Did you know that the term “anchor baby” is offensive? ABC News reporter Tom Llamas did. More than that, he had proof. Llamas looked “anchor baby” up in a dictionary and saw it was designated Offensive. He also noticed that Donald Trump and other G.O.P. candidates were using the term when discussing foreigners who come to the U.S. for the express purpose of giving birth on American soil so their offspring may acquire birthright citizenship and thereby act as an “anchor” to help other family members acquire U.S. citizenship.
On August 19, 2015, armed with knowledge and proof, the TV reporter (who recently became the Sunday anchor on ABC World News Tonight) took a seat among fellow journalists at an evening press scrum in Derry, New Hampshire and awaited the opportunity to confront the Republican front-runner. He began his question to Trump with a preamble: “You said that you have a big heart, and that you’re not mean-spirited. Are you aware that the term ‘anchor baby,’ that’s an offensive term…”
The newsman spoke with an authoritative tone and chopped air with one hand for emphasis. “People find that very hurtful,” he continued, picking up steam.
“You mean it’s not politically correct and yet everybody uses it?” Trump interrupted.
Recently, Scott Adams, creator of the “Dilbert” cartoon and a professed expert on hypnosis and persuasion, wrote a perceptive analysis of the verbal tricks that Trump uses to persuade audiences. Coincidentally, one of these maneuvers is called an “anchor” and is used to deflect a hostile question and leave a positive impression. An example would be when Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly began her debate question with the premise that Trump has a history of directing abusive language toward women and the candidate swiftly interrupted with his anchor: “Only Rosie O’Donnell.”
This time, Trump delivered the anchor so quick that it was out and finished before Llamas could close his mouth to begin the next word of his question. The reporter appeared to sense the moment slipping. The premise of his question was being undermined before he even asked it. It was time to show proof.
“Look it up in the dictionary. It’s offensive!” Llamas harrumphed and almost began his question. As he was about to pronounce its first word, Trump interrupted again.
“You know what? Give me a different term. Give me a different term. What else would you like me to use?”
“The American born child of an undocumented immigrant,” Llamas volunteered.
The offered substitution steered clear of the term “illegal immigrant,” which is considered inflammatory by those who favor general amnesty for illegal immigrants. Of course, “undocumented” also has a pejorative quality that is likely to offend someone too.
The other revealing thing about Llamas’ response was that instead of an alternate term for “anchor baby,” the newsman actually gave an alternate definition. “American born child of an undocumented immigrant” omits any reference to the intent of the child’s mother, who purposefully travels to the U.S. to give birth so that her newborn may acquire automatic citizenship and enable relatives to secure citizenship.
“You want me to say that, okay.” Trump replied. For a moment, Llamas nodded his head in appreciation, eyebrows raised, like he was expecting a compliment for helping the candidate rein in his tone.
“I’ll use the word anchor baby,” Trump finished, dismissively.
‘Hold on! I’m saying!” answered Llamas, suddenly angry and inarticulate. “Why do you have to use that phrase?”
“Excuse me. I’ll use the word anchor baby.”
Over the following few days, ABC News re-ran the exchange on ABC World News Tonight and Good Morning America. “Trump Unapologetic for ‘Anchor Baby’ Language” ran the headline. On GMA, the segment was teed up by George Stephanopoulos, a professional propagandist for the Clinton administration before he jumped to the top spot at ABC News without any background or qualifications in journalism.
The edited version of the exchange included all of Trump’s responses and the reporter’s interjection “Look it up! It’s offensive,” but omitted the part where Llamas offered his politically-correct substitution or snapped “Why do you have to use that phrase?”
In follow-up reports, Llamas interviewed Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio to get their reactions and see if they would agree to never say “anchor baby.” The unchallenged premise of the reportage was that “anchor baby” is a deeply egregious slur, but this was widely questioned. On Twitter, the newsman brushed doubters aside by telling them to look it up in the dictionary. Llamas had a specific dictionary in mind.
@secupp actually it is-American Heritage Dictionary. Look it up. Thx.
— Tom Llamas (@TomLlamasABC) August 20, 2015
The American Heritage Dictionary designates “anchor baby” as Offensive and further states: “Used as a disparaging term for a child born to a noncitizen mother in a country that grants automatic citizenship to children born on its soil, especially when the child’s birthplace is thought to have been chosen in order to improve the mother’s or other relatives’ chances of securing eventual citizenship.”
For Llamas and his higher-ups, this settled any debate as to whether “anchor baby” was offensive. However, just a slight amount of research shows that this evidence was concocted by a professional lobbyist for immigration reform.
