individual law, even when he must break that law as a matter of honor and the public good — not lightly, but after serious deliberation.

            And that good citizen accepts whatever punishment may lawfully follow upon his breach of the law, so that the system, the idea of the Law may be upheld, even though the individual law must be broken.

            Or I could put it in another, more Heathen way. Loki has his rightful place in the order of things, just as Odin does, and it was fitting and right that the two of them became sworn blood brothers. Loki did right to father Fenrir. Vidar will do right to slay Fenrir. Unless all perish at Ragnarok, the ground will not be clear for what comes next.

            And such things repeat throughout all eternity, for reasons that far surpass our capacity to understand — and maybe even even dying Odin’s heightened capacity to grasp and take up. One small part of those reasons may be: lest we humans, lest even the Gods themselves, should ever think that we are the crown and the glory of Wyrd’s designs.

            Does that make it a little clearer?

  • son_of_pan

    Replace drug war with cold war and mexicans for communists. How history repeats itself in different ways.

    • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

      I can’t tell if you’re trying to validate the War on Drugs, or invalidate the Cold War.

  • Anonymous

    Whatever it takes to get illegal aliens repatriated to their home countries is fine by me… particularly given how many of our politicians have chosen to turn a blind eye to what can only be described as the invasion of the U.S.
    Why should Americans continue to have their taxes used to subsidize the social services and education requirements of people who have no business (based on our existing laws) being here in the first place?
    Instead, we have them out protesting for their ‘rights’… while Americans who actually NEED social services get denied. It’s total b.s.

    • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

      Actually, two-thirds of illegal immigrants pay Medicare, Social Security and personal income taxes. However, most of them won’t see a dime of that money back.

      http://reason.org/news/show/122411.html
      http://roygermano.wordpress.com/2011/02/28/do-illegal-immigrants-pay-taxes/

      • Anonymous

        Sure they do…

        • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_7T7JYFPQSTL6RDWCLR2HMKVRXE John Medellin

          So, by this short response I think what we can all gather is that you’re too afraid to click links that contain information that might prove that your arguments and prejudices are baseless. Awesome. It’s nice to know that America has devolved into a place where uninformed opinions are seen as equal to informed opinions.

          • Skye_phoenix99

            Once again, an opinion is not proof. Get yourself an American English Dictionary and look up the word opinion. Now look up the word proof. See the difference. I clicked the links, I disagree with the OPINIONS presented, and they are just that, they are not proof.

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_7T7JYFPQSTL6RDWCLR2HMKVRXE John Medellin

            I don’t necessarily need a dictionary, but I think you could use an introductory course in logic. The links below present facts. When they don’t line up with your opinions, that means that your opinions are wrong. In order to be right, you must change your opinions. The facts will not change to accommodate your opinions, regardless of how attached to them you are.

          • Anonymous

            John, I clicked them and I read them. Articles written with such a pro-illegal immigration slant have no value because, ultimately, they’re not based in facts.

            The fact that matters to me is this: Our country is being invaded, and has been for more than 20 years. That is a fact. Republican and Democratic politicians continually sell out American citizens by not REQUIRING I.C.E. to deport known aliens, by not REQUIRING businesses to follow hiring laws and prosecuting said businesses when they are found to be breaking our laws, force public schools to educate the children of illegal aliens, force hospitals to provide free health care to illegal aliens, and the list goes on.

            And Americans lose. We have laws in this country for a reason. If you break them, you are a criminal. It’s as simple as that.

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_7T7JYFPQSTL6RDWCLR2HMKVRXE John Medellin

            I agree that both parties have thrown America under the bus on this issue, and on several others. However, the fact that the American immigration system is broken was brought to their attention well over 20 years ago. Neither party did anything to change that. Now that we have eased our foot off the back of the nation of Mexico through various trade agreements and diplomatic negotiations, the illegal immigration problem is nearly over. The rates that people illegally, or legally, immigrate to the U.S. from Mexico is far less today that it was in 2008, let alone twenty years ago. The immigrants in this country are being used as a scapegoat by the Republicans because they need something to unite their voter base. You are being lied to. Please wake up.

          • Oberon Osiris

            Actually our country was invaded, at least 30 years ago, by a cabal of neo-conservatives who only wish to serve the rich, so they can get their own reward.

          • SIRI

            “…force public schools to educate the children of illegal aliens, force hospitals to provide free health care to illegal aliens, and the list goes on.”

            Where I live the graduating class for the last 2 years has been around 500. My girls graduated in 2010 & 2011. The HS is racially a mix of balck/white 75%, hispanic 20% and asian 5%.

            All of the asian classmates of my girls have graduated with honors. Most of the blacks/whites have graduated. Those who haven’t make up about 20%. Except for those who moved away, all of the hispanics graduated.

            Of those blacks/whites 20% who didn’t graduate EVERY SINGLE WEEK one of their faces turn up on the local news tv or paper having committed some crime. Most of it drug related and most times including some act of violence.

            I know of many hispanic births and 3 operations. I have taken them back to the hospitals to make their payments. Most of them pay every week. It took 1 young man 39 months of weekly payments to pay off his hospital bill for an operation he had.

            How many of us have made 160 weekly payments on a bill that wasn’t to Rent-A-Center. He paid with a smile everytime because he was able to get ER care for a burst appendix and was alive.

            All in all I would much rather have the hispanics paying their bills than have the welfare mothers of any race.

            I would much rather have the hispanics graduating and going on to work everyday than the rednecked, methed out, gold toothed thugged out, crack ho’ or pimp who terrorizes our community daily.

            JUST SAYIN’

          • Skye_phoenix99

            There appears to be no link to reply to John anymore, so I’ll post this here. Apparently John’s idea of logic is this:
            If someone violates the law – it is not a crime, even though every dictionary in every language says that that is the definition of the word crime. Following through on his logical progression then, people who commit crimes – are therefore not criminals.

        • Baruch Dreamstalker

          Jason started this post with a repeat warning that
          “intensifying polarization over the issue of illegal immigration” is having ill effects. To all who jumped in with insistent polemics, thank you for validating that this polarization is real; Jason wasn’t blowing smoke to hype a topic.

          Which is that this ill effect, demonization of syncretic religion, arises from this storm of polarization.

          Please let’s note that the USA would be on the receiving end of just as enthusiastic migration flow if there were no religion of Santa Muerte. Can we all agree on that — that the religious attack was 100% unproductive in affecting immigration issues?

          • Skye_phoenix99

            I agree 100%

      • Skye_phoenix99

        I would like to see proof, but of course I won’t, because links to articles written by illegal-immigration-advocates are not proof. So, how about links to Social Security and Medicare administration reports detailing moneys paid into the system by non-citizens vs benefits paid out to non-citizens. Can you do that? Anyone can claim they pay 2/3’s 3/4’s or whatever, and anyone can link to an article written by someone who supports their views, but there are few who can and/or will provide actual proof when called on.

        • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_7T7JYFPQSTL6RDWCLR2HMKVRXE John Medellin

          Let me see if I understand this. These people are bad. You know they are bad because someone told you so. You would go investigate, but that means that you would be trusting bad people. Therefore bad = bad and you know this because someone told you so. The proof comes with reading. You’ll have to dig a little deeper than these linsk, but they do have the information available, particularly from the sources that you are requesting. You will have to move past your prejudices though.

          • Anonymous

            So why don’t YOU open your home and support a bunch of aliens using YOUR money. Don’t volunteer MY contributions to support your pro-illegal agenda.

