John McCain Doubles Down on Racist Scapegoating of Latino Migrants

mcbigotrezied.jpg
CNN
McCain, digging the hole deeper after his racist comments over the weekend

When white nationalist websites and racist minutemen with erstwhile ties to child killers are championing your cause, you know you've made a serious error. Particularly when you're a failed presidential candidate still desperate for the world to take you seriously.

Such is the case with U.S. Senator from Arizona John McCain, who recently blamed Sand Land's current rash of wildfires on illegal immigrants, and refuses to apologize for his obscene, racist blunder.

Instead, the cranky septuagenarian plays the fool by defending his remarks on the lamest of talk-radio shows, that of Don Imus. (Yeah, I didn't know he was still on the air, either.)

Meanwhile, McCain earns the praise of the racist website VDARE.com, which draws its handle from the name of Virginia Dare, the first European (read: "white") baby born in the new world. 

"Good for Senator John McCain for stating out loud that many of Arizona's destructive wildfires have been started by illegal aliens," reads the website.

Similarly, McCain is earning kudos from Cactus Country bigot-boy Glenn Spencer, head of the one-man American Border Patrol, whose soft noggin is plagued by anti-Mexican conspiracy theories and nightmares of Mau-Mau-like uprisings led by Latinos.

Spencer's former fellow Minuteperson Shawna Forde, arrested shortly after leaving Spencer's property in 2009, was recently convicted of murder and sentenced to death in the home-invasion murders of a 9-year old girl and her father in Arivaca.

Nice company you've earned yourself, Senator.

Yesterday, McCain's top flack, Brooke Buchanan, rode to her master's aid with clips she'd mined off Nexis and some dusty testimony dated 2006 from the then-forest supervisor for the Cleveland National Forest in Southern California.

Keep in mind that Senator McCain was asked generally about Arizona's current wildfire epidemic, and he generally answered that these argued for a "secure border" due to all of these illegal border crossers setting fires. 

Right. As if building the "dang fence" would somehow stay Sand Land's triple-digit heat, low humidity and the wind itself, leaving the yearly plague of forest fires a bitter memory.

In any case, here are the clips Buchanan coughed up as proof that her employer isn't some senile ol' bigot:

"[T]he great majority, if not all the fires, on the Coronado National Forest (this year) have been human-caused. Causes of fires include ricocheting bullets, campfires, welding equipment and possibly ignition by smugglers or illegal immigrants." -- Jim Upchurch, Forest Supervisor, Coronado National Forest-- Arizona Daily Star, June 7, 2011.

"Lightning cannot be blamed for the fires this year, Coronado National Forest acting fire management officer Kristy Lund said. Fires can be caused by careless campers and hikers, by ricocheting bullets, trailer chains that drag on the ground and send up sparks or driving on a flat tire and the rim lights sparks as it hits the road. And some can be caused by illegal border crossers." -- Sierra Vista Herald, June 7, 2011.

"Large numbers of warming and cooking fires built and abandoned by cross-border violators have caused wildfires that have destroyed valuable natural and cultural resources.The wildfires also pose a threat to visitors, residents and firefighters as well as to the cross-border violators in the area. Agencies have documented that some cross-border violators also will intentionally set diversion or rescue fires, using uncontrolled wildfires to divert law enforcement from their illegal activities." -- U.S. Forest Service Testimony to Congress, June 15, 2006.

"A fire that blackened nearly 900 acres in San Diego was caused by illegal immigrants who were apparently lost and set off a signal fire." -- Los Angeles Times, September 4, 2010. 

You'll note that this information is hardly conclusive, and the clips indicate myriad causes of wildfires such as "careless campers and hikers, by ricocheting bullets, trailer chains that drag on the ground and send up sparks or driving on a flat tire and the rim lights sparks as it hits the road."

But, hey, white people can do all that. Much easier to blame the brown folk, which is what the senator did.

Operating in the here and now, the spokesman for the feds overseeing the Wallow fire, when asked if there was any evidence to indicate that McCain's comments were accurate in relation to Wallow, said, "Absolutely not."

