May 2, 2007

Immigration Protests Fail To Impress

Last year, millions of people marched in the streets to push for comprehensive immigration reform. Holding signs that demanded open borders, telling Southwestern cities that the land underneath them was really Mexican, and flying Mexican flags, the demonstrations had the short term effect of publicizing their agendas -- which had the long-term effect of strengthening anti-immigration hardliners. Congress never passed the comprehensive reform they demanded, and instead passed a border fence intended to restrict illegal immigration.

Not surprisingly, the immigration rallies this year did not come close to the scale seen last year:

Waving U.S. flags and demanding citizenship for undocumented immigrants, tens of thousands of jubilant protesters marched through the streets of Los Angeles on Tuesday during a mostly peaceful day that ended with clashes between police and demonstrators in MacArthur Park.

Fifteen police officers were among those hurt. About 10 people were taken from MacArthur Park by ambulance to hospitals for treatment, said d'Lisa Davies, a spokeswoman for the Los Angeles Fire Department. She said the injuries mainly were cuts, including head and neck wounds. None of the injuries were believed to be serious. Police reported that one demonstrator was arrested.

About 35,000 people turned out at two Los Angeles rallies, far fewer than the combined 115,000 that organizers had anticipated and greatly fewer than the roughly 650,000 who turned out at rallies last year.

Turnouts were light across the country compared to last year, when millions of marchers in 150 cities took to the streets.

It wasn't light enough to keep the Los Angeles event from turning into a small riot. It's unclear how it started, but protestors began throwing bottles and other items at police. The police responded by attempting to clear the park, and then escalating to foam bullets and gas. After the Rodney King riots, the LAPD has a strong inclination to respond early and in force when it sees a demonstration getting out of hand, and Chief William Bratton now has to see whether they acted too quickly and with too much force.

People had a number of theories for the lack of turnout yesterday. Two of the more hilarious explanations were that (1) people feared deportation, and (2) there were too many events and they diluted the response. The first is patently absurd; nothing has changed in the year since the huge rallies, except that amnesty-favoring Democrats control Congress. They were more at risk for arrest and deportation last year than this year, and even then it was highly remote, as events proved. As for the number of events, there may possibly have been more yesterday, but millions of people didn't show up for them.

The best explanation is probably that Congress hasn't tackled illegal immigration yet. In fact, they haven't tackled much of anything so far, preferring to posture for almost three months on funding the troops in Iraq. John McCain has dropped out of leadership on this issue, and Republicans look less inclined to support normalization before border security than they were last year. Without a bill pending in Congress, they have no inspiration for massive protests.

And, just perhaps, illegal immigrants may have realized that they did themselves no favors with their arrogant demonstrations last year. The McCain-Kennedy bill may have passed if they hadn't shouted their reconquista slogans on every news channel in America. That display cost them the moderates, and the immigration bill they wanted died on the vine of the pushback from hardliners. This year, they may have just decided that quiet lobbying works a lot better for their aims.


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Comments (14)

Posted by Yuzzub [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 2, 2007 7:44 AM

Global warming gave us cool weather and heavy rain here. Not many marchers. Thanks Al Gore.

Posted by Doc Neaves [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 2, 2007 8:30 AM

The scariest video I've seen yet on illegal immigration.

Posted by The Yell [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 2, 2007 8:42 AM

Anytime 15 riot-armored cops get hurt and 0 'citizens' then I don't think we're talking about overreacting cops

Posted by NahnCee [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 2, 2007 8:45 AM

I didn't see the LA protests personally, but I did see the massive amount of police staging in preparation for it. Tons and tons of motorcycles, cop cars, helicopters, and cops. I'm wondering if there were a lot of furtive cellphone calls in Spanish that downtown LA was a good place to stay away from if you didn't want to come eyeball to eyeball with a large stern law enforcement officer.

I'm also glad the LAPD took the opportunity to kick some illegal ass at MacArthur Park, which is a well-known hang-out for drug dealers, gang members and sellers of fake documentation. If illegals are claiming now that LAPD was shooting rubber bullets at children in strollers, I don't believe it. Why would any sane parent bring their child in a stroller into an area that has been totally taken over by swarthy crooks?

Posted by retire05 [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 2, 2007 9:12 AM

LA seems to be the dip stick that the media reports on when it comes to the Reconquista marches. And while LA does have a large Hispanic population, it is no greater than San Antonio, Texas.
Last year, in San Antonio, an estimated 30,000 marchers came out from a population of over 1 million. Most of the city of SA is Hispanic.
This year there was only about 1,000 marchers and the news reported the promoters of the march were disappointed in the numbers.
What can we take from that?
1) San Antonio has a large population of Tejanos. Native born Texans of Hispanic heritiage.
2) The Tejanos did not come out in favor of the illegals.
3) Tejanos know that they, and undereducated black Americans, are the ones most affected by illegal immigration as they are the ones losing lower wage jobs to illegals who will work for even less. They know that it is they, who sit in emergency rooms at St. Mary's Hospital, that have to wait hours because of patients who are illegal and they know that their school taxes have sky rocketed due to the illegals in the San Antonio ISD.
When you don't have the support of your own ethnic group, you will have a hard time convincing others that you are in the right.

