As a conservative in California, sometimes I feel I’m fighting my own party before I can fight the rabid socialist progressives who are so prevalent here. For example, last year a group of seven (why is it always a gang of seven?) GOP Assembly members joined forces with Democrats to push through an extension of Jerry Brown’s cap-and-trade program, setting off a major melodrama within the party. Activists felt that they had to convince the establishment to support central conservative tenets such as free markets and lack of government intervention.
In the same way, it sometimes seems that conservative writers and pundits have to break through the critical lens of those on our own side who want to see Trump-loving or racism or white nationalism tinging every comment or every issue before we can hope to take on the left.
On Tuesday, Ingraham’s opening monologue focused on “The Left’s Efforts to Remake America.” She specifically brought up Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s bellyaching that “older” Democrats in Congress aren’t sufficiently supportive of young progressive candidates. It’s because they’re old, of course – “their heyday was in the ’90s, when, like, you know, kids had, like Furbys and, like, parents, that – you had like soccer moms who – like two vans, and stuff…that’s not America anymore.”
Personally, I’m more offended that her characterization would put me in the same age bracket as Nancy Pelosi than anything else.
Ingraham went on to agree with AOC’s assertion that “that’s not America anymore,” and those are the comments some conservatives immediately saw as racist, bigoted, and demonstrating that Ingraham is afraid of anyone who doesn’t look like her.
“Because in some parts of the country, it does seem like the America that we know and love doesn’t exist anymore. Massive demographic changes have been foisted upon the American people and they’re changes that none of us ever voted for and most of us don’t like. From Virginia to California, we see stark examples of how radically in some ways the country has changed. Now, much of this is related to both illegal, and in some cases legal, immigration that, of course, progressives love.”
It was Ingraham’s characterization of legal immigration bringing about unwanted, radical change that some were especially offended by. However, chain migration is perfectly legal but has absolutely brought unwanted changes to our country. The story of how chain migration has radically changed Hazleton, PA can be read here.
As RedState diarist Davenj1 pointed out, Ingraham’s critics mostly ignored this part of her monologue:
There is something slipping away in this country and it’s not about race or ethnicity. It’s what was once a common understanding by both parties that American citizenship is a privilege, and one that at a minimum requires respect for the rule of law and loyalty to our constitution.
Some of my close friends are second and third generation Americans living in California whose parents came from Peru, Chile, El Salvador, and Mexico, and they agree that this common understanding “that American citizenship is a privilege” is indeed slipping away and affects all races and ethnicities. My “brown-skinned” friends (that’s how they describe themselves to me, so don’t go calling me racist in the comments) are furious that they are sometimes lumped in with those – of all skin colors – who see citizenship as a one-way street, where people stand there with their hands out and demand that government give them something.
After all of the “kerfuffle” over Wednesday’s comments, Ingraham opened Thursday’s show with a monologue clarifying her prior remarks – something she shouldn’t have had to do.
“I want to start tonight by addressing my commentary at the top of last night’s show. A message to those who are distorting my views, including all white nationalists and especially one racist freak whose name I will not even mention. You do not have my support, you don’t represent my views and you are antithetical to the beliefs I hold dear. The purpose of last night’s angle was to point out that the rule of law – meaning secure borders – is something that used to bind our country together. And despite what some may be contending – I made explicitly clear that my commentary had nothing to do with race or ethnicity, but rather a shared goal of keeping America safe, and her citizens safe and prosperous.
Furthermore, as I have said repeatedly on this show, merit based immigration does wonders for our country’s economy, our way of life and how we define our country – I even said that in my opening thoughts last night. I want to make it really clear that my concern will continue to remain with the families who have suffered the tragic results of illegal immigration, the children put in dangerous and unfair situations at the border, and all those border agents around the country who work to keep our country safe.”
I am stunned that conservatives would take the entirety of Ingraham’s comments on the show and immediately consider them racist. It’s a bit like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s reaction to Ben Shapiro’s invitation to debate. Bafflingly (to us), when she finally responded to the challenge she likened it to rape culture.
Just like catcalling, I don’t owe a response to unsolicited requests from men with bad intentions.
And also like catcalling, for some reason they feel entitled to one. pic.twitter.com/rsD17Oq9qe
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) August 10, 2018
We know that personalities like Ingraham, Tucker Carlson, et al., will be pilloried by the left for every word they breathe. I’m not advocating giving conservatives a free pass by any means, but perhaps we should take a deep breath, listen to the entirety of what someone says, and consider whether our comments will help the cause of stamping out progressive liberalism in our country or hurt it before making them.