Pass the margaritas: victory and a note of caution

Latinos around the country are celebrating Lou Dobbs’s announcement earlier this month that he is leaving CNN -- this following an unprecedented international campaign to get him off the air.

For years Dobbs has used his platform to skew facts about Latinos and immigrants -- hate speech masquerading as journalism. For example, Dobbs had long insisted that undocumented immigrants make up a third of the United States prison population, a claim he eventually admitted was not factual. He has asserted falsely that immigrants are carriers of malaria and leprosy -- still more proof that Mexico is an enemy of the United States, he has said.

Worse, Dobbs has been open in his support of FAIR, the Federation for Immigration Reform which was founded by white nationalist John Tanton and which the Southern Poverty Law Center designated as a “hate group.” And he has expressed his admiration for the so-called Minutemen, armed U.S. citizens who congregate near the U.S.-Mexico border in search of immigrants. (A faction of the Minutemen has been charged with the May killing of 9-yeart-old Brisenia Flores and her father, residents of the border town of Arivaca, Ariz..)

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While celebration is in order, it’s critical that we continue to monitor Dobbs (who still has a radio program and is said to be moving to FOX News) and the many who share his world view. Hatred has real life consequences: Hate crimes against Latinos has risen by 40 percent since 2003. And that, Mr. Dobbs, is a fact.


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