The column "A city about to change colors" (signonsandiego . com/news/op-ed/navarrette/20051019-9999-lz1e19navar.html) says it was written by San Diego Union-Tribute editorialist Ruben Navarrette Jr., but it reads like it was written by Vicente Fox.
I strongly urge you to read the column and use the email addresses below to let those papers that printed this know what you think. While most might appreciate the attention, some might also reconsider whether they want to continue being associated with his views.
After Katrina, Americans gave millions of dollars to help the victims, and our federal government will give untold billions more. This should be an opportunity for Americans of all races and backgrounds to come together and help each other. Unfortunately, some others tend to put their race before their country and their fellow citizens.
If you thought the destruction caused by Hurricane Katrina was ugly, then you should take a look at what's happening now. It's not pretty.
The Rev. Jesse Jackson and New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin are up in arms because what has historically been a mostly black city may be on its way to becoming a largely brown city. Latino immigrants are coming to New Orleans from as far away as California to repair homes, clear debris, rebuild roads and do other jobs...
The vast majority of them are citizens of Mexico and other countries. Some are new crossers, others are illegal aliens who've been here for a while. The vast majority are not Americans.
Folks such as such as Jackson, who has also complained that too many of the government contracts to rebuild the city are going to firms outside Louisiana. Jackson has gone so far as to propose chartering buses to bring black evacuees back to New Orleans so they could claim jobs that Jackson insists are rightfully theirs.
First of all, not all the people on his buses were black, and I don't think even Jackson would have restricted it just to blacks. And, don't those former residents have a greater right to those jobs than illegal aliens? Would someone who's willing to put their country and their fellow citizens ahead of their race think the same thing as Navarette does? How could any American support such a position?
City officials say that one thing that keeps former residents from wanting to give New Orleans another chance is the lack of subsidized housing.
Guess what? Latino immigrants have to contend with the same shortage. The difference is that the immigrants are not sitting around and waiting for government to come to the rescue. They're probably living two or three families to a house, and saving money to buy a home of their own.
That's how it used to be in this country before the advent of the welfare state. And, if the immigrant values win out in this struggle — over those of the New Orleans officials — it could be that way again.
Those "immigrant values" include unsafe working and living conditions, hardly American values.
What's the American thing to do in this case? Let's do whatever we need to do to get those former residents - or at least other Americans - to do the jobs. Considering the subtext of those preceding paragraphs, if this had been written by a white person it would never have seen the light of day. Even if some of our fellow Americans are as shiftless as Navarrette wants us to believe, then we need to deal with that directly, and not just send them to other states where they'll continue to be a part of the welfare state.