Archive for November 16th, 2006

Farmers Branch: I wish I never knew you

November 16, 2006

Forgive me for barging in to the Houseflies domain after going so long with nothing useful to contribute. But I finally have something to talk about.

Larry James contributed to our blog some time ago. For those that don’t remember, James serves as the President/CEO for Central Dallas Ministries, “a human community development corporation with a focus on economic and social justice at work in inner city Dallas.”

On his blog today, he put forth a great articulation of my hunch that most Americans are ignorantly nodding their heads in agreement with bigotry, and I’m sick of it.

I’m sick of the pundis that portray “illegals” as greedy, criminals that weasel their way in to our country taking jobs from deserving Americans.

I was repulsed to see the portrayals of immigration in the Pennsylvania Senate race. Does Pennsylvania really have an imminent threat of border jumpers? Take a look at the tone from the front lines of the issue in places like California (this link is well worth the read!) and Arizona. The term “illegals” is almost universally replaced by the moniker “migrants.” In a previous post James questioned, “How can a human being be illegal?”

Enter Farmers Branch, Texas. Growing up I considered Farmers Branch Church of Christ my surrogate church. They hosted a youth leadership conference I attended from 8th grade until my college years.

In James’ post he discusses FB’s new attempt to crack down on these illegals. I find it noisome, this legislation led by FBCoC member, Tim O’Hare.

Where is the compassion? Where is the concern for humanity?

I don’t profess to be the most informed person on the history and origins of our border issues, but I know racism when I see it.

James makes excellent points about the notion that migrants take from “hard working Americans.” Even though, as Larry points out, they pay sales tax, contribute to property tax. If employed, they contribute to social security with no expectation of return.

When it comes to the security concerns of our porous border, our elected officials certainly have a difficult problem on their hands. However, they ran for office to deal with the tough problems facing our country.

When they resort to preying on American jingoism and xenophobia, I don’t know whether to fight, cry or puke.

New Leadership

November 16, 2006

This topic seemed newsworthy enough to move it from the comments section to an actual post. In voting today, John Murtha lost his bid to become the Democrats’ Majority Leader, 149-86. As the president might say, it was a thumpin’. Nancy Pelosi, who was supporting Murtha, won the Speaker’s chair unanimously. It sounds like the caucus asserted itself and said, “Nancy, we love you as Speaker, but you’re wrong about Murtha. We can’t say we’re going to set new standards for honesty and ethics, then turn right around and elect someone with Murtha’s problems.”

Earlier in the week, the senatorial GOP chose Trent Lott as their second-in-command, despite his endorsement of the 1948 Dixiecrat platform only a few years ago. Based on reports I heard this morning, the general sentiment among GOP senators seemed to be that Lott had been punished enough for that. In other words, the punishment they had inflicted was for being impolitic in expressing his racism, not for being a racist. Apparently, it’s still okay to be a racist, as long as you show a little politesse about it. The South’s swaggering style is too gauche for a senate leader; the North’s haughty style, however, is fine.