By Fidel “Butch” Montoya
It was great news when CNN finally pushed Lou Dobbs off the air, giving in to the pressure of thousands of Latino/as demanding that the cable network fire Dobbs. Unable to sign off with his trademark smirk on his last show, Dobbs was, however, able to heave that reported eight million dollar payoff by CNN over his burdened shoulders and laugh all the way to the bank.
The question everyone was asking was where will Dobbs reappear? Some right-wing pundits have said Dobbs will sign on the FOX News channel. Dobbs, himself, has said he will continue his “advocacy journalism,” and that we have not heard the last of him.
So be it, but what Dobbs and his right-wing fanatics can’t deny is the fact that a national Internet effort, coordinated by journalist Roberto Lovato, was a powerful force that even CNN could not ignore.
Many of his critics could care less where Dobbs might show up. Latinos were satisfied with the wave of criticism and its consequences, which got Dobbs off the air.
But wait, just about three weeks after he was fired, the resurrected Dobbs appeared on a live interview on Telemundo’s Al Rojo Vivo with news anchor Maria Celeste and he had a new message for the masses.
“Whatever you have thought of me in the past, I can tell you right now I am one of your greatest friends and I mean for us to work together.”
Whoa! Stop the ‘Get Rid of Dobbs’ bandwagon! He said what? Yes, you read correctly what Dobbs said. “I am your greatest friend and I mean for us to work together.”
According to The Wall Street Journal, the new Dobbs is desperately trying to shed the old Dobbs. “I hope that will begin with Maria and me and Telemundo and other media organizations and others in this national debate that we should turn into a solution rather than a continuing debate and factional contest.”
Dobbs said that? I wondered if Dobbs had been hit with a bad case of the H1N1 flu. Was he delirious, out of his mind with a high fever? What exactly was going on here??
As Celeste ran down her list of why the Latino community would not want him over for tamales or menudo, she pushed back harder, wanting to hear why he thought he would be welcomed in the Latino community.
There was no fuzzy warm feeling of “mi casa es su casa” during the interview.
“Many Hispanics consider you to be the No. 1 enemy of Latinos,” Celeste told him. “Do you think that the community is somehow misjudging you?”
“Oh, not somehow. Definitively, absolutely.” Dobbs responded. “By the way, I don’t believe for a moment that the Latino, Hispanic community in the United States believes that of me at all. It has been the efforts of the far left to characterize me in their propaganda as such.”
So all along, every time Dobbs appeared on his daily CNN show and spewed his poisonous mean-spirited hateful lies about immigrants, he was just trying to endear himself to our community?
So as he smirked at his viewers, the lies he told day after day demonizing the undocumented immigrant was just a bad misunderstanding? So as we sat in our family rooms watching CNN, not believing our ears as Dobbs did his best to get his far right-wing nuts all fired up about hating Latino immigrants was just a big misinterpretation of his lies?
But wait, there is more in The Wall Street Journal story that may cause you run to your therapist, thinking your hallucinating or losing your mind.
Mr. Dobbs told Spanish-language network Telemundo he now supports a plan to legalize millions of undocumented workers, a stance he long lambasted as an unfair “amnesty.”
"We need the ability to legalize illegal immigrants under certain conditions.”
This is the same immigration critic who day after day called for the deportation of the reported 12 million undocumented immigrants living in our country. Now, according to his spokesperson, Dobbs wanted just the criminals deported. Not those who are “living, upright, positive and constructive lives,” who should be part of our society.
I don’t know if Dobbs bumped his head on the way out of his CNN office or maybe his Latina wife gave him an ultimatum to clean up his act or she would leave him taking with her half of that eight million dollars?
The truth be told, Dobbs is considering a run perhaps as a third party candidate in New Jersey against our only Latino United States Senator Robert Menendez. And you know what that means?
Dobbs needs the votes of the largest growing minority in the country - Latinos! He knows he cannot possibly even think of winning that race without his Latino friends supporting him.
But before we even think of extending our hand to Dobbs, let’s not forget the reason to quiet Dobbs was not because he had just a different opinion. Dobbs found it was better for his TV ratings to feed deception, fear and hate, and allow the merchants of hate push their political agenda of misinformation and myths about immigration reform and undocumented immigrants.
So now that Dobbs is our friend again, and since he earned those millions of dollars demonizing every Latino in the USA, would he consider giving some of that payoff to help spread his newfound truth that immigration reform is needed in our country?
Come on over Lou Dobbs, but don’t forget your wallet, and by the way, forgive us if we don’t forgive you.
This article first appeared on http://www.latinolandscape.com/
Fidel "Butch" Montoya is Director of H.S. Power and Light Ministries. He was the Vice President/News Director of KUSA Channel 9 News from 1985-1990, and worked at the news station for 24 years. Montoya also served as Deputy Mayor of City and County of Denver from 1995-1999; as the Manager of Public Safety for the City and County of Denver from 1994-2000. Montoya was Licensed to preach in 1972.