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February 27, 2016 12:00 AM

Pope hypocritical in decrying Mexico wall

I find it ironic that Pope Francis, as head of the Roman Catholic Church, an organization that makes millions of dollars and owns vast properties and pays no taxes, has the nerve to tell us that building a wall is wrong while living in a walled city.

He says we should take in immigrants while the Vatican takes in none.

If we do not secure our borders we will lose all that is great about this country. I am not against immigration, I am against illegal immigration.

When I lock the door to my house at night, it is not because I hate the people outside, it is because I love the people inside.

Jack Jokinen


Mail Tribune

Letters to the Editor, Feb. 27

A citizen's lament

How does a country allow its own citizens to leave? Has it no pride in its own people? Perhaps, it has no pride in itself! Has it done anything to encourage the people to stay? Or, has it maintained the "status quo?"

Mexico is the country that comes to mind immediately. Corruption, drugs and the cartel, and a huge facade of "macho" are all I hear about Mexico. And much talk about immigration. Also, other countries have established factories to assemble products as a place of employment. But what industry has the government initiated on its own?

Have their sanitation and transportation problems been solved? Are they going to let the country be known as the drug capital of the world? When have they sent equipment, medical supplies or other necessities of life to a country that has had a disaster? Where else can their people be assisted, and often encouraged, and many times "scammed" into heading for the United States? Finally, why is our justice system, along with the incarcerated population, being increased by Mexican nationals?

This citizen's lament was written on Jan. 6, but never mailed. Then, on Feb. 14, the Catholic Pope asked basically the very thing I am asking!

Tom Ehrhart



THE Advocate

Letters: Hypocritical pope protected by own wall

Feb. 26, 2016; 5:32 p.m.

The Vatican is legally a separate country, and the pope is its head of state. The chief executive of that small country has chosen to inject himself into an American election by criticizing one candidate for wanting to build a wall to stem the flow of illegal immigration.

To not appear hypocritical, I’m sure Pope Francis will soon be taking down the huge wall that surrounds his own little country.

When the refugees pour in, he can set up camping tents and Port O-Lets for them in St. Peter’s Square.

M. R. Franks
Attorney at law



LETTER: Why are we rewarding illegal immigrants?

4:01 p.m. EST February 25, 2016

Once again the Press has taken the side of “illegal” immigration with its Feb. 22 article “Fate of NJ immigrants rests with Supreme Court.” Not once was the word “illegal” used to describe people who were able to sneak across our border “illegally.”

Yes it is “illegal” to sneak into our country. They are breaking the law. Since when does the U.S. ignore federal laws that make it “illegal” to sneak across our border?

A man pictured in the article has four children, pays no taxes and probably didn’t pay anything toward a medical bill when they were born. Nor does he pay anything towards their care or schooling.

Who does pay? I pay, and you pay. My taxes and medical insurance, etc., all bear the brunt of this “illegal” immigrant’s “illegal” entry into our country. Rather than enforce our laws, the Democrats are going to give all of those “illegals” a free pass so they can get their vote.

Now New York City wants to give them the right to vote without any identification. It gets worse by the day.

Obama and his cohorts are trying to pass laws that make it OK to come here “Illegally” and to forgive those who have already done it. With the illegals’ votes, the Democrats will control our country for years to come.

Don Mullins
Long Branch



Cruz will be tough on illegal immigrants

February 25, 2016, 12:31 PM

Are you concerned about how illegal immigration is hurting our country, but want to know which presidential candidate we can trust to enforce our immigration laws?

Being from Maryland, I can assure you that we can't trust former Gov. Mayor O'Malley to enforce our immigration laws. In violation of existing federal law, Mr. O'Malley signed a bill in 2011 requiring Marylander taxpayers to pay two-thirds of the cost of a college education for illegal aliens who already received free taxpayer-supported education in the state's K-12 schools. He knew that when they graduated, they would try to work illegally in Maryland, but he wanted that.

At least we could trust Mr. O'Malley to be consistent in his beliefs — unlike Florida Sen. Marco Rubio. Mr. Rubio co-sponsored a very similar bill in Florida and in January said he "stands by that vote." He also says he wants to use e-verify and have businesses that hire illegal aliens fined.

