Thursday, July 26, 2007

"The genius of our Constitution"

Expect posts throughout the day and tomorrow in reaction to the Hazleton decision. I just read a few of the latter pages of the decision and found this quote particularly powerful:
The genius of our Constitution is that it provides rights even to those who evoke the least sympathy from the general public. In that way, all in this nation can be confident of equal justice under its laws. Hazleton, in its zeal to control the
presence of a group deemed undesirable, violated the rights of such people, as well as others within the community. Since the United States Constitution protects even the disfavored, the ordinances cannot be enforced.

Andy in Harrisburg

Labels: ,


Anonymous Anonymous said...


3:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Whether people are disfavored because of political views, illegal acts, or for discriminatory reasons, we should all be assured fair treatment under the law. Having a constitution and basic laws that apply to _all_ people is what makes us a free country.

4:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Illegal immigrants are not "dis-favored". They are criminals. They have no rights under the constitution.

4:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This insane post is a good example of why the ACLU, for all the virtues of its cause, is held in such contempt by so many Americans.

Saying that illegal immigrants have the same rights as American citizens is as absurd as saying that the next door neighbor who breaks into your house has the same rights as you do. He doesn't. He has unlawfully entered your house and you have the right to forcefully remove him. Similarly, illegal immigrants have unlawfully entered this country and we Americans have the right to remove them.

This ruling did not uphold the rights of Americans. It squashed our right to self-protection and self-determination.

Seriously, if the ACLU is going to stand up for the "rights" of illegal immigrants over those of American citizens, then the should change their name to the Universal Civil Liberties Union, for the purpose of intellectual honesty.

5:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just another case of a federal judge ignoring the law and putting his personal prejudice above all else. "Illegal Aliens" are just that, illegal and should not have any rights.

5:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This traversty should be over turned on appeal.

And in hindsight there was actually no need to pass a law in Hazleton. Any American city has the right of self defense against foreign invasion. Why would any American municipality need a law to repel foreign invaders?

5:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Illegal Immigrants are not American citizens, but citizens of Mexico (Nicaragua, etc.). The rights of American citizens does not apply to citizens of other nations. As I type this it reminds me of just what an absurd world we live in that it even has to be said. This is a sad day, but hopefully Hazleton will triumph in the end.

6:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A lot of know-nothing commentary.

"They are criminals. They have no rights under the constitution."

It is obvious that criminals, of all origins, have rights - what bunk.

"THE JUDGE IN THIS CASE IS WRONG IN HIS DECISION" & "Just another case of a federal judge ignoring the law and putting his personal prejudice above all else."

He is just affirming what the Supreme Court ruled a long, long time ago. Not wrong. Not personal. Its the law of the land.

The only reason for the Hazleton law was to give grief to an ethnic minority. The folks who post this rubish are all a bunch of biggots who simply have found a socially acceptable way to express their biggotry.

6:41 PM  
Blogger ACLU of Pennsylvania said...

Actually, illegal immigrants *do* have rights under the Bill of Rights. If you look at the text of the Bill of Rights, it specifically uses the word persons, NOT citizens. Of course there are certain rights that apply only to citizens, like the right to vote, but the right to due process applies to everyone present in this country.

Sara in Philly

6:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tell me, is the ACLU now going to go after the city of New Haven for offering ID cards to illegal aliens in violation of federal law. From what I've seen of this decision, it certainly seems that if the City of Hazleton can't usurp the authority of the federal government to enforce federal law, then the City of New Haven can't violate federal law themselves to help illegal aliens avoid it.

6:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh, and Alan, tell me, what "ethnic minority" is "illegal"? Do you mean that some particular ethnicity or race has an unfortunate propensity to break our immigration laws?

6:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Illegal aliens are not legal persons.

7:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We need more men like Joe Arpaio. Arapio is truly doing God's work in the protection of his fellow countrymen.

These weak nonsense has got to stop.

7:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry. I meant "This" weak nonsense has got to stop.

I truly hope that America can come to its senses before it is too late. I guess a bright spot is that the border fence received funding for the full 700 miles today.

Now we need more fencing, a large armed military presence on the border with tough rules of engagement, and a new President.

7:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The U.S. Constitution clearly indicates that it is the responsibility of the Federal government to protect the states from invasion.

This the U.S. government is not doing. Therefore, the states and the cities in the states have a right to protect themselves from invasion (and yes, literally millions of people from Mexico and other countries pouring across our borders IS an invasion).

The city of Hazleton and every other city being invaded by illegals should publicly declare that they will ignore all federal judge rulings as "unconstitutional" as the Federal government is not protecting them from invasion and therefore the cities themselves will have to do so.

7:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

RE: Ethnic Propensity

Mexico, while nowhere near the poorest country in the world, does however, share a very long boarder with the RICHEST country in the world. What you call an "ethnic propensity" is actually the very understandable ECONOMIC propensity that all human beings share to better their lives.

On the other side of the boarder, the same economic propensity exists, which is why we pay Mexicans and other economic migrants come here and help us out.

This isn't a big mystery. What's your point? (Assuming, of course, that you have one.)

8:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

RE: "protect the states from invasion"

Yet more half-baked, right-wing militia drivel. Hopefully, while you are playing paint-ball with your beer-belly pals, the Dept. of Homeland Security will mistake you for a terriorist and protect us from YOU!

Don't expect hebias-corpus to do you any good.

8:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The US Constitution protects only lawful American immigrants and citizens. It does not protect illegal aliens.

What has happened to the ACLU? It has gone completely bonkers the past decade or so. What a shame.

9:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow. It took Alan all of five seconds to play the "racism" card, and then to turn around and vomit his ignorant, bigoted hatred for American patriots.

Did you cry yourself to sleep when your beloved "hard-working undocumented pre-citizens" were recently denied amnesty, Al? You guys were smacked down pretty humiliatingly, not to put too fine a point on it.

The Constitution does say something to the effect that the United States "shall protect each of [the states] against invasion," frootloops. And with 20 million plus invaders camping out on our dime, I'd say we're under invasion.

Americans are beginning to wake up, and the day of rabid America-haters like Al is drawing to a close.

- An Attorney

10:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

At least when the Romans abandoned England, they did not also forbid the English from protecting themselves. The ACLU and the Federal judge have taken care of this national survival instinct, to forbid us from even defending ourselves from invasion. This Federal judge has ignored the fact that the law was only a response to the government's refusal to do its constitutional duty to protect the people from invasion.

The Federal judge puts his jackboot on the throat of Americans, so that the invaders can continue to pour in. The ACLU thinks this is a good thing. How can we even think the Federal court continues to represent the American people or the nation? Continued credibility and respect due the federal court? Why?It has become as traitorous as the ACLU. Robert in Nashville

11:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

RE: The "Racism" Card

It took me a lot less than 5 seconds... I've been calling bigots and racists what they are for years. If it walks like a duck, if quacks like a duck...

People who live in urban areas where there is a lot of ethnic diversity are not hyperventilating about this issue. It is only a "problem" for small-town / small-minded folks who suddenly discover that there are brown people moving into the area. The reason it is pursued under the umbrella of "illegal immigration" is that racism and bigotry are anathema in political discourse and this is the only acceptable way to frame the issue. This is the same thing that happened in the '80s when Asians moved out of the urban areas and showed up in small towns. After a while, almost everyone got used to it and calmed down. The same thing will happen this time around. In the mean time, the haters and bigots are exploiting the situation.

Nope, I didn't cry when "amnesty" was denied. Its just businesses as usual. Basically, we have an informal and exploitive "guest worker" system that fills our country's economic needs while avoiding direct confrontation with the bigots and racists. We don't have a reasonable, rational, formal system because of the bigots and racists who are fixated on ethnic identity and cultural purity. Basically, this is as close to a "win-win" that a politician who has to both cater to fringe extremists (oh, excuse me, "patriotic Americans") and at the same time respect economic reality is going to get.

As far as a real solution is concerned, the only way it will come about is by removing the racist bigots from the discourse. When their bigotry is generally recognized for what it is it will be easy to come up with a system that is more or less fair to everyone, and to tweak it as needed.

9:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ok, before you all start waxing intellectual on the US Constitution, try learning something about the damn thing.

The Constitution outlines the ways in which the Federal government may operate - it is NOT an outline of the rights of a Citizen!

