DAYTON, Ohio — Raul Ramos y Sanchez, the author of “America Libre,” a novel that contemplates a Hispanic insurrection fueled by mainstream backlash, is discovering just how volatile the immigration issue has become. Right wing bloggers in particular have taken aim at the author. “I wrote America Libre as a cautionary tale about the dangers of extremism on both sides of the immigration controversy,” said the author. “One right wing blog portrayed me as a ‘Marxican’ plotting a civil war.
In fact, I’m neither Mexican nor a Marxist.” The Cuban-born author came to the U.S. in 1961 fleeing Castro’s communist regime. Today, he is a partner in a business that employs twenty-four marketing professionals.
“America Libre” (ISBN: 0-595-42606-9) a novel by Raul Ramos y Sanchez imagines a nightmarish, not-too-distant future where Hispanic demonstrations turn violent and Anglo vigilantes launch revenge attacks against the barrios, igniting an ethnic conflict that eventually leads to full-scale civil war. The author sees the book as a wake-up call to the dangers of bigotry in a growing ethnic gulf. “Anglo supremacist groups are using the furor over immigration to swell their ranks. Some news reports claim KKK membership has grown by 40% in the last two years. Meanwhile, the radical separatists in the barrios are growing as well. Today’s increasingly heated rhetoric over immigration, and the wave of backlash legislation it has generated, is playing with fire over a powder keg.”
An example of this brewing conflict came from a right wing blog featuring America Libre that read: We ain’t the only ones talking about a revolution. “To some people, the premise of my novel is not fiction,” said Ramos. The smears have even spread to the author’s listing on amazon.com where reviews of America Libre have been vandalized for political motives.
The controversy over America Libre has also generated public attention. The author’s website has been getting over 10,000 visitors per week since the first of May. Ramos has also been interviewed on several radio programs and been the subject of countless online articles and blog references. A May 19th radio program broadcast in nine U.S. cities by the Hispanic Communications Network, featured Ramos as part of roundtable discussion on the rising threat of supremacist groups.
During the research for America Libre, Ramos explored the shadow world of extremist organizations, both Anglo and Hispanic. “In a way, these groups feed off each other. The supremacist groups use the small minority of radical separatists in Latino communities as evidence of a deliberate invasion. The Hispanic separatists point to Anglo hate groups as proof of racism, aiding their appeals for self-determination and unity,” said Ramos. He notes that the influence of fringe groups with a radical agenda is greatly magnified during times of political stress.
“The Bolsheviks were never a majority in Russia, yet they exploited Russia’s disastrous involvement in the World War I to topple Czarist rule. In a similar vein, today’s extremists will seize hostile, polarized reactions to further their agendas.”
More information on extremist groups is available at http://www.raulramos.com.
The author believes this polarization is evident in Washington politics as well. “It’s little wonder the senate is having trouble reaching consensus on a comprehensive immigration reform bill. The rhetoric has become too heated for any kind of compromise. The “A” word – amnesty – has become a flaming arrow conservatives fire at anyone who proposes anything short of deportation. On the other side of debate, many supporters of a guest worker program accuse their opponents of racism. It’s time to stop demonizing the opposition,” said Ramos.
“Despite receiving the support of politicians as divergent as President Bush and Ted Kennedy, the new immigration reform bill appears to be DOA.”
As host of MyImmigrationStory.com, an online forum for U.S. immigrants, Ramos has seen firsthand the need for immigration reform. “The stories of families caught up in USCIS red tape are heart-wrenching. It doesn’t take long to realize our immigration system is simply dysfunctional.”
More information about America Libre and its author is available at http://www.raulramos.com or by calling Scott Willis at 504-525-7694.
[tags]Raul Ramos y Sanchez, America Libre, Hispanic insurrection, Rook Interactive, immigration reform[/tags]