illegal immigration

OFIR President returns safely from border tour

OFIR's President has returned from a week long intensive study of the Arizona/Mexico border.  Meeting with experts from Border Patrol, National Parks, DEQ, Fish and Wildlife, the Tohono O'odham Indian Nation and law enforcement officers from several agencies all along the border, Cynthia has gained a great deal of insight into the issues on the border.  Please check back for updates.


 

Is the Border Secure? Shocking Video Shows Otherwise

Just about a week ago, we were given a video exposing a major breach on the U.S./Mexico border near Lukeville, Arizona, located about 100 miles southwest of Tucson.  We checked its authenticity with our sources at the Department of Homeland Security who have confirmed that the video is real and was taken recently.  This was first posted by Cochise County Sheriff Larry Dever and see how, despite claims by the Administration, the border is far from secure.

border video

Our DHS sources have been able to determine from the clothes the men are wearing, the straps on their backpacks, and other things they're carrying, that these are indeed drug smugglers bringing hundreds of pounds of illegal drugs into the United States.

The fence shown here was built by the Bush Administration and part of a $1 billion contract with Boeing. Amazingly, the fence was designed to do exactly what the smugglers did. The fence panels slide inside two steel columns, but no one in the Bush Administration nor at Boeing even considered welding the panels to the posts, making it easy for smugglers to get through. What we don't know is if they failed to weld along the entire length of the fence or just in some areas.

DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano has testified before Congress, saying the border is more secure now than it's ever been. Administration officials boast about fewer border crossings and the effectiveness of thousands of more border patrol agents. But where are the border patrol agents in this video? And if there aren't any border patrol agents to see the illegal crossings, then the crossings can't be recorded.

NumbersUSA is currently pushing for a Congressional investigation into this major breach of border security. The fence needs to be fixed, and Boeing needs to pay for it!

We need all Americans to watch it and consider its ramifications. Whether it be smuggling of illegal drugs, national security, or illegal immigration, every American should be shocked and demand answers!

Video link at:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qdc-kv7nzaU

OFIR President to tour the Arizona - Mexico Border

Alert date: 
February 17, 2012
Alert body: 

The Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) is hosting OFIR's President and six others from around the country for a private, guided tour of the Arizona - Mexico border between Yuma and Tucson.  Experts from many organizations will travel with the group as they learn about key issues related to border security, drug smuggling, human trafficking, environmental impact and much more.  Check back regularly for updates as the trip unfolds next week.

Visit http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qdc-kv7nzaU for an introduction.  This video has been verified for authenticity.

 

Administration Appoints New Lobbyist for Illegal Aliens

In an effort to quell accusations by the open borders lobby that the Administration has not gone far enough with its administrative amnesty program, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced last week the creation of a new “public advocate” position for illegal aliens. Senior ICE Advisor Andrew Lorenzen-Strait, who was appointed as the new advocate, will serve as a point of contact for aliens in removal proceedings, community and advocacy groups, and others who have concerns, questions, recommendations or other issues they would like to raise about the Administration’s executive amnesty efforts. (ICEPress Release, Feb. 7, 2012)

The ICE announcement attempted to portray the creation of the Public Advocate position as part of the normal course of business.  “The creation of the Public Advocate position is another milestone in ICE's ongoing work to enact significant policy changes and improvements to focus the agency's immigration enforcement resources on sensible priorities…” ICE stated in its press release. (Id.

The new advocate will report directly to the Director of Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO), Gary Mead. According to the agency’s website, the public advocate’s role will entail:

  • Assisting individuals and community stakeholders in resolving complaints and concerns with agency policies and operations;
  • Proposing changes and recommendations to fix community-identified problems and concerns;
  • Alerting agency leadership to potential community stakeholder concerns with current or proposed agency policies and/or operations; and
  • Maintaining a collaborative and transparent dialogue with community stakeholders on the agency's mission and core values.  (See ICE Website, Feb. 11, 2012)

Ironically called a “public” advocate, ICE created the new role solely to placate amnesty advocates in an election year. Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX), called the Administration’s creation of the new position outrageous. “This is just further proof that the Obama administration puts illegal immigrants ahead of the interests of Americans,” he further added in a press release. “The Obama administration’s lack of immigration enforcement allows illegal immigrants to steal jobs away from American workers and now their in-house lobbyist for illegal immigrants costs U.S. taxpayers more money.” (Rep. Smith Press Release, Feb. 7, 2012)

Does pandering pay off?

Offered a stark choice on the illegal immigration issue, Florida Latino Republicans today broke nearly 2-1 for the candidate with the firmest opposition to amnesty and the strongest support for enforcement.

Mitt Romney's margin of victory among Latinos was nearly double his margin of victory among Whites.