Near the end of 2011, the fifth edition of the American Heritage Dictionary debuted its definition for “anchor baby.” The entry made no mention of the term’s offensiveness and succinctly defined it as: “A child born to a noncitizen mother in a country that grants automatic citizenship to children born on its soil, especially such a child born to parents seeking to secure eventual citizenship for themselves and often other members of their family.”
Shortly afterward, an angry response was posted on the website for the American Immigration Council from Mary Giovagnoli, director of the Immigration Policy Center (IPC), who denounced the term as “mired in the politics of anti-immigrant rhetoric” before launching into an examination of the bad motives of anyone who speaks of anchor babies: “Those who use it are not in the business of clinically describing some sort of sociological phenomena. They are instead intent on suggesting that people come to the country illegally and deliberately have babies in order to use their children’s citizenship to acquire legal status of their own.”
There’s little to disagree with there. The term is widely used to describe the offspring of foreign nationals who come to the United States for those recited reasons. Giovagnoli characterized the existence of anchor babies as an outrageous proposition, but she is demonstrably wrong.
It is a fact that foreign nationals act to capitalize on the nearly unique law of birthright citizenship offered by almost no other country besides the United States. For some reason, “anchor baby” was verboeten if used in regard to Hispanic illegal immigrants but alright for the offspring of Asian foreign-nationals who have made Los Angeles the worldwide capital of the birth-tourism industry.
Incidentally, although politicians, lobbyists and TV pundits routinely allege that birthright citizenship for the children of non-citizens is a historic Constitutional right, the text of the 14th Amendment actually provides no basis for the belief or practice. It only started 30-odd years ago after extreme liberal Supreme Court Justice William Brennan slipped a footnote into Phyler v. Doe (1982). Trump is promising to test the current interpretation in court, which is driving immigration reform advocates apoplectic.
In her blog post, Giovagnoli blasted the “poisonous and derogatory nature” of “anchor baby” and castigated American Heritage Dictionary for failing to mention its highly offensive nature. She links it to the political speech of those opposed to expanding the rights of illegal immigrants. As far as Giovagnoli is concerned, that alone makes it a “loaded” term.
The IPC director goes on to recount a successful re-education effort against Chicago Tribune columnist Eric Zorn, who used the term in an article he wrote in 2006. Giovagnoli proudly relates how after receiving complaints and denouncements, Zorn learned that the term “anchor baby” is actually “a way to dehumanize the children of undocumented immigrants.”
Ergo, using the term “anchor babies” is dehumanizing to children. Stating that some foreigners and illegal immigrants travel to the U.S. for the express purpose of birthing a child is dehumanizing to children. In this way, language is censored, political speech becomes hate speech and lobbyists like Giovagnoli no longer need to debate in order to win. This Alinskeyite method of manipulating opinion and shaming dissent has been highly effective throughout the Obama era.
Within hours of her condemnation, Giovagnoli was contacted by Executive Editor Steven Kleinedler from the American Heritage Dictionary, who promptly followed through on an expressed promise to amend the definition in full compliance with her recommendations. In return, Giovagnoli promised to continue to monitor the American Heritage Dictionary for further infractions.
Despite the fact that “anchor baby” was officially deemed Offensive, there was no doubt that Trump won the exchange with Llamas. He continued to rise in popularity, confounding pollsters’ predictions, and defying the will of the editors of the National Review and Weekly Standard. Meanwhile, Llamas’ Twitter feed lit up with condemnations of his blatant bias and liberal activism.
It would fall upon Jorge Ramos to play “Captain Save A Ho” to the imploding media campaign to take out Trump and prohibit any discussion of anchor babies.
Jorge Ramos is the Mexican-American Univision/Fusion news anchor who reaches more than two million people a night on a network that commands a market share of 70 percent of Spanish-language primetime TV-watchers 18 to 49 years old. Despite his job title, Ramos is a pure propagandist whose declared intent is to see amnesty extended to an estimated 11 million illegals in the United States. He recently told University of Southern California graduates: “Neutrality is for referees in a football game.”
There’s little mystery to the sources of Univison’s political bias. In 2006, longtime Hillary Clinton supporter and billionaire lobbyist Haim Saban led a group of investors to acquire Univision for $13.7 billion. In 2014, Univision partnered with Team Hillary to provide educational programming to Hispanic mothers in a transparent bid to promote the unlikable candidate. Not coincidentally, Jorge Ramos’ daughter recently took a high-level position with the Hillary Clinton campaign.
