Fast and loose Colorado Springs blogger and occasional Fox News pundit Michelle Malkin blasted the DREAM Act in a speech at the University of Texas-Austin Tuesday, calling undocumented students there looking to benefit from the law narcissists and incompetents. She characterized the widely supported onetime bipartisan proposal a Trojan horse that would bring on massive amnesty. She has written elsewhere in favor of deportations and internment of undocumented residents and has defended the round-up and internment in camps of Japanese Americans during World War II.
“You know, based on their debate skills,” she said about the UT undocumented students asking her questions at the talk. “I am not sure how much they even have to contribute to this country. And you can quote me on that.”
“There is enough multiculturalism on campuses anyway,” she added, saying the DREAM Act debate only “inflate[d] it and encourage[d] grievances.”
The DREAM Act, which suffered a major setback Tuesday, would grant citizenship to illegal immigrants brought to the country as children and raised in the U.S., provided they attain a certain level of education or serve in the military. The proposal began as a Republican plan and is supported by Democrats and the military but, in the year of the Tea Party and in the wake of the controversy over the Arizona immigration law passed this year, leaders on the right have lined up against passage. The views of rhetorical bomb throwers like Malkin have rushed into the vacuum left by Republican leaders who, in the eyes of many longtime DREAM Act observers, have seemed to only backpedal and offer half-baked arguments for their opposition.
The Texas Independent’s Mary Tuma reports that the Austin event was coordinated by the UT College Republicans. Malkin, she writes, skewered the Obama administration, giving the audience a taste of her latest book, Culture of Corruption: Obama and His Team of Tax Cheats, Crooks, and Cronies, before moving into a tirade against the DREAM Act. Tuma describes the exchange with the students:
When asked by an undocumented immigrant what solutions she had for him post graduation, she responded by telling him to “get in the back of the line.”
“I want to give back to this great country by working and paying taxes after I graduate college,” said Him Ranjit, a biomedical engineering sophomore originally from Nepal. “The DREAM Act is my only opportunity to do that. What would you suggest for me?”
Malkin retorted that he had not been denied a college education; immigration enforcement was not after him; and due to an “ill-advised quirk in tax law,” he would be able to pay his taxes. There were much more important things, said Malkin, than having him be comfortable, get legal and give back.
“I would rather expend limited resources deporting [illegal immigrants already identified as such by authorities] and then we’ll get to you. You ought to wait,” said Malkin. “This is the thing with so many activists that are coming out now. There is a narcissism bred by the left on campuses. It’s all about me, me, me. You get your education; I am not bothering you; and guess what? There is no ICE agent chasing you down right now.”
Tuma reports that Malkin said she wasn’t being racist and pointed to her Filipino heritage to firm up her case. She said she sees the undocumented young people raised in America as a drain on resources and that, in effect, instead of bringing them in as full contributing citizens, the country should cut its losses.
“I think many of the DREAM activists labor under the illusion that it is not a zero-sum game — it is. There are scarce resources and if the Act is passed, you will get in the front of the line of people who are here legally. I don’t think that’s right and I don’t think that’s fair,” said Malkin, eliciting a rupture of applause from the audience.
The lecture comes a day after a group of college students and community activists staged a protest sit-in at the office of U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison in San Antonio. The 16 activists, who were also on a three-week hunger strike in support of the Act, spent the night in jail on trespassing charges.
Earlier during her lecture Malkin gave an impassioned speech recounting instances of “liberal racism,” concluding people should never dehumanize or marginalize those with whom they disagree.