Thursday, May 4, 2006

Herald-Times steps over the line

The Herald-Times claims that the policy of the paper is to strive for accuracy. They often miss the mark through laziness, incompetence or bias. We saw this a couple years ago when H-T columnist Mike Leonard intentionally distorted Congressman John Hostettler's voting record on the Federal Marriage Amendment.

Well, the area's main "newspaper" has done it again. The Herald-Times claimed that "Hostettler apparently wants to punish those who took part in Monday's boycott." The H-T further claimed that "Hostettler's idea would turn the legitimate, Constitution-given right to peaceably assemble into an excuse for punishing businesses and workers."

As I have often done here at, I will sift through the spin and dishonesty coming out 1900 South Walnut and present the truth.

Hostettler did in fact call for businesses that closed for Monday's boycott to be investigated. That was not about punishing anyone for engaging in First Amendment activity. If a business closes because it expects to be without workers on a day illegal immigrants are boycotting, does that not raise reasonable suspicion that there might be illegal immigrants working there?

Yes, the H-T is correct that not everyone who participated in the boycott is an illegal immigrant. However, much of the motivation for the boycott is with regard to how illegal immigrants are treated and proposed legislation targeting illegal immigrants. Many of the people who participated in the boycott are illegal immigrants. Hostettler believes that law enforcement should act to enforce the law when there is reasonable suspicion that people are committing illegal acts. I agree with him.

The Herald-Times is trying to play both sides of the issue. They pretend to support efforts to "tighten up enforcement of the law", but when a proposal comes forth to actually do it, they start whining and crying about "free speech". Unfortunately for the H-T, their editorial is as transparent as a newly-washed window.