Monday, November 05, 2007
The Clown Lou Dobbs got surprised by his own ignorance, thinking that the majority of his viewers supports his hidden Anti Immigration Agenda.
Protesters turn out for Dobbs appearance
By BETH BURGER
SARASOTA - It was a new attraction for the Sarasota Reading Festival as a group of mostly New College students protested Lou Dobbs' stance on illegal immigration.
For the past 10 years the Sarasota Reading Festival has never had protesters to any authors on the list, said Betty Morris, director of the event.
Dobbs, a CNN anchor and author, changed that Saturday when he came to promote his new book, "Independents Day." Dobbs supports immigration enforcement by controlling borders. He has gone on the record linking illegal immigration to contagious diseases such as leprosy.
Morris said the issue of illegal immigrants hits close to home for a lot of people.
"It's just their right to have freedom of speech," she said.
The protesters walked down Pineapple Avenue beating a drum and holding peace signs as they passed readers and tables full of books.
"I disagree with everything he pretty much says," said Andrea Ortiz, 18, of Bradenton, who attends New College. "He reports lies."
Ortiz, whose family came to U.S. from Colombia legally, said many illegal immigrants come from countries in political unrest or poor circumstances.
She said illegal immigrants work jobs most Americans would never want to work and provide greater diversity.
"These are your brothers and sisters," she said as she handed out fliers. "All of us come from the same roots."
Sometimes, people made a peace signs back as the students marched.
Others weren't so agreeable.
Michael Ponzo, 55, of Sarasota held two manila folders taped together with "Illegal is illegal" in marker. He was one of hundreds who stood in line to meet Dobbs inside First United Methodist Church. When Dobbs first arrived he shook hands and met with his supporters, Ponzo said.
"When I do illegal things. I get in trouble. It should be equal opportunity for for all lawbreakers," Ponzo said. "If I break the law I get fined or go to jail. Why isn't that the case when an illegal immigrant asks for a driver's license?"
In anticipation of student protesters, some illegal immigration protesters decided to meet at the reading festival and coordinated efforts through the Floridians for Immigration Enforcement Web site.
Sarasota Police Department Lt. Jeff Karr said the protesters on both sides were respectful for the most part.
"There was no real issues," he said. "Everyone is allowed to express their opinion here." he said.