You Want Smoking Gun Proof That The Mainstream News Media Is Promoting Illegal Immigration And Intentionally Deceiving The Public To do It? Here It Is!

Observe. The headline above was the one first published by the Washington Post. Note the absence of the word “Illegal” before “immigrants.” The fact is that immigrants have nothing to fear about using food stamps. The headline is fake news–it’s false. It is literally untrue. (The story does suggest that some legal immigrants may be avoiding food stamps out of ignorance, but no evidence is presented to show it.)

That’s not the only thing wrong with the headline, and the story beneath it. This is more “poor, abused illegal immigrant” propaganda. How terrible it is that people living in this country illegally after breaching our borders and immigration laws have to fear being held accountable for living in this country illegally after breaching our borders and immigration laws! The outrage!

A nation of laws enforces its laws.  Not enforcing them so as to encourage law breaking is the real outrage.

The Washington Post wasn’t troubled by any of that, though. What caused the paper to change the headline was that highlighting the use of taxpayer funds to pay for food stamps to benefit people who have no right to be in the U.S. might, you know, sort of undermine the intended message of the article, which is to create sympathy for illegal immigrants while seeding opposition to the Trump administration.  Can’t have that. So the headline was changed to this…

If you think this is good, ethical, responsible journalism, you are hopeless.

The story itself is confusing, in part because of the intentionally confounding “immigrant/illegal immigrant” word games played by the news media. We learn, for example, that

“Undocumented immigrants are never eligible for food stamps, though they may live in a “mixed eligibility” household that does receive them. For instance, it’s not uncommon for undocumented parents to apply for assistance on behalf of their citizen children.”

…who, it should be noted but isn’t, shouldn’t be here either. So legal children of illegal immigrants are going hungry because their illegal parents are avoiding the consequences of breaking our laws? That’s their fault and responsibility, not Donald Trump’s. [ As Glenn Logan’s comment below notes, the original of this post contained an erroneous reference to the Department of Agriculture’s food stamp policies. I regret the mistake, and thank Glenn for flagging it.]

It is episodes like this that make me wonder if those who deny that there is a leftward bias in the media just believe that these muddled and unethical attitudes are objectively correct. Of course a citizen of another country should be able to avoid the legal immigration process, enter the U.S. illegally  and receive taxpayer-funded benefits without fear of negative consequences of any kind! What’s the problem?

How did such an illogical and destructive concept take root? I don’t know, but journalists who actively misrepresent the issue are a large part of the answer.

__________________________

Pointer: Twitchy

35 Comments

Filed under "bias makes you stupid", Ethics Alarms Award Nominee, Ethics Train Wrecks, Government & Politics, Journalism & Media, Law & Law Enforcement, This Helps Explain Why Trump Is President, U.S. Society

35 responses to “You Want Smoking Gun Proof That The Mainstream News Media Is Promoting Illegal Immigration And Intentionally Deceiving The Public To do It? Here It Is!

  1. Neil Dorr

    Jack,

    Point of clarification. When you say: “…who, it should be noted but isn’t, shouldn’t be here either.” of whom are you speaking? The anchor babies/dreamers? If so, I’m confused.

    Allowing anyone born within our borders to have citizenship may not be the best policy (which is why so many countries have done away with it or never adopted it) but it is the rule nonetheless. Thus, why shouldn’t children legally-born in the United States be here or allowed to stay? Or are you talking about another group altogether? Please advise.

    • James MacKenzie

      The children may be citizens, but it does not follow that their lawbreaking parents should be allowed to remain in the country. The parents are free to make whatever arrangements for child care they deem best for their family. That may involve the children going back to their homeland with their parent, or remaining in the United States in the care of another guardian. The child’s citizenship should not give their parents carte blanche to ignore our laws.

    • It’s pretty obvious. If the illegal parents didn’t break the law, the kids wouldn’t have been born here (citizens) or dragged here (the “dreamers.”) They shouldn’t be here means “if the laws weren’t broken, they wouldn’t be. Hence, since laws should be broken, they shouldn’t be.”

    • Matthew B

      The United States is one of the few countries with birthright citizenship. Canada has eliminated theirs, now only legal residents’ children get birthright citizenship.

      Congress has the authority to set the rules on citizenship. We could have the same rule.

      • Matthew B

        After posting that, I had doubts do I did some digging. Nope, after the 14th amendment it is now in the Constitution.

  2. Neil Dorr

    I misspoke. The two made-up words I used “anchor baby” and “dreamer” are not synonymous. My mistake.

  3. Other Bill

    Here’s one of my favorite Washington Post headlines on one of my favorite stories that’s being warp beyond recognition by the media:

    “17 migrants crossing into Canada rescued in blizzard, as mounting numbers desperately flee U.S.”

