BY THE TIME THEY GET TO PHOENIX(THERE WILL PROBABLY BE NO MEXICANS LEFT)

From EPISCOPAL LIFE:

The Episcopal Church's House of Bishops will meet Sept. 15-21 in Phoenix for its regular fall meeting as planned, including an optional pre-meeting trip to the U.S.-Mexican border, despite public outcry over Arizona's recent enactment of the nation's toughest immigration law and calls for a boycott.

"It's an opportunity to be educated, to be informed and to make a public statement about solidarity with people that are victims in this, and there are victims on both sides, which is important to emphasize," said Arizona Bishop Kirk Smith in a telephone interview. "We will accomplish a lot more by being here, learning, hearing and responding about it and standing in solidarity with people suffering instead of taking the easy way out by saying let's go meet someplace else."

COMMENT: Personally, I don't think the bishops need to cancel the Phoenix booking. But, the above statement from Bishop Smith is nonsense and spin.

"Victims on both sides?"

WTF?

That's a grade ones example of Tufti-speak and complete and utter bollocks, of course.

Comments

BY THE TIME THEY GET TO PHOENIX(THERE WILL PROBABLY BE NO MEXICANS LEFT) — 20 Comments

  1. Dear Mad Priest,

    This is my first (I believe) comment to your lovely blog. I am a straight, white, American-born male, of a modest, working-class background who avoided jail and went to school till they made me stop. I grew up in California, and am near-fluent in Spanish. I deeply value (and achingly miss now living in Boston) the centuries-old and on-going enrichment at every level of of American society and culture at-large, by Latinos, and regionally in the American Pacific and Southwest in particular by Mexican-Americans, Mexican immagrants and Mexican visitors.

    There is a severe sin afoot of not welcoming the stranger, among many others. Certainly the most wounded in this shameful situation are the suffering, exploited, oppressed, besieged, stigmatized and scapegoated undocumented immigrants who are clearly economically displaced refugees.

    The interesting thing to me is how the American-born and documented immigrant, working-class and lower middle-class population, who are actually victims of depressed wages from the effects of the exploited labor pool of the undocumented, are manipulated and tricked into blaming and even supporting political and social sanctions against the least-powerful players in this hideous game.

    There is actually work aplenty to go around. The undocumented are under-paid out of sheer, cynical, cunning, exploitative greed. The American-born and documented immigrant population at-large are underpaid because of the effect of the artificially low wages and usually no benefits paid to undocumented workers, who are cynically pitted against each other in the work force.

    A pathetic case of Stockholm syndrome, and the long-standing, American, collective, psychological inability to hold accountable the most powerful and those who are actually responsible for and who benefit from abuse, greed, exploitation and criminality. All wage-earners would benefit from illegal immigration amnesty as well as fundamental and realistic immigration reform, business owners and capitalistist would make less sinful profit.

    Yes, many of my compatriots are indeed destructive, angry and truly unsympathetic Stockholm syndrome suffers, who are relatively more empowered than the least empowered, less vulnerable than the most vulnerable, the less victimized than the most victimized in this gruesome and embarrassing family dysfunction of agitated sibling rivalry and game of let’s-roll-the-feces-down-the-hill, and as such they participate in and perpetuate their very own victimization.

    All that said they are still victims, who pay a price that unjustly enriches the most empowered and those least in need of further enrichment, who deftly incite ignorance, xenophobia and hate to their benefit, laughing all the way to the bank.

  2. I wish you lived here, MadPriest. The bishop is nothing like your ABC. Hope you’ve read Bishop Smith’s letter to the Hispanic Episcopalians in his diocese. It’s a heckuva lot more than GLBT folks have heard in the way of support and compassion from ++Williams.

  3. There have recently been some rather notorious murders of US citizens near the border, by undocumented Mexicans coming over. In THAT context, MP, I understand why +Kirk felt it important to say “victims on both sides.”

    That said, I think the HofB still SHOULD move the meeting. A boycott’s a boycott. For it to work, you can’t say “Well MY particular Arizona Event is Special!”

  4. Yes, JCF. But the muted boycott was in respect of the legislation and only one side is the victim of that.

    I think specifically and read specifically. If other people are sloppy in their pronouncements it ain’t my fault.

  5. I posted this bishop’s letter condemning the legislation the day he wrote it. It was a good letter in which he spoke plainly. But this latest announcement of his is not plain it’s bishopspeak and disingenuous.

    There was a bishop who lived in the 9th. Century in the Carthusian Mountains somewhere. He was only a bishop for about thirty seconds because after the other bishops laid their hands on him, he stepped backwards, fell on the sanctuary step and broke his neck. During those 30 seconds he acted in a perfectly exemplary way, he was the perfect bishop and didn’t put a foot wrong until the foot he put wrong that led to his early demise. So yes, Brian R, it is possible.

  6. I think the wiser policy would have been to move the meeting to New Mexico, just across the line. They could show solidarity with Latinos, speak with them, and speak to the tangled issues of the US-Mexican border without appearing to endorse Arizona’s legislation, or to diss any of the many different populations that live there.

    But then, I’m not a bishop.

  7. The Mexican drug cartel people are fully capable of killing inconvenient accidental witnesses of drug transport. I suspect that some US owners or residents of border land are paid to cover for or help out drug smugglers. I’d imagine that any interception of smugglers on the owner’s land would result in murder of the owner or resident by the drug cartel. There’s nothing like a murder to dissuade other U.S. border residents from going to the police or even hinting to family or friends about the smuggling activities.

