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"You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."

I just heard a woman interviewed on the radio. She was terribly upset about what she considered a horrible situation of police misconduct. "The police are supposed to protect us against vigilantes. But in New Ipswich and Hudson, the vigilantes have guns and badges."

I was disturbed. I've known small-town cops, and sometimes they can be abusive and swayed by their power. It's almost a cliche', the power-drunk small-town cop.

Oh, it's that story again. The horrible violation of human rights committed in those two towns? They found people driving without a license. Then, when they discovered they were also illegal aliens, they arrested them for trespassing.

That's right. That same old story. Police who are hired to enforce the law are lambasted for actually doing that.

Yesterday was a busy day for New Ipswich's Chief Garrett Chamberlain. He was given a plaque by a group of New Hampshire legislators, who have recently formed the New Hampshire House of Representatives Immigration Caucus, for his efforts to address the illegal immigration problem. And just as they finished up, he met with about 30 protestors (including the woman I quoted above), who presented him with a petition telling him he shouldn't concern himself with the laws regarding immigration.

But back to that woman. I just looked up the word "vigilante," and it's defined as "one who takes or advocates the taking of law enforcement into one's own hands." That seems to me that it pretty much excludes police officers from being vigilantes.

I wish to hell that this woman, her fellows at the "protest," and a few annoying commenters here would simply be honest and spell out what they do want, instead of simply whining and name-calling.

I can understand why they're reluctant to do so. It's easier to attack the other side than put up your own proposals. It requires a bit too much effort to actually come up with their own plan and defend it; why not simply keep attacking the other side's positions until they either put up something acceptable or simply give up? I spelled out my own plan here. Let's hear some alternate plans.

If you actually have them.


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Comments (19)

<a href="http://imdb.com/ti... (Below threshold)

The Princess Bride is one of our favorite movies! Excellent!

And the new immigration rules sound excellent as well. Do you think the Dread Pirate Roberts would accept deportation? I bet he would, being perhaps the most polite pirate you may have ever seen...

Actually, wouldn't the woma... (Below threshold)
yetanotherjohn:

Actually, wouldn't the woman either be a vigilante or at least be advocating vigilantism. She doesn't want the public laws enforced, rather she wants to define what the laws are that would be enforced.

If you are accepted as a le... (Below threshold)
penny:

If you are accepted as a legal immigrant you will be required to learn English in a reasonable period of time.

It's devisive politically, socially and economically to not insist on all citizens speaking the common language. It's not that much to ask for the privilege of citizenship.

How about showing some preference for immigrants that actually have money and business skills. How many of the "great unwashed" do we really need in a highly competative global economy anymore?

I like a lot of Jay's propo... (Below threshold)
mantis:

I like a lot of Jay's proposal for dealing with the immigration problem (but definitely not the landmine part), and don't have a dramatically different idea right now. But I'm wondering, since it keeps showing up, what is the point of this in New Ipswich? The Chief started charging illegals who were pulled over with trespassing because INS told him to let them go. So it seems to me that while this may be personally gratifying for some people, applying trespassing fines to illegal immigrants doesn't really do anything about illegal immigration. Since I bet the court costs outweigh the two hundred or so dollar fine, there doesn't seem to be much point, other than as a publicity stunt. Am I wrong?

If you are accepted as a... (Below threshold)
mantis:

If you are accepted as a legal immigrant you will be required to learn English in a reasonable period of time.

English isn't an official language here, friend. What would you do about immigrants who already have citizenship whose English is poor or nonexistent (or can read and write but do not speak English well)? What would you do about towns like El Cenizo, TX, where Spanish is used almost exclusively? What about immigrant parents who chose to teach their child (a natural citizen) their native language but not English (not too common, but it happens)?

mantis, immigrant children ... (Below threshold)
penny:

mantis, immigrant children do/should have to present to school. english may not be the official language, but it is the language of commerce/science/higher education here. to avoid english is to risk failure economically. if you are an immigrant that isn't willing to make that kind of committment, why be here?

english may not be the o... (Below threshold)
mantis:

english may not be the official language, but it is the language of commerce/science/higher education here. to avoid english is to risk failure economically.

Traditionally, as I understand it, the goal of most immigrants was to come to America, work hard and provide a better life for their children (as is the goal of most Americans). This often meant (and means) low-wage jobs and not much financial success, but enough so that their children had better opportunities than they did. Commerce, science, and higher education rarely made a difference to adult immigrants who served as manual labor, same with their lack of fluent English. Nowadays of course we have many adult immigrants who come here for higher education, but we still have plenty of labor immigrants, especially from Mexico and S. Amer. They, like the Irish, Italians, Polish, and countless other groups in the past, tend toward cities and neighborhoods populated with their own people who speak their native tongue. English is often just not that important to these people (though it is important that their children learn English, of course). Your proposal would put pressure upon productive, hard-working people who want to attain citizenship to learn a language they don't need. There is a reason that we do not have an official language in this country. I understand that the history and traditions of this country are not as important to you as other considerations in this "highly competative(sic) global economy", but the unwashed masses were instrumental in securing our position in that economy. To deny them would be simply unamerican. And of course the immigrants you speak of that "have money and business" skills are the rich, and they don't have nearly the incentive to move to the land of opportunity.

