Dick Durbin's ridiculous take on 'chain migration'

For Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) the phrase “chain migration” is offensive to African-Americans because some of their ancestors were brought here in chains as slaves.

Writes Ethan Epstein in the Weekly Standard: (Subscription may be required)

Dick Durbin would like to have a word with the professoriate. It seems that the phrase “chain migration”—a technical term used for decades by university-based demographers to describe family-based migration patterns—is in fact racist. The Illinois senator suggested as much last month, after President Trump used the term in a meeting about immigration.

Sen. Dick Durbin (Brian Cassella / Chicago Tribune)

Sen. Dick Durbin (Brian Cassella / Chicago Tribune)

“When it came to the issue of, quote, ‘chain migration,’ I said to the president, do you realize how painful that term is to so many people?” Durbin said. “African-Americans believe they migrated to America in chains and when you talk about chain migration, it hurts them personally.”

Durbin’s claim was of course ludicrous on its face: “Chain migration” is a metaphor, conjuring an image of each member of a family as a link in a chain, and has nothing to do with slavery. (Something he apparently knew back in 2010, when Durbin used the term on the Senate floor.) “Chain migration” no more refers to slavery than do “chain restaurants” or “supply chains.” But this wasn’t the first time that the use of a homonym or homophone was willfully misinterpreted to accuse another person of racism. (Of course, the other possibility is that Trump said it, so it had to be racist.)

Read more to discover additional silliness, such as someone being offended by the posting of “K” signs in the MLB stands for striking out.

Remember Durbin claiming that a Republican House leader told President Obama “that I cannot even look at you?” Recall that the White House spokesman said the claim as “flat wrong.”

Or remember this?

Sen. Dick Durbin went to the Senate floor late Tuesday to offer his apologies to anyone who may have been offended by his comparison of treatment of detainees at the U.S. military base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to Nazis, Soviet gulags and Cambodia’s Pol Pot.

“…may have been offended?” The typical politician’s apology that suggests that “maybe the remark wasn’t so insulting, but the good heart that I am, I’m apologizing anyway.”




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    Clueless Durbin is an embarrassment.

  • If you use the loosest interpretation of chain migration, Donald Trump is the product of chain migration. Maybe we can deport him, his Slovenian wife and all his progeny as the first step in "immigration reform"!

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