Posted by Lightwave [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 2, 2007 9:24 AM

The obvious lesson here is the comparisons the immigration advocates and the Democrats need to be making. In both cases:

1) They have allowed the most radical fringe to represent the entire group's face to the world.

2) They are increasingly provoking a hard line response from opposing elements.

3) The public has quickly become disillusioned with the movement because of 1 and 2.

4) As a result both groups have gotten nothing done other than to anger the fringe, the base, and those who they might be able to sway.

Important lesson here.

Posted by Rose [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 2, 2007 10:01 AM

I'll say it again, and as often as I have to ---

Some folks still think there is room for negotiation, here.

I live less than 2 hours from the Mexico Border in Texas - there is no room for negotiating letting ILLEGAL ALIENS stay here, or continue to be invited to keep on coming here.

Some of you even think you can afford to soft-pedal your side of the issue til we can come to some "friendly" agreement.

We have to stop the Illegal Aliens from coming, we have to make as many as we can leave here.

I still think the best way to do that job cleanly is with Bounty Hunters who get to confiscate the goods of those they catch to pay their bounties, following like 30 days grace period for them ALL to leave here - NOW. But once caught by the Bounty Hunters - it is going to cost - LIKE MEXICO MAKES ILLEGALS PAY.

Some of you still tell yourselves you are doing a kindness to let the illegals keep coming on these terms - you are lying to yourself, to the harm of others. You aren't being fair to anyone.

I know what your neighbors would do if you opened their door to a wandering gang of thieves who came browsing through your neighborhood.

You let your community come to the tipping point, playing with politics as if you think it is like playing Candyland with a bunch of 3 yr olds.

But you have put your communities at risk, and your posterity.

And what is left of your posterity when you get through making a mess of everything - they aren't going to like you as well as the German posterity likes the 1938 Germans who LET Hitler ravage Europe at their expense.

Posted by RBMN [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 2, 2007 10:16 AM

The previous demonstrations also got pushback from some of the illegal immigrants that didn't march, as in, 'stop "helping" us, and just be quiet you morons!'

Posted by Achillea [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 2, 2007 12:25 PM

Last year, this pack of criminal invaders and their useful idiot enablers doubled my Beltane commute home with their effort to win my support. Looking at the bus windows at all the foreign flags being waved around, I amused myself for a small part of that three-hour slog with cutting a check to the Minutemen. This year, they only managed to slow traffic a little, but more than made up for that by attacking the LAPD.

They also had walkouts planned for local schools, but they seem to've been pretty much a wash out. On the other hand, those World Can't Wait ninnies hadn't spent the past month trying to sneak in and paper the campus with "Trewth to Powwer" posters, either. Even the United Students (a bunch of Che-chic guerilla socialist wannabes) kept their horns pulled in.

Posted by 180 [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 2, 2007 1:52 PM

I don't have a problem with considering some kind of plan to work out the illegal immigrant issues but I do have to demand that something be done first about all those here that don't see fit to abide by the law.

In the city that I live in there are so many illegals that it has become difficult to get around. From over crowded freeways to areas in town that before were safe and now are not. Not to mention the ones that drink and drive on a daily basis ,or commit crimes against women and children and yet somehow quietly slip through the systems hands and never have to pay any consequences.

Can somebody tell me when my family will be safe I have to pick up myself and my children and move to feel the freedom of rights that I as an American supposingly have....will the police finally protect those who deserve to be protected and not let those who drive drunk get away with a simple impound and a warning that wouldn't even hold up in court.

I used to support the plight of the illegal immigrant and sadly to say ,my views have slowly changed with each year that passes and affects my life in a negative way ,endangers my children ,and takes so much from the systems that were put in place to help the "American "people.

I am no racist....I simply believe in fair treatment .....if you or I went to the country that the illegals are from ,would their laws tolerate our inability to follow the rules? Would their people embrace us trying to change their systems to benefit our needs? We all know the answers to those how about the government stepping up and providing an answer to our questions.

Posted by Keemo [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 2, 2007 7:30 PM

From the L.A. Times

1. 40% of all workers in L.A. County ( L.A. County has 10.2 million people) are working for cash and not paying taxes. This was because they are predominantly illegal immigrants, working without a green card.

2. 95% of warrants for murder in Los Angeles are for illegal aliens.

3. 75% of people on the most wanted list in Los Angeles are illegal aliens.

4 Over 2/3 of all births in Los Angeles County are to illegal alien
Mexicans on Medi-Cal, whose births were paid for by taxpayers.

5. Nearly 25% of all inmates in California detention centers are Mexican nationals here illegally.

6 Over 300,000 illegal aliens in Los Angeles County are living in garages.

7 The FBI reports half of all gang members in Los Angeles
are most likely illegal aliens from south of the border.

8 Nearly 60% of all occupants of HUD properties are illegal.

9 21 radio stations in L.A. are Spanish speaking.

