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May 2011
Steve K
Wed, Aug. 24th, 2005 06:17 am
Illegal Immigration

I am curious as to what people think about illegal immigration.  Of course, I am all for authorized entrance into the nation -- it's how the vast majority of folks came to be in this country!  I am split on illegal immigration, though.  The more charitable Christian side of me wants to be compassionate, and understands how the poor and desperate would want to make a better life for themselves.  The more legalistic American side of me says that people should play by the rules, that plenty of people go through the proper steps to become citizens and you shouldn't take shortcuts or try to cheat the system.  They don't pay taxes or have insurance, so a lot of costs aren't accounted for or picked up by a large group of people.  In the post-9/11 era, I think it's important to keep track of who's around and what they might be doing.  I just can't help feeling like Muhammed Atta & crew got away with wanting to know how to fly planes without taking off or landing because people were complacent and didn't want to be politically incorrect.  I don't know, though.  Any thoughts?

Current Mood: grumpy grumpy


Thomas Jackson
Wed, Aug. 24th, 2005 12:02 pm (UTC)

I'm with you ... i'm torn onthe issue.

Right now I think that it's better to be fair/by the rules with government stuff, but compassionate in person to person relationships.

Like I think health care should be free... but to citizens. That way we're not the soup kitchen for the world. It's a wonderful ideal, but Christianity (specifically or ethically) shouldn't be governmentally supported. It has enough truth/rightness to stand on its own two feet. People should be swayed by its 'superiority' in that sense rather than forced to in order to get free health care of their own.

I got off subject. Illegal Immigration is illegal. Stupid restatement I know. I think as a compromise, there should be an effort to make the 'legal process' of becoming a citizen as hospitable as possible, but you're correct, efforts have to be made in order to maintain the safety of all (new citizens, old citizens, and hopeful citizens).

It can't be a free-for-all.


Wed, Aug. 24th, 2005 02:56 pm (UTC)

This is a touchy issue for me as well. I don't mind people wanting to come into our country in a legal fashion, working here and sending their money back home where it can better the lives of their families. What I am not for is *giving* non-citizens medical care, or *giving* them college educations. We have a health care crisis in this country, and I think it's a shame that we, one of the richest nations in the world, can't seem to take care of our own. American citizens are dying, being turned away, because they don't have health insurance, or can't afford to pay their medical bills up front. And many other average Americans are having a hard time affording even community college. I'm currently helping my little sisters through their first semester of college at IPFW. And it's not cheap by any stretch of the imagination.

Last week at a local hospital, the wife of a friend of mine had outpatient surgery on her toe to remove bone chips and drain an absess. It cost her well over $12,000 for that proceedure. The hospital called the night before her surgery and asked her for a credit card number to pay for the proceedure. She refused. The first thing the hospital did after admitting her the next morning was to send her to the Financial Dept. to collect on the proceedure. They had estimated all of the costs and estimated how much her insurance company would pay, and wanted what they thought was due them before she could see her doctor. When she complained, the Financial officer pointed to a framed article on her wall that told of how many medical institutions are asking for payment up front before allowing full admittance. The officer mentioned that almost all of the hospitals in the Fort Wayne area are doing this now. If you are a person of means, or someone who has a decent available credit limit, this is probably not such a big deal. But imagine if my friend was struggling to get by. His wife would've been turned away until she could afford to pay their total cost estimate up-front, and the consequences of such might be that she could've lost her toe -- or worse! I find that unconscionable!

I was actually thinking about the illegal immigrant issue a lot lately because of a story I read last week in the Washington Postabout a decision made by the local government in Herndon, VA to create a special place for illegal immigrant day workers to gather for hiring purposes. They may as well be giving Federal laws the finger! "They're people, too." Herndon politicians cried. Well, yeah. So? Have them enter the country LEGALLY and then I have no problem with them being here, or gathering someplace as day workers. They're no threat to me. But many of these illegals are criminals. The MS 13 gang has been particularly bad in this part of Virginia, and almost all of those gang members are here illegally,. Give them jobs! Give them free medical care! Give them free educations! Just don't complain to me about the crime in your area and your decreasing tax base because you're welcomeing all illegals -- who don't pay taxes and have not had their backgrounds checked -- with open arms.

Anyway. I'm not good at explaining myself, so I'm hanging it up for now.


Wed, Aug. 24th, 2005 03:01 pm (UTC)

"Of course, I am all for authorized entrance into the nation -- it's how the vast majority of folks came to be in this country!"

I'm not sure the vast majority of people who moved here were 'authorized.' I'm pretty sure if they had sought the approval of the people already living here, they might not have ended up here. However I also think this is water under the bridge.

So often immigration policy is confused with race-related issues. A lot of people supporting more severe restrictions are doing it because they want to keep "Them" out of the country. So, motives are important.

Do I think immigration is what has allowed terrorists into the country? No. I think we have the right laws in place, they simply aren't implemented consistently and carefully. If they were, I think there would be fewer issues.

Wed, Aug. 24th, 2005 04:32 pm (UTC)

I am torn about this issue too - my family immigrated here almost a century ago. I can understand wanting to make a better life yourself and your family, but I do think that it should be through legal means. I work for the federal government and I certainly know that the gov't is not always easy to work with. I also know that I work hard for my paycheck and I don't want others to take advantage/abuse services that are funded by tax dollars. As I'm sure everyone can agree with, it's hard enough to make ends meet.

Working in the emergency management field - hazmat or not, I get to attend a lot of lectures and seminars about these issues. It's my job to help communities/counties/states to prepare for and be able to respond to a hazmat incident. More often than not, at some point, a terrorist attack (like 9/11, a bio-release, etc) is considered a hazmat incident. These people are not all here illegally and they spend years finding our weaknesses. 9/11 wasn't planned in a day - it took years. We've made huge strides to protect our airports and planes, but it doesn't take a plane to achieve their goals - unfortunately.

Just some food for thought...
- Do trains carrying commercial/industrial materials go through your town?
- How many tankers full of chemicals drive on your city streets and highways every day...and do you know what's inside?

Honestly, I'm not paranoid. It's just my job.

Zach E
Thu, Aug. 25th, 2005 12:27 am (UTC)

My paternal family immigrated here a couple of generations back through ellis island. Really there wasn't much "authorization" involved. They took down your name and they said "welcome to america!" You weren't really required to jump through the legal hoops you do now. Of course back then in the 1910's you didn't need a lot of authorization to get a job or anything. Nowadays, movements between countries are much more restricted. With good reason, but still its sad that there isn't the trust that there used to be, and america doesn't have the reputation it once did as the land of opportunity. Most of the opportunities have been taken by other people. I think that there are too many legal hoops to jump through for people to come here from other countries, but i do agree that we need to monitor what kind of people are coming into this country for statistical purposes if not only for security purposes. No one is a pure american. I love the fact that america truly is a melting pot.