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Mark Krikorian Bemoans “Ethnic” Leadership at GALEO

Brian Schultz • Jan 02, 2012

So another new year is upon us, and it’s a time associated with turning over a new leaf—resolutions, pacts and promises to ourselves, general improvements that we’d like to make in our lives. Less often is it a time that we dwell on the things that don’t change, the attributes in us—in our friends, colleagues, and critics—that persist through the years and, at least in part, define who we are. I, for one, always found these more interesting than our mutable traits that rear themselves on January 1.

Take, for example, Mark Krikorian, whose persistent attribute seems to be sneering jingoism. Though one could always hope for a sweeping change of heart, this anti-immigrant Grinch never fails to surrender his signature chauvinism.

Two days before the new year, he wrote a piece on his regular column at National Review Online decrying “pro-amnesty” bias in the Atlanta Journal Constitution for daring to publish an article written by two members of the Georgia Association of Latino Elected Officials (GALEO). This isn’t anything new. What also isn’t new is Krikorian attacking one member, Jerry Gonzales, with the heinous label of “left-wing professional ethnic”; he regularly flings racist diatribes at the nonwhite people who disagree with him, accusing them of self-interested cultural zealotry.

Now, he goes so far as to simply designate his detractors as “ethnics.”

Year after year, he’s maintained a steady record of his own prejudice, like earlier in 2011 when he referred to Muslims as a “vicious people” with inherent proclivities “to do evil.” Then there’s his 2010 diagnosis of the post-earthquake crisis in Haiti, claiming that the small country was “so screwed up because it wasn’t colonized long enough.” And over and over, we could demonstrate his less-than-cosmopolitan legacy that spans over a decade.

Moreover, Krikorian holds a high station in the largest and most contentious anti-immigrant coalition in this country; as executive director of the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS), he finds himself tied to the notorious John Tanton Network, a constellation of nativist organizations that took the name of their common benefactor. Tanton himself has garnered controversy for propounding a white majority in the United States and a profusion of epithets about African Americans, Asian Americans, and Latinos.

CIS was founded by Tanton in 1985, and though Krikorian has publicly disavowed any relationship to him or his ideas, it’s clear from his aforementioned remarks that they share more than he would claim. More still, Krikorian and other CIS personnel have participated in the Writers Workshops put on by Tanton’s white nationalist publishing house, The Social Contract Press. CIS also circulates articles from the anti-immigrant blog VDARE.com, a veritable cornucopia of racism that hosts the work of anti-Semites, Islamophobes, homophobes, and their ilk—including many members of the Tanton Network.

So, when Krikorian casually slings the soubriquet “ethnic,” it could be the ultimate form of hypocrisy; in one swipe, he reveals his own racism while flouting the ethnocentricity in his own camp—namely, an unapologetic white nationalism.

But it’s 2012, after all, and perhaps Krikorian made it his resolution to be less of a bigot; even still, I feel like I’ll be writing the same blog one year from today.

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