For God's sake, the primary tenant behind the document is the Government does not give the people their rights - the people empower their government. Does the phrase "endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights" ring a bell??? How about the tenth amendment?

You all claim to love and defend this country, but you don't have the first idea what this country is about. You're race warriors using patriotism as an excuse, and it's disgusting. If you really cared about the United States, then you would be ACLU members, defending the Constitution.

11:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


While chastising some of you for being ignorant about the Constitution, I messed something up myself.

The amendment I meant to refer to was the ninth, not the tenth.

"The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people."

11:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'll take a so called racist over a traitor any day.

The ACLU are traitors to America and the Constitution.

1:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If state and local governments can make decisions about what behavior is appropriate to their particular circumstances, what makes this any different? If, like San Francisco, Hazelton decided that they didn't want PVC piping installed in buildings would a federal judge have to be involved? Of course not. So, if you're already NOT supposed to help people illegally here STAY here, what is the problem? I admit it's goofy to try to interpret the decision in rational ways, and especially on this site but, we all must continue the good fight in spite of the rabid anti-americans that post and read here. True patriots will shoulder though the lemmings that inhabit this site and make our points, then leave you all to your socialist drivel.

11:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Because there is no federal law pertaining to the use of PVC piping. If there were such a law (as there is in the case of immigration) then yes, a federal judge WOULD have to be involved in that decision. Hazleton can't decide to install lead pipes in all their buildings, precisely because there IS a Federal law that applies.

That's why Hazleton is a town and the United States is a country. Hazleton doesn't just get to write whatever the hell laws they feel like, regardless of what the Federal government says.

1:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ok the PVC pipe is a bad example. The federal laws are clear, harboring or helping illegal immigrants to STAY here is a crime.
So Hazelton was/is trying to do what the federal government is unwilling to do. Again, what is the problem? Do people actually hate our LEGAL poor so much as to support the millions of invaders who lower wages and undermine working conditions to the point where we'll soon be back to the days of the robber barons. It seems absurd that many who read this site are on the side of big business and against our native poor. I realize that the ACLU was founded by a socialist/communinist and really doesn't give a damn about the USA, or it's citizens, but come on this is about greedy businesses hiring people at slave wages undermining our own citizen's ability to make a living wage and work in a relatively safe enviroment. You guys are just on the wrong side of this.

7:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm continually baffled by the idea that defending the US Constitution can somehow be "communist." Yes, Roger Baldwin was personally a communist supporter, but does that make every endeavor he even embarked on a "communist" project? Was every tuna sandwich he fixed in his life a "communist sandwich?" What could be more American than defending the Constitution?!

As for your issues with illegals in Hazleton... First of all I think your assumption that the presence of illegals in Hazleton was hurting the "legal poor" - other cities that have seen sudden deportation have NOT seen a drop in unemployment, they've generally just seen jobs go unfilled - but that's really moot. The ACLU is not fighting for any of the human interest stuff, or on the side of anyone, immigrant or citizen. They are fighting for the Constitution, and that's it.

I get it that people don't like the way the Federal government is handling this, but hey, welcome to my life. I don't like the way the Fed is handling taxation, or health care, or gay rights, or foreign policy - the list goes on. It doesn't entitle me, or my city, or even my State, to declare myself above Federal law and write my (our) own legislation. The only option we have, good or bad, is to address our Federal government by voting, writing and calling my Rep and Senators, and protesting in the public eye. Believe me, I know it's frustrating, but that's the way it is.

Here's an idea: why not help put the ACLU on the RIGHT side of this issue? Make yourself a sign and go protest against the Federal government's lack of action on illegal immigration - or go protest outside a Wal*Mart, the "greedy businesses hiring people at slave wages undermining our own citizen's ability to make a living wage and work in a relatively safe enviroment." Make sure you stay on public property and don't violate any noise ordinances or fight with anyone. If you're lucky, you'll get arrested (remember not to fight back) and the ACLU can sue on your behalf. There's only one drawback: you will have to leave your computer.

10:29 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why doesn't the ACLU take the Federal Government to task for failing to enforce the federal laws with respect to illegal imigration? Or does the ACLU have its own agenda as an open border advocate.

9:43 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home