Gibson suspicious that Hispanic-American advocacy groups are set on "retaking old Mexico territories ... by pure birth rate"

››› ››› BEN ARMBRUSTER

While saying that he was citing an internal e-mail from The National Council of La Raza (NCLR), Fox News' John Gibson claimed he was suspicious that "open immigration groups" like the NCLR favor "the so-called reconquista," which Gibson described as the "retaking of old Mexico territories, which are now part of the United States, by pure birth rate." Gibson also asserted that the NCLR "is a group dedicated to the betterment of the race," adding, "good, but try being American while you are at it, guys."

While saying that he was citing an internal e-mail from The National Council of La Raza (NCLR) during the "My Word" segment on the April 3 edition of Fox News' The Big Story, host John Gibson claimed he was suspicious that "open immigration groups" like the NCLR favor "the so-called reconquista," which Gibson described as the "retaking of old Mexico territories, which are now part of the United States, by pure birth rate." Gibson also asserted that the NCLR, which describes itself as "the largest national Latino civil rights and advocacy organization in the United States," "is a group dedicated to the betterment of the race," adding, "good, but try being American while you are at it, guys."

As Media Matters for America has noted (here and here), in recent weeks, conservative media figures and pundits have attempted to link protestors of a recent immigration bill passed by the U.S. House of Representatives with advocates of the theory that "the American Southwest belongs to Mexico," or reconquista. Reconquista is a term associated with El Plan Espiritual de Aztlán, the founding document of the Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlan (Chicano Student Movement of Aztalan, or MEChA), a group with affiliates at numerous college campuses and several high schools that claims to work toward "improving the social and political situation of the Chicano/Latino community."

Media Matters also noted that according to a March 30 column by Alex Koppleman, a columnist for Drexel University's biweekly online magazine Dragonfire, reconquista is now a concept promoted more by "white supremacists and neo-Nazis" than by Mexicans or Mexican-Americans.

From the April 3 edition of Fox News' The Big Story with John Gibson:

GIBSON: Reading about a memo or an e-mail from a group called la Raza, I'm also convinced there are some Hispanic political groups who think assimilation is a bad idea, and they actively lobby to keep Mexican-Americans more Mexican than American. This story has been reported in the Richmond Times Dispatch among others. It talks about an e-mail from la Raza on a specific piece of proposed legislation, which would give immigrants English classes and permit those who demonstrate English proficiency to apply for citizenship a year earlier than others and it would give immigrants classes on civics and U.S. history, which of course they need to pass citizenship tests.

The la Raza e-mail warns that, quote, "While the bill doesn't overtly mention assimilation, it is very strong on patriotism and traditional American values language in a way that is potentially dangerous to our communities," close quote.

Potentially dangerous? Patriotism and traditional American values are bad things? I think this kind of discussion by a major Hispanic political organization like la Raza casts a lot of suspicion about what open immigration groups are up to. There has been much discussion -- much discussion about the so-called reconquista, which is the retaking of old Mexico territories, which are now part of the United States, by pure birth rate.

We hear people say we are going to take it back and eventually -- that will eventually color the immigration debate in the way that Mexican-Americans and Hispanic immigrants will not want. La Raza is a group dedicated to the betterment of the race; good, but try being American while you are at it, guys. Eleven million people say they want to be Americans, they want to stay here, they want to be legal. Fine, just be Americans, learn the language so you can deal with the rest of us while you maintain your identity and your language and assimilate into American culture. That's how you make yourself welcome.

Posted In
Immigration, Immigration Myths
Network/Outlet
Fox News Channel
Person
John Gibson
Show/Publication
The Big Story with John Gibson
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