July 14, 2004
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[Previously by John Derbyshire: John Derbyshire Reports Fear and Loathing on Long Island and A Neocon Gatecrashes VDARE]
Three teenagers here in Long Island have been sentenced under "hate crime" laws for fire-bombing a house in which Mexican immigrants were living. Here is a story about the sentencing (Note: Newsday is the main Long Island newspaper. It has a strong left-liberal editorial line and a fawning attitude to "day laborers," i.e. illegal immigrants.) [Teens sentenced for role in firebombing By Zachary R. Dowdy, July 14, 2004]
"Although no one was killed or injured in the blaze at the home of Sergio Perez and Maria Garcia, the crime shocked and terrified many of the town`s growing numbers of Hispanic residents."— [Riverhead: Sentencings In Hate-Crime Fire New York Times] ("Growing numbers" is right: There will soon be more illegal immigrants in Farmingville than citizens. Local residents—the legal ones, I mean—are very angry about the failure of the feddle gummint to do a darn thing about this.)
Now, these teenagers are obviously low-life dimwits. The dimness of their wits, in fact, can be gauged from the fact that they were apparently not aware that while lobbing a firebomb at any house is a crime, lobbing a firebomb at a house occupied by members of a Protected Class is a super-crime, and illegal immigrants—oops, sorry, "day laborers"—are a Protected Class.
Certainly nobody should have to suffer having a Molotov cocktail lobbed through their window, and nobody should shed any tears for these three arsonists.
Yet there has been an odd gap in news coverage of the story, which I have been following since the firebombing happened a year ago. Nobody has told us whether Perez and Garcia are in this country legally.
Given the local situation, this is a point any reader of Newsday or the Times must naturally be curious about; but apparently our curiosity is deplorable, and will not be catered to by respectable news organizations.
Said the guy who was firebombed out of his home, speaking of the arsonists: "These people do not deserve to be free ... They are a threat to the community. They are a threat to all humanity." One understands the indignation here expressed by Sr. Perez; but one would be a bit more receptive to it if one knew that Sr. Perez is himself a legal resident of this country.
And as is the case with the reporting of criminals` race, one is bound to suspect that, since the newspapers did not make a point of telling us that Perez and Garcia are lawfully resident, the probability is that they are not.
John Derbyshire writes an incredible amount on all sorts of subjects for all kinds of outlets. His most recent book is Prime Obsession: Bernhard Riemann and the Greatest Unsolved Problem in Mathematics.