The Washington Post

Jose Antonio Vargas: Why the flack?

The Seattle Times reports that Jose Antonio Vargas has lost his Washington state driver’s license. The move could cause the former staffer of Huffington Post and The Washington Post some difficulties: “It means that if Vargas’s license is checked by law enforcement or anyone else, he will show up as not having a license at all,” reads the Seattle Times account.

The license-yanking stems from Vargas’s smashing 4,000-word confessional that ran last month in the New York Times Magazine. In the story, Vargas disclosed his status as an illegal immigrant; coming out with that revelation, he acknowledged, could create legal problems for him, but he said he was tired of carrying around the secret.

Since the piece surfaced, I’ve heard a lot of gossip about Vargas. Some feel he’s just seeking attention. Some feel he’s earnestly concerned about the plight of young illegal immigrants.

My only beef with him arises from this line in the Seattle Times piece:

“A spokeswoman for Vargas said he had no comment.”

So Vargas Inc. has grown to the point that its founder can no longer handle his own press?

One of the sub-themes to come out of Vargas’s June imbroglio was his repeated protestations that he’s a journalist at heart. Journalists handle calls from journalists.

Erik Wemple writes the Erik Wemple blog, where he reports and opines on media organizations of all sorts.


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