As we've been reporting, there is ethnic tension between students at Live Oak High School in Morgan Hill, California, outside of San Francisco. The controversy is being driven by the new Arizona law that broadens local police power over illegal aliens.
The fuse was lit on Cinco de Mayo when five students wore clothing bedecked with the American flag and were sent home from school for doing that, while some Hispanic students were allowed to wear Mexican flag apparel. The superintendent has admitted that sending the boys home was a major mistake, but Tuesday night little was resolved:
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's always been Hispanics vs. Caucasians. It's been like that in our history. We cannot sugarcoat this. We cannot hide it.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The students were not making a political statement. Their goal was simply to show their pride in their country. As parents, we are proud we have raised young men who stand up for what they believe in.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
Now the controversy in Morgan Hill reflects the controversy nationwide. Some Hispanic-Americans believe they are being punished because of the immigration chaos. They think anger over the flood of illegal aliens is race-based.
On the other side, millions of Americans are simply fed up with the failure of the federal government to control the Mexican border and to impose order on the immigration process. Every time a heinous crime is committed by someone in this country illegally, every time a neighborhood is impacted, resentment grows.
And so the kids acted out at Live Oak High and did so using flags, always emotional symbols, to vent their frustrations. That of course, provoked deep reaction.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Regardless of where we came from, when we come to this nation, we adopt this culture and what this nation stands for and the flag. And I personally am getting very, very tired of disrespect to that flag and what this nation actually stands for.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, we are proud American citizens, but we are all human first. There is no color. There is no race. There is no religion. And you guys made this segregated by stupidity and ignorance.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
Now, years ago, I taught high school in Miami, Florida, and there was some tension on campus between Cuban- and Anglo-Americans. I told the students that was a total waste of time, that we are all Americans and should be looking out for each other. Now some students got it; some didn't want to get it. They wanted trouble, and they found it.
Three decades later, ethnic tension is on the rise again, and it will not diminish until the federal government effectively deals with the illegal alien problem.
And that's "The Memo."
Pinheads & Patriots
In support of the "Bold Fresh" paperback, I appeared on "The View" on Wednesday. First up, Speaker Pelosi saying the American clergy should help her with immigration reform:
O'REILLY: All right, look, Nancy Pelosi. This is what I love about the speaker, and I actually like her. I'd love to have her come on my program. You can't have the baby Jesus at Christmastime in the public square because of separation of church and state. So the baby Jesus throws — they just throw him right out of here. Now she wants all the Catholic priests to be talking about illegal immigration from the pulpit. So the baby Jesus can't hang out at Christmas. No, no.
I don't think the Obama administration had any reaction to the oil spill other than, "Uh-oh, what do we do now?" And then people say, "Well, they didn't react quick enough." That's probably true. And Bush didn't react quick enough on Katrina. But what do you want Obama to do? Do you want to get him in a dive suit with a rake and drop him down there? I mean, I'm saying, OK.
There is a law, a legal thing that says, if we think terrorism is ongoing, we don't have to Mirandize, and stuff doesn't get thrown out. So that's the way it should be. We have to protect ourselves here, and the federal government has an obligation to protect all of us, except Joy.
So you can decide who is the patriot and/or the pinhead during that exposition. But I had fun on "The View."
And again, we want to wish Barbara Walters the best. She had a heart-valve operation on Wednesday. She's 80 years old, an American icon for sure. Our thoughts and prayers are with Ms. Walters.