10. In L.A. County 5.1 million people speak English.
3.9 million speak Spanish.
(There are 10.2 million people in L.A. County).

Less than 2% of illegal aliens are picking our crops,
but 29% are on welfare.

Over 70% of the United States' annual population growth
(and over 90% of California , Florida , and New York )
results from immigration.

The cost of immigration to the American taxpayer in 1997 was, (after subtracting taxes immigrants pay), a NET $70 BILLION/
year, [Professor Donald Huddle, Rice University ]. The lifetime
fiscal impact (taxes paid minus services used) for the average
adult Mexican immigrant is a NEGATIVE number.

29% of inmates in federal prisons are illegal aliens.

If they can come to this country to raise Hell and demonstrate by the thousands, WHY can't they take charge over the corruption in their own country?

We are a bunch of fools for letting this continue.


On February 15, 1998, the U.S. and Mexican soccer teams met at the Los Angeles Coliseum. The crowd was overwhelmingly pro-Mexican even though most lived in this country. They booed during the National Anthem and U.S. flags were held upside down. As the match progressed, supporters of the U.S. team were insulted, pelted with projectiles, punched and spat upon. Beer and trash were thrown at the U.S. players before and after the match. The coach of the U.S. team, Steve Sampson said, "This was the most painful experience I have ever had in this profession."

Did you know that immigrants from Mexico and other non-European countries can come to this country and get preferences in jobs, education, and government contracts. It's called affirmative action or racial privilege. The Emperor of Japan or the President of Mexico could migrate here and immediately be eligible for special rights unavailable for Americans of European descent.

Corporate America has signed on to the idea that minorities and third world immigrants should get special, privileged status. Some examples are Exxon, Texaco, Merrill Lynch, Boeing, Paine Weber, Starbucks and many more.


That Mexico regularly intercedes on the side of the defense in criminal cases involving Mexican nationals?

Did you know ... that Mexico has NEVER extradited a Mexican national accused of murder in the U.S. in spite of agreements to do so?

According to the L.A. Times, Orange County , California is home to 275 gangs with 17,000 members, 98% of which are Mexican and Asian. How's your county doing?

According to a New York Times article dated May 19, 1994, 20 years after the great influx of legal immigrants from Southeast Asia, 30% are still on welfare compared to 8% of households nationwide. A Wall Street Journal editorial dated December 5, 1994 quotes law enforcement officials as stating that Asian mobsters are the "greatest criminal challenge the country faces." Not bad for a group that is still under 5% of the population.

Is education important to you? Here are the words of a teacher who spent over 20 years in the Los Angeles School system.

"Imagine teachers in classes containing 30-40 students of widely varying attention spans and motivation,
many of whom aren't fluent in English. Educators seek learning materials likely to reach the majority of students and that means fewer words and math problems and more pictures and multicultural references."


I remember hearing about the immigrants that came through Ellis Island . They wanted to learn English. They wanted to breathe free. They wanted to become Americans. Now, far too many immigrants come here with demands. They demand to be taught in their own language. They demand special privileges .. affirmative action. They demand ethnic studies that glorify their culture.

Posted by NahnCee [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 2, 2007 8:16 PM

No one has mentioned how many billions of dollars these illegals are skimming out of our economy and shipping back "home". And not just to Mexico, either.

I seriously demand that any program that allows ANY immigrants into America from now on make it illegal to send money "back home". That goes for Palestinians, Salvadorans, and Canadians. If you're here as an immigrant, you're an American. Period. You're not a Mexican-American and I do *NOT* want to hear about how you built a home for your mamma back in RatHoleZica Mexico and all the Mexicans still subsisting there think you're swell. If you've got extra money to be sending to Mamma, then you can pay more taxes to make up for the years of Free Shit you've been leaching off the American system.

Posted by Roxane [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 2:50 AM

I'm not surprised that this years illegal immigrant marches were a bust. I was angered by the brazen behavior of the "illegals" last year who had the nerve to demand their "rights" from the American taxpayer. These are people who's first act upon entering the US was to break the law.Last years marches turned me against the "illegals" which I'm sure was the case with many Americans.The irony is that if the "illegals" and their advocates had kept their big mouths shut and stayed out of the streets they'd have gotten the legislation they wanted. Now the backlash against them is so strong even a Democrat congress can't pass the "comprehensive" bill they desire without significant cover from the Republicans. No wonder "illegals" and their supporters were smart enough to stay out of the streets of America this year.

Posted by flenser [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 3:10 PM

And, just perhaps, illegal immigrants may have realized that they did themselves no favors with their arrogant demonstrations last year. The McCain-Kennedy bill may have passed if they hadn't shouted their reconquista slogans on every news channel in America. That display cost them the moderates, and the immigration bill they wanted died on the vine of the pushback from hardliners. This year, they may have just decided that quiet lobbying works a lot better for their aims.

So you don't have any real objections to their aims, your only point is that it was stupid of them to be so up-front with their aims, thereby scaring some of the "moderates", who seem to be the sort of people who live with their head in the sand. Thats real insightful analysis there.