The Drudge Report linked to a Reuters news report about the response to the recent Arizona law against illegal aliens.

Protest organizers said on Wednesday outrage over the Arizona law — which seeks to drive illegal immigrants out of the state bordering Mexico — has galvanized Latinos and would translate into a higher turnout for May Day rallies in more than 70 U.S. cities.

“The marches and demonstrations are going to be far more massive than they otherwise would have been,” said Juan Jose Gutierrez, a Los Angeles rally organizer who runs an immigration assistance company.

First, May Day, among other things, is a celebration of socialism. And socialism isn’t anything that makes this red-blooded American feel like celebrating. I’m old enough to remember the May Day demonstrations of Soviet military might parading through Red Square. And I’m certain I’ll see plenty of socialist / communist flags and demonstrators mixed in with the other demonstrators in favor of illegal aliens.

Confused Protestors

Yes, even illegal aliens have rights. They have the right to live in their own country. They have the right to legally visit and even work in the United States. But they do not have the right to illegally enter this nation, just like we don’t have the right to illegally enter another nation.

And as I have pointed out before, Mexico treats their illegal aliens harshly. In fact, an AP report shows that the Mexico law is far harsher today in Mexico than the new Arizona law even thinks of being:

Central American migrants are frequently pulled off trains, kidnapped en masse, held at gang hideouts and forced to call relatives in the U.S. to pay off the kidnappers. Such kidnappings affect thousands of migrants each year in Mexico, the report says.

Many are beaten, raped or killed in the process.

At present, Article 67 of Mexico’s Population Law says, “Authorities, whether federal, state or municipal … are required to demand that foreigners prove their legal presence in the country, before attending to any issues.”

Here in the U.S., and even after the Arizona law goes into effect, people of any origin, legal or not, will still be able to attend school, go to the emergency room, and call the police. Under the new Arizona law a police officer may question the legal status of people if they suspect that they are here illegally. Under the current Mexican law, all authorities must ascertain the status of the person before doing anything else. I recall recently reading the parable of the mote and the beam that applies to the Mexican complaints of the new Arizona law.

Besides, what is it about illegal immigration that these demonstrators just don’t understand?

I’ve observed before that the left believes in the freedom of speech only when it is their speech being protected. I call this phenomenon “Free speech for me, but not for thee” because when the left disagrees with someone, they have no problem with denying the other person the chance to speak, or drowning out someone else’s speech with screams when the floor belongs to another speaker.

Let’s look at a few examples caught on camera. First, however a warning: some of these videos have foul language. You have been warned. Now, onward! Earlier this year in Chicago, six people stood up in the middle of the Holy Name Cathedral Easter Mass service, interrupting Cardinal George in the middle of his homily.

While these six people have every right to state their opinions, the middle of Easter services is the wrong time and place to do so. If you believe the government is wrong, then go to a government venue to express your opinion. Don’t pull your stunt in the middle of a church service, interrupting the worship of thousands of people. It is rude, boorish and counter-productive.

Here is another example of interrupting in an inappropriate time and place. I’m sorry that you’ll have to listen to Sheila Jackson Lee for 30 seconds at the beginning of this clip from Bill Maher’s show.

I’m not a fan of Bill Maher, but he makes a great point two minutes into the video: “You are in the audience. Audience comes from the Latin ‘to listen.’” Again, disrupting Bill Maher’s show with your 9/11 “truther” agenda is the wrong time and place, and it ultimately does your cause a disservice.

In the next video, the Recreate68 crowd in Denver gathers around a Fox News camera crew and strong-arms them out of their midst.

Caleb says it well in his report of this scene:

Throughout the event, these men and women exercising their freedom of speech lamented, in dramatic and ominous terms, their lack of free speech. Then in the middle of the event they decided to silence the Fox News crew.

For a peace protest, these guys sure are ready to make war. Not with enemies abroad, but with conservatives at home, real or perceived. Stop war, they cry. Just not theirs, apparently.

Remember that the First Amendment, which specifically mentions your freedom of speech, also safeguards freedom of the press. But if you disagree with the reporters or the network they represent, then their right to report the news is not to be honored. Classy.