Of course we're talking about immigrants who go through or desire to go through the process of attaining citizenship, since your proposal really does not address illegal immigration at all.

As far as not teaching their children English, I doubt that's really an issue. I just happen to know a Chinese couple who are homeschooling their child and only teaching him Chinese (they're strange). Interestingly, I also know a couple in China that are teaching their child English as his first language (a smart move).

Here's a real simple starti... (Below threshold)

Here's a real simple starting point for a policy: if you're here illegally, you have to leave. NOW. Doesn't matter how you got here, what you were studying when the visa expired, or who employs you as a nanny, gardener, factory worker, whatever. If you have children born here, they are citizens. They can stay. But you leave. You are welcome to apply to come here legally. But for now, you leave. You also leave a photo, DNA sample and fingerprints on your way out, to be kept in a database available to ALL law enforcement. You get caught here illegally a second time, you get deported again. Third strike, you're out. Permanently barred from seeking legal entry. You get a year in prison, out you go again. Fourth time, three years. Fifth time, ten years. Sixth time, 20 years. Couldn't cost much more than welfare, medical care, crime, etc. we're already paying for illegals. And at least we'd know where they were. If there were a real threat of NOT getting ahead here, there'd be a lot fewer illegal aliens.

......but the unwashed m... (Below threshold)
penny:

......but the unwashed masses were instrumental in securing our position in that economy. To deny them would be simply unamerican

Whoa. The frontier ended a long time ago, so did lots of unskilled worker jobs. Our population is reaching 300 million and resources aren't infinite. That was then. This is now. Who says that it's un-American to deny entry to anyone? Or to choose a different criteria if it fits the country's needs? We don't owe someone a place here because of "unwashed masses" status. Our Constitution doesn't address immigration. It's not a right of anyone outside our borders. Immigration is historically an economic phenomena.

...the immigrants you speak of that "have money and business" skills are the rich, and they don't have nearly the incentive to move to the land of opportunity.

Rubbish. Lots of "rich" people live in countries with unstable governments and henious tax laws. Canada made a policy of attracting the Hong Kong "rich" and they came in droves. Check out Vancouver. Our quota system has been unfairly skewed away from Europeans for decades. One big problem in Silicon Valley was getting enough Indian software engineers during the boom.

I'd be real interested in your definition of "the rich" which I suspect will expose the core of your outrage at "un-American" behavior dribble.

I posted my ideas concernin... (Below threshold)
Nick:

I posted my ideas concerning immigration a few days ago on my blog here.

Basically, I would eliminate the policy which makes any infant born on US soil a citizen and replace it with one that would require at least one of the parents to already be a legal citizen for the infant to get citizenship.

I would also base all financial aid on the number of illegal alens crossing the border each year; as the number goes up, the aid goes down.

A wall with two razor-wire fences and a 100-yard killzone in between them would be constructed, complete with guard towers, machine guns and cameras, from Texas to California, as well as the Northern Border.

Finally, driver's licenses would not even be an option unless you are a citizen, period. If you are here on a work-visa, you should be able to use the driver's license from your home country for identification purposes. Using the license from your home country would eliminate the chance of the ID being used to prove fraudulant citizenship.

None of these proposals would do anything to prevent a person from legally immigrating to this Country. If it is too much effort to immigrate legally, we don't want you here.

Mantis, ever spend any time... (Below threshold)

Mantis, ever spend any time in Miami? I grew up in Hollywood, worked in Miami later on and saw, first hand, what happens when people don't bother to learn the language or to assimilate. Do you have any idea how unwelcome one can be in parts of Miami if you don't speak Spanish? How you can be right here in a country you were born in and can't read the road signs? You can't even go in a store and ask where the olives are. They make no effort to adopt any of the American ways of life, hole up in small communities and expect special consideration.

How many of these immigrants comprise a minority of the local population yet the number of them on welfare is disproportionately larger because they don't speak the language and employment opportunities are limited?

They put their kids in schools that have to bear the burden of teaching them English (that costs money), collect welfare checks, use our hospitals and let medicare pay the bills and put an undue strain on the whole social construct. And many of them aren't even citizens.

No, my friend, what you say sounds so ideal and one would think it enriches us to be so diversive, but it doesn't work that way.

My Grandmother came here from Cuba in the late 40's and in order to gain her citizenship she had to be able to speak reasonable English. Now, there are those who say it isn't fair to ask this. What's the big deal? All we're asking is to learn the language and remove the one barrier that keeps us separated even though we're right next door to each other. We're not telling them they can't cook their favorite ethnic dishes or can't wear a head scarf or can't speak their language to each other.

It's not too much to ask.

I always find it ironic tha... (Below threshold)
shark:

I always find it ironic that the same bleeding heart types who champion unchecked immigration to this country also are among those who deplore the way we "stole this country from the Indians"

But what happened with the Indians wasn't an invasion, or a declared war. Nope, it was just the effects of massive, unchecked immigration into an existing society. The indians lost the resulting cultural and armed struggles that happen anytime 2 cultures clash like that.