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_7T7JYFPQSTL6RDWCLR2HMKVRXE John Medellin

            OR, I could just have them pay me money to stay here and tend to their health care with the understanding that they will have work and not see a dime of their money back. Oh, wait. That’s the very situation Americans and the illegal immigrants are in.

            Very little of your money goes to pay for them, if at all. In contrast their earnings are keeping our Social Security System afloat. Go thank them instead.

            Finally, I don’t have a “pro-illegal agenda,” though I’m sure you’re proud of how well you can make up a conspiracy on a dime, I have an agenda to treat people like people and fix our broken immigration system.

          • Anonymous

            “Very little of your money goes to pay for them, if at all.”
            You sound like you seriously believe this. Where does the money come from for the education of the children of illegals? There’s also the negative effect these kids have on American student populations, but that’s another issue entirely. Where does the money come from to pay for the social services they’re using/abusing? Where does the money come from to pay for the hospitals and doctors they use? I was at the doctors office this week and two illegals came in for aid from the Urgent Care unit… because they knew they could get subsidized assistance.

            Answer to all of the above: The American tax payer pays for ALL of this.

            The larger question is this: what are the social consequences for the country of enabling the law-breaking behavior of millions of illegals? What are the consequences of giving them preferential treatment (free social services) because they had the audacity to cross our borders?

            We don’t have an immigration problem in this country. What we have is a group of people (mostly from south of our border) who think that it’s OK to break our laws and not follow established processes for gaining lawful entry.

          • Nicole Youngman

            Ya know, I must confess that I haven’t actually opened my home to these folks, but they FIXED my home when it was open to the sky via a hole in the top after Katrina. Mine and, oh let’s see, a few tens of thousands of others (and I do mean that number literally). These guys who hang out at Home Depot every day have quite literally put roofs over our heads, and for that I am eternally grateful. Well, for that, and for the new Mexican restaurants that have been popping up around town the last 5+ years. You see, when these guys get settled, they tend to open their own business, and hire people, and nice socially helpful stuff like that, and some of ‘em are awfully good cooks. :)

            So…roofs, good. Tacos, good. Territorial “we were here first” nonsense, very bad.

          • Aine

            Are you consciously referring to them as ‘illegals’ and ‘aliens’ rather than ‘immigrants’ or ‘undocumented’? I’ve noticed a lot of people do that, often unintentionally, and it’s dehumanizing.

            I would love to see the studies of how undocumented students have a negative impact on the US student population. A lot of undocumented students don’t know they are undocumented, for a variety of reasons, including paperwork that wasn’t filed exactly correctly.

            I would also love to know how you knew it was ‘two illegals’ that came into the hospital. Did you ask them, ‘Are you undocumented?’ How did you know that?

            Also, I should point out that there was a huge repatriation of Mexican-Americans between 1929 and 1939 that resulted in the deportation of many American citizens being forced to Mexico because their family came from Mexico. This has happened to many groups in the US when economic times are hard, by the way.

            Maybe if you considered a more human approach, rather than just labeling these people as ‘illegals’, you would better understand the issue. There is a reason why immigrating illegally is only a misdemeanor.

            (Would just like to point out, since this issue gets discussed away from the border areas where people might not understand the environmental conditions as well…it’s not a walk in the park to cross the Mexican-US border. There is a reason that Border Patrol acts as search and rescue a lot; people are dieing horrible deaths in the desert. Human trafficking is a bigger issue than people getting free doctors visits, at least to me. This issue is so complex, and you have to grasp that complexity to understand why people are risking and losing their lives to cross the Mexican-US border.)

          • Oberon Osiris

            Your taxes – not contributions – go to the same place that mine do, and are dispersed according to Government protocols. If you don’t like that, you can… join the Tea Party and try to change it. Good luck! The worm has turned on that mess; they are dropping in the polls as more and more, Americans realize they are … only in it for themselves.
            United we stand, divided we fall. People like you have to stop thinking that its everyone for themselves, I got mine, the hell with everyone else. Why don’t you find a forum more in accordance with your extreme views? Better yet, try reading this blog (and Jason, you should consider adding this to your links, its great, another wonderful person in Covenant of the Goddess) : http://desultoryphilippic.wordpress.com/2011/09/08/are-you-smarter-than-an-agnostic/
            It is slightly possible you might learn something here…

          • Oberon Osiris

            Couldn’t have said it better. Thats the problem, actually on both sides, but hands down most liberal thinkers are better educated/informed. Most governmental articles/advocacy is written ‘objectively’. Its called technical writing, and it used to be a standard that held up in journalism, but like everything else that Conservatives get control over, it becomes dumbed down and rabidly palatable for the masses.

            It is why, essentially, public education has been in the conservatives sights for some time. They are destroying our children’s right to an education that includes critical thinking skills.

          • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

            Um, no, a public education that is serving to indoctrinate, rather than teaching critical thinking skills.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            “Thats the problem, actually on both sides, but hands down most liberal thinkers are better educated/informed. ”

            Actually, this isn’t true. It’s just that such people like to think themselves better educated and informed, while demonizing all information they don’t like.

            A fool will often think himself wise, even when surrounded by nothing but fools who think the same.

        • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters
          • Skye_phoenix99

            urban.org is not a government agency and as such does not give out the requested reports.
            cnn is as about as trustworthy as the fox network, and again, doesn’t issue such reports. This is not evidence. However:

            http://www.ssa.gov/oig/communications/testimony_speeches/03142006testimony.htm

            “Title II of the Social Security Act requires SSA to maintain the reported earnings records of individuals. SSA uses these reported earnings to determine individuals’ eligibility for, and amount of, retirement, survivors, disability and health insurance benefits. SSA validates the names and Social Security numbers (SSN) on the Wage and Tax Statements (Forms W-2) it receives against information in its own records. When an earnings report contains a name and/or SSN that does not match SSA’s records and cannot be resolved, the report cannot be posted to an individual earnings record in SSA’s Master Earnings File. Instead, the report is posted to the ESF, a repository for unmatched wages.”

            Let’s assume for the moment that all of these wages are made by persons in this country illegally, and none are due to an error causing citizen wages to be included – since – there is no proof that any of this money counts for citizen wages.

            “As of October 2005, approximately 8.8 million wage reports, representing $57.8 billion in wages, remained in the suspense file for TY 2003 alone.”

            not exactly current, but it will do, now we need to know how much wages were earned in the U.S. total, not counting persons paid under the table, as those wages will not be found in the public record. Interestingly, the SSA doesn’t provide this information, but the U.S. Census bureau does:

            http://pubdb3.census.gov/macro/032007/hhinc/new06_000.htm

            When you add everything up you get a figure of $7.723 trillion.

            So how many times does 57 billion go into 7.723 trillion?

            And the answer is 1.3549 %, so now that’s less than a 2% contribution to the economy, but only for 2005

            Of course this only lists the income, not the amount actually paid into SSI and Medicare, as well as other taxes. So this isn’t proof of my point either, but it is evidence, and it is evidence based on actual facts and figures.

            1.3549% is not equal to 2/3

            Your evidence?
            Where exactly did you get that 2/3 figure anyway?

          • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

            So anything that isn’t directly from the government is suspect and therefore not evidence? You do know that means throwing out mountains of data and scientific research, right? Anyway, the 2/3rd figure is from a NYT article.

            http://www.nytimes.com/2005/04/05/business/05immigration.html

            But wait! Before you dismiss it as simply a liberal plot to brainwash the masses, you might want to see where they get their data from….

