Uninformed political observers delude themselves into thinking that these sentiments are relegated to the fringe. But the core concepts of reconquista (the "re-conquest" of the Southwest by Mexico) have spread wide and deep-from San Francisco to Los Angeles to Milwaukee to Arkansas and beyond. In Denver, a large banner read: "AMERICA IS A CONTINENT NOT A COUNTRY." In Albuquerque, Latino activists held up a provocative sign asking aloud: "Manifest Destiny?"
On the Sean Hannity radio show Monday, I debated (or rather listened to five minutes of screeching by) a young member of the radical group MeCha. A student at the University of San Francisco, she denied that her group still subscribed to 1960s identity politics, then promptly delivered a full-throated rant about Mexico's right to reclaim American territory: "We believe that we have the right to be in this land…Aztlan is California! Aztlan is this country! This country was ours…We didn't cross the borders. The borders crossed us…This country is based on exploitation!"
On NPR's "All Things Considered," Gloria Ramirez Vargas, a politician in Baja, Calif., rallied her constituents with a similar cry: " Many Mexicans are nourishing the ground in the U.S. , but those lands were once ours. Those same lands, which now with intelligence, with love and with a lot of work, we are re-conquering again for our Mexico."
On leading conservative talk show station KFI in Los Angeles, hosts John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou interviewed Tony Valdez, who also invoked "manifest destiny" as a rationale for supporting the sabotage of our immigration laws. He pontificated about 1846, recycled the "We didn't cross the borders" nonsense, inveighed against the war in Iraq, and exclaimed: "You took this country. You killed people in order to take this country for yourselves."
Valdez is a FOX News 11 reporter at KTTV in L.A.
In Seattle, photojournalist Byron Dazey of CreativeFlashes.com snapped hundreds of pictures of extremist left-wing claptrap. "Open the Borders" screamed a giant banner. "No more blood! No more borders!" echoed another placard. "Stop the War! Stop the Borders!" preaches a sign carried by a "Freedom Socialist Worker." Other protesters displayed a rambling, illiterate message scrawled on a giant blue tarp:
"To the diplomats in Arizona talking of illegal deal, why R U so hipocratics (sic) when we know that almost ½ of what it was Mexico, was bought illegally by the US . Santa Ana was a conquestee from France, he was not the president of Mexico or Mexican. 1845-1847 we were fighting our own independence with their own people and also fighting the French. The US took advantage N offered Santa Ana money for the Mexicans land. Do U call this legal?"
Dazey wrote me: "The best line from a speaker…was the one where she screamed: 'They can't deport you from the land that they stole from you!' The crowd cheered wildly, of course."
Our borders are sieves. We are at war with Islamofascism. And these seething demonstrators are still griping about the Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo while our government prepares to grant a massive amnesty at Mexican President Vicente Fox's behest. Hello?
While left-wing socialists and anti-war Bush-bashers are indeed helping coordinate the open borders movement, it is a foolish, patronizing mistake to characterize the reconquistadores as hapless pawns of the American Left. The homegrown multiculti-mau-mau-ers know exactly what they believe and the know exactly what they are doing. They aim to mainstream the "Stolen Land" mantra and pervert history. They aim to obliterate America's borders by sheer demographic and political force.