Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Back when AIDS first appeared on the scene, newspapers looked to protect the privacy of victims who were not openly gay, so they rarely came out and explicitly said someone had died from AIDS (the 'gay' disease). Readers would read between the lines of obituaries, looking for clues in the profile of the deceased and/or the description of the cause of death...

And I wonder if the papers are up to the same thing, hiding facts that might reflect 'badly' on a particular cause of theirs... this time, illegal immigrants.

The Washington Post ran a story today about DNA tests that pointed to a Afredo Prieto, an inmate on death row in California, as the murderer of three DC-area residents about 18 years ago. In the story, the Post describes the murderer as a "native of El Salvador who moved to this country in 1981" (italics mine).

According to this site, it turns out that Prieto is one of the poster children of foreign nationals charged with crimes in the United States who were supposedly denied contact with their country's consulate offices.... something that wouldn't be an issue if Prieto was a naturalized US citizen. And given that Prieto supposedly 'moved' to the United States in 1981, for him to be still hanging around 10 years later sure suggests that he wasn't here on a student or work visa as I believe they aren't good for that length of time.

So, assuming Prieto is in fact in the country illegally, is the Post unaware of that fact? Were they too lazy too check out his immigration status? Did they not care what his immigration status was? Or did they know and refuse to print it, thinking the last thing they want to do is provide ammunition to opponents of illegal immigration?

Just wondering...