Sun, May

Hard to Tell the Extremists from … Well, the Extremists


PROTESTS AND POLITICS--Welcome again to Upside-Down World, where every day is "opposite" day and when, after repeated promises that crazy stuff will neeeeeeever happen suddenly--and whadaya know--DOES happen! 


(And, of course, if you complain, then clearly YOU'RE the crazy one!) 

Of course, this might just be the whole "progressive" thing (a term that is anything but liberal--which implies an "open-mindedness"), where they say "this change won't bring around chaos" then say "that change won't bring around chaos, either" then say "yep, this chaos is what we always wanted, and ain't it great?" and finally proclaim "don't you DARE complain or try to reverse this chaos, because you'll pay dearly...and what you're reversing would lead to ... chaos!" 

Case in point, but only one case in myriad other examples: illegal immigration, and the move to find that fair balance between obeying the law, and having laws, and having flexibility, and having compassion...and knowing when to defend our own interests, and those of our fellow taxpaying, law-abiding citizens. 

First they were called "illegal aliens" and then they were called "illegal immigrants" and then they were called "undocumented immigrants", and then they were called "undocumented migrants" and now they're just "migrants". 

And now it's "don't you DARE call them illegal!" or "You're a racist and xenophobe if you hate migrants!" even if it's never been about "hate" or "migrants". 

And, of course, it's "ya know, we really did steal this from Mexico." 

Regardless of the fact that NOT all immigrants, legal or illegal, are from Mexico. 

Regardless of the fact that--in the past--both legal and less-than-legal immigrants were supposed to have family and corporate sponsors to protect taxpayers from the costs of those we let in legally, and/or tolerated illegally, because of the compassion related to our own immigrant background, and an awareness of how hellish the rest of the world can be. 

Regardless of the fact that it's almost always the immigrants from only ONE nation, almost always illegal, who over the decades chose not to speak Spanglish but Spanish-only, and who demand that others--including black, Asian, Native American, and Latino English speakers--speak Spanish. 

Regardless of the fact that immigrants from every other nation but ONE--seek to assimilate into the tapestry of the United States and forsake their old nation because that old nation's culture was so awful that they fled to a better life in the United States. 

Regardless of the fact that virtually all Americans already ARE kind, compassionate, and understanding and don't view all immigrants, including Latino immigrants, including Mexican immigrants, as criminals and moochers. 

Regardless of the fact that there will be, as in the past, Mexican-American citizens and immigrants who will write and thank me for doing this piece. 

Regardless of the fact that American taxpayers recognize that every tax dollar spent on an illegal immigrant is one tax dollar not being spent on our own transportation, education, and other vital services for our communities--including and especially underserved and very poor communities (such as African American neighborhoods, Native American reservations, and the like). 

Regardless of the fact that the majority of Americans supported passing NAFTA, at least in part, to help our southern neighbor (and the source of most of the heat surrounding the immigration debate) which is Mexico. 

So keep it up, those who choose violence and chaos at the Trump rallies.  Wave those Mexican flags and ignore even Trump's own proclamations that he wants legal immigration.  

Use lots and LOTS of public profanity and attack the police. 

Because you're progressive, and sooner or later, you'll make us all see your real agenda and we'll all remember that--as with other progressive causes, God is on your side (provided you believe in God) and we'll all apologize for being so intolerantly regressive. 

And we won't come to the conclusion that Mexico is a failed nation with such an ingrained culture of corruption that the majority of its own people are oppressed and repressed, and that it treats its indigenous/Native American population like dirt, and that it's a horrible neighbor both to the north and to the south. 

And we won't come to the conclusion that Trump and other politicians like him are right, and that a hideous eyesore of a wall is needed out of pure desperation. 

And we won't come to the conclusion that "if yours is mine, then mine is yours" and start talking about buying out and occupying Baja California and northern Mexico, or at least raising the issue of asking Mexico to be broken up, because "borders" is such an antiquated, regressive term. 

So if any part of this article was or is to be perceived as "extremist," then perhaps it's long overdue to just ask how "progressive" or "extremist" things are supposed to be for us all to step back and say enough is enough--because while progress is often good, progress isn't always good, particularly when it leads to chaos... 

...and particularly for those who've got an agenda as to what a new form of "good" should be, and who will tear our society apart for "the greater good" of us all.


(Ken Alpern is a Westside Village Zone Director and Board member of the Mar Vista Community Council (MVCC), previously co-chaired its Planning and Outreach Committees, and currently is Co-Chair of its MVCC Transportation/Infrastructure Committee. He is co-chair of the CD11Transportation Advisory Committee and chairs the nonprofit Transit Coalition, and can be reached at  [email protected]. He also co-chairs the grassroots Friends of the Green Line at www.fogl.us. The views expressed in this article are solely those of Mr. Alpern.)



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