Donald Trump has a different relationship with the channel. Currently, Univision is being sued by Trump for $500 million after the company broke a contract to air the Miss Universe pageant, which is partially owned by Trump. In June, Univision executive Alberto Ciurana tweeted that the decision to cut ties with Miss Universe was due entirely to Trump’s statements about illegal immigrants. After Dylann Roof slaughtered nine parishioners in Charleston, VA, Ciurana sent out a tweet likening Trump to the mass killer.
On August 25, 2015, Ramos arrived at Trump’s press conference in Iowa determined to do battle. His longtime co-anchor María Elena Salinas later wrote an editorial describing her colleague’s mindset: “He went to Donald Trump’s press conference with a clear mission: to question him, denounce him, and expose him.”
Trump had just stepped up to the podium and called on another reporter for a question when Ramos stood up and began making a speech denouncing his immigration policy. Fittingly, Ramos had jumped to the front of the line and expected to be accommodated for breaking the rules. Trump wasn’t having it.
“Sit down!” he growled.
“I am an immigrant and I have the right to ask a question,” Llamas protested, as if being an immigrant meant he didn’t have to wait to be called on.
“No you don’t. Go back to Univision.”
But Ramos kept going with his speech and refused to yield the floor until security ejected him. There’s no way to view the exchange and not be struck by his egotistic display. Later, the Univision anchor went on the Megyn Kelly File and tried to spin the event by claiming Trump tried to silence him like a dictator because Trump was so threatened by the hard-hitting questions of Jorge Ramos.
This problem with this spin was that it overlooked the fact that the Ramos was readmitted to the press conference and got to ask all his hard-hitting questions and was destroyed by Trump.
Trump took questions from Ramos for nearly five minutes and soundly obliterated him. He did so without anger or rancor, although he clearly enjoyed dis-assembling the faux-journalist’s talking points and forcing him to acknowledge facts considered heresy by immigration advocates, like the vast problem of criminal gangs comprised of illegal aliens throughout the United States.
Without doubt, Trump won the exchange. His popularity continued to defy the will of the G.O.P. consultant class and their counterparts in liberal news media. Once again, pundits lined up to support reckless accusations of racism hurled at the candidate from individuals whose motives go unexamined. Last week, Trump was George Wallace. Now he was Joe McCarthy.
All the major networks ran stories about the press conference that supported the fictionalized version of events conveyed by Ramos and never mentioned that his daughter works for Team Hillary. On ABC World News, the Univision anchor sat down with fellow propagandist George Stephanopoulos and declared himself a journalist then justified his advocacy by simply imputing the best motives to himself and the worst to his opponent:
“I think the best journalism happens when you take a stand and when it comes to racism, discrimination, corruption, public life, dictatorship or human rights, as journalists, we are not only required but we are forced to take a stand and, clearly, when Mr. Trump is talking about immigration in an extreme way, we have to confront him and I think that’s what I did yesterday.”
This self-glorifying version of events omitted the part where Ramos returned to the press conference and got destroyed. It also failed to grasp the inherent conflict between being a journalist and an activist. Ramos apparently sees no conflict, so it’s no surprise that he justified his advocacy by portraying Trump’s popular immigration policies as some type of human rights violation. Likewise, in an interview with the Washington Post, Ramos insinuated that Trump had him ejected because he’s racist.
In response, NPR’s Cokie Roberts breathlessly described Ramos as an “absolute icon in the Hispanic community” and Fox commentator Juan Williams declared him a “star journalist” with “a certain weight on issues of immigration.”
Nonsense. Ramos is a well-paid propagandist for a media company bankrolled by a Hilary Clinton supporter. In all his interviews since the press conference, the plain goal has been to convince voters that Trump’s popular immigration policies are racist and intolerable. Mainstream news outlets are working hard to assist him and foist upon G.O.P. voters the creeping milquetoast horror that is Jeb Bush or his alternative Marco Rubio, who also favors immigration reform instead of enforcement.
Trump leads in popularity, followed by the similarly disposed Ben Carson, Carly Fiorina, and Ted Cruz. As it turns out, most G.O.P. voters -including many Hispanic voters- favor measures that are not a priority for the establishment candidates: secure borders, a halt to illegal immigration, judicial review of birthright citizenship. Media attacks on Trump have only increased his standing, which presents a question that pundits charged with the professional task of influencing popular opinion must now consider.
How can the media discredit Trump when the media has no credibility?