Thursday Thoughts

Thought #1

How quick do you think federal authorities can evacuate Tampa Bay, Florida?

As FEMA and other government agencies prepare for what is now being called the worst oil spill disaster inĀ  history, plans to evacuate the Tampa Bay area are in place.

The plans would be announced in the event of a controlled burn of surface oil in the Gulf of Mexico, or if wind or other conditions are expected to take toxic fumes through Tampa Bay.

Let’s see… The oil has already started killing forms of life we haven’t even discovered and they are talking about a “controlled burn”? I’m no expert, but something tells me that lighting the entire Gulf of Mexico on fire is a really bad idea.

Thought #2

The entire Gulf of Mexico might not be on fire yet, but it sounds like someone’s working on a lethal solution for endangered sea turtles. Watch this…

If I heard him correctly, BP brought in a group of people to help rescue the turtles, but then in frustration that the rescuers were “present”, they cut the program short. I think we have a President who voted “present” for a long time. Stupid is as stupid does.

Thought #3

Speaking of stupid… If you looked in the dictionary under the word “stupid” you might find the photograph of a county supervisor from Wisconsin.

Peggy West was speaking during a hearing to decide whether or not Milwaukee will boycott Arizona because of their new immigration law. This is what she had to say about the great state of Arizona.

If this was Texas, which is a state that is directly on the border with Mexico, and they were calling for a measure like this saying that they had a major issue with undocumented people flooding their borders, I would have to look twice at this. But this is a state that is a ways removed from the border.

Did you catch that? She actually said that Arizona is not a border state. Then, when someone called her on it she said she “misspoke”. That’s not misspeaking, that plain, unadulterated, genuine stupidity.

No Reason At All

If I had to move tomorrow, and pick any other state to live in except Georgia, I would have to choose Arizona, Arkansas, Idaho, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, or Utah.

One of America’s national organizations fighting against illegal immigration is announcing that 17 states are now filing versions of Arizona’s SB 1070 law which is designed to help local police enforce America’s existing immigration laws.

That’s right. I want to live in a state that tries to make sure that laws are adhered to. No, it has nothing to do with race. It has nothing to do with discrimination. It has nothing to do with racial profiling. I simply want the state I live in to enforce existing law. It really is that simple.

Numerous national and local polls indicated that 60-81% of Americans support local police enforcing immigration laws.

I bet 60-81% of Americans also want their local police to enforce all of the other laws while they’re at it too. Isn’t funny how we try to single out this one law, from one state, rather than address the issue at hand. Our current laws, especially those pertaining to illegal immigration, are not being enforced. What’s wrong with ensuring that those existing laws are actually enforced?

I can’t think of one good reason not to enforce current laws. Not one single reason.

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People In Glass Houses…

By now you are familiar with Arizona’s SB 1070, right? Oh come on, I’m sure you’ve read it. The media won’t stop talking about it or the boycotts that have been announced because of it. SB 1070 is the new immigration law that everyone under the sun is squawking about. Schools won’t allow games to be played and cities won’t allow business to be done with the state of Arizona because of it.

Just in case you forgot what the law states, let me refresh you…

(a) Every law enforcement agency in Arizona shall fully cooperate with the United States Immigration and Naturalization Service regarding any person who is arrested if he or she is suspected of being present in the United States in violation of federal immigration laws.

(b) With respect to any such person who is arrested, and suspected of being present in the United States in violation of federal immigration laws, every law enforcement agency shall do the following:

(1) Attempt to verify the legal status of such person as a citizen of the United States, an alien lawfully admitted as a permanent resident, an alien lawfully admitted for a temporary period of time or as an alien who is present in the United States in violation of immigration laws. The verification process may include, but shall not be limited to, questioning the person regarding his or her date and place of birth, and entry into the United States, and demanding documentation to indicate his or her legal status.

(2) Notify the person of his or her apparent status as an alien who is present in the United States in violation of federal immigration laws and inform him or her that, apart from any criminal justice proceedings, he or she must either obtain legal status or leave the United States.

(3) Notify the Attorney General of Arizona and the United States Immigration and Naturalization Service of the apparent illegal status and provide any additional information that may be requested by any other public entity.

(c) Any legislative, administrative, or other action by a city, county, or other legally authorized local governmental entity with jurisdictional boundaries, or by a law enforcement agency, to prevent or limit the cooperation required by subdivision (a) is expressly prohibited.

Does that ring a bell? It should, especially if you live in California. You see, the section of code quoted above actually comes from the California State Penal Code, section 834b. I replaced ‘California’ with ‘Arizona’, but other than that slight modification it is the actual law, word for word, which has been on the books in California for quite some time.