OK, so I’ve been picking on the left for their tendency to interrupt at the wrong time and place, but the phenomenon of interrupting someone else’s speech isn’t exclusive to leftist radicals. In the next clip, several survivors of abortion stand up and interrupt a speech by Senator Obama:

I actually support the idea that abortion, as it is commonly practiced in the United States, is an abomination — but disrupting a speech to point this out is rude, and again, it’s the wrong time and place. The people had congregated to listen to Obama, not to the disruptors. This kind of interruption as as boorish and unwelcome as having a loud phone conversation or repeatedly yelling out the address of your MySpace page in a packed movie theater. The people in attendance paid to watch the movie, not to listen to you.

There is an appropriate time and place for actions and words. If you disagree with the government, some official, or a person’s position on an issue, then feel free to speak up! But pick the right venue. If you are going to protest, then do it with class, not crass. Here’s an example of a classy protest — at 1:15 into the following clip, a lone protester stands and holds up his sign. He says nothing — just holds up his sign.

Is he interrupting Sean Penn’s speech? Well, he’s not shouting and preventing Penn from speaking. He’s just holding up his sign. Had the others in the crowd left him alone, he would have continued to stand there quietly. Their actions caused more of a stir than he did. And their actions proved that they didn’t respect his right to free speech, as his sign was torn out of his hands. It’s worthwhile to point out that while he showed some class and respect for the people around him, this protester still picked the wrong place and time to make his point.

It’s easy to stand up for speech with which you agree, but it is much harder to stand up for speech with which you disagree. I dislike protests that disrupt the freedom of others to speak their mind. If you have something to say, then post to a blog, email your friends, call people on the phone, or stand on a street corner and just plain talk. Explain and convert as many people as you can to your position with the excellence of your rhetoric and argument. But as you want people to honor your freedom of speech, you should be prepared to honor theirs.

Don’t scream and shout when other people are talking. Didn’t your mom teach you that?

UPDATE: As I wrote this, a number of Code Pink protesters broke into the Republican National Convention to disrupt the proceedings. They interrupted Senator McCain’s speech and were promptly removed from the area.


Last week I overheard two conversations. Technically, both of the quotes below were part of the same long conversation, but there was enough of a pause between them that I’ll label them separately.

The first phrase that perked my ears was in conjunction to the 22nd Amendment to the Constitution, the one that prohibits President Clinton (or any other twice-elected President) from serving a third term. One person was lamenting that President Clinton couldn’t run again unless that Amendment were overturned by another, the way the 18th was overturned by the 21st. And then came the phrase that really got my attention:

“The Republicans don’t want to repeal the 22nd Amendment so Bush could be elected a third time, because they know that President Clinton would be elected with a majority of the vote if he ever ran again.”

I could have responded, but I was talking with a customer about a fairly complicated technical issue, and I decided to concentrate on the issue at hand. But if I’d been free to say it, I would have replied:

Reelected with a majority? What makes you think President Clinton could be reelected with a majority when he never got a majority in his two times at bat?

The conversation drifted away from politics and into the realm of work for the next little while, but it veered back onto the subject of President Clinton when one of the guys asked why people would vote for President Clinton if the choice were available. Here is the response from the same guy quoted above:

Clinton was a great president because he didn’t take us into war. Instead, he was a perfect caretaker for the nation as he kicked the ball of problems down the road. It was Bush who couldn’t keep the peace and wrecked the economy. The economy was great under Clinton, and people would vote for Clinton again to bring back that prosperity.

Ah. Where to start with this? Since I was still on the phone with a customer (that call lasted for over three hours), I couldn’t bring up the bubble economy of the dot-com craze, nor could I bring up Haiti, Kosovo, or Somalia to show that President Clinton had no problem with taking the nation to war, ignoring the U.N. as he did so. Remember the huge peace protests in all our major cities when our forces bombed from 30,000 feet? It’s funny that protesters only seem to wind up the anti-war machine when a Republican is in office.