How does that work? Mr. Rubio supports Floridians paying in full for 12 or more years of primary and secondary schooling for those living in Florida illegally, and then co-sponsored a bill to have two-thirds of their college costs paid for by Florida taxpayers. Where does he want them to work after Americans have paid tens of thousands of dollars for their education?

Maybe Mr. Rubio thinks we should encourage illegal aliens to stay in our country by paying for their education, but then when they are ready to give back, they should move back to their country to work legally. Or perhaps he doesn't really believe in e-verify, as he claims, at all.

As the Chairman of, I helped gather over 130,000 referendum signatures to take Maryland's bill to pay college costs for illegal aliens to the ballot. I care deeply about how this issue will affect the future of our country, and I trust NumbersUSA as a source of factual information regarding which presidential candidate would work to enforce our existing illegal immigration laws.

Senator Ted Cruz earned the highest rating for immigration enforcement from NumbersUSA out of all of the current presidential candidates, with an A score. Contrast that with Mr. Rubio's ranking of D.

Don't be fooled by name-calling or who can talk louder. Look at the facts. The facts are clear: Senator Cruz's record proves his commitment to enforcing our nation's immigration laws.

Neil C. Parrott, Hagerstown

The writer, a Republican, represents Washington County in the Maryland House of Delegates.


Savannah Morning News

Letters to the editor Thursday

Posted: February 24, 2016

Immigration creates burden for American taxpayers

Illegal immigration has affected our country in many ways. Jobs, housing, healthcare, security, education, law enforcement (jail, sanctuary cities, murder, police, courts, rape), insurance, traffic accidents, pollution, translators, the Federal budget, those living on borders to Mexico, food banks, unemployment benefits, food stamps, welfare, alien smugglers, fire, trash, drugs, kidnapping, wages, anchor babies, HUD properties, U.S. money sent back to the illegals’ country and earned income tax credit. These are probably but a few expenses that are picked up by the taxpayers. Not every occurrence listed affects everyone, because each state is different and therefore, the costs vary from state to state.

I am talking about illegals, the word defining these aliens and/or immigrants and not those who have entered our country the legal way.

Focusing on Georgia, the facts are as follows. An estimated 624,000 illegal aliens and their U.S. born children live in Georgia. They cost the taxpayers $2.4 billion. They pay an estimated $142 million in taxes collected by the state. This leaves a burden of nearly $2.26 billion and results in $768 per household headed by a U.S. citizen in additional taxes.

1. Education costs $1.67 billion and American teachers can’t get a raise?

2. Healthcare costs $318 million and American people can’t afford their medical bills?

3. Law and Justice costs $195 million and American families have trouble paying their lawyers.

4. Public Assistance costs $77 million and Americans are having trouble finding jobs.

5. General Government Services cost $138 million and Americans are having trouble getting adequate services.

This information is documented by the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), which can be found on the Internet.

Richmond Hill



Pope Francis doesn’t get United States

Wednesday, February 24, 2016 10:58pm

In his remark regarding Donald Trump’s wall against illegal immigration, Pope Francis showed a disturbing lack of understanding of what the United States is all about. Said the pope, talking about walls without bridges is not Christian.

What Thomas Jefferson termed “separation of church and state” is one basis of our Constitution. A more specific statement of this separation principle was issued by our Senate in 1797: “The United States is not, in any sense, founded on Christian religion.”

My first reply to the pope would be: In the United States, deterrents against illegal acts (in this case illegal immigration) have no obligation to be Christian or in any other sense religious. To that I would add that we are not obligated to be Christian in our attitude to those who break our laws. And another point: The pope was wrong about the lack of a bridge. The wall along our border with Mexico would be a barrier against illegal immigration. The bridge would be immigration by legal process. Put another way: If you want to immigrate to the United States, don’t try to jump the wall. Instead, use the bridge. That’s why it’s there.

Additionally, now a note of irony in the pope’s assessment of Trump’s wall. In his most often quoted assertion that there should be no relationship between church and state, Jefferson specified “a wall of separation” between the two.