    Why would the ordinary undocumented people commit violent crimes at a higher rate than citizens? The undocumented person’s goal is to stay under the radar.

    The average American can’t think in a logical fashion.

  8. I do believe there have been victims on both sides in more than just a physical sense – a bishop has to be aware that sin victimizes the sinner, as well.

    However, that’s a fine distinction that the bishop might have had the political acumen to avoid addressing in the ongoing heat the situation is – rightly – generating!

  9. Well, if he meant that Mark, he should have said that. It’s the generic wishy washiness of bishops that gets on my wick. Their inability to say anything definite in case they upset somebody. The thing being that quite often the people they are trying not to offend could actually do with being offended.

  10. I think moving to New Mexico is a good idea or if somehow they must go to Arizona, they should change the venue to Tucson, the liberal city with the Hispanic Studies courses the legislature has targeted.

    Staying in Phoenix is a bad idea and undermines the impact a church protest would have.

    –sheila–

  11. The Arizona law does nothing more then enforce federal statues. The hysteria and misinformation surrounding the law is resulting in unreflective, kneejerk and misplaced concern for the undocumented. I’ve read enough of your blog to know that you understand the complexity of immigration to Britain and the threat it poses to the unskilled and even the natural cultural underpinnings of the nation. Why would one not think that unchecked immigration to Arizona would not pose similar problems.

    In Los Angeles, the wage deflation in many well paying industries is directly attributable to the influx of undocumented workers. The often repeated refrain that the illegal is just doing work that no self respecting American will do is not only insulting but total Bull shit.

    The threat to the environment posed by overpopulation primarially from immigration is also real.
    The culpability of the Mexican governement whose incompetence and corruption making it unable to care for its people, is profound. It dumps its own people at the border to rid itself of the pressure of impending social unrest and forces many into an illegal drug trade that has morphed into wars taking place on the borders which are truly horrific and very real.

    I also take issue with the hypocrisy of those seeking a ridiculous boycott of the state. There is right now a law in California that impounds and siezes the veichles of unlicensed drivers which in fact impacts only the undocumented who are forced to simply forfeit their cars and buy new ones. This exploitation by the state government is amazing.
    Arizona did not address the issue comprehensively that much is true. But neither is anyone else and that includes business, government both federal and state and the Church while correctly advocating for social justice leaves a hefty number of the native poor out of the equation.

  12. The Arizona law does nothing more then enforce federal statues.
    Seamus, the law sets whole new groups of officials with jurisdiction to question anyone and everyone’s status. Few city, county and state police had that jurisdiction before.

    In Los Angeles, the wage deflation in many well paying industries is directly attributable to the influx of undocumented workers. The often repeated refrain that the illegal is just doing work that no self respecting American will do is not only insulting but total Bull shit.
    Easy to say, link the research that backs it up.

    The threat to the environment posed by overpopulation primarially from immigration is also real.
    Again, easy to say, link the research that backs it up.

    The culpability of the Mexican governement whose incompetence and corruption making it unable to care for its people, is profound.
    The government has been corrupt for almost a century with US support, because your government thought it in your best interest to maintain the status quo.

    It dumps its own people at the border to rid itself of the pressure of impending social unrestIt dumps its own people at the border to rid itself of the pressure of impending social unrest
    I am sorry, where are these buses, and where might one get a ticket. I am unfamiliar with these free rides to the northern border.

    forces many into an illegal drug trade that has morphed into wars taking place on the borders which are truly horrific and very real
    The drug trade exists because of demand. If there were not a huge body of drug addicts in the USA and Canada there would be no drug trade in Mexico. The average Mexican certainly cannot afford drugs.

    If there were not an inordinate amount of gun dealers within a few miles of the border, more than any other locale in the USA, there would not be guns and ammunition for the drug cartels. 90+% of weapons confiscated have been directly traced by the US back to sale in the USA. Retail sale of guns, rifles and ammunition to the public are illegal in Mexico. There are no gun shows or gun shops. Those of us with legal weapons were carefully vetted and licensed by the Mexican military and the sale of ammunition to us is carefully controlled.

    There are many folks in Arizona who want to come home at this point, but they are stuck there. They are afraid to go to work. They are afraid to go out and look for work. They do not know what they will do come the first of the month because they have no money to pay the landlord the rent. They are afraid to head for the border to come home.

    They are afraid that if they are caught trying to come home that what would have been a few days journey will become a nightmare. If they are caught they could spend weeks, sometimes months in the US deportation system. They would loose any valuable possessions they were bringing home. Folks die in detention for lack of medical care. And their photo and finger prints will be entered into the US data base, making any legal entry into the US impossible for a minimum of 10 years.

  13. Just move the meeting to a location just barely on the western side of Lake Havasu. THAT would be a real slap in the face to AZ.

  14. PS: Lake Havasu, at least the AZ side of it, is where London Bridge ended up, ya know. 🙂

  15. Really, the only “fair” way to enforce this new law in AZ is to check the papers of everyone. Make that the law, and I’ll bet it would quickly be overturned.

    I do find it remarkable that those that most loudly cry that the illegals are “stealing jobs” from willing to work Americans are clueless about what those jobs really are. I hear it from my overweight and underemployed, lazy brother-in-law. But he’d never deign to pick strawberries in the fields in California, nor would he be willing to labor in the Arizona desert.

    – DJC (a Tucson resident)

  16. DJC, you lot are too tall to work the fields, it is bad for your backs to bend over that far. We are built much closer to the ground. And also, we invented low riders, so one can pick lettuce without getting out of the car!