“Adios America! Viva America!”
The word MULTI-CULTURALISM is an anathema to many Americans because it is misapplied and badly defined by the people who object to it and its use.
In California, some object to the statewide school requirement that Spanish be taught in the 4th grade. Others object to bi-lingual language education in Spanish/English in English-as-a-Second Language curriculums. They even object to having to push #1 for English and #2 for Spanish when they call private businesses on the phone. They object to multi-lingual ballots on Election Day.
They are now crying foul over Mitt Romney’s declaration on Sunday’s Meet the Press (NBC) that the “biggest mistake” he made in his losing 2012 Presidential race was “not paying early attention to the minority vote.” For example, he could have driven nails into Obama’s campaign by telling Mexican Americans that his father was born a Mexican citizen.
Finally, Romney hits the nail on the head. Here is what he ignored in political “intel” – In 1988 the proportionate share of the White vote was 85 percent; in 2004, 77 percent, in 2012 it was 72 percent. In 2016 it is expected to be 70 percent.
If 2012’s demographics had mirrored 1988s or even of 2004, Mitt Romney would be running for reelection and Obama would have been consigned to the Benghazi ashcan of history. But they didn’t.
White Pollyanna-like pundits, authors and politicians like Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, Phyllis Schafly, Congressman Steve King, Senator Ted Cruz (TX), Senator Jeff Sessions (AL) and a gaggle of House Republicans desperately try to convince themselves and others that if only Republicans work to increase their all-ready dominant White vote, the Presidency will be Republican again.
They obviously do not know the White vote is shrinking. They don’t because they don’t acknowledge the country is changing.
When I was in elementary school just four years out of Mexico there was no formal program to educate Spanish-speaking children, I learned English in spite of no program but was in turn assigned to work with and help new comers from Mexico to learn English. There weren’t that many kids that needed help so it wasn’t much of a problem.
But now we are talking about millions of Spanish speakers and recently Asians and some Africans that have arrived on our shores or crossed the border that need help because there aren’t enough kids like me for one-on-one help.
Additionally, some emotionally magnify problems far beyond reality in order to frighten non-Hispanic Whites. Ann Coulter, for example, is all over television hustling her new book, “ADIOS AMERICA!” in which she claims that if an American wants to be raped and/or murdered, a Mexican will gleefully murder and/or rape that innocent American.
She is wrong, of course, and has no documentation to back-up her claims but nonetheless, she is out there and there are some who believe her because they want to.
How does she and her believers explain the following information from California’s Department of Justice? Los Angeles County is larger than most countries, has the largest population of immigrants, legal and illegal, in the country and they are mostly from Mexico, El Salvador and Guatemala the very people Coulter attacks.
In 2004, Los Angeles County had 1038 murders and 2108 forcible rapes; in 2013 the murder number dropped to 543 and forcible rapes dropped to 1556.
In the federal prison system there are 33,450 Mexican-born prisoners and 159,698 non-Mexican-born prisoners. The Bureau of Prisons reports that 2.9 percent of all prisoners are Mexican-born convicted of murder/kidnapping or aggravated assault with 7 percent of all prisoners Mexican-born convicted of sex crimes. In which category does “rape” fall under?
The tally of convicted murderers in state prisons is more illuminating than anything Ann Coulter insists on; for example: as of December 31, 2013, there were 166,800 convicted murderers in state prisons of which 68,400 were Black, 45,800 White and 40,000 “Hispanic” some of whom might be from South of the Border but we, including Ann Coulter, don’t know how many.
So who should White America and the mostly non-Hispanic White Republican Party listen to, Ann Coulter who claims that the GOP simply needs to concentrate more on White votes or Mitt Romney. He thinks otherwise, he thinks more efforts should be expended by the GOP towards the minority voters he ignored.
We know that Hispanic immigrants start new businesses at rates higher than native-born Americans (and have since the Ronald Reagan Presidency); ditto Asian immigrants. We know that the Roman Catholic Church is busy naming Hispanic Bishops because it can see who is in their pews. We know that national, state and local Hispanic Chambers of Commerce thrive; we know that people are inclined to join the political party that asks them to join. We also know that business people lean, by nature, to the over-all Republican message.
Hillary Clinton says that businesses don’t create jobs; Hispanic business people know otherwise.
Asking them in English and Spanish helps. So does welcoming them with an “abrazo,” (a Latin American male hug). Instead of “Adios America” how about “Viva America!”
Contreras was syndicated by Creators Syndicate and wrote for the New American News Service of the New York Times