Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Immigration Reform?

Cross posted from Demediacratic Nation

When will the politicians wake up?

In answer to that question, they do wake up; think 9/11. But no sooner do they awaken to something, they and the public with the assistance of the “we know everything” MsMEDIA allow themselves to be lulled back into slumber.

No one was really that awake in 1986 when the Ronald Reagan signed the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (italics mine), which allowed for the amnesty of approximately 2.7 million illegal immigrants. Passage of the act criminalized businesses with fines if they knowingly hired an illegal, auditing of I-9 forms and stepped up border enforcement and. The amnesty granted reached back to illegal immigrants in the country since roughly 1982.

Fast forward 10 years and our government found it necessary to pass the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996. Two pieces of this legislation were authorization for the increase in border patrol agents and the barring of permanent residence to those illegal immigrants that were found to have claimed to be U.S. citizens.

I offer the two examples above, not in great detail, but as examples of previous attempts at reforming immigration. This is not to say reform is not necessary to immigration or anything in general as scenarios change, so obviously reform of some sort may always be needed somewhere down the road.

Immigration reform is one of those “hot button” issues that has many up in arms, with opposing arguments offered in screeches rather than debate. I personally believe that perhaps, reform at this time may not be as necessary as enforcing the law as written now. Granted, we have an estimated 12 to 20 million “illegal” immigrants in the country at this time. This of course does not allow for the political soundbyting that all pols love. It also would require their having a clue what they are talking about. My pessimism aside, in 1998-99, the state of Nebraska began an operation called “Operation Vanguard,” “which “sought to identify illegal workers at all meatpacking plants in Nebraska.” The plan was to slowly “wean” employers off “illegal labor,” and was working until “employers and politicians vociferously criticized the very idea of enforcing the immigration law.” This strikes me as an example of ‘what is the point’ if you don’t walk the talk.

Another example, the simplicity of which a mind like mine can grasp is with regard to the “Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996,” and it’s section that dealt with the “barring of permanent residence.” But simply put this I guess is just not as simple as I was (easily) led to believe as I wonder, what about ‘what about Elvira Arellano? (previous Arellano posts, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here. It must be love.). Strikes me that she is a prime candidate for poster child in the debate, but she is inextricably linked with the side of the argument that doesn’t seem to have an issue with supporting “illegal” activity.

But, hey, I’m just one of those racist, xenophobes the media denigrates because it’s a simple argument that so many have missed the point of as a recent NY Times editorial pointed out :

“Catch the Immigrant” also reflects a larger misunderstanding of the immigration issue. The more than 11 million illegal immigrants cannot be caught. Even if they could be, rounding them up and deporting them would be disastrous, economically and socially. Educators should teach the game players about the real world.”

I would really have liked “enforcement first” reform that strengthened the border and pushed for interior enforcement before allowing politicians to continue to run roughshod over our laws; laws mind you that they wrote. The idea of taking the time to see if they actually did what they said they were going to do gave me great hope. But now of course, there is not much, if any possibility of that, so we’ll get our “comprehensive” reform mishmash that allows the clueless to add insult to injury and the scoring of political points today and forgetting about tomorrow as they can just do this again sometime later.

I read an interesting article by John O’Sullivan in the most recent issue of National Review March 19, 2007 VOL. LIX, NO. 4, a quote of which is as follows:

“Comprehensive immigration reform is what the Beltway calls a bipartisan issue — namely, one supported by almost all Democrats and a minority of Republicans. Outside the Beltway, more or less open immigration is supported by corporate and cultural elites and opposed by more than 70 percent of voters. But the elite support is so strongly felt that the issue is falsely presented in the media as a dispute between most (enlightened) Americans, on one hand, and bigots, xenophobes, and the Republican “base” on the other.”

Politicians are bad enough, but we vote for them; I don’t recall ever voting for anyone in the msm, yet rather than be the vanguard they often claim to be they’re really no better than the pols, lobbyists or propagandists themselves.

Posts from other C.A.I.I. members today:

From stikNstein: Illegal immigration Activist outraged by government rescue of exploited illegals

From Liberally Conservative: Illegal Immigration and U.S. Crime – Commentary

**This was a production of The Coalition Against Illegal Immigration (CAII). If you would like to participate, please go to the above link to learn more. Afterwards, email stiknstein@gmail.com and let us know at what level you would like to participate.**