McCain had just finished touring damage related to Wallow when he inserted hoof into mouth. His gal Friday's attempts to bolster McCain's bigoted contention are ineffectual.

Which is likely why Buchanan was so peeved with my correct labeling of McCain's statements as "racist."

Sending her lame clip file to me, she kvetched of my recent blog on McCain's blunder,

"But honestly, the racist headline was a little out of line. Do you truly believe that Senator McCain is a racist? And if so, please provide some evidence to validate your slanderous headline."

To which, I replied,

"The statement IS racist. And he should apologize or resign. Nothing in what you've sent me backs up his statement. As far as 'slanderous' goes, when you slander an entire ethnicity, you're hardly the one to talk."

Buchanan: 

"I didn't realize that illegal immigrants constituted an ethnicity. And if you bothered to read the below the first sentence, you would see that federal, state, and local officials stated essentially the same thing. So perhaps you should apologize to the senator and consider resigning??"

My response:

"Who do you think's coming across the southern border, Irishmen? Canadians? They're Latinos, and the senator knows that. Moreover, he made his statement in the context of the current conflagration.

"[T]he great majority, if not all the fires, on the Coronado National Forest (this year) have been human-caused. Causes of fires include ricocheting bullets, campfires, welding equipment and possibly ignition by smugglers or illegal immigrants."

"Possibly? Why didn't the senator blame 'ignition' or 'ricocheting bullets'? He knows what he said. If this results in further ethnic violence in this state, he bears full responsibility."

Of the clips, I said in another e-mail,

"Lame. He was discussing the wildfires currently raging. His statement was that of a bigot. He needs to apologize or resign. Nothing in these press clippings backs up his stupidity."

Buchanan:

"Wow, the craziest e-mail I've ever received from a so-called reporter."

Me:

"Wow. Craziest e-mail I've ever received from a so-called PIO who works for a bigot."

Buchanan:

"Creative. As a reporter I thought you would come up with something a little more original."

Me:

"Yeah, but at least I don't send out rationalizations for bigoted comments. What's next, will the senator blame illegal aliens for the heat and humidity, too? The price of gas? The next earthquake in California?

"Did you know that hate crimes have increased 125% in Phoenix alone over the past few years? If McCain's comments inspire some racist to kill a Latino, which they could given the climate of hate in this state, he's on the hook. 

"Not that you or he care. You don't live here."

At one point, she asked if I was at the presser where McCain made his asinine statement. Of course, I was not. Didn't need to be, as CNN caught it on video.

"We all saw the question and his response," I e-mailed her. "If McCain had an ounce of honor, he would realize the harmfulness of what he said and apologize. But no, the Pavlovian response is to defend the indefensible. The lack of originality is on your part."

Is McCain himself a racist? Probably not, despite his recent racist pronouncements. 

Given his age, McCain's likely more of an Archie Bunker-type bigot. Still, throwing logs on the pyre of racism remains an odious act. More so when you are a U.S. senator.


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秀年 许
秀年 许

 

Insixteen twenty-one, a big  celebration ofbarbourjacket took place at Plymouth Colony in what is now the state of Massachusetts.  European settlers known as the barbour  jackets were celebrating theirautumn harvest after a winter of struggle.

