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Timothy Egan, liberal New York Times reporter turned left-wing Times columnist, filed "Not Like Us" for Saturday's paper, portraying the Republican field as avidly chasing the "red-faced" "immigrant-hatred vote," calling out not only Donald Trump but Ted Cruz, a Cuban-American.
But first, Egan unveiled a supposedly clever historical sleight of hand designed to shame conservatives:
They were criminals -- thugs and thieves -- a single ethnic group that filled the jails of big cities. “Scum unloaded on American wharves,” one speaker in Philadelphia said of them. Dirty, filthy, foreign. As for their children, they were “utterly ignorant of a place such as school,” The New York Herald reported.
Mexicans? No, the Irish of the 1850s, then pouring into Anglo-Saxon America at such a rate that it gave rise to a political party founded in opposition to immigration -- the Know-Nothings. At one point, it was second largest party in the United States, complete with a paramilitary arm called the Wide Awakes.