So they're either for unchecked immigration, or they're against it. But they don't have the discipline of mind to think it through. If they thought about it, they'd probably side with those wishing to check immigration. (Then again, maybe not as these types of people invariably hate America and wouldn't mind seeing it destroyed)

Basically, I would elimi... (Below threshold)
penny:

Basically, I would eliminate the policy which makes any infant born on US soil a citizen

Bingo. An excellent point, Nick. I lived 8 years in a border state and crossing the border pregnant to have the baby in the US happens.


FloridaOyster, my son-in-law is Cuban whose iimmigrant parents minimized Spanish so the kids would have an advantage. It worked. All are college educated and don't consider themselves hyphenated Americans with bogus victim issues.

We don't owe someone a p... (Below threshold)
mantis:

We don't owe someone a place here because of "unwashed masses" status.

I didn't say we owed them something, I say we shouldn't restrict people simply because they don't have a certain level of education. Say, hypothetically, that tomorrow all illegal immigration stopped and all illegals were magically deported. Don't you think we would have a large problem with underemployment in some sectors of manual labor and such? Would we fix that by allowing immigration of people with business degrees? No, we would need the poor and uneducated, who obviously want to come here.

I'd be real interested in your definition of "the rich" which I suspect will expose the core of your outrage at "un-American" behavior dribble.

In this case my definition of rich is people in poor countries that have degrees and experience in finance and business (this is of course rich by the standards of that country). I don't know what outrage you are referring to, as I have expressed none.

As for this: Basically, I would eliminate the policy which makes any infant born on US soil a citizen.

It's not just policy, its the 14th amendment, and that would take a lot to change.

It's not just policy, it... (Below threshold)

It's not just policy, its the 14th amendment, and that would take a lot to change.

No change in the 14th would be required, it would just need to be interpreted correctly.

If millions of illegal aliens deported themselves, that would probably end up being very good for the economy. New machinery would be invented, and those industries that are inefficient would go out of business or be forced offshore. Not to mention all the other benefits.

Even if those people and companies that profit off illegal immigration prevail and manage to lie to enough people about us needing all these illegal aliens, there's no upside at all to letting Mexico be our chief cheap labor supplier. In fact, I'd imagine there are several smart kindergarteners who learn about the Mexican-American war and our other history with that country and figure out the dangers inherent in allowing Mexico to basically resettle their "Lost Territories."

If smart kindergarteners can do it, maybe one day politicians and pundits will eventually figure it out.

Wow, just think about the i... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Wow, just think about the immense environmental improvements if millions of illegal immigrants were sent elsewhere (wherever, just out of the United States).

We'd have less crowding, less public expenditures, improved educational conditions, more housing, far better healthcare, the phones would be answered, the lawns would be pruned, we'd have less overall garbage, less cars on the roads, more resources for everyone who is a citizen (or legal resident) of the United States.

I like the idea of disallowing citizenship for locally born children unless one or both their parents are citizens.

And, about the language issue, it's very stupid that mostly Spanish-language illegal immigrants insist on maintaining Spanish as their native tongue because just look what that's done to the cultures they've left behind. I once asked a guy who claimed to be "an Indian, not a Mexican" who was from (illegally, also) central Mexico, I asked the guy what happened to HIS native tongue, why HE and his had abandoned their native languages (for Spanish) and he had no idea. He didn't even know what is native or original "Indian" language was, nor could he speak, read or write it.

The Phillipines is a great example of a culture run amok because there are so many there from village to village who refuse to speak anyone else's language and maintain their own -- and you have a tiny island (relatively) nation with hundreds of different languages, and most villagers being unable to comprehend what their neighbors are saying, much less to enjoy improved conditions by working together (which involves improving communications).

I still say that illegal immigration is more about nation building by illegal immigrants than anything else...and it's quite disprespectful to the nation as it was and is remaining. Which is the point.

Another little know fact is that most of California and the Southwest U.S. was not desirable to most of Mexico and many parts of CA were even deemed "unlivable" to all but European missionaries and those that followed. Towns were built, suddenly Mexico wanted the place.

Seen that happen time and time again...that once improvements are made, someone else seems to think they deserve to have what someone else worked to build and create.

All most Americans have ever asked is that people respect laws and property boundaries. I have never found those expectations too outrageous and even barely defining what civilization is. That illegal immigrants despise the expectations speaks more about them in the derogatory than it does anyone else.

We don't need new laws, we ... (Below threshold)
bullwinkle:

We don't need new laws, we just need to enforce the ones we have. Any attempt at enacting new laws will only add loopholes and that's exactly what we don't need. The government failing to enforce the laws we already have is the most reliable and best form of assistance the illegals get.

Thanks for the read.<... (Below threshold)

Thanks for the read.

Interesting post.

I reposted a link on FreeSpeech.com

-Steven G. Erickson aka Vikingas

I agree with bullwinkle ...... (Below threshold)
Zsa Zsa:

I agree with bullwinkle ...




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