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Kitsugab
Kitsugab

This to inform you of a person living and working in the United States illegally. The names that this person assumes are as follows: Gabriela Sanchez (her niece), Karla P. Durazo (her aunt), Patty Durazo (her sister),Julieta Sanchez (her aunt), Patty Sanchez (her sister/her niece) Rocio Sanchez (her sister), Mayra Viramontes (her cousin), Karen Durazo (her cousin),Kenya Durazo (hercousin), Karina Sanchez (her cousin).All of the names assumed by her can be substantiated through her facebook account which is under the name Gabby Sanchez.Her Employer is: Dr. Larry Stark   3201 W. Peoria Ave # A-100   Phoenix, AZ 85029Her assumed Social Security # is her Aunt's Soc. Sec. # 611-32-7757 (Karla P. Durazo) who actually lives in California.She drives a pathfinder with AZ lic. # AHT4587 Her address is: 2220 W. Mission Ln. #1095 (which is in Larry Starks name /  Phoenix, AZ 85017    co-signed for)  SRP Acct # 919-863-000    (which is in Larry Starks name)Her Phone # 602-628-3116   (which is in Larry Starks name)Family Assistance Administration Case # 00564738 (Gabriela Sanchez)Dental work provided under the name Patty Sanchez. And full medical (BCBS)is paid for by Larry StarkHer sons name is Carlos Flores-Sanchez and he graduated from Cortez High School.She was raised by her Grandmother who was a whore in Mexico. This young woman makes it easier for other illegals to obtain medications includingnarcotics and evade citizenship tests through the Doctors office that she works in.Also supplying them with false identification and documentation. I am very concerned about the illegal activities (Document Fraud, Identity Theft, Conducting crimes in America) that she is involved in. Please address the above issues as soon as possible.

Concerned Citizen 

Kitsugab
Kitsugab

This to inform you of a person living and working in the United States illegally. The names that this person assumes are as follows: Gabriela Sanchez (her niece), Karla P. Durazo (her aunt), Patty Durazo (her sister),Julieta Sanchez (her aunt), Patty Sanchez (her sister/her niece) Rocio Sanchez (her sister), Mayra Viramontes (her cousin), Karen Durazo (her cousin),Kenya Durazo (hercousin), Karina Sanchez (her cousin).All of the names assumed by her can be substantiated through her facebook account which is under the name Gabby Sanchez.Her Employer is: Dr. Larry Stark   3201 W. Peoria Ave # A-100   Phoenix, AZ 85029Her assumed Social Security # is her Aunt's Soc. Sec. # 611-32-7757 (Karla P. Durazo) who actually lives in California.She drives a pathfinder with AZ lic. # AHT4587 Her address is: 2220 W. Mission Ln. #1095 (which is in Larry Starks name /  Phoenix, AZ 85017    co-signed for)  SRP Acct # 919-863-000    (which is in Larry Starks name)Her Phone # 602-628-3116   (which is in Larry Starks name)Family Assistance Administration Case # 00564738 (Gabriela Sanchez)Dental work provided under the name Patty Sanchez. And full medical (BCBS)is paid for by Larry StarkHer sons name is Carlos Flores-Sanchez and he graduated from Cortez High SchoolThis young woman makes it easier for other illegals to obtain medications includingnarcotics and evade citizenship tests through the Doctors office that she works in.Also supplying them with false identification and documentation. I am very concerned about the illegal activities (Document Fraud, Identity Theft, Conducting crimes in America) that she is involved in. Please address the above issues as soon as possible.

Concerned Citizen 

Benvenutorchio
Benvenutorchio

Too bad that North Vietnamese missle  wasn't alittle more accurate. The NVA are to blame for this bastard even being around.

Coz
Coz

McCain = Senile old fool.

Venonacables
Venonacables

With all the print that has been devoted to this subject, I do not recall seeing Mr. Lemons denying anywhere that illegals started the fires.

Bobby
Bobby

I know, Americans are so worthless compared to Mexican or any other foreign nationals for that matter. Right?

Bobby
Bobby

This is definetly strange for the old fart. From McCain Feingold Amnesty to concerned American. From, "Americans wouldn't pick lettuce for fifty dollars!! an hour to American patriot. Even I think his ass should be replaced, by a Mexican-American if possible, just to accent his hypocricy. 

Mistalee
Mistalee

I believe that the fire started when the trailer housing Chris Simcox's methlab ignited. 

Go ahead, prove me wrong.

Keith
Keith

Good observation, Haddie.