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2017/03/09/17-migrants-crossing-into-canada-rescued-in-blizzard-as-mounting-numbers-desperately-flee-u-s/?utm_term=.51432674a44e

    Is the fact illegal immigrants are fleeing to Canada a bad thing?

  4. I haven’t been here in a bit (life gets in the way sometimes), but I somehow missed the smoking gun, or the falseness of the headline. The fact that they left out the word “illegal” in the headline does not make it a false, or fake, headline or news. It does make it deceptive when you have to question the intention of leaving it that way. But this is in no way fake news. I really think that term is getting thrown about WAY too much lately, by both sides of the political spectrum.

    I would also think that american citizen children (I don’t really agree with that policy myself either, but it is the policy) going hungry is a societal problem. Not just their parents. I don’t want an illegal to be getting benefits. They made their choice to come here that way, and should not be given any types of benefits to make their life easier for it. But their children who were born here are citizens of this country, and should be protected and helped as much as any other citizen.

    Is much of the media skewed to the left, of course it is! They’re a business as well as media, and will give favorable reporting to the people who buy their papers and watch their news (and help get the advertising dollars). Media that derives from local papers even more so. But this is not fake news, it’s a deceptive headline, with a story that is slanted toward a policy that you (and I as well for the most part) do not agree with.

    • Using “immigrants,” whom nobody is deporting, when the story is about illegal immigrants, is fake news. The facts as conveyed are false. It is intended to deceive. Why would you not call this fake news? I’ve gone around and around with Charles Green on this. When supposedly legitimate news organizations falsify stories. they are much more believable than social media rumors from Lithuanian teenagers. Or should be. The story is properly about illegal immigrants, and is represented about the opposite. How much more fake can you get? If fake news doesn’t mean “news that isn’t true,” what does it mean? And this isn’t a “mistake.”

      • Because it’s not false. They are immigrants, they’re illegal immigrants in specific, but they ARE immigrants. Logically the headline is accurate. If they had said “ALL immigrants”, then it would be fake and false, because it would not apply to the legal immigrants. It’s not represented to be about legal immigrants, unless WE read into it and assume it is. That is on us, as much as it is on the news publication. But logically structured, that is an accurate headline.

        I would say it’s deceptive certainly, but not false. Are they relying on their readers to not note a difference? Maybe, we don’t know.

        By another other line of thinking, I could read into it that headline that they are saying every single immigrant in the country is going hungry if I want, because it just says immigrants. So I could take it to mean immigrants, in the all inclusive plural, and not that it’s just some immigrants.

        • Steve: it cannot be accurate and deceptive, and not be called false. You have defined deceit. Deceit is a lie, using facts. The story is meant to be about illegal immigrants, and that adjective is material.

          • I’m just assuming that it’s deceit. I feel it’s deceptive, because I have a bias to the story as well (in that I think illegals shouldn’t be here). I’m placing my own bias into the reading of that story. But of course it can be both. It’s deceptive in that they might not put all the information in there, or it may be written in a way that doesn’t define how we feel it should be written. The information is not WRONG, it’s just put in a certain way that can be interpreted differently. Almost every news article has some kind of opinion orientation to it (just look at the types of adjectives used). It gives a slant, or a deceit, or something to it. Not every article will, or can, have every piece of information in it. This is something that we feel should be in (that is that it effects illegals), but the lack of it does not make it wrong. Maybe I have too much logic theory involved, but in a logical And/OR structure, the headline is correct. There are immigrants who the headline is correct to. It’s not all immigrants, but the fact it’s only to some of them doesn’t make it incorrect.

            If I go back to a report, or blog post, that says something like “Media showing their Anti-Trump bias”. That would be a factual statement. Of course, it’s not ALL media who do it. There are some media outlets that or generally neutral. There are some that are Pro-Trump. That doesn’t mean that the headline is fake news. Just because it didn’t specifically say “Some specific Liberal Media organizations are showing their Anti-Trump bias”

            • It’s only accurate and not misleading if it’s substantially correct. But that statement isn’t like substituting immigrants for illegal immigrants, since te vast majority of the “media” IS showing anti-Trump bias. However, the vast majority of immigrants, by the facts asserted in the story below it, are NOT refusing to take food stamps. Deceit. The story only cab be justified if one accepts the premise that illegal immigrants and immigrants are the same thing. They aren’t. But “media” and “mainstream media” are close enough for a headline. No intended deception can be fairly inferred.

              • This is all because, you know, a single word that is very clear, “illegals” has been declared politically incorrect. So the headline prefers confusion and ideological lockstep over clarity. Mustn’t dehumanize the illegals.

                • Chris

                  How is the word “illegals” abundantly clear? Does it describe every single person who commits an illegal act? Are murderers, shoplifters and jaywalkers alike “illegals?”

                  No, this word won’t do. “Illegal immigrants” is clear, and progressives who object are kidding themselves. But “illegals” as a noun is dehumanizing.

