Anyone who spends time in Colorado ski resorts knows that for many years immigrant Australians and New Zealanders (maybe with legal papers, maybe not) have been employed in jobs that used to be filled by American "ski bums." I blogged about it earlier this ski season. Now, the issue of immigrant workers has suddenly become a concern of the Denver Post editorial board. Why? As Denver Post writer Bruce Finley reported recently, Colorado ski resorts increasingly are turning to Latin American students to staff lift lines, mountaintop restaurants and other resort jobs. The trend has set off brisk exchanges over the nation's immigration policies. . . . The history of the ski bum aside, the growing ranks of Latin American students at Colorado's resorts does raise a few questions about immigration policy. The young people are in this country under a U.S. government cultural-exchange program. Critics, including Congressman Tom Tancredo, say the program's purpose is being abused, and congressional auditors say the State Department isn't properly overseeing the program. The growing ranks of Australians and New Zealanders, of course, did not raise any questions about immigration policy. To write an editorial about immigrant labor at Colorado ski resorts that doesn't even mention the words "Australia" or "New Zealand" is truly mind boggling. In contrast, the Post did manage to mention that for many years large numbers of Mexican immigrants have handled ski resort jobs with minimal customer contact (e.g., housekeeping). It's revealing that the furor over immigrant labor at ski areas was triggered by having students from Buenos Aires and elsewhere working as, for example, cafeteria cashiers where they are face to face with resort customers. For the record, I have seen exactly one of these Latin American students at a ski resort, a woman wearing a tag giving Buenos Aires as her home town working in the cafeteria at the Mary Jane base. In contrast, when I went to Copper Mountain over Thanksgiving weekend it was easier to try to figure out who wasn't Australian, at least among the ski school instructors. In my opinion, the biggest problem with the over-the-top racism of this Post editorial and of the people who didn't become concerned about the vanishing American ski bum until Argentines instead of Australians started popping up in ski resorts to replace them is that anything less egregious than this gets reinterpreted as "not a race issue," which helps prevent real discussion of the ways race influences political discourse in this country.