Thursday, March 30, 2006

Inanities at the Immigration Bill Protests

After a couple of days of local protests, it seems the local school system has had enough of the students skipping school. Thursday's Potomac News article Protesting students may be punished notes that while high schools tended to look the other way on Monday and Tuesday, by Wednesday they were ready to mete out punishment, much to the chagrin of students (who possibly are worried about the impact to their parents, who have to accompany the truant children in order for them to go back to school).

I'll have to admit I do have a certain respect for the students from Stonewall Jackson High who walked over 4 miles to get to the Manassas Park shopping center, where they were joined by Manassas Park High and Osbourn Park students. But that respect is lessened when I read what they were saying. For example:

Sporting a T-shirt emblazoned with an image of revolutionary icon Ché Guevara, 16-year-old Osbourn Park sophomore Alex Iraheta ... said: "I have family here who don't have documents. I don't want them to be sent back."

I wish I could it was stupid to publicly identify family as illegals. But there's little danger of any immigration officials taking action to track down these people.

More quotes:

"Why can't I come to school until 12 p.m.?" shouted Judy Vasquez, 16...
"We are here to make our voices heard, and we will keep on protesting until we accomplish what we want," said Montoya, who also participated in the protest at Freedom on Monday while she was on suspension.
[Montoya] said her goals are to "represent her people," and to protest legislation that would require schools to verify students' immigration status. The bill to which she referred -- HR4437 -- contains no provision requiring schools to check immigration status.
All the Spanish and the black people eat lunch downstairs, and the white people eat upstairs," Vasquez said of the Stonewall cafeteria.

"We do that to ourselves," objected her classmate Julio Ayala, 16.

"What about the dress code?" Vasquez insisted. "If a Hispanic girl shows just a little bit of skin, you get a referral. White girls can wear skirts as short as they want."

"We are the hardest-working people here," Montoya said. "How can you deny someone who wants a better life for their families?"

But the most incomprehensible revelation comes at the end of the article:

The demonstration was peaceful -- as student protests Monday and Tuesday had been -- until approximately 2:15 p.m., when the demonstrators were approached by a large, white man wearing a navy blue Fire Department of New York T-shirt and blue jeans.

"Wetbacks," shouted the man, according to eyewitnesses, "get out of this country. Go protest back home."

[Ricardo] Juarez [National Capital Immigration Coalition], an eyewitness, said he told the man to leave and called the police. The man left in a Dodge Dakota pickup truck before the police arrived.

So let me get this straight. A group of High School students leaves school without permission for the 3rd straight day. They gather in a parking lot without permission to hold a protest for which they have no permit. A man drives by and, obviously incensed by the sight of a mass of truant high-schoolers waving Mexican and other foreign flags, yells at them (in admittedly offensive language).

And the man sent by the Schools to mediate with the protesters calls the cops to arrest the one man protesting the protesters?

Free Speech for me, but not for thee. From people who are happy to come to this country and enjoy all the benefits, and then talk of "our people" and wave the flags of other countries that they fled to come here.

If we caught and deported people here illegally, we could open up hundreds of thousands more slots for people who are willing to go through the process of getting legal access to our country. The illegal line-cutters make it worse for america, and worse for all those would-be immigrants who respect our laws and want to do things right.

The thought that we would reward these people for their selfishness and lawbreaking is anathema to me. I can't imagine what is wrong with the Senate to even consider allowing these people to buy their way into the immigration line. I can understand a guest worker program for those who are in critical needs jobs which we can't immediately fill with others (I don't think there are as many of those as the President, but I can see the possibility). But we can't reward them further with citizenship.

Anyway, I would be surprised if many of these illegal immigrants even WANT citizenship. They seem to love their countries of origin more than this country. Many are just here working until they make enough money to be big shots back home. They don't assimilate, they don't learn the language, they don't try to fit in because they have no intention of fitting in. They just want to put in their time, make their money, and leave.

What I fear more than anything is a backlash from the protests, and to the Senates capitulation to amnesty. I don't like the house bill, I don't want these people to be felons. I don't want people to turn against legal immigrants. I want to try to put our society back together. I want to find a way to break down the cultural barriers, to assimilate the legal immigrants into our society, to bring them to the point where they love our country as much as we do. We can't do that if a majority of our citizens think all immigrants are foreign-flag-waving, law-disrespecting rabble-rousers.

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