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Saturday, April 19, 2014
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Author Archive: Ruben Navarrette

Parenting demands responsibility

SAN DIEGO — Too many Americans refuse to take responsibility for their actions. Nothing is their fault. They never do anything wrong. They look for ways to excuse misbehavior and bad choices. When they make mistakes, they don’t admit them. They might even say they are proud of what they did — which suggests they […]

What the ‘e-word’ means to women

SAN DIEGO — The other day, I found myself wanting the perspective of a woman about a brouhaha in Washington involving a U.S. senator and the former head of the Central Intelligence Agency. So I called up an old college friend who now leads one of the largest nonprofit organizations in the country and asked […]

April 13, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged , | 1 Reply

Through the immigration looking glass

SAN DIEGO — With many issues, the more you study them, the more likely you are to understand them. But with the immigration debate, the closer you follow it, the more likely you are to go stark raving mad. This probably suits the Obama administration just fine. At this point, it’s obvious that the main […]

Lone Star lunacy continues

SAN DIEGO — Every state has its challenges. California has drought. Oklahoma has tornadoes. Colorado has forest fires. Texas has Dan Patrick. The Republican state senator intends to ride a wave of anti-Hispanic nativism straight to the lieutenant governor’s office. If this happens, Patrick will help do for Texas what former California Gov. Pete Wilson […]

Standing on principle necessary to move forward

SAN DIEGO — It’s always great to be invited. But with Latinos, things don’t get interesting until you’re “uninvited.” It has happened to me a few times. Several years ago, I agreed to speak at the annual conference of the California Association for Bilingual Education. The invitation was extended because the organizers approved of my […]

Google shows keys to mega-success

SAN DIEGO — At the height of the self-esteem movement of the 1970s, when parents and schools were busy trying to convince children they were unique and worthy of praise, the popular assumption was that the people who were most successful in life were confident and sure of themselves. If this process went a little […]

Lone Star State turns right on immigration

SAN DIEGO — Having left Dallas nine years ago, I now must watch from a distance the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party that is Texas politics. I keep doing so because, like a pot of boiling water on a stove, it is something that it is best not to turn your back on. This year, I […]

Chavez film appears incomplete

SAN DIEGO — There is excitement in the Latino community, especially among Mexican-Americans in the Southwest. One of their most beloved iconic figures is at last headed to the silver screen. More than 20 years after his death, Cesar Chavez has finally been discovered by Hollywood. It shouldn’t have taken this long, in an industry […]

Oval Office ‘spins’ on immigration

SAN DIEGO — Barack Obama’s apologists are once again tackling the immigration debate by powering up the fog machine. This month, they’re trying to divert attention from the fact that the administration will soon rack up its two millionth deportation. This dubious milestone comes courtesy of a president who shamelessly pandered to Latinos by promising […]

Americans with attitude

SAN DIEGO — As someone who is often prodded to declare my allegiance to the United States, I’m envious of a group of Americans that no longer has to put up with such demands. When it comes to identity, these folks enjoy the best of all worlds. No one questions their loyalty to this country. […]

Teen entitled to be a brat

SAN DIEGO — Mexicans have a graphic saying that should serve as a warning to today’s parents, not only south of the border but also in the United States. It loosely translates as: “If you raise crows, they’ll scratch out your eyes.” Believe it. Just ask Sean and Elizabeth Canning of Lincoln Park, N.J. Their […]

March 13, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged , | 1 Reply

Misuse of the American flag on display

SAN DIEGO — You have to be careful with flags. They’re not just harmless pieces of cloth meant to inspire patriotism and national pride. Those seemingly innocent sheets of fabric can lead to all sorts of trouble. Sometimes, that is the idea. Let’s not be naive. Flags aren’t always about simply declaring one’s love of […]

Mexican president gives a lecture we don’t need

SAN DIEGO — Stampeding recklessly into the crystal shop of U.S.-Mexico relations, Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto said recently that he is “indignant” at how his neighbor is behaving. That makes two of us. As a Mexican-American whose loyalty falls on the “American” side of the hyphen, I’m feeling a little indignant myself – about […]

March 06, 2014 | Posted in Local opinion columnists | Tagged , | 1 Reply

Pay attention to Venezuela

SAN DIEGO — Selma. Mexico City. Johannesburg. Tiananmen. Tehran. Kiev. Caracas. We’ve seen this movie before. When people are brave enough to stand up for freedom against repressive governments intent on maintaining their grip on power, the process is usually messy – and often bloody. In between ducking batons and dodging bullets, they wait to […]

March 02, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged , | 1 Reply

Mexicans’ skepticism fuels legend of ‘El Chapo’

SAN DIEGO — U.S. officials want to extradite the notorious Mexican drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, who was captured last week by Mexican marines and U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration agents. Sounds like a fine idea. The 56-year-old leader of the Sinaloa drug cartel was arrested before, in 1993, and sentenced to 20 years in […]

