Some samples of her comments:
ATLANTA -- We are proud to be an academic partner of New America Media, and we are very excited about being here today to learn more about what may be the number one news story in the United States right now and certainly the number one story in the South.
When Sandy Close (Executive Director of New America Media) asked me to provide a statistical overview of immigration patterns in the Southeast, I thought she was nuts. Because compared to you, who deal with immigration issues every day, I know nothing.
But then I took a moment to ask something writers often ask themselves: What is my standing in this story? What is my personal relationship to it?
The answer is that my family made the same journey that your families, and all the other families in your communities, made. They just made the trip a couple of generations earlier.
And, as you know, timing is everything.
Four years ago I made my first visit to Verona, the lovely Northern Italian city my family abandoned. It’s a very romantic place with the Romeo and Juliet legend, the Adige River and a Roman amphitheater. My people lived on the outskirts and cultivated grapevines and vegetables. Being there, I thought how sad it must have been to leave such a beautiful place, and how brave to join forces with a few neighbors and cross the Atlantic.
But the Ghiottos and Toffalettis were held down by political and economic problems. There was no way to make a better life for themselves or their children. They believed this could happen, though, if they took the risk of immigrating to the United States, the land of opportunity.
You know this story.
And although Italians did not use the terms “coyote” or “snakehead,” they were lied to and ripped off by the ship’s captain who brought them here. So they got off the boat with few possessions and very little money.
You know this story, too.
And like many of your families, they did not aim for established ethnic communities in New York or San Francisco. Instead, they settled in the Southeast, Central Florida to be exact, where they expected to prosper by farming. But their grapevines died and so they became small shopkeepers and ran a boarding house for men working on the railroad.
This is also a story you know.
And how were my relatives received in Ocala, Florida? You can guess. They were shunned and ridiculed for their language, their customs and even their wonderful Italian cooking. The only thing they did not give up was their Catholic faith, because that helped sustain them in the new world.''
Yes, Miss Thomas, this IS a story I know, because I have heard it in various forms about 468,329 times from various 'immigrant descendants' like you. And in 99.99 percent of cases, those immigrant descendants are Irish, Italian, or Jewish.
And without exception these little stories are always an attempt to play on heartstrings with tales of poverty, want, and of course the obligatory tales of 'bigotry' from the old-stock Americans whose hospitality made your ancestors' immigration possible. But is the hospitality answered with gratitude? Scarcely; the only memory that seems to survive is that somebody was mean to the poor suffering immigrant and 'ridiculed their language, customs, and even their wonderful Italian cooking.'
And if I am sounding hard-hearted, please be aware that I used to listen politely and sympathetically, and even believed many of the stories of persecution. Now I hope I may be excused for the fact that my sympathies are rather threadbare, and my give-a-damn has worn out. There have just been too many such stories, repeated too many times, by too many people, in too many situations, and in too many cases, defending too many illegal immigrants.
It has not escaped the notice of many of us that these people far too often side with illegals over what should be their own countrymen. Instead, Miss Thomas and her ilk have become increasingly blatant about siding with others, even those who are here illegally, and in dredging up generations-old grievances for which they want to exact retribution via opening the country up to millions of 'new Americans' who are here strictly to strip-mine this country of its bounties.
Miss Thomas is like an invited house guest (she has chosen to remain a guest, it seems, rather than accept adoption into the American family) who surreptitiously opens all the gates and doors to confederates outside who want to burglarize, loot, and destroy the family domicile.
And by the way, I need proof of all these sob-stories, these pity-party pieces about the poor persecuted grandma and grandpa who were ridiculed and shunned for Italian food and the Italian language. I have a strong feeling that many of these traditions are urban legends like the 'No Irish Need Apply' signs. But these legends persist, and go unchallenged. Why do people cling to them so fiercely, absent real proof? Probably because of our bizarre victimocracy, in which a claim to some kind of grievance and historical victimhood is a perverse kind of status. Americans have traditionally sympathized with underdogs but this has just gone way too far, for too long. Sometimes underdog status is merely proof of inadequacy; some underdogs are in an inferior position for good reason. We have let things go too far, to the point that being dominant is now considered proof of discriminating and oppressing the poor underdogs of the world.