        • Joe Fowler

          Steve, this argument can be made then, assuming we substitute “Humans” for “Immigrants” in the first headline?
          – They are humans, they’re illegal immigrants in specific, but they ARE humans. Logically the headline is accurate. If they had said “ALL humans”, then it would be fake and false, because it would not apply to the legal residents (humans).-

    • Mrs. Q

      “it’s a deceptive headline, with a story that is slanted toward a policy.”

      How is that NOT fake news? Have our standards for media accuracy & accountability gone so downhill that propaganda & deception are acceptable as news? Fake news has been around since Hearst if not before. The only difference today is the bias regarding politics is nearly transparent and good people like you Steven are apparently willing to accept it.

  5. Other Bill

    “a deceptive headline, with a story that is slanted toward a policy”

    This is why I much prefer “propaganda” to the sloppy term “fake news.”

    • Chris marschner

      I agree with you OB.

      • Other Bill

        Thanks Chris m. I think the term “fake news” is very suspect and simply clouds any discussion. It’s lefty misdirection. We end up talking about what “fake news” is or isn’t rather than what’s really being foisted upon us, which is propaganda.

        • But propaganda doesn’t relate to journalism; It relates to politics.Nor is all fake news, as practiced by the MSM, truly propaganda. It is deception, obfuscation, indoctrination, fog-throwing, ad hominem, and sometimes outright fiction, without any clear purpose, dictated by bias.. The news media’s job is news. When it’s news is really half-news, false news, misleading news, manipulated news, then it’s not news at all.

          And, of course, the other reason to use the term fake news is because the MSM invented it to take the heat off of its biased and incompetent campaign coverage. They built the petard.

          • Wayne

            Why don’t we just pass a new amendment to the Constitution making the requirement for citizenship by descent from a US parent who is a citizen (jus sanguinis) or through naturalization? That would end the fake news of “immigrants” starving though lack of access to food stamps.

            • Glenn Logan

              Great idea. Sadly, amendments are very hard.

              If you can’t get qualified judges through congress except by eliminating the filibuster (no matter who’s in control), how would it be possible to get a constitutional amendment, which requires two thirds of both houses just to get to the state legislatures or a Constitutional Convention called by two thirds of the state legislatures, to ever happen on such a contentious subject?

          • Other Bill

            Jack, I’d say propaganda better fills the bill because journalism has thrown itself whole hog into the politics and policy business. As Mika Brezhinski explained the other day, it’s the media’s job to tell us what to think. If that’s not propagandizing, I’m not sure what would be.

          • Jeff

            When the topic is a specific government policy (in this case immigration) and the “journalism” in question is slanted to drive the reader toward a particular side of the debate using emotional appeals, weasel words, and carefully-omitted facts, the term “propaganda” is absolutely spot-on.

            One of the definitions of propaganda is “the spreading of ideas, information, or rumor for the purpose of helping or injuring an institution, a cause, or a person”. I don’t think you could craft a more accurate description of some of the news articles we’ve seen recently.

            • It depends on whether yoy are focusing of truth or motive. Ethically, motive doesn’t matter. Journalists are supposed to be factual and truthful, and when they publish misleading, half=true, manipulated or slanted stories, they are fake news. I really don’t care if the false and misleading stories are due to bias, a political agenda, incompetence or negligence. The result is the same, and equally unethical.

    • Rich in CT

      Propoganda is not the buzzword du jour.

  6. Steve-O-in-NJ

    The fact is that the media has completely drunk the Kool-Aid of the left. The left wants to turn every illegal alien into a faithful democratic voter and seal a permanent majority, but of course they can’t say that. So they cast it in terms of compassion, generosity, and other values that can’t be argued with, and essentially argue that the US should be the world’s asylum, orphanage, and overall dumping ground for any and all people with a sad story.

  7. But Jack, if Progressives don’t get to Orwellianly modify the language and definitions of terms, how else do you expect them to Left-splain the world to us rubes?

  8. Glenn Logan

    “The Department of Agriculture’s formal guidance for noncitizens, codified in a June 2011 document, says that there are no immigration consequences for legal immigrants who participate in SNAP. A spokesman for the department confirmed that this is still its official position.”

    But soon to change, I hope.

    I’m confused as to why you would want this to change. That document states specifically and unambiguously that:

    SNAP eligibility has never been extended to undocumented non-citizens. [my emphasis]

    The document then goes on to describe the requirements for non-citizen SNAP benefits, extended to “qualified aliens” such as green card holders, people granted asylum, refugees legally admitted, etc. This seems uncontroversial to me.

    I assume you are highlighting that paragraph because it seems confusing, and it does — I had to read it twice to make sure what it was trying to say, but it looks like it has it’s facts essentially right.

    The problem is, we use so many terms to refer to non-citizens that it’s hard to keep track. Illegal immigrant seems like such an easy concept to grasp, yet the media have essentially put it off limits for that very reason — they want to confuse us.

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