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MSNBC Contributor: 14th Amendment Debate about Eugenics, Xenophobia

Whenever Fox News host Glenn Beck raises the history of progressives and eugenics, or the possibility that eugenics is part of the motivation of a legitimate policy debate, the left-wing has a hissy fit. But when the left introduces it, we're supposed to accept it as high-minded and scholarly, especially in the case Princeton University's Melissa Harris-Lacewell.


On MSNBC's Aug. 12 “Countdown,” liberal blowhard Keith Olbermann asked Harris-Lacewell, an MSNBC contributor, what the motivation was behind the proposition the 14th Amendment of the Constitution should be altered to close a loophole for illegal immigrants to achieve legal status in the United States. As expected, Harris-Lacewell suggested it was motivated racism, but took it even further to say there was some sort of desire for genetic purity pushing it.


“It certainly is xenophobia, but it's got a little eugenics mixed in with it,” Harris-Lacewell said. “Part of what I see going on here is, first, a deep misunderstanding about the 14th Amendment, and for whom the 14th Amendment provided citizenship. And although certainly part of it was about newly freed persons after the Civil War, it was also about all Americans.”


Back in March, Harris-Lacewell demonstrated her ability to play the race card in a unique way – by likening the individual backlash to ObamaCare to the causes of the Civil War. This time she proposed this harebrained theory that altering the 14th Amendment would lead to a genetic purity test used to prove American citizenship.


“In other words, I want Americans to pause for a moment and ask themselves on what basis would you determine citizenship, if not based on where a child is born?” Harris-Lacewell said. “So are we willing to go to a kind of genetic grandfather clause for American citizenship? Do you have to have two parents who are citizens? How about grandparents? How about great- grandparents? The notion becomes very quickly a racialized one, where the idea of who will count as American becomes genetic rather than location.”


The latest left-wing meme has been that the anchor baby issue really isn't a significant one based on data from the Pew Hispanic Center, so why worry about it? But the a closer look at the Pew study shows it's based on U.S. Census data, which has historically been fuzzy on its numbers with undocumented immigrants. And rather than scrutinize the report, left-wingers have accepted it as indisputable fact since Pew, as Olbermann put it, is “nonpartisan.” And that's allowed liberals like Harris-Lacewell to suggest there is a malicious intent to alter the 14th Amendment and try to de-legitimize a component of the illegal immigration.


“And I think all of us, white Americans, black Americans, Latinos who are in the country as citizens, and people who are here illegally and without documentation, should all be worried about such a notion,” Harris-Lacewell said.


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