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On talking-heads

2 July 2010

When I woke up this morning, there was an article in my Google News feed from everyone’s favorite news source, Fox News, quoting Karl Rove as saying that Pres. Obama is “not serious” about comprehensive immigration reform.

If you read my earlier post on immigration, you probably know my feelings on the subject. I think it is a matter of justice for us to reassess how we respond to the influx of immigration in this country.

Now that Karl Rove has opened his mouth yet again, I’m confused. Why does anyone care about what Karl Rove thinks? He is not an elected official nor has he ever been; he represents no one other than himself, yet considers himself a policy former, as does Fox News, apparently. He’s been found in the middle of more than one corruption scandal (see the Valerie Plame Affair, the Bush Administration email controversy, and the the dismissal of those U.S. attorneys). And, the worst of all, he is likely the source of the theory that an ideology can be defeated with bombs and land war, violating all notions of “just war” and increasing American imperialism.

Has representative democracy descended to this? Do we allow talking heads to dominate public discourse instead of duly elected representatives? Have we become a society where whoever yells the loudest wins, despite the will of the people?

And a remark that didn’t fit into that earlier post, coming from my class on immigration in France last summer: immigrants have two natures, the worker and the inhabitant. In times of economic boom, most people only care about the worker side, what they can do for us; in times of economic crisis, the inhabitant side comes into play, asking what they might require from us as cohabitants. We need to start recognizing both and stop freaking out about a reality that that was there all along. By using immigrant labor, we signed on to taking them into society and now, there is no putting the genie back into the bottle.

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