Finally, the pope spoke hypocritically: That is, his pontification was judgmental. I recall that Jesus Christ, from whom the term Christian derives, cautioned us not to judge lest we be judged.

Tom Wright


LEXINGTON Herald Leader

FEBRUARY 23, 2016 6:46 PM

No to Muslim refugees

When there were a lot fewer people in this country, movement within was easier. I never heard of a case of road rage. Water quality was good to excellent; no one was looking for a good drink out of a bottle of water sold by a grocery. No one said anything about climate change or global warming.

I believe this country was full a long time ago. You don’t keep adding people to a full boat or elevator. I’m definitely against immigration.

Those who say “we are a nation of immigrants, so let in the Muslims” disregard the cultural differences. Europe let in many Muslim refugees recently, and a payoff was many sexual assaults during New Year’s celebrations.

The night that President Barack Obama had a meeting about more gun control and more background checks, a radical Muslim shot a Philadelphia police officer with a gun stolen from the police. Some seem to believe all is OK if only one percent of Muslims are radical or can be radicalized.

If there are 3 million Muslims in this country and one percent become radical, there are 30,000 bad ones. Is that OK with you?




Who pays for this education mandate?

FEBRUARY 23, 2016, 3:46 PM

Last year the Obama Administration's Justice Department filed a brief concerning illegal immigrants. According to the brief, it is not necessary to "document" your citizenship to enroll in public schools. On the other hand, the James City County-Williamsburg School system is proposing a new budget and there is a debate over need for another school. How do these stories tie together?

The proposed budget spends over $10,000 per child in James City County. According to my research the "illegal immigrant" population in James City County is approximately 1.2% which means James City County residents pay approximately $1.3 million a year to educate "illegal immigrants." The math looks like this:

11,000 total students X 1.2% of "illegals" = 132 students in JCC schools

132 students X 10,000 cost per student = 1.32 million dollars spent

Obama's policy mandates the citizens of James City County educate the children of "illegal immigrants" who, by the way, chose to violate the sovereignty of our border. It seems to me that James City County should send Obama a bill for $1.32 million a year, to cover this unfunded- mandate, after all, border security is the federal government's job.

I have one question for those who stand for "illegal immigration." It is undeniable that the immigrant who comes to our country illegally has broken the law. If the powers that be allow this transgression, which law can I disregard, as an American citizen, without prosecution?

Richard K. White



Refugees: Remember, charity begins at home

February 23, 2016

Charity begins at home. Once the needs of all Montanans deserving assistance in securing proper shelter, nutrition, education and employment have been met, it may then be time to review accepting undocumented and unvetted individuals from foreign lands into our state.

Ravalli County commissioners understand that, since being purged of liberals in past elections. Yet, a band of the usual suspects from Hamilton are in the process of securing signatures in support of Syrian refugee settlement in our area, via a MoveOn.Org-type petition. Politics at the county commission in Missoula are different than Ravalli, as is the city council thought process and other liberal agenda in that community.

A strong voice to accept refugees from unknown backgrounds into our area is both disgusting and disturbing, but what else can be expected from the liberal Democrats, in any community? Let each county take care of the needs of those less fortunate within their boundaries, before accepting those from out of country. Most certainly, charity begins at home.

Dave Hurtt,


Denton  Record - Chronicle

Letters to the editor, February 23

Pope should reserve judgment

There is a certain irony in Pope Francis urging America to accept more immigrants and warning us not to build a wall to keep them out. Vatican City, with a wall surrounding it, has some of the strictest regulations against immigration and has accepted one family this year — from Greece.

In the letter this paper published from Mr. John Ziegler, he states that the wall was built long before Francis became pope. True. But he is the pope. He can tear down that wall should he please. Further, Mr. Ziegler, in a letter that got everything wrong, says the pope did not attack Donald Trump directly but made a generic statement about people wanting a wall not being Christian. But the pope said specifically Mr. Trump is not Christian — a judgment he might want to reserve for our Lord on Judgment Day.