Locoxjuan63
Locoxjuan63

Shit McCain is just an old fool, his blaming the fires on Mexican immigrants wat the fuck mexicans are not the only illegal immigrants in this country. I'm a damn Mexican and damn proud of it:) FUCK MCCAIN

philly chicano
philly chicano

too bad what he said about the fires is true. with the great economy most of the current traffic is criminal. get your heads out of the clouds and look around.

gerry
gerry

Mc Cain was repeating what Sheriff Dever said. "illegals" they did not say mexicans. We had 1900 illegals from the middle east get caught last year. You are making Mc Cain a racist! Cannot handle the truth.

The Truth
The Truth

John McCain served his country proudly for a certain part of his life by bieng in the military. The other 75% of his life has been nothing more than a person who is worthy of bending the whole Bush family over and.....well you get the picture. He is not even worth getting angry over.

Benjamin
Benjamin

 To all of you dumb-asses, enjoy living in your 'tolerant' America of the 21st century.  As long as common sense is suppressed in the name of diversity, you can expect more criminals, more achievement gaps, and more degradation of the once great nation of America.  But, it's ok, make excuses and apologize; anything to rid yourself of your white guilt. 

Kcarson
Kcarson

Nice lede:

"When white nationalist websites and racist minutemen with erstwhile ties to child killers are championing your cause, you know you've made a serious error. Particularly when you're a failed presidential candidate still desperate for the world to take you seriously."

While I'm not buying into McCain being racist, which I see you are backing away from as well, I do think he is bigoted and do think your argument concerning the harm done by his statements is shaping up well.

Good Job.

On a related subject: You assail McCain because his comments have been used by genuine, unrepentant and thoroughly disgusting Nativists. Do you hold similar contempt for your colleagues whose work is adopted by hate-groups?

Specifically, when writing about the murder of Noor Almaleki Mr. Rubin called the death an "honor killing," which drew from the presiding judge in the case a rebuke issued to all members of the press engaged in similar sensationalism.

Now, the anti-Muslim forces of the world have picked up Rubin's shrill and irresponsible words to promulgate their hate for all things Islam.

You think McCain's words put him in league with disgusting reprobates, Check out the company Rubin's words keeps:

"I remain in favor of “honor killings” of Moslem women and girls by Moslem families for a number of reasons. First of all it reduces the number of Moslem women. Secondly it reduces the number of Moslem women available to procreate. 

"Finally and most importantly “honor killings” are a horrific but absolutely necessary reminder to liberal Westerners of the savagery, hatred, irrationality, and unbridled cruelty so characteristic of Islam and it’s followers, male and female."

http://pajamasmedia.com/phylli... (article includes, erroneously, Ms. Almaleki's death as being an honor killing.)

I have more, but after reading just a few who are now using Ms. Almaleki's death and the ignorant claims of it being an honor killing as a reason to hype hate against Muslims, I literally became sick.

Perhaps McCain and Rubin can share a podium when making the requisite mea culpas?

I am sure you agree, Mr. Lemons, yes? And you'll be writing about Rubin in your next blog?

Unless, perhaps, we aren't always responsible for how others use our words in ways we didn't intend?

Rick
Rick

Concerned Citizen should turn this information over the the Maricopa Sheriffs office.

Mistalee
Mistalee

"Even I think his ass should be replaced"

Maybe you should replace mcCain's ass. You're an ass yourself, so it should be a straightforward part swap.

Bobby
Bobby

Calm down buddy. Just a short while ago, the old fool was willing to give amnesty to millions of Mexicans. He can't dislike you that much. Now, how much he likes non-Mexican Americans is another question.

Mistalee
Mistalee

There's no evidence pointing to any specific individual or group at this point.

So what McCain said was baseless. And stupid.

People just like what he said because they like reasons to hate on Mexicans, even if those reasons are bogus.

MrBrown
MrBrown

"We had 1900 illegals from the middle east get caught last year." 

That's a lie. State your source.

Mistalee
Mistalee

So you think maybe it was "illegal" Middle-Easterners that set the fires?

 

Mistalee
Mistalee

"To all of you dumb-asses, enjoy living in your 'tolerant' America of the 21st century."

Oh, I most definitely do!

You on the other hand are obviously distressed. Maybe you should move somewhere that is more to your liking. 

