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‘Nobody’s Listening Anyway’

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I just spent over an hour approving comments from the day (see what happens when I travel and am away from the keys). This one from commenter Jonah R., on a Trump thread, stood out:

In my county, which has taken on far more illegal immigrants from Spanish-speaking countries than our schools and social-service institutions can handle, it’s the legal immigrants from Asia (and, to a lesser extent, legal Hispanic immigrants) who manage to embarrass the white, progressive politicians on their completely unconditional support of illegals. But your correspondent is right: these “brown,” legal immigrants who oppose illegal immigration barely exist in the media narrative.

This year our school system opened with 2,500 more students than it had back in June. (Yes, 2,500.) Kids are attending class in hastily rented trailers. Trying to put a positive spin on things, school leaders told reporters last week that overcrowded schools show that our county is a desirable place to live. They jacked up taxes a couple years ago to pay for ESL classes and gang interdiction programs.

Crime is up here. Violent crimes, including rape, have risen, and identity theft has doubled. MS13 is shaking down local businesses, most of them run by Hispanic and black entrepreneurs.

Local lawmakers want to make it possible for people to turn garages, sheds, and outbuildings into dwellings—which means 15 or 20 people (or more) could end up packed into a house and its back yard. The media reported, vaguely, that the “more diverse” areas of the county support the initiative.

The public recently discovered that our county gives our tax money to organizations that provide free legal assistance to illegal immigrants. I am literally paying to help bail criminals out of jail and to pay for lobbyists and protesters who attend pro-illegal-immigration rallies.

Just mentioning any of these facts would get me (and in a couple of cases has gotten me) branded by my white, liberal neighbors as some sort of far-right reactionary—even though I have no problem with measured, reasonable immigration, and even though I appreciate that most of the local illegals just want to escape violent, impoverished hellholes. But there’s no room for a 50-year-old white taxpayer to say, quite reasonably, “our community can’t absorb all of these people; we can’t just let everybody in; we can’t afford to let everybody in; and our elected leaders have messed it all up”…even though that would have been perfectly acceptable coming from a Democrat a couple years ago.

My county is run 100% by Democrats. Both of my senators are Democrats. Seven of my eight Congressmen are Democrats. In my state legislature, Democrats outnumber Republicans more than 2 to 1.

I’m not a white nationalist or white identitarian. I’m not opposed to a manageable infusion of new immigrants of any color or background. But at a time when centrist Democrats and mainstream Republicans are AWOL on this issue and any questioning of current policy is considered “hate,” what else can I do expect maybe, possibly consider voting for Trump? My vote won’t make a difference, and nobody’s listening anyway.

about the author

Rod Dreher is a senior editor at The American Conservative. He has written and edited for the New York Post, The Dallas Morning News, National Review, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, the Washington Times, and the Baton Rouge Advocate. Rod’s commentary has been published in The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, the Weekly Standard, Beliefnet, and Real Simple, among other publications, and he has appeared on NPR, ABC News, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, and the BBC. He lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, with his wife Julie and their three children. He has also written four books, The Little Way of Ruthie Leming, Crunchy Cons, How Dante Can Save Your Life, and The Benedict Option.

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