Official blog of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Pennsylvania
Labels: Hazleton, immigration
posted by ACLU of Pennsylvania at 7/26/2007 02:14:00 PM
How very sad that local cities, counties and states can not do anything to protect their tightened and overburdened budgets and taxpayers.A federal system is not supposed to be a federal monolith. Local control always leads to more responsive and better government. I can't very well make much of a difference in D.C. with my few personally elected representatives, but I can certainly speak directly to my local school board or county board and influence their election outcomes.So, not surprisingly, my vote and influence counts much more on a local level than a federal level. And local governments need the ability to serve its overburdened taxpayers. It's the very definition of civil liberty... the freedom to govern ourselves.If only local governments were allowed to enforce local minimum wage and payroll reporting laws so that any immigrant (even if they're already criminals by being here) can at least make the same wage any other person can and pay the same level of taxes, then it'd be much fairer, and we could take on the responsibility of educating their children and providing local hospital care.But no one seems to want to do that. I mean, what would be the point if you can keep paying illegal workers under minimum wage. What exactly is the point of minimum wage then? Is it just to assure ourselves that Americans won't be able to get the lowest paying jobs... since we'll just be giving those to people we're allowed to pay less than that to?It's amazing how little sense every side and both parties make when it comes to immigration. No one wants to look at the real problems (minimum wage means minimum wage and fair tax collection to provide services to all). Instead, they want to side with some group and just give them an unfair share (corporations or illegal workers).I wish there was no such thing as illegal immigration. I don't see the need to criminalize the act of coming into our country. However, we have quotas and a line. I don't like it, but it is the law. So line-jumping is criminal and against the law. No matter... we can't fairly address an open border to all who want to work until we agree that minimum wage and fair tax collection will apply to ALL who work here.America continues to lose... and lost again today.
WE WON! All of us! All RIGHT!
Anon,The reason that we do not have rational, enforceable immigration regulations is because of the small minority of nativist bigots who are hyperventilating about "illegal immigration." They are basically small-minded people with a real mean streak. The way to get RATIONAL, ENFORCEABLE immigration regulations is to REMOVE their bigotry from the debate.Encouraging "local control" of immigration is simply encouraging mean-spirited bigotry. Nothing will be gained other than pain and suffering for Latinos and Hispanics - whether they are immigrants or (like native Americans) were here before the pilgrims. By calling them what they are - bigots - we might be able to shut them up or shame them and then we can work out a real solution.
Where did I loose the comprehension of the word "illegal"? Perhaps my education system failed. Maybe the ACLU should sue on behalf of the majority of American's that do not understand the word "illegal".
lost, if you can point out where in the Constitution it refers to "illegal aliens," then we'll all defer to you.There's no such thing as an "illegal alien," just like there's no such thing as a "partial birth abortion." It's a buzz-word, intended to install bias into any argument in which it's used. I'm not a fan of "undocumented immigrant" either because it's just too darn crunchy, but it's a lot closer to the truth. The fact that they're in the country illegally does not strip them of all rights - just as one illegal action on your part does not suddenly strip you of yours. Also, FYI for all you know-nothing, kneejerk nutjobs: The ACLU is not trying to keep anyone in the country. We are only working to protect civil liberties - if the Fed removes "illegals" in a way that doesn't violate the Constitution, then it's not something the ACLU will even touch.
That's it. I'm filing a complaint with the ACLU because you personally attacked me by labeling me as a "know-nothing, knee-jerk nut job(s)." My rights have been violated. Oh, by the way, the definition of "illegal" is: "not according to or authorized by law." Therefore, they have not been authorized by law to be here. Hence, "illegal" fits the term. Maybe the Merriam-Webster dictionary should be sued for slandering these poor creatures.Now, to take it a step further, let's identify the word "alien". According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, "alien: belonging or relating to another person, place, or thing, relating, belonging, or owing allegiance to another country or government."So now we are left with incorporating both of these words to come up with the term "illegal alien." Just so you don't feel all perplexed that I'm using the simple argument, let's see what Cornell Law Department has to say about immigration (http://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/index.php/Immigration)"Federal immigration law determines whether a person is an alien, and associated legal rights, duties, and obligations of aliens in the United States. It also provides means by which certain aliens can become naturalized citizens with full rights of citizenship. Immigration law serves as a gatekeeper for the nation's border: it determines who may enter, how long they may stay and when they must leave.The United States has a long history of immigration laws. The Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952 (INA) with some major, and many minor, changes continues to be the basic immigration law of the country. The most significant ammendment to the INA was in 1965 which abolished the natural origin provisions, and established a new quota system.For INA purposes, an "alien" is any person who is not a citizen or a national of the United States. There are different categories of aliens: resident and nonresident, immigrant and nonimmigrant, documented and undocumented ("illegal" )."So where is the buzz word that you speak of? I call it definitions. Now, let's talk about who the "illegal aliens" are:Right now, I hate to tell you that the majority of them are Mexicans--or should I say Mexican-non-Americans so that I don't hurt your feelings?Now let's address how the ACLU defends the Constitution (straight from the website):IN BRIEF The national ACLU is neutral on the issue of gun control. We believe that the Constitution contains no barriers to reasonable regulations of gun ownership. If we can license and register cars, we can license and register guns. Most opponents of gun control concede that the Second Amendment certainly does not guarantee an individual's right to own bazookas, missiles or nuclear warheads. Yet these, like rifles, pistols and even submachine guns, are arms. The question therefore is not whether to restrict arms ownership, but how much to restrict it. If that is a question left open by the Constitution, then it is a question for Congress to decide. ACLU POLICY "The ACLU agrees with the Supreme Court's long-standing interpretation of the Second Amendment [as set forth in the 1939 case, U.S. v. Miller] that the individual's right to bear arms applies only to the preservation or efficiency of a well-regulated militia. Except for lawful police and military purposes, the possession of weapons by individuals is not constitutionally protected. Therefore, there is no constitutional impediment to the regulation of firearms." --Policy #47 Clearly the ACLU picks and choses which Constitutional Amendments to support, challenge, and fight. Is it perhaps that they don't have the intestinal fortitude to use common sense? Hence, don't bring an argument up on the Constitution when it clearly states in the 2nd Amendment that "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."
I correct myself, lost, you're not know-nothing. At least, you have access to the web.Has the ACLU ever actually worked to undermine civil rights based on the second amendment? No. They've just never gone to battle either way. I'll also point out that the second amendment is SUPER open to interpretation, so if you're really using that as an argument against our defense of other amendments, like the fourteenth, that's pretty weak.As for your definition, you yourself point out that the actual definition is "undocumented," so thanks. Whether you want to use the term "illegal alien" instead is up to you, but lots of people use nasty words with applicable dictionary definitions all the time, and they're welcome to do so. The first amendment allows every American to express his or her half-baked, jingoist opinion. Fortunately, the rest of us don't have to listen.
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