StephenLemons
StephenLemons

I didn't call McCain a racist. I said he made a racist statement. There's a difference.

As far as all this stuff about Rubin's story, I didn't read it. No slight to Paul, but I barely have time to re-read my own stuff these days. If you have a question about Paul's story, you may want to ask him about it. He'll know more about his story than I will.

Bobby
Bobby

Not really. I would never had dreamed of giving millions of foreign nationals, in the U.S. illegally, who march in the streets against Americans and tell them where to go, amnesty. Oh no. You wouldn't like me leading Arizona. Those clowns you imagine to be so bad, are lightweights. By the time I got through with the Grand Canyon State, it would be equivalent to hell, for anyone that even dreams of coming there without premission. Let's put it this way since you like using words like Nazi, nativist, bigots,etc.--by the time I got through, you'd have to invent words that superceed those.

Mistalee
Mistalee

Now, this is something which has been troubling me for awhile; A truly wicked person might make racist statements which they do not personally believe, so they would perhaps not technically be a racist but just a person who says racist things out of malice or a desire for personal gain. 

But KNOWING that about somebody else presumes that we have Godlike powers, that we can read minds, etc. Absent that, we only know what other people say and do, not what they think and feel. Those who display a pattern of saying and/or doing things that are racist, we call racists.

So when we say "I don't think McCain is a racist, he just said some racist stuff," Isn't that a little like saying "I don't think McCain is a tap-dancer, he's just someone who tap-dances?"

So when you say that McCain made racist statements, but you don't think he is a racist, what leads you to that position? Is it because his recent comments were so completely out of character that you cannot believe that he meant what he said?

Bobby
Bobby

How do you know how his ass looks? We really should leave this alone.

Mistalee
Mistalee

No, Bobby, I just think you are just a good replacement for McCain's ass. His old, sagging, shriveled, wrinkled, white-haired, incontinent ass. 

Bobby
Bobby

So you like my ass. We'd better leave that one alone.

Mistalee
Mistalee

You misunderstand.

I'm not suggesting you are capable of replacing McCain, just his ass. 

Kcarson
Kcarson

Nice effort

>"Imagine somebody being in Alabama or Mississippi in the early 1960s and saying "The motherfuckers hanging from trees had it coming.""

The reason this fails in a logical argument is that it can be determined, by fact and reason, that they didn't have it coming and that they were hung like strange fruit because of their race, thereby demonstrating the statement has a racial motivation.

It was a nice try, but ultimately a fallacy.

That leaves us in agreement about the following:

>"Even a small lit match is a big deal when you're standing in a pool of gasoline. 

>"McCain's comments may have wound up the next Shawna Forde, or inspired the next Chris Simcox or Glen Spencer.Which is why I wrote that we need to push back hard on McCain, but we should do so with what we can prove: he's a bigot and either a fool or a liar.

That's been my point all the while.

Mistalee
Mistalee

 I "read up on logic and argument" more than thirty years ago in college. I didn't need to google it.

"Your experience with the human condition leads you to feel thatcomments such as McCain's are indicative of a racist mindset, or amindset that is deliberately playing to racists."

True enough. Amongst other things, my experience with racists has taught me that most are careful to tailor their comments so as avoid the shameful label of "racist" while still getting their racist point across.

My argument is that you can't have a meaningful understanding of what McCain was doing unless you also understand the context.

Imagine somebody being in Alabama or Mississippi in the early 1960s and saying "The motherfuckers hanging from trees had it coming."

This statement names no race, ethnicity or nationality. Maybe the speaker was talking about piñatas.  Moreover, it makes no claim that one race is superior to another.

Is it a racist statement? Like McCain's statements, it does not explicitly name an ethnicity, nationality or race and makes no explicit claim that one race is superior to another. So it fails the litmus tests of racism that you have held forth.

At the same time, it is a statement that stands strongly in the service of the most poisonous racism, and most people hearing it would be shocked.

This is why I say that the argument is meaningless either way unless one clearly understands, and not just in a vague intellectual manner, the nature of the zeitgeist. Even a small lit match is a big deal when you're standing in a pool of gasoline.