With a law like this on the books, which is so very similar to the new law in Arizona, could someone please explain to me why the city of Los Angeles is boycotting the state of Arizona?

Stop, Look, And Show Me Your I.D.

Now that you’ve had time to digest everything the media is telling you about the new Arizona Immigration Law, and you’ve had time to read it (you did read the link I posted here on my site didn’t you?), Let’s look at the meat of the bill.

NO OFFICIAL OR AGENCY OF THIS STATE OR A COUNTY, CITY, TOWN OR OTHER POLITICAL SUBDIVISION OF THIS STATE MAY ADOPT A POLICY THAT LIMITS OR RESTRICTS THE ENFORCEMENT OF FEDERAL IMMIGRATION LAWS TO LESS THAN THE FULL EXTENT PERMITTED BY FEDERAL LAW

FOR ANY LAWFUL CONTACT MADE BY A LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICIAL OR AGENCY OF THIS STATE OR A COUNTY, CITY, TOWN OR OTHER POLITICAL SUBDIVISION OF THIS STATE WHERE REASONABLE SUSPICION EXISTS THAT THE PERSON IS AN ALIEN WHO IS UNLAWFULLY PRESENT IN THE UNITED STATES, A REASONABLE ATTEMPT SHALL BE MADE, WHEN PRACTICABLE, TO DETERMINE THE IMMIGRATION STATUS OF THE PERSON. THE PERSON’S IMMIGRATION STATUS SHALL BE VERIFIED WITH THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT PURSUANT TO 8 UNITED STATES CODE SECTION 1373(c).

Take a moment to read that part one more time. I’ll wait.

Arizona is simply enforcing federal immigration laws at the state level. Federal immigration laws that the feds are not (and have not been) enforcing.

The federal government changed the law in respect to state issued identification a few years ago.

By now people should have noticed that their renewal of their license in 2005 or later required much more documentation than was required prior. The reason for that is because the Federal Government set a series of guidelines that must be met for the issuance of IDs in order for the federal government to accept them.

Since all but one state is in compliance with these federal guidelines that is why a valid license from all states except one is proof someone is here legally.

In every state, but one, when you produce your state issued identification you are essentially proving your citizenship status at the same time.

As a white male in America I have been subjected to this very thing my entire life.

When I wanted to drive a car, I was told I needed proof of who I was in order to obtain a driver’s license. When I applied for grants and student loans, I was told I needed proof of my identity in order to receive either one of them. When I write a check, purchase alcohol, or use my credit card, I am constantly asked for identification. But most importantly, when I travel to Mexico, crossing at a legal border crossing, I am asked for my identification when I return. I am forced to prove my identity when I enter my own country.

I have lived my life pulling out documentation and providing proof of my identity. Why should it be different for anyone else? Many states already have laws on their books requiring you to carry (and produce when asked) photo identification, so how is this law any different?

Many people consider this bill to be racial profiling, but let’s be honest here. It’s not like we have hundreds or thousands of Irish people crossing our southern border on a daily basis. It’s only natural that some people consider this new law racist since, coincidentally, a large number of those here illegally are of the same race.

The new Arizona immigration law isn’t really new (or news) at all. The 17 page bill simply gives authorities the right to double check someone’s citizenship status while engaging them for other reasons (traffic violations, investigation of crimes).

If I am not mistaken, I am also asked for my identification if I am pulled over for a traffic violation or suspected of committing a crime.

Obviously, our country was founded by immigrants, but illegal immigration shouldn’t be tolerated. If we’re willing to ignore one crime, how long will it take until we begin to ignore all of them?

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Misreported Law Subject To Much Scrutiny

This week I participated in a poll from Right Wing News for conservative bloggers on the Arizona immigration law, illegals, & legal immigration.

The new Arizona law is probably one of the most, if not the most mis-reported laws I have ever read about. There are so many falsehoods being reported about this law that it makes me laugh. For years, people have complained about the mainstream media and the total lack of facts in many of their reports, yet now many of those same people are using the mainstream media as their source as they lambast this new law.

I highly recommend reading the entire Arizona Immigration Law which you can find at the Arizona State Legislature website. If you would rather download the PDF version or print it out, you can also download the Arizona Immigration Law in that format.

The poll, conducted by John Hawkins at Right Wing News, contained several questions ranging from “Do you approve of Arizona’s new immigration law?” and “Would you like to see your state implement something like Arizona’s new immigration law?” to “Do you believe the fence on our southern border will be completed while Barack Obama is in office?” and “Do you believe Arizona’s new immigration law constitutes racial profiling or discriminates against Hispanic Americans?”

You can find out the results of the poll over at Right Wing News.