Dome Infestation

It's hard to know whether Ryan Beckwith is enjoying his new-found popularity, but for those who are interested, Under the Dome is now officially infested with denizens of the rabid right. In response to Martin Lancaster's call to allow enrollment of illegal immigrants in community colleges (he's the President of the Community College system), the bottom has fallen out of the xenophobic barrel. And in case you think I'm throwing that word around lightly, take time to read the comments for yourself. The Old North State is one sad and ugly place.

In the past, I've had the practice of checking out the Dome regularly. No more. The wingnuts can have the place all to themselves.


Oh yeah....the nasties come out of the woodwork

to comment at the CharO as well. I just don't read. I break out in hives.

Robin Hayes lied. Nobody died, but thousands of folks lost their jobs.

Vote Democratic! The ass you save may be your own.

good for Lancaster

His comments provide the clearest justification I've read by a serving state official for the community college policy.

I'd wondered why I was suddenly receiving a rash of emails from the organized anti-immigrant forces railing about Lancaster as well as Easley.

FYI, here's my response to the Progressive Democrats of NC survey question on immigration:
Nationally, our system for immigration and enforcement of immigration laws is in great need of an overhaul. The current system is not working well, with adverse consequences both economic and humanitarian. In part, the current problems result from a drastic decline in workplace enforcement of immigration laws during the early years of the Bush Administration. Predictably, as work-site inspections and prosecutions declined, the number of workplace violations soared. That is key to our current situation, because the great majority of immigrants who have come to or stayed in our country illegally are in effect economic refugees. They are here to find jobs that they could not find in their home nations. This basic problem must be addressed at the national level through comprehensive immigration reform legislation. That comprehensive legislation must include an earned path to citizenship opportunity for undocumented immigrants here now. Regardless of the heated political rhetoric dominating public debate on the topic, the only alternative to providing a path to earned citizenship is the unacceptable creation of a permanent criminal underclass of those branded as "illegal aliens". Mass deportation of 12 to 14 (or more) million individuals is nothing but a dark fantasy of the radical right. It is not a realistic possibility. Both humanitarian and responsible business leaders understand this.
Most of the leaders of the political right must understand this reality as well. Regardless, they are cheerfully willing to use this issue to gain short-term political advantage by inflaming nativist bigotry, and driving political wedges between recent immigrants and native-born citizens, especially those who are themselves under economic stress.
While pressing for national comprehensive reform, I understand too the necessity to deal on a humane basis with the great numbers of undocumented immigrants in our state today. We must work to lower the heat level of political rhetoric on this topic and call our people to rational conversation. We must also remind the public that demagoguery on this topic produces not just results that are inhumane to the immigrants themselves. Driving people further underground also makes general criminal investigation and enforcement, immunizations and other public health measures, and strengthening of economic opportunity for all more difficult.
This will continue to be a challenging issue. Candidates who stand for realistic approaches and humanitarian treatment of immigrants may well lose some votes as a result, in the short run. It's still the morally imperative thing to do.

Dan Besse
Democrat for Lieutenant Governor

Dan Besse

the post itself isn't unfair

A quick skim of the comments makes it clear that someone sent out a "calling all trolls" request, but the blog post itself seemed fair.

The Dome should go through and remove those comments that are openly calling for racial violence, and using dehumanizing terms, but beyond that what can they do?

Me personally, I'd rather hate be out in the open, where it can be recognized and confronted.

- - - - -
Thomas Jefferson said you always get the rulers you deserve.

I agree, Jerimee.

I'd rather see who and what we're dealing with in this state, as distasteful and disgusting as it may be.

Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi

Congratulations, Anglico

Apparently you are a traitor - at least on the Dome.

You must be doing something right if those morons called you that. :)

Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi

Thanks for the link, Graig.

Lancaster's full statement is near perfect. I don't like the word "aliens" when used in conjunction with human beings, but I'm probably being too PC.

How did your radio appearance go? (it was you who was going to do that, wasn't it?)

Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi

Thanks for asking!

It actually went better than I thought it would. It was short, about four minutes. The host, Greg Knapp, actually said that he doesn't think it's fair to punish kids for their parents decisions. I got my opening to attack his rhetoric when he asked wouldn't this just bring more illegals here. No, I replied, because the families I work with who are already here don't even know anything about our community college system. So there's no way a family in Mexico is thinking "Hey, if I move to North Carolina my six year old will be able to go to community college in 12 years!" They just want to come make some money.