A cause Republicans should adopt

SAN DIEGO — I keep waiting for just one prominent Republican elected official to condemn in the strongest possible language President Obama’s horrendous record of deporting illegal immigrants. Next month, the administration is expected to reach the milestone of having deported 2 million people in just over five years. That is more than any administration […]

February 23, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged , | 3 Replies

No path toward reform

While in the midst of the immigration debate, Americans will tolerate quite a bit. They’ll put up with politicians who deceive their own constituents – Republicans telling conservatives that they’re tough on illegal immigration while softening up to please businesses, and Democrats telling liberals that they’re compassionate toward illegal immigrants while the Obama administration deports […]

Wrong debate on immigration

SAN DIEGO — Justice Sonia Sotomayor has injudiciously reignited the conversation over words used in the immigration debate just when the prospects for immigration reform in Congress are holding on by a thread. Let’s focus on what’s important. Lawmakers need to find the courage and common sense to break the impasse over immigration in a […]

Jerry Seinfeld’s bad joke

SAN DIEGO — Unlike the theme of the hit television show he helped create, the brouhaha involving Jerry Seinfeld and comedians of color is not about nothing. For me, it brings to mind a distant memory. Almost 30 years ago, in a dorm room on the Charles River, I found myself in a heated argument […]

Love thy (like-minded) neighbor

SAN DIEGO — “People don’t care about politics.” I say this all the time, in speeches, meetings and casual conversation. What I mean is that most people don’t care about politics. Especially if they don’t live in Washington, or work for the Obama administration or on Capitol Hill. And, especially if it is what political reporters […]

Immigration’s house of mirrors

SAN DIEGO — When the topic is immigration reform, Republicans can be counted on to infuriate. Before heading for an annual retreat for congressional Republicans, House Speaker John Boehner told reporters that this is the moment to tackle immigration. “This problem’s been around for at least the last 15 years. It’s been turned into a […]

Same old stall on immigration reform

SAN DIEGO — When the topic is immigration reform, liberals and Democrats always manage to disappoint. President Obama has never been serious or sincere about fighting for immigration reform beyond making a passing reference to it in a speech. In the State of the Union address, which was nearly 7,000 words long, Obama dedicated 121 […]

Wendy Davis’ choices her own

SAN DIEGO — Being a liberal means never having to be consistent. Take the idea that women should make their own choices about family and career and it is no one else’s business what they choose to do. That sounds good. I just can’t believe it’s coming from liberals who have never been particularly skilled […]

Documentary not the full picture

SAN DIEGO — Documentaries are serious business, and a new film for public television about Arizona’s regressive immigration law follows that script – for the most part. It saves the comedy for the end. At least I hope the ending was a joke. Anyone who pays attention to the immigration debate might laugh out loud. […]

January 26, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged , | 1 Reply

GOP issues a mixed message

SAN DIEGO — What are House Republicans up to? By releasing a one-page set of principles explaining how they would fix a broken immigration system, GOP lawmakers are doing one of three things – or a combination. They’re either trying to find a pragmatic solution to a vexing issue, or sending a bouquet to Hispanic […]

Missing: A little gratitude

SAN DIEGO — For illegal immigrants and those fighting for immigration reform, the world can be a dark and lonely place. You take your “wins” where you find them, and you don’t ask questions. You don’t tolerate questions from anyone else, either. So when the Democratic-controlled California Legislature approves a special bill to allow an […]

1 to watch in New Hampshire

SAN DIEGO — It’s with a chuckle that Marilinda Garcia recalls the day that her critics demanded to see her papers. Did this happen in Arizona, the state with the harsh immigration laws? No, it occurred in New Hampshire. And the demand didn’t come from conservatives who are uneasy with illegal immigrants but from liberals […]

A game-changer on immigration

Americans are so accustomed to conservatives imploding over the immigration issue that it’s a refreshing change to see liberals struggle with it as well. Of course, the left has never been one big happy family on this issue. There has always been a split between blue-collar workers who oppose legalizing the undocumented and Latinos who […]

January 12, 2014 | Posted in State, national columnists | Tagged , | 1 Reply

MSNBC’s classless acts

Mitt Romney says it’s time to move on from the controversy involving MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry and his adopted grandson. I say it’s time to turn off MSNBC. Its angry talkers take personal attacks to a new and uglier level. They offend, we recoil. Alec Baldwin was fired and Martin Bashir resigned for making crude […]

‘Duck’ outcome a victory for little guy

SAN DIEGO — The Chinese calendar says that 2013 was the Year of the Snake. But given the recent media ruckus involving a dynasty closer to home and how it all turned out, it is clear that the recently departed 2013 could have been called the Year of the Duck. You’ll recall that the A&E […]

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