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WNYC Highlights Ethnic Press Coverage of Ryan, Deferred Action

August 17, 2012 7:23 pm Leave a comment By  | , , , , , , , , , , , A+ / A-

Voices of NY’s Indrani Sen appeared on WNYC this afternoon to discuss reactions from the ethnic and community press to Mitt Romney’s vice-presidential pick, Paul Ryan, and coverage of President Barack Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals plan.

Here’s her roundup of coverage of both issues, which also ran on wnyc.org.

It’s been a week since the announcement of Mitt Romney’s vice-presidential pick, Paul Ryan, and like the mainstream press, the ethnic press has been busy analyzing his choice.

El Diario La Prensa asserts in Spanish that “Ryan is not very friendly to Latinos.” Medicaid and Medicare are big issues for Latino voters, the paper reports, and Ryan’s proposed changes to these programs have many worried.

Though Ryan’s views on immigration have yet to fully emerge, he voted for the construction of a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border, opposed the “DREAM Act,” and favors immigration reform that does not include a path to citizenship, El Diario reports.

Ryan’s positions on Medicaid and Medicare are among the reasons that a Colorlines’s headline proclaimed, “It’s Hard to Imagine a Worse Choice for People of Color Than Paul Ryan.” The site argues that Ryan’s emphasis on American exceptionalism and Ayn Rand’s philosophy will lead to more of the “blame game” of black and brown people.

The Jewish Week points out that despite signs prior to the Ryan announcement that Romney was making inroads with Jewish voters, the Ryan pick may erase any gains he has made.

“Polls show that Jewish voters are among the biggest boosters of public safety nets,” the Jewish Week observes.

On Israel, the Jewish Week notes, Ryan has no clear record, but despite his opposition to foreign aid, he has never advocated cutting funds to Israel.

Ryan has “shown impatience when asked about LGBT rights issues,” the Gay City News argues , but “his disinclination to broach the topic should not be mistaken for anything other than nearly absolute fealty to social conservative dogma.”

The paper goes on to offer a report card of Ryan’s voting record on LGBT issues, including opposition to same-sex marriage, hate crime legislation, the military repeal of “don’t ask don’t tell,” employment non-discrimination measures and anti-HIV programs such as syringe exchanges.

Meanwhile, some other publications focused in on Ryan and his family’s own ethnic heritage. IrishCentral recounted the Ryan family’s migration, fleeing famine in Ireland, to arrive in Wisconsin in 1851.

In another piece, IrishCentral argues that this year’s all-Catholic vice-presidential race shows that “Catholic is the new Protestant” in American presidential politics, appealing to a crucial constituency in swing states such as Ohio and Pennsylvania.

“Obama handily wins the Catholic vote when it includes Hispanics,” IrishCentral observes, “but without Hispanics they are the great swing vote.”

Paul Ryan’s wife, Janna Ryan, is the focus of a piece in Indian Country Today Media Network, which looks into claims that she is part Chickasaw Indian – though her heritage is likely to come under scrutiny after the debunking of the Massachusetts Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren’s claims of Cherokee ancestry.

In the ethnic media’s coverage of a new immigration program that allows young undocumented immigrants a two-year reprieve from deportation, much of the focus has been on the practicalities of the program.

Feet in 2 Worlds offered some useful tips to those asking “am I eligible?” One immigration attorney, for example, advised against applying without consulting an experienced lawyer who can pre-screen for criminal history in every state the applicant has lived in, to prevent triggering deportation.

Ethnic publications also covered the efforts of advocacy groups to mobilize around the new program, including a foundation started by an attorney on Long Island to help immigrants apply for the new status, as reported by La Tribuna Hispana, as well as a fund-raising effort to help applicants pay the $465 application fee, noted in Colorlines.

Several publications, including Long Island Wins, The Asian Journal and my own publication, Voices of NY, have told the stories of “DREAMers” – activists for the stalled DREAM act in Congress, which would provide a path to citizenship for undocumented young people.

Amidst the euphoria over the new plan, some publications, such as Amsterdam News, have pointed out that it offers no path to citizenship or permanent residency, and have looked into the question of whether the DREAM Act can be revived.

Jennifer Cheng, Felipe Cabrera, Jehangir Khattak and Hyemi Lee contributed to this roundup.

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