But if there is any definitive reason why President Clinton should never be reelected, it is precisely because he failed to act when it really mattered. This inaction allowed Osama bin Laden to become progressively more bold as he viewed the U.S. as a paper tiger. After all, the World Trade Center was bombed in 1993, Khobar Towers in 1996, two embassies in Africa in 1998, and the USS Cole attacked in 2000. The response was measured at best, and so ineffectually wimpy at worst as to let Osama believe that the U.S. would never respond to an escalated attack. That’s the sort of problem that occurs when a leader kicks the ball of problems down the road, rather than dealing with it himself. If you don’t agree, I have a phrase from history for you to ponder:

My good friends, for the second time in our history, a British Prime Minister has returned from Germany bringing peace with honour. I believe it is peace for our time.

There are vocal people standing up for Hezbollah and against Israel, and there are people who are calling for peace.

The simple symbols printed on their T-shirts and signs summed up the reason for their protest.

They want peace.

A group of about 40 people, wearing and holding peace symbols, gathered Thursday at the corner of Sanborn Street and Pine Grove Avenue in Port Huron.

They “demand peace” by calling for an end to the Iraq war and fighting in the Middle East.

But the reality is that they are not demanding that peace break out, they are demanding that the fighting stop immediately. Unfortunately, that is not the same as peace. Thomas Sowell explains this well in his post today:

One of the many failings of our educational system is that it sends out into the world people who cannot tell rhetoric from reality. They have learned no systematic way to analyze ideas, derive their implications and test those implications against hard facts.

“Peace” movements are among those who take advantage of this widespread inability to see beyond rhetoric to realities. Few people even seem interested in the actual track record of so-called “peace” movements — that is, whether such movements actually produce peace or war….

Was World War II ended by cease-fires or by annihilating much of Germany and Japan? Make no mistake about it, innocent civilians died in the process. Indeed, American prisoners of war died when we bombed Germany.

There is a reason why General Sherman said “war is hell” more than a century ago. But he helped end the Civil War with his devastating march through Georgia — not by cease fires or bowing to “world opinion” and there were no corrupt busybodies like the United Nations to demand replacing military force with diplomacy.

There was a time when it would have been suicidal to threaten, much less attack, a nation with much stronger military power because one of the dangers to the attacker would be the prospect of being annihilated.

“World opinion,” the U.N. and “peace movements” have eliminated that deterrent. An aggressor today knows that if his aggression fails, he will still be protected from the full retaliatory power and fury of those he attacked because there will be hand-wringers demanding a cease fire, negotiations and concessions.

I would label the protesters in Port Huron who are demanding peace as “hand-wringers demanding a ceasefire.” They don’t like the war, so in the name of peace, they demand that we leave Iraq right away. And what would be the result if we did that? Would it be peace? The last time we pulled out of a major engagement due to public pressure, the result was millions of murdered people in Vietnam and Laos. There was a form of peace there after we left — the peace of the dead.

Peace comes through winning the war and making the loser beg to sit at the negotiation table. Peace does not come from going to the negotiation table and signing some documents, unless the war has already been fought and won. Don’t believe me? In an attempt to appease the Germans, British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain sat down at the negotiation table with Hitler, but there was no peace. Germany annexed the Sudetenland that same year, invaded Poland the next, and invaded the rest of Europe by 1940. That was no peace. But after Japan signed the terms of surrender on the USS Missouri, there was peace between the U.S. and Japan for more than 60 years.

I’ll take real and lasting peace through victory any time.

So the Left has been out in force demonstrating against the war in Iraq as it hits the three-year mark. Tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of people rallied in the nation’s capital. Similarly-sized demonstrations happened in New York, Los Angeles, and across the U.S.

Eh, who am I kidding. These planned demonstrations were a big fat dud. The second picture at Michelle Malkin’s site shows a few dozen people at the Pentagon. Whoopee. A demonstration in Washington D.C. drew a whopping 166 people. On the radio, I heard a man ramble excitedly about the high turnout of teenagers at the local demonstration. What was he so excited about? At one demonstration, there were two teens out of six people. At the afternoon rally, five of the eighteen people who showed up were teens. My, Grandpa, what big numbers you don’t have.