            “Our assumption is that about three-quarters of other-than-legal immigrants pay payroll taxes,” said Stephen C. Goss, Social Security’s chief actuary, using the agency’s term for illegal immigration.

            Why, it’s an official from the SSA! That I believe, is a government source. A chief actuary, even.

          • Skye_phoenix99

            An individual from the SSA is a government source, and one of the things he says is, “Our assumption is that about three-quarters of other-than-legal immigrants pay payroll taxes,” An assumption? Really? This is your evidence? Again where are your figures? Where’s your documentation? Assumptions, opinions, speeches made by politicians in favor of illegal immigration presented as evidence. Thank you Jason, you have just proved my original point.

            For the claim of moneys paid into the government I would insist on government source data as proof, because that is who administers all records relating to same. If a retailer claimed that 2/3 of all customers for product A also purchased product B and I wanted to check that statement for accuracy I would look at the company sales records, not the opinions of people who like the company, and not the opinions of people who dislike the company.

            Anyone can look at the available data and claim any percentage, because the actual data doesn’t say which groups paid what. I could claim that none of it was paid by illegal immigrants or that 100% of illegal immigrants pay in, but the available data won’t prove either position and that was my original point. That I’d like to see proof of the statement, but that I won’t.

          • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

            I’m sorry if the educated assumptions of an SSA official, based on figures he’s collected, isn’t good enough for you. I would think he’s far
            more knowledgeable on this subject that either you or I. I also think it’s rather insulting that you’re implying an SSA actuary is a pro-illegal immigration politician with an agenda.

          • Skye_phoenix99

            1. The assumptions of anyone, when not accompanied by supporting documentation is worthless to me.
            2. I have not inferred that Mr. Goss is is pro-anything. When someone makes a statement like his, and then either fails or refuses to back it up with the figures that one may or may not have collected, I especially consider it worth taking with a grain of salt.
            3. I asked for proof, you failed to provide it, and fired back with this accusation of insult to a third party where clearly none is made. Demanding proof of a statement is not an insult, especially when the individual who made the statement; himself, labels it as an assumption.

      • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

        Here in MI, most illegal immigrants get paid under the table, and pay NO taxes, social security or employment fees, and can get social service “benefits”. I’m sure that the employers who hire them, and the drug trade, did not participate in either survey quoted above.

        There is a “Head Start” program for migrant farmworker children, with busses, free food, and free babysitting in an air-conditioned building, all summer long, but no similar program for the children of American citizens. That is why LEGAL citizens are getting hosed.

        • Thelettuceman

          My younger brother used to work for a pizza place in town, and was among the entire kitchen staff that was arbitrarily fired when a bus load of illegal Ecuadorians came into the town to work for <2.50/hour. I know this all too well.

        • http://moma-fauna.blogspot.com/ Moma Fauna

          I hate to be contrary when everyone is busy being so contrary, but I must correct your description of Head Start. Head Start is a Federal initiative focused on LOW-INCOME preschoolers & their families, regardless of race, ethnicity, origin, yadda, yadda. My son attended Head Start last year. He will again this year, unless we lose his spot to a family with greater need (and I will respectfully defer to that). I am white, middle-class and qualify for the DAR (if I was so inclined).
          It’s not a program for exclusively for migrant workers, recent immigrants, Mexicans only, etc. Anyone who is poor (or, in our case, in a low population zone) can participate if space is available. It may that in your area, the program fills up with immigrant families because they are, well, the POOREST.
          It’s a pretty awesome program too. I wish the rest of our public school system could be so well designed.

          • Anonda

            as someone who worked for Head Start, i attest to this. i had white, somali, hispanics, asian, african-american families…and so on

    • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters
    • Oberon Osiris

      I don’t mind the subsidizing, sorry for all you misers out there. I don’t get to tell Big Gov that the war machine takes up WAY TOO MUCH more of my taxes. We *all* have to pay taxes on things we don’t approve of, or would want in our lives. Too bad!
      Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr: “Taxes are the price we pay for a civilized society”. This is the problem, tax complainers don’t really care about society. Everyone is on their own. Foolish and very short-sighted.

      • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

        Because paying taxes on defense, the military and police keeps us all safe from terrorists and criminals, while paying taxes to individual people grants them comfort, but taxpayers gain no return whatsoever.

        • http://sarenth.wordpress.com/ Sarenth

          That is total B.S. In fiscal year 2009, according to the DHS of Michigan, it distributed:

          • More than $2.1 billion in Food Assistance Program benefits to almost 2 million state residents. These are
          dollars that were spent exclusively on food and related products in Michigan grocery stores, convenience
          stores and local markets. The more than $2 billion in federal benefits helped more than 1.7 million people
          access healthy foods.

          That $2 billion goes right back into PRIVATE businesses and helps the economy. Paying taxes to individual people keeps some Michigan businesses afloat. These are foodstuffs that keep kids fed, and the less-well-off from starving. I’d say that is one hell of a gain.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Well….If it make anyone feel better….It’s not the tax payers paying for all this. It’s loans from the Chinese that pay for this. Of course, this might not make you feel better when you have all the people on entitlement programs wanting their due and the Chinese come calling to collect. :P

          • AnonGuest

            About Michigan and aid to the poor – the state is running out of money and it’s response is to cut funds to the poor Oct. 1. Anyone who has received aid for more than 4 years total in their lives will be cut off, with no notice (unless you count knowing this was going to pass in August. ) http://www.iacenter.org/struggle/mich-austerity090911/

          • AnonGuest
  • Charles Cosimano

    Well, the idea of “kinky spiritualism” sounds like fun.

    • Krystal H.

      That’s exactly what I was thinking when I read it!

    • http://paosirdjhutmosu.wordpress.com Djhutmosu Si-Hathor

      And by God,and all that’s good and holy, that’s WHY it must be opposed! Mexicum delenda est!

      • http://kauko-niskala.blogspot.com Kauko

        “Mexicum delenda est!” made me seriously LOL.

        • http://paosirdjhutmosu.wordpress.com Djhutmosu Si-Hathor

          I’m glad. :) I hope I didn’t use the wrong ending or something Latin Wikipedia has Carthago for Carthage, and Mexicum for Mexico, so I figured I’d go with “Mexicum”. I don’t speak Latin, I just know a little of it.

          • http://kauko-niskala.blogspot.com Kauko

            Oh, it’s been far too long since I’ve studied Latin and I’m far too deep into a bottle of Australian shiraz to figure out Latin case endings ;)

          • Anonymous

            Ozzies make some nice wines. reminds me I need to look for a Latin class again now that I’ve got me bill squared off.

  • Kilmrnock

    My take on illegal immigration is first secure the border , fence , electronicaly , boots on the ground whatever . Next all other ways i’ve heard to deal w/ all illegals here are nonsence . Amnesty along w/ a path to citisenship is the only practical way of dealing with these folks. And altho unpopular i believe american english should be the official language of our land , with that in mind anyone unwilling the learn our language can go back where they came from. No other emmigrant group that came here got preferential treatment , the italians , greeks, poles , etc that came here had to learn english to function in our society . i also believe that anyone looking to get drivers licence here needs to speak english and atleast have a green card or be on their way to citisenship. We are the great melting pot , my family is of european stock. My wifes family came here from the Ukrain right after WW2 . They applied for and got US citisenship and learned english just like all other emmigrants .I just don’t believe any group , mexicans , whatever should get preferential treatment .As far as religous descrimination goes it’s entirely wrong and inapropriate.Tis a shame this belief system is also used amoungst criminals . but we must separate the people from the religion and deal w/ them accordingly . In the US religion is never supposed to be used against anyone . Kilm

    • Baruch Dreamstalker

      Kilm, my father’s father’s family also hails from the Ukraine — the time frame being right before WWI. They strove to learn English and my grandmother was actually a standout among seven sisters as to how well she got it. She was also fluent in two other languages, including Yiddish. Nobody had to make them do it; they knew this was the way to what they’d come for.

