Robert Scheer via Cymro at Talk Left:
From Having intermittently covered this issue for the Los Angeles Times over 30 years, I can well recall the peaks of panic in which we reporters were dispatched to the border and out into the fields to witness the arrest of people desperate to find work -- only to be embarrassed by the hunted eyes and clutched crosses of the enemy discovered.
Such frenzied attention was inevitably followed by a lull in which most Americans were quite happy to eat the food harvested by those same harassed and abused workers as well as to entrust the "illegals" with the care of American homes and children. On no other issue is there such an extreme disconnect between attitudes and actions.
When Wal-Mart was busted for hiring undocumented workers, did anybody boycott the company? Of course not; consumers value price and aren't concerned, for the most part, about how a company accomplishes cheapness. If, however, people do really care about keeping all jobs open to American citizens, then there is only one effective strategy: Level the playing field by enforcing labor laws.
The astounding number of Mexican-Americans and others turning out to protest the hysterical, hypocritical, myopic, xenophobic scapegoating cranked out by the Fascist Right is truly awesome.
The Left Blogosphere is ripe with discussion about why liberals can't throw together an impressive demonstration. The answer is very simple: It's all about the urgency of the threat. Lefties refuse to acknowledge that democracy in America is now - not "is going to be" - replaced with a Fascist oligarchy. As a group, we reject what our eyes and ears tell us every day because, if we confront the truth, we have to ask ourselves what we're doing to engage those who have taken away our freedom. We do not make threat assessments because we are afraid to be called to direct action. Somebody might call us unAmerican. We might get on a list or lose a sale.
Our Latino brothers and sisters, and those who stand with them, cannot ignore the threat. The consequences -- having relatives turned into felons for the crime of serving as fodder in the smoking barrels of the America's consumer culture; becoming felons themselves for adhering to the most basic principles of human rights -- are potentially far too devastating; the threat, all too real.
"Things will get better," the rest of us keep telling ourselves. It never does. Until we choose to make our voices are heard, it never will.