So by way of atoning, we are now being browbeaten into passivity as we are compelled to accept millions upon millions of the world's underdogs and have-nots. Why? Because we are historically guilty; we oppressed the Indians, the blacks, and everybody else, and we made fun of Miss Thomas's Italian forebears, so our penance is to submit to the opening up of our country to all and sundry, to whatever self-selected 'migrants' can make it across the finish line.
Old Atlantic at Old Atlantic Lighthouse addressed the issue of the 'son of immigrants' in this recent post
Old Atlantic alludes to Sen. Lindsey Graham's recent remarks at a La Raza event, in which he rashly boasted to his Raza amigos 'we're gonna tell those bigots to shut up.''
Old Atlantic continues:
Whenever Senators talk of bigotry, its to justify doing something bad to their constituents that their constituents don’t want.
Son of Immigrants is also one of those phrases. When a politician says “son of immigrants”, he is going to pick your pocket, whether you are in his group or not, are an immigrant or not.
Whenever a politician tells us where his ancestors came from, what religion he has or they had, or about adversity or bigotry they overcome, he is saying we are the bigots he is overcoming, whether we share his affinities or not. Its us he is saying he has overcome, is overcoming and will overcome. He does that by using the power of government to do something bad to us. That is why he talks about his ancestors. Its to remind us of ancient grudges and resentments he has. He wants us to think all those who share group membership are backing him up while he does something bad to us, all of us.
If we are in his group, we are supposed to feel we are supposed to keep quiet while one of ours gets it back against “them”. If we are in his group, we are supposed to feel, if we speak up, then we are betraying the group. If we are in his group, we are supposed to feel if we speak up, the whole group will turn on us as a traitor. If we are in his group, and we speak up to say no, we are supposed to feel that when the other groups come for us, no one in our group will rally around us, a traitor to our own kind.
The pol is saying, I am going to do some bad thing to you, take money, take your job, subject you to terrorism, etc. If you stand up and fight me, you have to fight everyone in my ethnic group or religious group or country of origin. So you better sit down and take what I’m going to give you and not talk back. That is the message. The bad thing will hit his own group just as much as everyone else, but he is using that group as a wedge to get away with doing the bad thing.
Usually what the pol wants to do benefits corporations and special interests that are paying him money. But he wants us to think we have to take on his ethnic group, religious group, or country of origin if we say no to whatever special interest he is paying off by harming us. If we are in his group, we are traitors to say no, and if we are outside it, we are bigots to say no.
This is one of those things we are supposed to accept, because some politician said to us he was the son of immigrants.
Pols who talk of ancestors, their religion, adversity they overcame or use the phrase, “son of an immigrant” are engaging in gang talk. They are saying I am taking from you, and if you object, you have to fight my whole gang. They are saying, my gang backs me up. They are saying my gang is my ethnic group, religion, or those from the same country of national origin. Senators who talk this way are talking like gangsters. Senators who talk like gangsters, do bad things to us, and take special interest money for it are acting like gangsters. At some point, Senators become the gangsters they imitate. They are like the Mafia acting like the Godfather.''
Old Atlantic sums it up pretty well.
And to return to Miss Thomas's depressing speech, cheering on the remaking of the American South, she notes triumphally,
But I do know there’s been a tremendous influx of immigrants into the Southeast over the past 20 years.
• In 2000, the most recent immigrants to the Atlanta area came from Mexico, India, Vietnam, Korea and Jamaica. Further down the list were Colombia and China, along with several European nations.
• If you look at places where the Latino population soared by more than 300 percent between 1980 and 2000, 11 of 18 of these so-called “hypergrowth” areas are in the South. In Raleigh, for example, the Latino population exploded by nearly 1200 percent over 20 years; in Atlanta, it grew by nearly 1000 percent.
Atlanta will probably never have Hispanic or Asian communities the size of those in Los Angeles or New York, or even a black community as big as New York’s. But in terms of trends, all three of these populations are increasing rapidly in Southern metropolitan areas. According to a Brookings Institution report, called Diversity Spreads Out,
• Hispanic communities are growing fastest in Atlanta, Georgia, Charlotte and Raleigh, in North Carolina, Nashville, Tennessee, and four metro areas in Florida.