      But I grew up in a metropolitan area that had (and still has) a patchwork of ethic nth-generation-immigrant neighborhoods. The one nearest me 50 years ago was Italian, and in my day you could still hear conversations in Italian rippling through back yards. The next generation down spoke accented English, and the one after that spoke Midwestern English. It’s a process that’s gonna happen, law or no law, but it can take time.

      • Anonymous

        Baruch, my experience matches yours, except that the language being spoken was French. My grandmother spoke no English, my mother spoke accented English, and I speak little to no French. I used to hear it spoken in the neighborhoods, but even that is rare now.

      • Cara

        Except that’s not what’s happening now. Immigrants and illegal aliens are clustering into neighborhoods (like they always have) but now so many agencies and businesses are set up so they don’t have to learn English, so they don’t. This keeps them locked into a ghetto and makes them vulnerable to con artists of all kinds. We now have generations that do not learn English to even a passable degree.

        Humans change and learn for 2 reasons – excitement and pain. If there is no pain (crap, I can’t get around, I can’t interact with people, I can’t get a job) and they don’t have a more positive reason for learning something so difficult as American English, they don’t go through the effort.

        • Baruch Dreamstalker

          So we should strip away social service agencies?

          This might take more time. There’s nothing wrong with a mother going into a store with a bilingual minor child to act as translator with the clerk. I’ve seen it happen in Yiddish.

          • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

            “So we should strip away social service agencies?”

            YEEEeeeeessssSSSS!!!

          • Anonymous

            No, because social services are needed. But they should NOT be made available to illegal aliens. Period. Likewise for being able to get a drivers license, likewise for public education. If you’re illegal, you’re illegal. Allowing them ANY services just opens the floodgates more. This is now a problem in every state, and every major city in the U.S. The Reagan amnesty program was supposed to put an end to it. Instead, millions more came and continue to come.

          • Baruch Dreamstalker

            The point of social services is to meet human needs, not to enforce immigration law. Unmet human needs eventually imperil the stability of the society, whether they are needs of illegals or of legal residents.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Baruch, let’s say that these people come here to be Americans, rather than just parasites on America. Why shouldn’t Social Services enforce immigration law, or at least assimilation into the country? By not making them become Americans, are we not denying them the Americanization that they came for? ;)

          • Baruch Dreamstalker

            Alchemist, because next they’ll be using Social Security to enforce the War on Drugs, and so forth. You’re the one who spoke out on the last thread about erosion of liberty starting at the fringes and working their way in. Use your own wisdom.

        • M.A.

          “We now have generations that do not learn English to even a passable degree”

          This is such a fallacy. I spent years teaching English to immigrants. Immigrants practically beat the doors down to get into ESL classes. Students often working 40-60 hours per week still manage to come to classes before or after their jobs. Unfortunately, budget cuts in many communities are slashing funding for these immensely ESL programs in schools. The English of second generation Americans is often much better than that of kids whose families immigrated generations ago.

          • Anonymous

            I agree. Where I live, lots of French people immigrated to the area to work in the mills. There was a lot of prejudice against them, lots of “stupid Frenchmen” jokes.

            They clustered together in neighborhoods; the stores & churches in the area conducted their business in French. I think one church still offers masses in French, but as the older generation dies off, so does the French language. People work hard to try to maintain the songs, food and language, but it’s tough work.

          • Oberon Osiris

            This is actually true. In Hamtramck (actually a French soldier, but the name for a formerly mostly Polish town) the High School we wanted to enroll our son in (late ’90s) had 25 languages being spoken. The town itself – 20 to 25,000 population, has at least 100 languages spoken. The Utne Reader, somewhere in the last 10 or so years called Hamtramck one of the US’ 10 most “hippest” cities, due to our New Rock/Alternative clubs and the many cultural aspects. I don’t get there very often, lately, but parts of the town or like a “new” Bangladesh or new Saudi, or new Albania, etc. etc. Frightening to the over-entitled old guard of Polish and Ukrainian 2nd, 3rd generations etc. They actually tried to legally shut most of these folks down in various ways – but lost. One memorable one was when they tried to outlaw a mosque’s “Call to Prayer” as – get this – converting them to Islam by force. People like me pointed out that the several Catholic churches would have to stop ringing their very loud bells too, then…

      • Oberon Osiris

        I live in Michigan, near Detroit, which has always had a Mexican/Hispanic community… for many, many years, but I’ve been aware of it myself since the ’60s, only. I meet many Mexicans here and also further North where my Mom and Sister now live. Those folks up there are more in the agricultural business; they harvest, produce, whatever… the food we take for granted at our markets.

        In all cases, most, if not nearly all of these folks, speak pretty good English. Always have, as I see it.

        I actually think they have better minds for doing this. How easy would it be for some of these complainers to learn a second language?

        On the other hand, our area plays home to the largest population of Middle Eastern/Muslims outside of the Arab/Middle eastern countries. While many of them have been here for many years also – I’ve recounted this here in the Islam-phobia thread from a week or two ago – and are as Americanized as any 2nd or 3rd generation immigrants are, like Baruch mentions, there
        has been a 2nd or subsequent wave of immigration from those lands, starting perhaps in the ’80s and picking up in the ’90s (possibly due to our foreign interventions during those years..) These folks are much more insular within their culture. These folks are possibly more likely to not assimilate, and cling to their language, culture and religions.

        Although I have stated my somewhat- love or respect for them – as HUMAN BEINGS, it is much more possible that their unwillingness to assimilate will be a bigger problem, at least in my own Metro Detroit area.
        Lastly, I lived in Hamtramck, another Detroit suburb, for 17 years – its a Polish/Ukraine enclave of many many decades – my wife’s family lived in the same house for 50 years. Within the most recent time I lived there, Immigrants from those countries still came – but mostly kept to their language, sparsely used English, and – were immediately receiving public monies. I often saw these folks using food stamps, etc, at the local markets. But they were white European types, so I guess that’s okay? If I were a person like Skye, I would wonder why legal immigrants can get public monies so quickly. Who cares? Like I said, we don’t own and their is NOT one concept of how America works or should work. Its a melting pot, for Goddess sake. Sometimes the pot overboils. Sometimes, someone sneaks in an extra ingredient (kinda like how I add some herbs or spices, without telling my wife, cause she’s so picky – – she never notices, and enjoys the feast.).
        Skye, and other disgruntled: Please try to enjoy the feast you have, not the one you think you should have. Or work with the cooks to change the brew, if you dare or care.

        • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

          Said Oberon, “I often saw these folks using food stamps, etc, at the local markets. But they were white European types, so I guess that’s okay? If I were a person like Skye, I would wonder why legal immigrants can get public monies so quickly”.

          Yes, we do wonder, and that is why fiscally responsible Republicans such as myself want to severely curtail these “social programs”. I do not care what your ethnicity is, get off the “entitlements” and stop being a parasite on the taxpayers! (The general ‘you’.)

          Yet why, oh why, are we paying for people who aren’t even citizens to receive “benefits”? That includes giving foreign aide, like the forty million that Mr. Obama handed to Mexico last spring… Don’t get me wrong, we oppose handouts to France, Brazil, Japan, Sierra Leone or anyplace else, as well.

          • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters
          • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

            So, um, what is the point? Giving money to European Jews, Poland and France prior to WWII would not have stopped Hitler. Then, as now, a strong American military is needed.

          • http://sarenth.wordpress.com/ Sarenth

            Get off the ‘entitlements’? Some people can’t eat unless the have that community support. Some people won’t have a home, and some people would not have health care with these ‘entitlements’. From what I’ve read, both from this and previous posts you’ve made, I guess you’re cool with old women freezing to death in their homes in the dead of winter or children starving as their families try to make ends meet.

            ‘Cause hey, what better way to get rid of “parasites” then freeze them to death and starve them, right?

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Not to be cruel…but with so many people out there whining about over population…. XP

          • Baruch Dreamstalker

            Alchemist, I used to be one of those population whiners, 40 year ago. By 30 years ago I’d stopped: US fertility had dropped to replacement rate and I’d realized the problem would be solved elsewhere by empowering women, not by lecturing about population.

            The US has a skewed age curve, with near-geriatric Boomers leading the bulge. We need those younger workers (if we can find jobs for them) kicking into Social Security.

          • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

            They can go live at YOUR house, and YOU can pay for them.

          • http://sarenth.wordpress.com/ Sarenth

            Get off the ‘entitlements’? Some people can’t eat unless the have that community support. Some people won’t have a home, and some people would not have health care with these ‘entitlements’. From what I’ve read, both from this and previous posts you’ve made, I guess you’re cool with old women freezing to death in their homes in the dead of winter or children starving as their families try to make ends meet.

            ‘Cause hey, what better way to get rid of “parasites” then freeze them to death and starve them, right?

    • http://erynn999.livejournal.com/ Erynn

      I don’t see anyone rushing to learn Native American languages. Maybe we should send everyone back where they came from if they don’t.

      • Anonymous

        The Native American languages were made irrelevant when they lost their lands to the Europeans. I fail to see what relevance your comment has to anything being discussed here.

        • http://kauko-niskala.blogspot.com Kauko

          I’ll be sure to pass on to all the Native Americans out there just how irrelevant they and their languages are. I’m sure they’d love to know so they can give up all that pesky preserving of their cultures and religions.

          • Anonymous

            If that’s something they want to do, good for them. But they’re not relevant to mainstream American culture. Heck, most schools aren’t even teaching the languages of Western civilization anymore… it’s all been reduced to Spanish, presumably so that kids can ask why all of their jobs have been taken by illegal aliens.

          • Anonda

            nonsense, instead of using the mindless rhetoric, why dont you show/prove that most schools arent even teaching the languages of western civilization anymore?
            and what are these languages by the way?
            are you aware that spanish is one of them?

            i live in arizona myself…and if anything, people look at you as if you have been insulted if you speak spanish or any other language…in spite of the countless of studies and resources that show the benefits of being bilingual….

            students and young folks in arizona are still taking french, italian and even learning critical languages….

            i know the likes of you, you are just one of those who is afraid that the white western race is going to die out because of this brown people…

          • Anonymous

            You do realize that Spanish is a Romance language that originates in Spain, right? Spain, a country on the Iberian Peninsula in southwestern Europe was a part of the West last time I checked. Romance languages are those that descend from Latin, the language of Western civilization at least since the age of dominance of the Roman Empire. Even if all schools are teaching is Spanish, they are most certainly teaching a language of Western Civilization.

          • Anonymous

            Folcwald wrote: “You do realize that Spanish is a Romance language that originates in Spain, right? ”
            Of course. But it’s being taught as a way to speak to the illegals, not as a representative of Western Civilization. There used to be a time when French, Italian and German (and Latin) were taught in public high schools. Now that’s a rarity and usually limited to private schools.

            Anonda wrote: “students and young folks in arizona are still taking french, italian, ” blah blah blah
            My daughter lives in Tucson and is being forced to take Spanish because that’s the only option. She tells me that the teachers tell the white kids to talk to the illegals in their class in Spanish, so that they don’t feel left out. WTF? Shouldn’t it be the other way around?

            Why is it that white people are the ones expected to learn Spanish and the Mexicans and other illegals from Central and South America aren’t expected to learn English? Do you understand that this sends a message that says they can’t learn English because they’re not smart enough? American culture has bent over backwards to accomodate illegals: signs in Spanish, press 2 for Spanish, bi-lingual education in public schools. Why can’t they learn English if they’re going to live here?

          • http://kauko-niskala.blogspot.com Kauko

            Maybe things have changed a lot since I was in High School, but my High School offered classes in Spanish, French, German, Latin and Japanese.

            “She tells me that the teachers tell the white kids to talk to the illegals in their class in Spanish”

            Your comments seem to consistantly conflate all Central and South American people whether here legally or not as ‘illegals’. Furthermore the way you have used the word ‘white’ in your comments seems to imply that ‘white people’ by definition represent legitimate, unquestioned legal Americans while people of color do not.

            “Why is it that white people are the ones expected to learn Spanish and the Mexicans and other illegals from Central and South America aren’t expected to learn English?”

            So, the white people are expected to learn Spanish, but the black or, say, Asian students aren’t? I’m confused. There seems to be a lot of racism behind your comments here.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            There might be a point there. A little over a decade ago, instructions for assembly came in English, French, German, Spanish, and maybe one other. These days? English, Spanish, Chinese, and Japanese. German, French, and most other European languages are getting relegated to the basements of every day life. And I think they are slowly shrinking in Colleges. There was something of a big push to learn Spanish so one could communicate with all the Hispanic immigrants. at the cost of learning other languages.

        • Oberon Osiris

          You mean when they were massacred by the Europeans, genocide. Something our ruling class of White Europeans have become quite good at. Hey, there’s a thought, why don’t all you folks just pick some “better” country and go take that one over, too?

          • Anonymous

            Wars for control of natural resources are not something unique to White Europeans… it just happens to have occurred most recently. I’m sorry you have such contempt for white people that you’re blind to the reality that this happens (and continues to happen) all over the world.

            Wars have winners and losers. Get over it.

          • Syna

            “Wars for control of natural resources” was not the premise that said White Europeans used when they made the decisions that resulted in genocide.

            They broke treaties, they slaughtered, they ignored longstanding claims to the land.

            Just because “it happens all the time” doesn’t make it right. If you want to invoke morality in this discussion at any point, fyi, you’re gonna have to concede that.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Syna, you seem to forget that the Native Americans also broke treaties, committed massacres, and did their fair share of horrible and nasty things like kidnapping, rape, murder, etc.

            Look, no one’s hands were clean, but simply because Europeans managed to survive in larger numbers do to continued immigration, and the Native Americans died because they couldn’t hand diseases like small pox (to which the Europeans had also died out in large numbers too) doesn’t make White hands dirtier than Native hands.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            I don’t think Massacred is the right word here, as most Native Americans died from sickness, not war or violence. Yes, we brought our germs with us, but you can’t blame Europeans for the actions of our germs, unless say you want to blame the Arabs for bringing the Black Death, or the Chinese for giving it to them.

          • Pagan Puff Pieces

            But you CAN blame them for seeing the plagues as proof of their right to take over. It’s not like they just walked into a place, said hi to the new neighbors and did nothing nothing as people died around them (and it’s not like people didn’t know how to purposely spread disease around before germ theory, though whether or not they did seems up to debate).

            Disease? Not their fault. Being jerks about it? Yeah, totally.

          • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

            Norse Alchemist: “I don’t think Massacred is the right word here, as most Native Americans died from sickness, not war or violence.”

            Large scale disease outbreaks are a common occurrence throughout human history. Europe was devastated by disease outbreaks at multiple times throughout its history. But after the pandemic is over, societies recover and populations rather quickly return to pre-pandemic levels. Something very different happened in the Americas.

      • Daniel Kestral

        Huzzah! And well spoken!

      • Thelettuceman

        Oh, please.

      • Anonymous

        Considering I want to eventually move me arse out west/south west, I thank you for this idea.

        Now to see if I can find a place in SE Mich that can teach any of the languages from that region.. Or an online class.

        again, an honest thank you for flicking the light switch.

  • http://erynn999.livejournal.com/ Erynn

    We are all insane.

    • Anonymous

      “We’re all here, but we’re not all there…”

  • Kilmrnock

    Erynn, i agree the way the American Indians were treated by the American Government is a disgrace and one we should make amends for wherever possible .To me the whole concept of manifest destiny is absurd.But this is a whole different discussion. Kilm

    • Daniel Kestral

      Indeed, many people easily dismiss the atrocities that were inflicted upon Native Peoples in North American by European and American Imperialism. Manifest Destiny, in and of itself, became a priviliged excuse to commit displacement and genocide against the Tribes of North America. Our own American narrative, fabricated and excused by delusions of granduer fed by religion, politics, and a superiority complex (White Man’s Burden, for instance) created these problems in the historical narrative of the continents of the “New World.” The dialectics of savage/civilized, etc., promulgates a whole plethora of problems where injustices are still excused and commited against Indigenous peoples.

      • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

        Oh how convinenet that we forget that sickness was running around killing everyone. Body counts to disease were higher than any massacres committed by “Whites.”

        • Daniel Kestral

          Yes, but your forget the US Government also used diseases in an early form of biological warfare to commit genocide against Tribal populations. Blankets, for instance, were given to Native Americans knowingly by the US Government so that Tribes would contract these diseases. Pox, Yellow Fever, Tuberculosis, etc. Look it up.

  • Jack Heron

    The truly disturbing aspect here is the association between Mexican culture and illegal immigration and thence to crime. Since when has learning about a neighboring culture been something so bad it must be banned?

  • Anonymous

    Great article.

    The dynamics that drive illegal immigration are the same that drove the slave trade, and current outsourcing of American jobs to foreign countries: cheap labor. It’s a race to the bottom, always has been. Instead of us little people getting mad at each other we should instead direct our anger at an economic system built on exploitation.

    • Oberon Osiris

      I agree very much with this!

    • Pagan Puff Pieces

      When the system craves cheap labor and loopholes that allow people to pay what they decide are “fair” wages for all-too-necessary labor (that isn’t “real” enough to pay a decent wage for), when it relies so heavily on this underclass there’s no imaginable way improve things without triggering a system crash, when you have a neighboring nation in such a state that those wages for that kind of labor is an improvement worth the travel, bending and breaking laws, and becoming an easy villain in the eyes of many, no amount of walls, laws, programs, or anger will stop illegal immigration or its related problems.

    • Skye_phoenix99

      I agree, remove the profit motive from the one’s who are making the profit. If counterfeit money cost more to make than the face value, no one would do that either.

    • Anonymous

      Plainly put, it’s a lot easier to threaten, harass and intimidate some person standing in the parking lot of Home Depot hoping for some day labor or some woman with her kids tramping through the desert than it is to go after the big agribusinesses that hire undocumented immigrants. The folks with the money have government and law enforcement backing them up and the “minuteman” types just don’t have the guts to step up to them. It’s just easier to follow this media-promulgated narrative of “They’re stealing our jobs and our stuff” instead of realizing that the people controlling the situation aren’t the workers. Going after the workers is just a convenient paper target for the cowards.

  • Anonymous

    Last fall, at a subway station in downtown Baydjing, my passport, along with my visa and 3000yuan was stolen from me. I had just lost my job (suddenly and without compensation) as well as not being able to afford the apartment I was living in.

    I reported it to the local police but after checking the US Embassy website, I realized I would not have enough money to purchase a new passport and Visa for many months.

    No passport means no Visa…no visa means no “residence registration”

    In short, because I didn’t have the money, after 30 days, I became an illegal immigrant of Chynah.

    I found a temporary place to stay and weathered the winter squeaking by on what I was making teaching English.

    When the Summer came, I had saved enough and had the space in my schedule to deal with the problem.
    Apparently what I had done was incredibly illegal. I had waited so long, the pohlees literally laughed at me when I went to report it.

    Fortunately, the guhvurnmint was very cooperative and I’m a legal resident again.

    So, my question for Skye_phoenix99 and sindarintech is this;
    As a functioning and participatory member of this community
    who pays rent, has taxes removed from his paycheck
    and is otherwise law abiding…should Chynah have thrown me out???

    Malaz

    • Deborah Bender

      “We have laws in this country for a reason. If you break them, you are a criminal. It’s as simple as that.”

      From the POV of some of the native born, perhaps it is as simple as that. But when I hear statements like these, I think of my European relatives.

      Hitler wanted to rid the Third Reich of Jews. He started by expelling as many as he could, but Western Europe and America didn’t want to receive a lot of Jewish immigrants. Most of the citizens of those countries disliked Jews. And their borders were well guarded.

      When the Reich conquered Poland, all of a sudden Hitler had a couple million more dirty Jews on his hands that he couldn’t get rid of in the usual ways. The Nazis lost patience with their Jewish problem and decided to gas them all like rats. And they were successful at this, because they were determined and the Jews had almost nowhere to go.

      The Mexicans aren’t fleeing genocide (though some of the Guatemalans are), just ordinary grinding, hopeless poverty. I have a good deal of sympathy with illegal immigrants and would-be immigrants from anywhere, because there but for fortune . . .

      • Cara

        Oh geez. Did you really have to go right to Hitler/Jews references???

        • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

          It was a favorite of Martin Luther King’s, who never tired of pointing out that everything that Adolf Hitler did was perfectly legal.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Law is Law, even when Lawful Evil. :/

            Make of that what you will.

      • Anonymous

        You’re comparing apples with oranges… and you’re also attempting to rewrite a bit of history too. Concentration camps didn’t suddenly materialize in Poland and Eastern Europe because Hitler discovered he suddenly had a couple million more Jews to deal with. It was ALWAYS his plan to exterminate them. What happened was that the Nazis chose to not waste ammunition used to shoot each person and looked for a less resource intensive method that could murder more people more efficiently. THAT was the true horror of the Shoah.

        Regarding illegal aliens: There’s a difference between them and would-be immigrants. The latter are following our established laws and processes and waiting their turn. They will be productive members of our society. The others are crossing our borders illegally and sucking dry our social service programs AND expecting their kids to get educated on our dollar. One thing the illegals have going for them is a network where information on how to use our system to their extreme benefit is passed on from one to the other. And, of course, organizations such as La Raza, which is only interested in opening the flood gates to the third world.

        If you don’t find this to be something worth becoming enraged about, then I don’t know what will.

    • http://paosirdjhutmosu.wordpress.com Djhutmosu Si-Hathor

      Quite unrelated to the subject at hand, but why the creative spelling? (like “pohlees” and “chynah” and “Baydjing”? )

      • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

        I assumed the individual was trying to bypass the great firewall of China? Other than that, I’ve got nothin’.