Let's not abandon the Dome. They're good guys, and they can't help it if the cretins outnumber the sages. I have to admit that I experienced the same sense of repulsion when I read those responses, too, and that I've been sufficiently discouraged by the predominance of right-wing commentary on the blog hosted by Gary Pearce and Carter Wrenn that I avoided it for a while. But it goes back to my rationale for living in NC (while my siblings are all in Los Angeles and San Francisco), which is that liberals are NEEDED here.

Of course we don't do much good if our voices aren't heard, so we can't abandon the Dome or even a blog that is hosted in part by Carter Wrenn.

By the way, a belated Happy Anniversary to you and Jane.

All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing
-Edmund Burke

Long-term confusion

I have always been confounded when confronted with a certain mindset. There is a group of people who believ that any benefit given to another group of people is something taken away from them. For the life of me, I cannot understand how education one person hurts another person who has never met them. I think it is a mindset fed by the Rush Limbaugh's of this world. It tells people that everyone is out to get them and they believe it.

All I can think when reading those comments is that I cannot even enter that fray, because I don't understand the argument.

Somehow I missed that one...

...someone sent out a "calling all trolls" request...

It must have gone into my "bulk" folder, or something.

I have mixed thoughts on this issue. While I agree that immigration reform is desperately needed considering the overwhelming influx of "non-citizens" (perhaps that is a moniker we can all accept), I do not agree with: 1. kicking them all out now that they are here, or 2. granting them automatic citizenship ahead of others who have been attempting to receive citizenship according to the rules already in place.

One thing I do believe: the children of illegal immigrants should not be penalized for their parents' actions any more than children of other criminals should be penalized for their parents' choices.

What I have not settled on is an acceptable solution.

I mostly agree with you.

. . . mostly. "Non-citizens" doesn't quite work, because there are many residents who are not citizens who have followed established protocols and laws and are here legally - you can't lump undocumented residents here with them; even I admit that's not fair.

I don't think there are many who would want to grant "citizenship" status - however, I would give credit for years of lawful residency (after the initial illegal entry) to count towards legal residency (green card, etc.) I would also have a different standard for children who were brought here not of their own volition but because their parents came here. They had no choice in the matter - let's give them the benefit of the doubt and let them contribute to our society. :)

Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi

I am not that satisfied with "non-citizens" either...

After all, they are citizens somewhere. And it is witnessing first hand the frustrations of friends and family members who are from other countries that have contributed to my views on this issue. I have no problems with immigration; to me, sealing the borders is akin to rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.

While I eschew political cliches, in this instance it really is "for the children." Again, the question is raised: "What to do?"

It is easy to say what not to do, but please offer a viable, sensible and workable solution. (It is the lack of focus on and proposal of solutions that is leading to my growing disenchantment with politics.)

As an aside, this is where I agree with Newt Gingrich's statement-

We don't really have [political] debates today; we have a kind of meaningless political performance art: a recitation of talking points choreographed to avoid any risk.

(Taken from NG's LA Times editorial Debates that Say Something)


I generally avoid Newt Gingrich. :) But in many ways, this is an issue we have to take some risks with, because it is about children - a generation of people growing up in this country completely in the shadows. I'm actually very glad that NC's community college system is taking this risk, as unpopular as it is in many circles and I'm glad that Gov. Easley took a leadership role and asserted the humanity of this issue.

Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi


they're looking for the threads with "immigration" in the title.

Be the change you wish to see in the world. --Gandhi

Origin of the specious

All that crap at the Dome originated at the ALIPAC discussion group

Thanks, Greg

Sort of like locusts, only not as attractive.

Same thing happens on Asheville Citizen-Times

comments. It's unbelievable. I guess now we know why lots of newspapers cater to the right. They've been getting these comments on the phone and in snail mail for years and they're terrified. They know the rapid left isn't going to come after them with AK-47s and pipe bombs so they don't need to care what we think.
News of the 10th district: See Pat Go Bye Bye,

ALIPAC is a "riot"

American's for Legal Immigration PAC is a Federal PAC but you'd be hard pressed to find a candidate it has contributed to.

ALIPAC fundraising has the same M.O. as Vernon Robinson's campaign. Some of the same contributor names pop up including retirees and one woman in particular.

Much of the money goes to Gheen's expenses and salary. In 2005 he gave himself $500 per month. In 2006 he upped it to $3,000 per month. In 2007 he's been giving himself $3,500.

My favorite disbursement is this to a Raleigh bar for "Food for protest rioters"

You're such a democrat.

The have's and have more's really know how to do a riot right. They even have hired bartenders to mix their molotov cocktails.

Person County Democrats

I actively oppose gerrymandering. Do you?

Wrong riots

Damn, I have been going to the wrong protests. The ones I go to are normally "catered" by Food Not Bombs.

"jump in where you can and hang on"
Briscoe Darling to Sheriff Andy