Scan the last paragraph of George Will’s column on Arizona’s round-up-the-darkies law while I take a deep breath:
Non-Hispanic Arizonans of all sorts live congenially with all sorts of persons of Hispanic descent. These include some whose ancestors got to Arizona before statehood — some even before it was a territory. They were in America before most Americans’ ancestors arrived. Arizonans should not be judged disdainfully and from a distance by people whose closest contacts with Hispanics are with fine men and women who trim their lawns and put plates in front of them at restaurants, not with illegal immigrants passing through their back yards at 3 a.m.
Ho ho! See what he did there? He’s flipping the script! It’s critics of the law—all presumably themselves non-Hispanic—who are out of touch! Because seriously, where would middle-class professionals and journalists outside Arizona ever encounter a Hispanic, except when they need their hedges trimmed or their tables bussed? That’s pretty much all they do, right?
George Will is probably the conservative pundit with whom I most often find myself in agreement, so it’s awfully disappointing that he sounds like such a flaming pendejo here.
Addendum: Yes, of course I get that this was intended as a too-cute-by-half “swipe at ‘limousine liberal’ types” (to borrow Jake Tapper’s phrasing)—but it misfires badly, because the gag only works or makes sense if you think it’s remotely plausible that the limousine liberals in question (at least outside Arizona) are all Anglos who wouldn’t have any contact with Hispanics other than busboys and landscapers, which in 2010 is ludicrous. As with the infamous “He’s so articulate!”, the obnoxious bit isn’t the intentional attack, but the presupposition it reveals.