        • http://paosirdjhutmosu.wordpress.com Djhutmosu Si-Hathor

          That would make sense. Tupidsay “Oldengay ieldshay”. They seriously need some cyber-Mongolians to tear down that wall or something. ;)

        • Anonymous

          Yah. Its not much, but so far speak-write has prevented me from getting kicked off the internet.

          • Anonymous

            Nuthin like freedom of speech, eh? ;-)
            I get it now… man, you have to be pretty creative to get around that stuff.

    • Anonymous

      Would the Chinese consider you to be a citizen? I highly doubt it. You’re likely perceived as a foreign invader who happens to have skills that the Chinese need use of (at the moment) and will be deported once those skills are no longer needed.

      Just out of curiosity: Why are you aiding the Communist Chinese? Are you really making that much more than you could here in the U.S?

      • Baruch Dreamstalker

        In case you hadn’t noticed, in scenarios like that of Malaz, China is eating the American lunch.

      • Anonymous

        Well, truth be told, I’m a Sohshulist. Its a big part of why I’m here. Their brand of Soshulizm isn’t exactly what I would prefer, but it’s what I have.

        (Lets not do the “red menace” thing shall we?)

        No, I’m making less…and that’s the point.

        Here I make roughly the equivalent of 1500$US a month.
        In the states, that’s a car payment.
        Here I can afford a house, clothing, food, luxury items like DVDs and leisure travel.

        • Anonymous

          China isn’t a socialist country, it’s a communist country.
          $1500/month would get you a pretty good car here in the U.S. :-)

          Good luck!

          • Anonymous

            Hey Sindar,

            Yah, that’s what we’re taught.
            It’s not…McDonalds is here, Starbux is here and micro-free-markets are developing everywhere.

            Besides, Khamewizm is just a subset of Soshulizm. :)

    • Skye_phoenix99

      When you first entered Chynah, did you do so legally? Yes. What did you do since then that was illegal? become a crime victim? Are you going to say that it is illegal on your part in Chynah to have your passport stolen from you? None the less, if it is illegal for you to remain in Chynah without one, and you were discovered, I would expect them to expel you, or more likely, put you in a deep dark hole. Do I approve of such methods? It is not my place to approve or disapprove of how Chynah conducts its affairs. That is for Chynah to decide. On the other hand, perhaps the comparison you were trying to make is that all of the people in the U.S. illegally are here because their passports were stolen, along with all of their money? It really is two different things, two different situations.

      • Anonymous

        No, the issue is simple.
        What was illegal was not reporting my loss to the central authority immediately AND not making an effort to get a new residence registration.

        Perhaps the situations are dissimilar in onset, but exactly the same in conclusion. Your arguments have been centered around the “laws” involved and what I’m saying is that for the better part of a year I was an illegal immigrant.

        When I was in the states, I had the opportunity to work with (and stay with) some people who were in Amherikha without the “proper papers”
        Other than how they arrived, they were law-abiding, made a true contribution to their community and were really…very cool.

        I feel that the way you have dismissed illegal immigrants is an emotional bias that you’ve rationalized with the law.

        Lastly, I’d like to say something about the reason there are so many II’s in the states. Akhmerika could be doing more for wealth distribution and shared, sustainable resources but it’s not. The US HAS the ability and the wealth to help countries become more prosperous economically, socially and medically but like all gud Kapilust states it hordes its resources while Mexico goes without clean water.

        I’m in Santa Rosalia or Matamoros and I have lived my whole life in poverty…you give me the chance to jump on boat to Amherikha…damn right I’m taking it.

        Malaz

  • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

    Many of the assumptions made by BOTH sides are wrong.

    One: St. Muerte is a figure like the grim reaper, or kinda like the Orisha, who was incorporated into the Catholic pantheon of saints. St. Muerte is not recognized by mainstream Catholicism. He / She is an “ahistorical” saint, who does not have a history or background within the Church. There are several of these in Britain and Germany, including St. Modron, St. Walpurgia, St. Alkelda and St. Cornelly. Some of these may have originally been Pagan deities.

    Two: Very few people of Mexican descent will admit to “worshipping” St. Muerte but all of ‘em want to appease Him or Her. St. Muerte is most often depicted on Dia del Muerte, the equivalent of Halloween, on altars and in graveyards. Offerings are given, and as in the photo here on The Wild Hunt, people place photos of ancestors or their departed loved ones nearby. Also, St. Muerte is one of the most popular figurines purchased by tourists, so we can’t claim to be completely unaware of the saint’s existence. For anyone to imply it’s some “secret cult” is ridiculous.

    Three: Worship of St. Muerte hasn’t anything to do with crime amongst Mexicans than worship of St. Brighid has anything to do with crime amongst people of Irish descent. Bad guys might worship St. Muerte, but bad guys might also worship Jesus, Allah or Herne. Yes, they really do have gang tattoos of St. Muerte — and 13s, skulls, the Virgien de Guadalupe, etc., but also the Tasmanian Devil, the Chevy logo, flowers, crosses, and ink that other bangers as well as regular citizens have.

    Four: The actual patron saint of Mexican drug smugglers and dealers, or Narcos, and drug enforcers, or Sicarios, is not St. Death but St. Jesus Malverde, who may have been a real person, a bandit shot by the police. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jes%C3%BAs_Malverde (the short Wikipedia version of the legend). Worship / reverence of him CAN be scary, for in order to be “blooded in” to a cartel / gang, one must do a rite including his worship and killing a rival gangsta. St. Malverde is also an ahistorical saint.

    Five: The average person of Mexican descent is as afraid of drug cartels and drug smugglers and enforcers as the rest of us. Why? Cuz El Narcos and Los Sicarios really are frightening dangerous people who perpetrate drive-by shootings, murder customers who owe them money, and infest their own communities with illegal drugs and the crime and poverty that follows.

    How does a boring middle-class midwestern housewife know this? Well, some folks have made allusions here to my checkered past… which included involvement with some nasty characters. Suffice to say I know what I’m talkin’ about.

    • Oberon Osiris

      AC, you live (I think) closer to the area that my Mom, Sister, Niece, now live in. There are a lot of Mexican/Hispanic folks there, so it is no surprise to me that you would know this, better than others. Plus you are very good at research.

      See ? I am able to compliment you as well as… not.

      • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

        I know this because one, several good friends are cops, and two, my handfasted second husband is in prison for life and housed with the former titular leader of La Eme / Dos Emmes / Mexican Mafia / M-13, who himself reveres St. Malverde and did the blood-in ritual initiation ceremony. In his heyday he smuggled tons (literally) of drugs into this country and killed 27 people that authorities know of. He is serving life without parole in CA, and that is where he belongs.

        When it comes to crime, and illegal immigration is a crime, liberals often wish to sugarcoat and theorize and pretend that if we throw money at the problem, and implement more programs, and learn about cultures, that will just make these people good wonderful citizens who want to give up their million dollar lifestyles and their Escalades and their Kalashnikovs and move into the suburbs and get along with everyone. Liberals want to think that we’re all one big happy family, holding hands and singing and dancing around the mulberry bush. This is SO not true.

        Most, I repeat MOST, Americans of Mexican descent are good, honest, decent, hardworking, taxpaying citizens. They want to assimilate while preserving their beautiful culture. This fact does NOT make the illegals legitimate. This fact does NOT make the criminals less dangerous. El Narcos prey on other Mexicans and they prey on the rest of America, too.