McCain's comments may have wound up the next Shawna Forde, or inspired the next Chris Simcox or Glen Spencer.

Kcarson
Kcarson

Thank you for taking the time to read up a bit on logic and argument.  It seems to have informed your opinion a bit.

This discussion has been whether one can sustain the claim that McCain's comments are racist in and of themselves. Previously I responded with "fair enough" because I don't care too much about the issue.

You raised the concern that comments can not be racist without the speaker being racist, so I chimed in agreeing with you in the major premise, but differing from you as to whether McCain's statements are racists when considered logically.

You've now backed away from that claim, rightfully so, and replaced it with an argument based on "FEELING." Expressed a better way - your experience with the human condition leads you to feel that comments such as McCain's are indicative of a racist mindset, or a mindset that is deliberately playing to racists.

Fair enough.

Kcarson
Kcarson

FWIW: I'm the grandson of a Spanish-speaking illegal immigrant.  He eventually became legal, but my mother still can't get a passport because she was born in a labot camp, not a hospital.

I know where the bad guys are and I know what they do to people and their lives.

I prefer logos over pathos and egos, because in my experience as a lawyer pathos and egos can lead to whomever looks nicest winning the day. (But, I'm not opposed to using ethos from time-to-time :) ). 

It can also backfire. People can reject your credibility.  They can reject your plea to their emotions. With logic, if people are honest, then the right argument will win.

Here, we know McCain is a bigot. We aren't sure he's a racist. So, let's go with what we know, which is more than enough to beat him over the head with.

That's been my point all along.

Mistalee
Mistalee

Ah, Jesus, it's like freshman philosophy played back on an endless loop.

All right, fine.

You surely realize that syllogism yields no new knowledge, and is subject to a great deal of error as a predictor and interpreter of real events, Zeno's paradoxes being only one small and silly example. Which is why the scientific method is firmly grounded in observation and inductive reasoning, and involves exhaustive checking against the empirical.

With that in mind-

Get out from behind your computer, and start talking to some of the people affected by this racist horseshit. Connect on a heart-to-heart level. Talk to some Navajo or Hopi who are fearful to go off-res because they get hassled as possible "illegals." Talk to Hispanic Americans whose families have lived in the US for generations and who won't travel to Arizona because they don't want to be witch-hunted by the cops for the shape of their cheekbones, the color of their skins. Talk to locals who ARE undocumented and find out why they came here and what they are going through. Hang out in a bar in Patagonia and talk to some old-timers about what it's really like on the border. Talk to a few people like Tupac Acosta and Sal Reza and find out what this all is about from their perspective.

And more important than talking to them, listen to them.

Seriously. Ethnicity is being criminalized in Arizona; I don't know that you understand that even intellectually. I am absolutely sure you don't feel it in your gut.

I really don't believe you are seeing clearly what is going on around you. You definitely are not FEELING what is going on around you. I'm not saying that to be mean. Our perceptions are driven by our life experience, and I am guessing that yours and mine are vastly different, and that we have traveled in different circles.

Mistalee
Mistalee

You need to spend more time looking around you, less time with a priori brain-wankery.

You are in a time and place where neo-nazis and nativists are hunting people down in the desert with assault rifles. Where the teaching of the history of Hispanic Americans has been banned in public schools.  Where a law was passed that would allow those who appear Hispanic to be detained for their papers like Juden in Warsaw.

Those cheerleading these developments instantly recognized the sick racism in  McCain's comments, and applauded him for it.

McCain's crazy claims were not directed towards reasonable people who want to calmly discuss legitimate issues. This crap was not soft-pedaled apologist rhetoric couched to sway the fence-sitters, this was McCain preaching to the racist choir. And THEY KNOW IT! Glenn Spencer knows it. So do the VDare White supremacists. Why is it that you with your "finely tuned logic" can't figure out what they instantly picked up on? This doesn't take "finely tuned logic," just a sense of smell.

