For all the positive sentiment by those who find themselves compelled (for some strange reason) to prove that they love their fellow [Mexican] man, unless the rest of us heartless, racist bastards, there's a fundamental problem with all of this demonstration. By definition, it can't go anywhere unless some form of amnesty is passed. If and when that amnesty is passed, it will be effected by the liberal faction of American politics, not by any grassroots movement.
People have spoken at length about parallels to the Civil Rights Movement. There are and there aren't and I think they are different than those getting airplay. Internally, I think Latinos are going to be dealing with the effects of a discussion among themselves that will parallel those of blacks, but externally it is not Latinos that are driving the political discussion in America today.
Latinos are going to have to face Cosbyesque questions on the Mojado issue - which are the same kinds of questions all emergent Americans face. When are you going to stop supporting lawbreakers out of racial and ethnic solidarity?
If there is any parallel to the Civil Rights Movement, that's it right there. Whitefolks had to ask themselves that - when were they going to break racial solidarity and support a lawful society. In America, the law and order folks have always won, and I have no reason to believe the outcome will be different in this regard.
There are, of course, always backsliders. In the Mojado case the parallel are white liberals (again) who are down for the radical chicness of loudmouths who flaunt the law and 'teach America a lesson'. But this too will pass. I think of what a joke it seems obviously to call someone like Eldridge Cleaver a black leader, however he got airplay in his day as someone representative of black power.
What's interesting about this 'movement' of illegals is there there is no leadership. There is nobody identifyable (aside from Nancy Pelosi who doesn't really count) who has spoken up from the grass roots and made any cogent points. So here's a parallel. In that way, the support by Latinos of Mojados is very much like the black ghetto support of the illegal drug economy and protection of drug gangs from police. Everybody knows it's wrong, there's this vague feeling of distrust by a significant element of the ethnic group, and it really comes down to a big collection of families who break the law and abide lawbreaking for their own financial gain. Just like the mother who drives a new car paid for with drug money, a lot of Mojado families are paying rent from illegal employment. Inevitably there will be some conversion of Mojado gains into the mainstream. Who knows what form it will take. We had a thousand rap producers emerge from the crack trade. But the Old School lives on, and I'm happy that Ice Cube can't get a spot on Oprah's show.
There's not a political movement here. Just an extended scam. And I believe that white liberals of the radical chic variety will keep idiotic notions alive for decades sucking the oxygen away from reality-based politics in the Latino electorate. Latinos will live to regret the day that they assumed racial solidarity with the lawbreakers among them.