        • Anonymous

          “When it comes to crime, and illegal immigration is a crime, liberals often wish to sugarcoat and theorize and pretend that if we throw money at the problem, and implement more programs, and learn about cultures, that will just make these people good wonderful citizens who want to give up their million dollar lifestyles and their Escalades and their Kalashnikovs and move into the suburbs and get along with everyone. Liberals want to think that we’re all one big happy family, holding hands and singing and dancing around the mulberry bush. This is SO not true.”

          Oh but apparently it’s true that every single illegal immigrant is a big time cartel hardcase with an Escalade and a Kalashnikov? Do you even read this stuff before you hit “post”? You’ve just made an almost completely unsupportable statement, but “liberals” are the ones living in a fantasy world?

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Well, the cartels are a big draw. If you’re an illegal immigrant or whatever you want to call them, the cartels will target to hire you, and why work for less than min wage when you can make money hand over fist killing and selling drugs?

          • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

            Ya’all must’ve missed my last paragraph. Guess we better throw some more tax dollars at public education.

          • Anonymous

            Really, you’re going to go for the veiled “obviously you’re an idiot because I really meant something else” thing? Well if you’re ever so much smarter than I am, perhaps you’d be so kind as to explain to me and the rest of us exactly who are the “these people” you were talking about. It might clear up some of the confusion we dullards are experiencing regarding the mention of illegal immigration right before the whole Kalashnikovs and Escalades thing.

    • Anonda

      in regards to point number one…
      she has been linked to the queen of the underworld Mictecacihuatl

      here she is

      • Anonda

        Mictecacihuatl

  • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

    Immigration by young healthy hard working people, legal and otherwise, is a demographic and economic boon to the US. People come here from Mexico (and elsewhere), work their asses off, pay taxes, and have lots of kids. This is how to keep Social Security from going belly up. Gods Bless America.

    • Anonymous

      Which, from what I can tell, is the entire reason politicians are turning a blind eye to this invasion.

    • Baruch Dreamstalker

      Which, Apuleius, as a retiree on Social Security, I find to be the most attactive position in this rant exchange — excuse me, “debate.”

      • Anonymous

        Baruch, you’re far too young to be a retiree!! :-)

        • Baruch Dreamstalker

          Thank you. I’m 70.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            You lazy yungun, get back to work XD

  • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

    You folks enjoy PBS, public television funded by tax dollars, right?

    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/drugs/business/malverde.html

  • Tara

    The solution is to make legal immigration more attainable. Noone wants to be an “illegal alien”, living in poverty and fear. People who come to America to work should be welcomed and treated with dignity. The government could sponsor free language classes for both Mexicans to learn English and Americans to learn Spanish. We should also crack down on the American business owners who are hiring and exploiting undocumented immigrants, like the pizza place lettuceman mentioned above. Allow immigrants to learn the language and become full citizens and they will contribute to our society.
    Where did your ancestors come from?

    • Cara

      Immigration reform (not just periodic blanket amnesty or ignoring that we have these things called laws) is the correct route to go through. I don’t like that we allow more immigrants from some countries than others. That is very discriminatory. The policies and quotas should not be country based, but should be based on the person. But we do need caps on the number accepted each year so we CAN devote resources to helping them adjust to their new life and be successful in the USA.

      When people come in illegally, even with the absolute best intentions, it negatively impacts us and them. What gets lost in the debate over illegal immigration is that the debate unfairly focuses on Mexicans. There are many, many millions of people who would love to move to the USA, but since they can’t cross over illegally as easily as Mexican nationals can – too freaking bad for them, right? Why worry about them? Also, people don’t need to look at Mexican nationals living in the USA as evil leeches any more or less than they would look on illegal aliens from other countries.

      (As an aside – the correct, legal term for someone in the country illegally is ‘illegal alien’ – so the complaining about how derogatory that term is and how we should use ‘undocumented worker’ is BS. Use the term if you want, but know it is a PR move and nothing more.)

    • Anonda

      tara,
      when i used to be a social worker (and i live in az, btw) a lot of my hispanic clients wanted to learn english…but the resources were limited. either it was expensive and they couldnt afford it or, the organization that offered free english classes would suddenly dismiss the program….due to lack of funding or whatever…
      it was as if there was a special force that wanted to prevent them from learning english and advance in life…

      this is very different from my experience in new york..

      • AnonGuest

        That’s infuriating.. locally (a Hispanic area) it’s easy to find free English classes, and they even started to offer very inexpensive (25$ for the whole class) Spanish classes for English students, too

        • Anonda

          anonguest,

          when the economy started going downhill, these english classes went downhill too..

          • AnonGuest

            Right, no public funding

      • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

        What ever happened to television? That was like the number one way to learn the local language. And for the most part, you can get the local channels for free. If not that, radio, and you can get that for free. XP

        • Anonda

          you assume that everybody in the usa owns a tv…
          and that even those who do, have time to watch it…
          your writing tells me that you assume too much and are ignorant about the limitation and conditions of other people…
          come to arizona, i will show you around…you will def. be surprised…

  • Robert Mathiesen

    Sindarintech wrote:

    “We have laws in this country for a reason. If you break them, you are a criminal. It’s as simple as that. ”

    Yes, it is almost as simple as that. And it is also as simple as *this*, too: there are and always will be laws in *every* country (including ours, but that is a trivial point) which are so unjust that the only honorable and right thing to do is to break them, thereby becoming a criminal.

    With respect to such laws as those, it is shameful and dishonorable to obey them, and only the criminals who break them are worthy of respect. I repeat, with reference to such laws, *only* a criminal is worth respect; the law-abiding, in that a case, merit the deepest contempt, and are bad citizens.

    This is a personal issue for me, for I have been in such a situation myself once or twice, and I have knowingly broken a law with serious penalties to save another person’s life, and done so before witnesses. I could no have lived with myself afterward if I had not. In such a case, the honorable thing is to become a criminal, and the contemptible thing is to obey the law.

  • http://www.facebook.com/boniface777 Boni F. Ace

    Many a drug dealer is Christian, with Jesus tattooed somewhere on their body. Jesus is depicted in churches nailed to a cross. Does that make Christianity a “death drug cult?” No. So why is the depiction of Santisima Muerte any different? The Scottish Cailleach is the same deity in a different cultural context, so is the Irish Morrigan, yet no one seems worried about these cultural representations. This is just bigotry, pure and simple.

  • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

    Illegal immigration doesn’t cost us money? It doesn’t lead to more crime?

    From a CBS news report of July last year:

    “Illegal immigrants are just seven percent of Arizona’s population,but make up nearly 15 percent of the state’s prison population. They represent 14 percent of all inmates jailed for manslaughter and murder, and 24 percent of inmates on drug charges.”

    http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2010/07/22/eveningnews/main6703953.shtml

    And… “of all the prisoners serving time in Arizona state prisons for kidnapping, 40 percent were undocumented. Of those in prison on drug charges, 24 percent were undocumented. And 13 percent of those serving time for murder were undocumented immigrants, according to the new data from the Arizona Department of Corrections.

    The number of undocumented immigrants in Arizona state prisons has also grown in recent years. In December, 2004 there were 4,098 undocumented immigrants in the Arizona state prison population making up 12.6 percent according to state data. By June 2010 the number had increased to 14.8 percent for a total of 5,983 incarcerated undocumented immigrants.”

    http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-31727_162-20011391-10391695.html?tag=contentMain;contentBody

    Buuuuut… I suppose certain factions will claim that illegal immigrants are unfairly targets and none of them are really criminals.

  • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

    I think things have gone a bit too far here, so I’m closing this thread. I think everyone has gotten a chance to air their positions, and sadly, there has been too much name-calling and over-heated rhetoric going on.