Extra! Update October 1993

    Scapegoating Immigrants

    In the wake of the World Trade Center bombing, a barrage of attacks on the asylum system in the U.S. has appeared in the media. These stories, which characterized the asylum procedure as a "scam" for entering the U.S., tended to feature the views of government officials and anti-immigrant "experts" without balancing arguments from immigrants or their advocates. The reports allowed critics of immigration to use the bombing to scapegoat asylum seekers and fan the flames of xenophobia. Francis X. Clines of the New York Times was one of the first to set the alarmist tone in a front-page story ...


    Happily Ever NAFTA?

    In the Jan./Feb. 1993 issue of Extra!, writers John Summa and Patrice Greanville reported that news coverage of NAFTA had a pronounced pro-"free trade" slant, promoting the views of government and business groups who support NAFTA. Critics of the pact, like environmentalists and labor unions who warned that the pact could have negative effects on the U.S., Mexico and Canada, had much less access to the debate. Lately, however, the mainstream press has featured claims that NAFTA foes are actually dominating the discussion: Washington Post columnist Hobart Rowen (5/9/93) complained that "most of the voices being heard on the trade ...