Guest Column: State of the Union speech deceptive on immigration
By E.J. Pagel
Quote from Barack Obama’s State of the Union speech: “We should continue the work of fixing our broken immigration system, to secure our borders and enforce our laws and ensure that everyone who plays by the rules can contribute to our economy and enrich our nation.” It sounds like President Obama has joined hands with the Minuteman Project! “Secure our borders and enforce the law” is exactly what our grassroots organization has been demanding since its inception.
U.S. immigration laws are the most generous and welcoming of any nation on Earth, yet millions choose to come here illegally, because lax enforcement and policy have made our nation’s borders and sovereignty an international joke. And, whenever a foreign national applies for immigration here, open-borders advocates claim he has been “approved,” and the only reason he isn’t here already is because of paperwork backlogs or bureaucratic red tape.
It didn’t take President Obama long, as the new CEO of our nation, to speak as if he has gained a new perspective—that the change we can believe in will be rigorous enforcement of our immigration law at all levels and jurisdictions. However, his newly-proposed 2011 budget would eliminate 180 Border Patrol agents and cut funding for the virtual fence, meanwhile adding 25 new positions in the Secretary of Homeland Security’s management office.
This flies in the face of Homeland Security’s own acknowledgment that the Border Patrol has “effective control” over only 939 of the 6,000 miles of land borders. That was the original reason for forming the Minuteman Project—so citizens with binoculars and cell phones could help the inadequate Border Patrol try to get the job done!
Obama’s proposed budget would have no increase in funding and deporting immigration fugitives or criminal aliens, no additional special agents to investigate workplace immigration violations, and no expansion of the visa security program. Adding insult to injury, members of his party continue to press for amnesty legislation that will further sell out and victimize United States citizens.
A major pillar of the Democratic Party that ensured Obama’s election, the consolidated union leadership, is supporting amnesty in spite of opposition from its rank and file, particularly Union Networks International, United Food and Commercial Workers, American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO), and Laborers’ International Union of North America (LIUNA).
Obama’s Department of Homeland Security has ended worksite raids, prohibited state and local police from turning over regular illegal aliens (those whose only crimes are associated with being in the United States illegally) to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), rescinded the so-called “No-Match Rule” requiring employers to fire known illegal-alien workers, and has worked to repeal the REAL ID Act, which prevents illegal aliens from obtaining state drivers’ licenses and other benefits.
Before the recent invention of “Jobs Americans Won’t Do,” houses were built, landscapes were tended, vegetables were picked, chickens were plucked, and bathrooms were cleaned—without 15 million illegal aliens. Americans are losing their wages, jobs, homes, and their health in numbers unprecedented since the Great Depression, yet you will not hear that in the elitist media.
You won’t hear about illegal immigration trapping Americans in a vise that is destroying their lives. Instead, we are bombarded daily with illegal alien sob stories about being laid off, being profiled, discriminated against, and finding it harder to get licenses and government freebies from mean and hateful Americans!
So, even though 11 million U.S. citizens are out of work, we need amnesty for illegal aliens who are holding jobs that are illegal for them to have in the first place?
E.J. Pagel is the media secretary for the Rockford Area Libertarians and a Minuteman.
From the Feb. 17-23, 2010 issue