In the New York Times, Some Racists


Happy 370th day of the Trump presidency, which is also yet another day when The New York Times has decided to spam its subscribers with stories from Trump’s Real America, where people hold some obscure and nonsensical and—just maybe!—racist positions.

Over the last year, New York Times reporters have bumbled along through “Trump Country,” interviewing such crucial people as “hopeful” coal miners who support the president and people who remain “loyal” in the face of crippling budget cuts. Last week, in the “spirit of open debate,” the Times devoted its entire Thursday editorial page to letters from Trump supporters, who applauded the president—a man with lower first-year approval ratings than any elected president in history—for having “vision, chutzpah, and some testosterone.”

And today, the Times bravely checks in with another important group of people: Americans who, for some reason, don’t support the DACA program. What could these people possibly say?

Here’s Pav Sterry, a 58-year-old retired math teacher from Ohio:

“I think DACA recipients should be given a few months to get their affairs in order and return to their home countries.”
To those who contend that the young immigrants would be marooned in a country they do not remember, Ms. Sterry says: “Parents and children can all go home together.”

Here’s Joe Kleeve, a 21-year-old senior at St. Mary’s University of Minnesota, on the fact that DACA recipients had been brought here by their parents:

What if someone’s parents were caught sneaking their whole family into a movie without paying, he asked. “Are they going to just kick the parents out?”

Here’s Jacklyn Haak, a 19-year-old chemical engineering student at the University of Minnesota:

“Granting legal status to Dreamers could potentially cause a domino effect in which other families bring young children, hoping that in time their children will be granted legal status.”

Yet, as the paper notes in its story, as few as 1 in 10 Americans feel this way. The position that all DACA recipients should be immediately deported is so rare, in fact, the Times had to collect some of its impressions second-hand:

Lars Larson, a syndicated conservative talk-show host based in Portland, Ore., said that 10 to 15 percent of his callers consider DACA recipients lawbreakers and want to give them “nothing at all.”

The Times notes that while some people interviewed had a firm grasp of U.S. immigration policy, others completely missed some crucial points:

Others expressed the sentiment that the immigrants’ parents should have gotten “in line,” though for many foreigners, a legal pathway into the country exists only if they have special skills or relatives in the United States who are citizens.

To its credit, the Times did manage to find one immigrant—a Vietnamese man who came here as a toddler, lives near America’s largest population of Somali refugees, and believes there is a “tidal wave” of migration on the horizon—to weigh in:

“If we can do it the legal way, so can they,” said Mr. Pham, an information technology consultant. “We don’t have to be creating new programs or giving them preferential treatment.”

But, to summarize:

They do not dispute that most of the immigrants are eager and hardworking and did not choose their station in life. But for these voters, that is all beside the point.

Wonder why that could be. Or why the Times—which in its own story admits that these are fringe positions—devoted over 1,500 words to people who want to immediately deport undocumented, life-long American residents, but can’t quite say why. If the Times is looking for an edgy, counter-intuitive opinion to give the news treatment, we hear there are, for instance, a lot of people out there who believe they’re being visited by sex-hungry ghosts. It would probably be easier to find them.

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