Do any establishment journalists have the cojones to express any skepticism about the latest staged, emotion-tugging political stunt that advances their personal political agendas?
Today’s manipulation is brought to us via cute, cute, cute little Sofia Cruz, who may or may not be the child of illegal aliens who are working with professional political advocates. Somehow, we are to believe, the elementary-school lobbyist skipped past multiple layers of gun-toting security professionals on the Pope’s parade, and was spontaneously invited by the Pope to hand deliver her professionally-drafted, TV-magnified ‘I love daddy’ message urging amnesty for millions of illegal migrants.
The established media instantly embraced the performance, like a mother seeing her new baby.
From an AFP report:
In a flash, Sofia clambered over a metal barrier, darted out onto stately Constitution Avenue and headed straight for the pontiff — Secret Service agents be damned.
Guards nabbed her about half-way there, but the pope waved for them to bring her to him. For her trouble, she got a gentle hoist, a hug and a kiss from Pope Francis himself.
“The police wanted to move her aside, but the pope asked for his car to stop,” Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi told reporters.
As the crowd roared with surprise and excitement, Sofia slipped the pontiff her letter.
Born on US soil to Mexican parents, Sofia traveled across the country as part of a group of a dozen faithful, her father among them, from Nuestra Senora Reina de Los Angeles parish in Los Angeles.
“She handed the pope a letter asking him to support the drive to legalize undocumented migrants living in the United States,” the parish said when contacted by AFP.
The spokeswoman was unable to confirm whether her own parents were undocumented.
Britain’s Guardian newspaper later spoke to the child, who told it she had learned by heart the contents of a letter, in Spanish and English.
“I want to tell you that my heart is sad,” it quoted her as saying. “All immigrants just like my dad help feed this country. They deserve to live with dignity. They deserve to live with respect. They deserve an immigration reform.”
Why does anyone think a “Secret Service agents be damned” attitude is a good thing? Is anyone going to speak up about the injuries this child could have suffered, or the dangers of encouraging other people to think moppet mail is a good way to attract positive coverage for their agenda? Does everyone with a passionate cause get to rush the Popemobile or presidential limo with a letter now? How about the young relatives of someone killed by an illegal alien in a sanctuary city? Or a little girl asking for proper enforcement of U.S. immigration law because her daddy lost his job?
Big media doesn’t have trouble indulging the most vigorous skepticism over people who challenge its ideology and preferred narratives. Get on the wrong side of a big-time left-wing politician, and you’ll soon find yourself on the receiving end of an examination that won’t stop until they’re digging up copies of your grade-school essays. If a child carries out some political action unhelpful to the left, we’ll probably know everything there is to know about their parents, grandparents, aunts, and uncles by the following morning.
But when someone acts in support of a narrative the media likes, they ask no further questions, and those who do are not greeted warmly. We saw this most recently in the story of Ahmed the Clock-Maker, who instantly became a global celebrity and Democrat Party human prop without the most elementary questions being asked about the useless and dangerous device that looked like a a hoax-bomb, or his family’s history of activism, or how the local authorities were being made to look awful by the parents’ choice to bottle up the school’s information. Not a single peek was allowed behind the curtain of that performance until political points had been scored, and the narrative was set.
It’s funny how skepticism is treated like thoughtcrime when it should be the default posture toward nearly every story. It’s another example of how emotion trumps reason in politics. Emotion says you don’t ask any questions about big moments involving children, even if you suspect they have been manipulated. Emotion says some arguments are accepted without question, while others are discarded without consideration.
In this case, I suspect many people think it is rude to even ask if there are any questions to be asked… even though migration policies affecting millions of people, and costing billions of dollars, are at issue.
Even if we set aside all skepticism of the incident itself and take all of the details at face value, this is still a story about emotion trumping reason.
Pope Francis is not a member of the United States Congress, and therefore has no authority over American immigration law. Open borders are not a moral imperative for any nation anywhere. No country is morally required to forgive the willful violation of its clear laws. No illegal alien entered the United States by accident.
All immigrants do not, as a matter of objective fact, “help feed this country.” The citizens of Mexico do indeed deserve to live with dignity and respect… in Mexico. The people of the United States are not in any way responsible for the failure of the Mexican legal, political, and economic system to provide such dignity and respect. It is completely impossible to relocate every Mexican, much less every resident of the southern hemisphere, who isn’t living with the dignity and respect they deserve to the United States.
At some point, even under the most generous migration policies, it is necessary to say “no” to a large number of people who want to live here. Many of those people will have adorable little girls — just as do many of the Americans now in jail for violating criminal laws.
The Pope knows that immigration policies must have clear limits because the Vatican’s tiny city-state already has one of the most restrictive set of immigration policies in the world, even as United States has by far the most generous legal immigration policies.
If there’s one thing that our experiences, and lately the travails of Europe, clearly demonstrate, it’s that permissive open-borders policies lead to huge migratory waves. They tend to be dangerous. Remember how the media didn’t want to show the pictures of children flung across the U.S. border and kept in unpleasant detention facilities after Barack Obama’s last amnesty giveaway? Remember the little Syrian boy who drowned in the Mediterranean because a vast wave of people came scrambling to Europe, by every available means, to get across their open borders? Would you care to peruse some photos of the children currently trapped in squalid camps along European borders because the EU realized it cannot make good on the reckless promises of German Chancellor Angela Merkel?
Madcap open-borders immigration policies are cruel to children. They all boil down to promises the host country cannot keep, and they dissolve the forces of change necessary to make the countries of origin get better for the children who remain behind.
There is no aspect of the immigration debate improved by emotional manipulation, heart-tugging anecdotes, or camera-ready stunts. The scale of the issue, and its importance to the rule of law, are too great to warrant anything but the most deliberate reason, with proper respect for the rights of those who don’t get small children into big photo opportunities.
Law is a heartless topic, more often than not, even when people get emotional about the issues of the day. Pleading for generosity, charity, and indulgence is a matter of the heart, but arranging it with all due respect for the government’s obligations to all of its citizens is very much an exercise of the mind.
Update: Sure enough, it turns out the whole thing was staged by an activist group that spent a year preparing its photogenic young emissary to rush the Pope with her message. They planned to try again in New York and Philadelphia if she didn’t get to the Pope in D.C. The same group staged a similar scene in Rome last year with a different, slightly older child.