Archive for the ‘Sociology’ category

Why Do You Think They Call It “Illegal?”

May 9, 2007

Maybe I just don’t get it. Or maybe I need to stop applying logic when trying to figure out the arguments of those arguing, no make that demanding, that illegal immigrants have rights and protections under U.S. laws. You see, to my way of thinking, if you made it to this country illegally then you broke the law and should not be here. Right? Simple. Slam dunk. End of argument. Goodnight!  Well, not quite apparently. 

Last week we were treated to the spectacle of rallies across the nation (although the rallies were significantly smaller than last year) from right here in Detroit to the apparent illegal immigration hotbed of Los Angeles. The marches featured the usual supply of left-wingers looking for a cause, any cause, so they could feel important. Which raised another thought, namely, are any of these professional protestors actually employed or am I supporting them with my tax money? Oh well, that is an issue for another day. 

The rally in Los Angeles received significant media attention when police were forced to use riot control methods to disperse the crowd which had initiated the confrontation by hurling rocks and bottles at the police. One organizer of that rally blamed it on “anarchists” who had infiltrated the rally. Should it not give pause to the rally’s organizers that their “cause” is attracting anarchists? Should this not be a signal that maybe it’s time to reevaluate your position? It seems to me that a lawless brigade of anarchists may not be the best vehicle for convincing Americans that illegal immigrants are simple, law-abiding, honest folks.  

I was also completely dumbstruck over the arguments being made by the protestors. The main point that these protestors seemed to be trying to drive home is that we should immediately grant citizenship to the thousands (millions?) of illegals because, well, they have families to support here (and elsewhere) and perform such a valuable service to our society. Really? 

They trotted out the tired argument that these illegal immigrants perform work that Americans choose not to perform. Of course there have never really been any verifiable studies to support such an assertion. I suspect that if the illegals were properly deported today that those jobs would indeed be taken up by the legal denizens of our nation. 

Our country is a nation of laws. We are expected to follow the laws or face the consequences. Granting citizenship to our illegal guests would only serve to further undermine the very fabric of what makes our nation so great. Yes, our nation was built on immigrants, no make that, legal immigrants. 

We have a defined methodology for becoming a United States citizen. I have seen the naturalization process at work and it really is a touching experience to watch the dedication that honest, hardworking immigrants put into becoming a citizen of our nation. The study and the dedication and the pure joy of taking the Oath of Citizenship is quite possibly one of the most emotionally satisfying moments someone can experience. Those who follow the legal methods of entry and citizenship should, and are, warmly embraced by our nation. 

In these post 9/11 days, it is mind-boggling to imagine people actually supporting illegal immigration and postulating that illegals have rights and protections under our law. The recent arrests of six Muslim extremists (boy does that sound redundant) who were planning attacks on our troops at Fort Dix should only bring this home further. It is believed that several of them were here illegally. 

Illegal immigration is one of the most pressing issues for society today. Not all illegal immigrants enter this country with the overt intention of inflicting harm on us, but illegal immigration does have a deleterious effect on our country no matter how it is parsed. From undermining our laws to the most overt threats, illegal immigration is a serious issue that needs to be addressed.

We have the laws in place. The question becomes, do we have the courage to enforce our own laws?

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Intolerance and Petulance on Campus

April 7, 2007

One of the great misnomers is the idea that free speech is embraced and welcomed at some of our nation’s largest and most prestigious universities. From “speech codes” to out and out attempts to silence the views of those not considered enlightened by today’s intelligentsia, campuses have become a hovel for petulent, impertinent adolscents who desperately need guidance from grown-ups. Unfortuantely, those masquerading around on campus these days as the grown-ups only instill such behavior.

Our campuses after all are now run by the same people who were the radicals from the 1960s but the difference from them and most of the people who grew up in that tumultuous era is that they never really got out into the real world. These people stayed in their cloistered little world of academia, apparently oblivious to the real world surrounding them. They see every little temper tantrum from today’s students as a throwback to their era. 

This has never been more evident than in the brouhaha that transpired at Columbia University this past October when an unruly mob stormed a stage and successfully shut down a speech by Minuteman Project founder Jim Gilchrist who was invited by Columbia’s chapter of the College Republicans, an officially recognzied campus organization. Gilchrist was there to speak on the hot-button topic of illegal immigration and his views did not set well with the various and sundry group of radical student groups who apparently feel that it is more important to shut down the opposition than to engage in meaningful discourse. Or maybe they are simply incapable of such discourse. But should not we expect more of students at an Ivy League school like Columbia?

Just 45 seconds into his presentation, Gilchrist was confronted onstage by several members of this angry mob which proceeded to destroy the lectern, trash the stage and hoist a banner reading “Minutemen, Nazis, KKK, Racists, Facists Go Away.” Several people rush the stage, fistfights ensue and according to one report a female student is kicked in the head.  Security appears, the curtain goes down and the melee appears to be over, but not quite.

Outside, a student who had the audacity to be a supporter of the Minutemen, is encricled by the mob, shouting “racist go home,” before security again arrives on the scene to break things up. The mob though is clearly pleased with itself, chanting, according to another report, ” Asian, Black, Brown and White, we smashed the Minutemen tonight!” Intolerant diversity in action. Such a moment of pride.

Nearly six months after this incident, Columbia finally decided to issue so-called “punishment” to the ringleaders. Befitting a University that has seen its prestige level crash and burn under the leadership of Lee Bollinger, the school issued the lightest punishment possible, almost the equivalent of the now infamous “double secret probation” punishment issued by Dean Wormer at Faber College.

The once credible school initially gave only “warnings to three students” which is the lowest level of discipline as such a “warning” only means that it will be noted on students’ transcripts and that any “future violations will be treated more seriously.” Only after this information became public, these students’ punishment was “upgraded” to censure which means that if the student gets a second warning, they will be suspended.

One of the organizers of the chaos that ensued that October night recognized it for what it was “a light punishment.” Monique Dols called it a “slap on the wrist. It’s a victory for free speech and anti-racism.” Another student, Andrew Tillett-Saks, was determined to have engaged in “conduct that places another in danger of bodily harm.” Some places would consider that to be assault. But on the glorious ivy league campus of Columbia, it’s all perspective. After all, that other person was just a racist, anti-immigrant neanderthal. No need to get worked up over those types!

Anybody who was ever young knows how convinced they were at that age that they were right and nothing could convince one otherwise. These young people on campus are being ill-served by the very people who are supposed to be the ones shaping our future leaders. Without guidance, direction and backbone, our campuses have become home to the kind of behavior most would consider intolerable at a day care center.