Kcarson
Kcarson

Allow me to add a final observation as I continue jousting with this canard.

Mistalee knows enough about logic and argument to understand that following syllogism is flawed:

Hitler liked dogs.You like dogs.You are Hitler.

I don't think he understands why it is flawed.

Two concepts need explored: universality and the dreaded "undistributed middle." I encourage you google these terms and take some time understanding their context.  Then come back and consider the following:

All Latinos are not illegal immigrants.

As such, the following syllogism - the one argued by Mistalee and Lemons - makes no sense.

McCain attacked Arizona's illegal immigrants.Arizona's illegal immigrants are Latino.McCain attacked all Latinos.

As a matter of logic - and common sense - the claim that McCain's attack on illegal aliens is, by extension, an attack on the Latino race is unsustainable.  Everything else is just emotional rhetoric targeted at a political enemy.

We as progressives want to demand more from the opposition, so to we should demand more from ourselves.

Kcarson
Kcarson

I agree he was pandering, just not sure it was race-based.  Not everyone who opposed immigration reform (restrictionists as some call them) are racists. Not everything they say communicates one race is inferior to another, the definition of racist. Some are just scared and uninformed.

That said, your argument that because a group is largely one race that any comment about that group must be race-based has no basis in logic.  If it were correct, then no comment opposing immigration in Arizona could ever, under any circumstances, not be deemed an attack on Latinos.

And that makes no sense - in any context.

For example, the comment that unauthorized immigrants leave trash in the desert, under your logic, would be to claim that, by extension, all Latinos litter. 

The claim that policing unauthorized immigrants costs US taxpayers, under your logic, would be to claim that, by extension, all Latinos are a drain on US taxpayers.

So too, arguing that McCain's wingnut statements that illegal aliens start forest fires is an attack on Latinos is balderdash. His statement does absolutely nothing to communicate that one race is inferior to another.

Don't confuse correlation with cause.

While we need to push back, hard, on batshit crazy, bigoted claims like those of McCain, we can not create an environment where people can not feel free to debate and discuss legitimate issues without fear of being labeled, in knee-jerk fashion, racists or having their statements mocked as racist with similar lack of thought.

Mistalee
Mistalee

Context.

If McCain claimed that forest fires in North dakota were set by those crossing the border illegally, then his remarks might arguably have been directed at Canadians.

But he made the comment with regard to those illegally crossing the Arizona/Mexico border, and those who enter the US illegally there are almost exclusively Hispanic, predominately Mexican.

So to claim he was not pointing to any particular race, ethnicity or nationality with his comments blindly ignores the context in which they were made.

McCain's irrational statements were pandering to hatred, and it was not hatred of  Canadians. It was hatred of Mexicans and other Hispanics.

Bobby
Bobby

What is it in your case. Just curious.

KCarson
KCarson

You're right, as a matter of pure argument, but its a moot point because most people aren't willing to do the hard thinking. Arguing about it, in my experience, becomes like hitting your head against a wall. Congrats for taking it on.

In truth, if the speaker's intent is not in play (i.e., we aren't calling the speaker a racist because we can not prove he believes one race to be inferior to others), then we must examine just the statement.

In this instance, the statement "illegal aliens start fires" does nothing to convey the notion that any race is an issue, much less that one race is inferior to others. If you can't examine the intent of the speaker, then the words themselves are not racists. It demonstrates bigotry, not racism.

As such, the comment "he's not a racist, he just says racists things" does not apply.

Arguing such fine points of rhetoric, however, with people unschooled in the finer points of logic, however, is a typically a lost cause. Rather than examining the statement dispassionately people instead react, understandably, with the desire to label irresponsible statements like McCain's as ghastly as possible.  Racism is worse than bigotry, so McCain's comments are labeled racism, logic be damned.

StephenLemons
StephenLemons

To borrow an old line from the Shadow, who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? I agree, we have to judge a man by his actions. We'll never know what's squirming inside of him. That said, it's more accurate to call the statement racist instead of the man, at least until there's more evidence or an outright admission.

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