• Southern cities where Asian populations are soaring include Atlanta, Orlando and the Tampa-St. Petersburg area.
• Black populations are also increasing in many parts of the South.
This Brookings report emphasized a phenomenon you no doubt already know about: immigrant communities are shifting away from inner cities and coastal port cities and toward suburbs and inland areas, where the cost of living is lower.
Cultural diversity is coming to small towns and rural counties: University of Georgia researchers found that during the 1990s, Hispanic populations soared by nearly 300 percent in 62 Georgia counties.
Remember when I said that the one thing my Italian forebears did not give up was their religion? One way to tell who is putting down roots is to note the types of churches, synagogues, temples, or mosques being built in an area.
When the megachurch phenomenon began in the 1980s, these giant Protestant houses of worship sprang up in white suburbs where congregants were affluent enough to build them. And the people who worshipped in them were white as well.
Today most of the 4.5 million people who attend megachurches are Caucasian, but 10-12 percent are African American, 2 percent are Asian, and 2 percent are Hispanic. About one third claim to have a significant minority presence, and more than half say their congregations are actively trying to become more multiethnic.
New Birth Missionary Baptist Church, where Coretta Scott King’s memorial service took place, is a megachurch in Lithonia, Georgia, with 25,000 mostly African-American members. But it now draws 1,000 people to a Spanish-language worship service.
Five thousand Muslims have gotten together to construct a new mosque in midtown Atlanta, across from the Atlantic Station mall. ''
She actually thinks this is a good and healthy and vibrant thing: the fact that mosques are sprouting up in the South, which heretofore has not been 'diverse' enough for her tastes, or perhaps not diverse enough to atone for the South's past crimes against humanity, I suppose.
Miss Thomas only confirms for me what I have felt all along: the South is being transformed against its will, as an in-your-face to the old-stock Southron people. To people like Miss Thomas, such people do not count; they are the 'old', passe, obsolescent America which can't be phased out fast enough for her and her ilk. She and the rest of her 'diverse' and multiculti comrades won't be satisfied until the South is another Babelized multiculti dystopia, and its original stock marginalized, outnumbered, and probably discriminated against openly. She will not be happy until all those hideously white churches are replaced by mosques and the church bells replaced by loud recordings of muezzins calling people to prayer five times a day.
And unfortunately, as Old Atlantic's post reminds us, there is no shortage of quisling politicians, even Republicans like Lindsey Graham, who are happy to sell out the South and America in general to please their handlers, or perhaps because they stand to make some personal, political, and financial gain by selling out America.
And thanks is owed to Patricia Thomas for reminding me again that I should regard warily anybody of recent immigrant stock, because in far, far to many cases, these people, especially those of ethnic descent, identify with immigrants and not with traditional America.
Are there exceptions? Some, but just as with the fabled 'moderate Muslims' those exceptions will have to stand up and be counted; patriotic descendants of Ellis Island immigrants who are fully assimilated into this country should not want to have any truck with the grievance-mongering, grudge-bearing, and whining of the Patricia Thomases of this country. If this country is not to the liking of these aggrieved descendants, they are fully free to high-tail it back to Italy, Ireland, or any other corner of the world where their language and culture is the dominant one, and they won't be persecuted by any mean WASP Americans. But I suspect that few would be interested in leaving; it's better to stay and benefit from this country and at the same time to condemn it and the people who made it, cashing in on their victimhood.
America has too many professional victims now as it is; it would be a wise course to stop rewarding every claim of victimhood, and to stop the Oprah-style pity parties for self-styled victims. The past is the past, no more blaming and exacting punishment for generations-old insults or slights.
And above all, no more letting our immigration policies be dictated or even influenced by people like Thomas who are obviously alienated from traditional America and carrying out a personal vendetta against old-stock Americans. These people are driven by subjectivity and a sense of being wronged, and they are not rational and dispassionate citizens. Whether they know it or not, they are an active fifth column.
Personally I think the nativists of the 19th century have been vindicated a million times over by the undeniable fact that so very many descendants of the Ellis Island immigrants have become fervent supporters of ever-increasing immigration, if not of open borders. The Know-Nothings appear to have known more than their detractors.