Saturday, August 11, 2007

Rolling Up The Welcome Mat

Oklahoma House Bill 1804 is designed to enable local law enforcement officers the ability to check the citizenship of a person that has been arrested (either under felony charges or misdemeanor charges that qualify the individual to be placed in custody). HB 1804 does not give local authorities the power to deport, but it does give them the power to detain and turn over to ICE any individual that is questionable for a hearing before a federal deportation judge once they have satisfied the charges against them locally. Before HB 1804 local law turned over a couple of people to ICE a week. Since they have been given access to check citizenship that number, in one week alone, jumped 5 times. HB 1804 is also known as the Oklahoma Taxpayer and Citizen Protection Act, which requires all local and state agencies to verify a person's citizenship before they can receive benefits. It was designed to not only remove individuals from the state that are breaking the law, but to ease the burden of welfare costs in the state.

HB 1804 is being blasted by critics as a means to single out the Hispanic population in Oklahoma by such groups as the American Dream Coalition and the Coalition of Hispanic Organizations. News reports from local individuals in the areas of town that the Hispanic population has settled are indicating that this bill is bad for business and will hurt the economy locally as many will seek to move away from the state to other locations in the nation that have less restrictive laws or just go back to their country of origin to avoid (as they allege) the profiling and discrimination that will accompany the empowerment of the local law enforcement agencies. It's been estimated that the illegal alien population in the last year or so had risen to around 20,000 in the Tulsa metro area. Some say that is a conservative figure and that the actual numbers might be double that. Regardless of the actual count, that number will be reduced over time with the combination of HB 1804 and the new federal laws that will soon go into effect mandating employers to verify citizenship or face large fines and possible imprisonment.

Nationwide news reports are indicating that the new federal laws are already hurting the dollars that have been flowing out of the US to the families of the illegal aliens that they were sending money home to. Oklahoma HB 1804 is this state's way of rolling up the welcome mat. It's our own way of saying, no mas. We won't be a sanctuary state any more to those who choose to come here illegally, regardless of their intentions good or bad. That is the bottom line really. Those well-meaning and "law-abiding" illegal aliens are still breaking the law, even though they can bend the truth in their own minds by justifying it with ideology that they are only providing for their families back home as best they can.

I can't respect that line of thought and will not allow myself to be sucked into the "poor them" spin that the open border lovers sing. I don't have any sympathy either for the businesses who made their money by hiring the illegal aliens to avoid paying the legal price of doing business. I doubt seriously that the nation will collapse because "there won't be anyone left to do the jobs we won't". It might mean a slight increase over the short term in the cost of doing business, but in the long-term the dollars saved in federal and state funding to subsidize the cost of doing business with the illegal element will more than pay off.

Although, there are those government agencies that will loose funding because the reduction in illegal aliens will reduce the dollars that they will have to work with. Take for example, the school system which is federally subsidized by the number of students they have. Not having the children of illegal aliens in some schools will drastically cut their funding. One of the local news agencies did a piece on an elementary school principle who was begging the illegals to bring their kids to school and promising that they wouldn't be subjected to citizenry checks. Excuse me, but this person's outpouring of humanity, saying she was worried about the kids, is suspect because her school funding is about to be drastically cut. It's also deplorable because as a state employee she should be the first to protect the law, not flagrantly encourage the abuse of it. I can only hope that the legal citizens of that school district have questioned the actions of this person. What kind of example really is she setting for her kids?

Our kids deserve a future that doesn't involve supporting an underlying illegal population which is draining our economy to subsidize a foreign economy that is dependent upon us to fix their problems. Our kids deserve to be free from a future in which the ability to speak Spanish is mandatory for them being able to be employed here in our own country. Our kids deserve a country that being a legal citizen has more rights, privileges and benefits through legally gained work than those who aren't legal citizens. They also deserve a life in which our borders are protected from those who aren't coming here to make a buck, but are intent on creating as much death and destruction as possible.

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posted by Is It Just Me? at 8:27 AM