Paul Knopick,



LETTER: Crack down on those who hire illegal immigrants
February 23, 2016

The recent comments of Pope Francis concerning our treatment of those who try to get across our southern border and candidate Donald Trump’s reaction are very disturbing.

Trump and other Republican candidates want to stop illegal immigration, which most of us want. However, most of those who come across our border come to get a job and provide food for their families. But, we do not enforce our laws that prohibit the hiring of illegals because most of our companies want cheap labor. We have effectively recruited illegal immigrants, and putting up a fence at the border, before we change our policies concerning their employment, would be criminal.

If the pope really understood the carrot we provide to entice people across the border, he would have offered much stronger comments. While I’m not a Catholic, I recognize that the pope is a very special and decent human being.

Until recently, companies could argue that they didn’t have a timely way of checking information provided by prospective employees, but we now an Internet-based system.

We must enforce our laws against hiring anyone who is here illegally. But we must not treat those who we enticed across the border to provide cheap labor as criminals. Those who have provided cheap labor and did not commit crimes while here deserve special consideration and some path to citizenship.

Larry M. Smith

Tuesday, February 23, 2016 at 3:15 a.m.

A meaningful solution

I think enough is enough, hearing about how we are going to have a wall to keep out illegal immigrants and how each candidate is going to stop illegal immigration. A wall is just one way we could combat part of the immigration problem.

What about immigrants who come here legally but overstay the visit, slip into oblivion and become illegal? Candidates, what's your plan to control and stop this real problem? Not every illegal immigrant is walking over the desert or swimming in. Many are walking in with valid papers, through customs and border control, but disappearing after allowed visits.

Take away the incentive to be here illegally and working. Create a vetting system for employers, people like me to check the status of a potential worker. If an employer fails to check the employee and is found to have an illegal worker, fine the employer $100,000 per offense. Don't give employers a slap on the wrist. Make it true pain, not just the cost of doing business. Employers hire these workers and often pay no taxes out of their pay, hurting all of us.

This is a very simple, commonsense approach. Why isn't our leadership fixing it? Don't be duped by the talk. Ask for solutions that are meaningful and make sense. I hope business lobbyists wouldn't oppose such legislation, nor our political leaders, as this would bring us true control.

Also, if it's about fear of terror, why no talk about a wall on our Northern border? I don't want such, but why are we only looking at one border and making such talking points?

This is just a humble opinion from an employer and immigrant. I came here legally and became a citizen who also served in the military and now lives the American dream.

Bob Speiss

Pope Francis’ questioning of Donald Trump’s faith over immigration stance

By DP Opinion
The Denver Post
February 22, 2016

When the pope is willing to open Vatican City, which is defined as an independent country, to unlimited immigration, then he will have a right to criticize Donald Trump for trying to stem the flow of illegal immigrants into the United States. Until that time, the pope should confine himself to church doctrine rather than injecting himself into the U.S. presidential election.

John Dellinger, Aurora

This letter was published in the Feb. 23 edition.


Trump plan to secure borders mis-characterized by pope

FEBRAURY 22, 2016, 6:44 PM

I am neither a Donald Trump supporter nor a Catholic, but I am confused by the pope's recent comments in which he called into question Trump's Christianity.

Does anybody else find it odd that Pope Francis would question the faith of a candidate who supports the enforcement of immigration laws, but has not questioned the faith of those who support abortion on demand and the harvesting of baby parts?

Last I checked, the Catholic Church was against such practices. Although I admire and respect Pope Francis very much, it sounds like he should have reflected more before commenting. Perhaps if he looked into the matter more thoroughly, he would find that the U.S. has welcomed more immigrants and refugees legally into their country than any other country in the world.

The idea that an effort to prevent "illegal" immigration somehow precludes one from being Christian is unfair. I do not know the state of Trump's faith, but, in my opinion, the pope's recent litmus test is fraught with inconsistencies.

Of course, caring for those less fortunate is a Christian calling, but if the pope feels that protecting sovereign borders is not "Christian," than perhaps he should tear down the walls of the Vatican and allow refugees to take up residence in that state without restrictions.

Susan Meloff, Coral Springs