Gateway Pundit has done a great job of tallying up the lackluster response around the globe.

Zombie has a photo shoot of the Global Day of Action rally in San Francisco held on March 18, 2006. From her vantage point, it appears the Saturday rally had more action than today’s. But even with the larger numbers on the weekend, the overall groups were much smaller this year. Perhaps the numbers are lower because the Left heard that Susan Sarandon is going to portray Cindy Sheehan in an upcoming movie, so they stayed home to watch Entertainment Tonight and E!

There are better ways to get your message across, but for liberals every war is Vietnam and every political scandal is Watergate all over again. And so they get to relive their youth and recall past glories by going through the same silly marches.

Please. That’s so 20th century.

So the Muslim people still have their collective undies in a twist over the Danish political cartoons about Mohammed. At this point, the West should, with a collective voice, tell Islam to get over it and grow up. Instead, the West has almost unanimously caved in to the rioters. If your 3-year-old kicks and screams to get ice cream, and you give it to him, he has learned that kicking and screaming is a useful tactic to get what he wants. And you have taught him that.

These Islamic rioters are collectively behaving like a very angry and dangerous 3-year-old brat.

Still don’t believe me? Here are two images of angry Islam, courtesy of Yahoo:


Muslim protesters stage a rally against the publishing a cartoon about the Prophet Muhammad in front of New Straits Times office in Kuala Lumpur, Friday, Feb. 24, 2006. The New Straits Times provoked many Muslims groups in Malaysia by publishing the Non Sequitur strip on Monday, even though the cartoon did not show the prophet. Still, Muslim groups said it mocked Islam, and the government asked the newspaper to give reasons why it should not be punished, including shutting it down. (AP Photo/Vincent Thian)

These Malay Muslims are demonstrating over the Feb. 20, 2006 “Non Sequitur” cartoon by Wiley Miller. Since the above link will be broken in a month, I’ll describe the highly offensive cartoon that has caused these Malaysian riots. The caption reads: “Kevin finally achieves his goal to be the most feared man in the world…” The drawing is of an artist sitting on the street with a sign that reads: “Caricatures of Mohammad while you wait!”

Quelle horreur!

Why do they riot? They riot because the wimpy West has taught them that rioting gets results. How many major American newspapers have published the dozen Danish drawings to show their relative mildness to American readers? None. Neither has any major news program shown its viewers the offending cartoons. I showed the cartoons to a bunch of co-workers, and while everyone had heard about them, none had actually seen them. Thank you, media, for keeping us informed!

More Waaaah!

Pakistani Shi’ite Muslims chant slogans during a rally in Karachi February 23, 2006. Imamia Students Organisation held a rally to denounce the bombing of the Golden Mosque in Iraq and against the publication of cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad in European newspapers. (THE URDU AND ARABIC WRITING ON THE PLACARD READS DEATH TO AMERICA) REUTERS/Zahid Hussein

Why does the sign say “Down with America” in English, and “Death to America” in Urdu and Arabic? What does the U.S. have to do with Danish cartoons, or the blowing up of the Golden Mosque in Iraq? Not a blessed thing! There is no reason–there is only rage. This is why riots in Nigeria have claimed the lives of over 100 people, as offended Muslims attacked Christians (as though they had something to do with the cartoons), and the Christians retaliated.

Note to the Nigerian Christians: while your religion accepts acting in self-defense, it does not condone vengeance.

I have worked with some wonderful people who are Muslims, and we have spent many hours discussing religion in the office, but at this point I am done with Islam. Don’t talk to me about being sensitive to Muslim feelings. Don’t tell me how I need to change my life to keep from offending them. Don’t remind me of Saladin or of Islam’s golden era. As far as I can see, Islam’s shining pinnacle was reached centuries ago, and it has been going downhill ever since. Islam has jumped the shark, and the mythical moderate Muslims are doing nothing to stop their hot-headed brethren from shrieking and wailing like little brats. Get over it already and grow up! Sheesh.

As Eleanor Roosevelt said, “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” Apparently Muslims don’t need much help to feel inferior, but that’s not the West’s problem.