For those of you who supported other candidates, you have to at least feel some real satisfaction that on the issue of immigration, Mitt Romney the winner was painted as by-far the strongest opponent of amnesty. You may have preferred another candidate -- including the President -- for other reasons, but most Florida voters went to the polls with the idea that Romney was indeed the toughest on immigration.

Pro-self-deportation Romney won the overall vote by 46% to 32%.

But pro-self-deportaton Romney won the Latino vote by 54% to 29%.

It was a strong rebuke of the majority of media commentators who insist that Latino-Americans can only be won by promising rewards for lawbreaking.  It added a sign of much greater dignity in the rule of law for the Latino population than most in the media are willing to give it.

(Read my full analysis blog and join the discussion at: https://www.numbersusa.com/content/node/13013)

Nobody can say that Floridians -- both Latino and non-Latino -- weren't provided a clear choice on the immigration issue. Immigration may not have been a top issue for most of the voters but it was one of the most publicized parts of the debates and contest.

Newt Gingrich campaigned hard among Latino voters with his continuing call for legalization and work permits for many illegal aliens and his pounding criticism of his opponent as "anti-immigrant" for opposing legalization.  Mitt Romney in two debates continued his campaign-long opposition to long-term work permits and legalization of illegal aliens and created a national media sensation by talking about "self-deportation" as the top goal for the illegal population.

WINNING MARGIN

Whites -- Anti-legalization Romney won by 13 percentage points

Latinos -- Anti-legalization Romney won by 25 percentage points

The results don't prove that Romney's anti-amnesty stance helped him with Latinos. But the results DO prove that a candidate can stand for the rule of law and for preferring unemployed American workers over illegal aliens and still win Latino support.

And that is a wonderful victory of the image of Latino-Americans and for all of us in our battle to say that unemployed Americans should have priority over illegal aliens for U.S. jobs.

Tonight's victor, Romney, put the issue in exactly those terms in the Jacksonville debate last Thursday night. Romney said: "You know, our problem is not 11 million grandmothers. Our problem is (APPLAUSE) ..... Our problem is 11 million people getting jobs that many Americans (and) legal immigrants would like to have."

Although that got one of the most enthusiastic rounds of applause of the debate, nearly all of the news media refused to offer that quote to the public. I believe that is because most reporters and editors in the news media refuse to believe it is possible that Americans and legal immigrants already here would take the construction, service and manufacturing jobs currently held by illegal aliens.

OFIR will offer two scholarships for college bound students

Alert date: 
March 1, 2012
Alert body: 

For the first time in OFIR's 11 year history, two scholarships for the most outstanding essays regarding illegal immigration will be awarded to college bound seniors and undergraduate students enrolled in college.  Scholarship awards of $1,000 for a first place winner and $750 for a 2nd place winner will be awarded Saturday, May 12, 2012 in Salem.  

OFIR's goal in offering these scholarships is to get young people to seriously examine the consequences of unfettered illegal immigration and excessive legal immigration and how that might impact their future. If you know of an Oregon resident student that is a US citizen, please let them know about this opportunity.  

Visit "Immigration Topics" for the complete application

Applications are due April 15, 2012.

 

Oregonian publishes telling op-ed article

Alert date: 
January 23, 2012
Alert body: 

Please take the time to read the excellent op-ed article titled "Rethinking deportation: New immigration rule would erode law, harm families", that appears in today’s Oregonian. 

It was written by Rick LaMountain. (Rick is OFIR Vice President).  Rick writes how the Obama administration is undermining immigration laws by administrative rule making.

In his article Rick quotes author Thomas Sowell as saying; “The purpose of immigration laws and policies is to serve the national interest of this country.” It certainly is not in the best interest of our country to reward and encourage lawlessness.

By undermining existing immigration law and rewarding individuals who openly break those laws, President Obama is debasing the American concept of the Rule of Law.

Click here to read the op-ed or visit our website's letters section:  http://www.oregonlive.com/opinion/index.ssf/2012/01/rethinking_deportation_new_imm.html

Senator Merkley is out of touch

Oregon's Senator Merkley will be holding Townhall meetings throughout Oregon.  Please plan to attend one near you! Ask the Senator why he won't support Representative Lamar Smith's nationwide, mandatory E-Verify bill that would ensure any newly created jobs would go only to citizens or those authorized to work in the US.  Do NOT let him get away with his standby answer that E-Verify has too many problems.  It is over 99% accurate.  It's free to businesses that sign up and it's easy to use.  One can only speculate why any business would try to prevent a mandatory E-Verify bill from passing.  Ask Senator Merkley if he is working for Oregonians or illegal aliens.  Senator Merkley maintains a D- grade with Numbers USA.   He needs to hear from you!

For more information go to:    http://www.numbersusa.com/content/my/tools/grades/list/0/RECENT/or/A/Grade/Active

Linn County Town Hall
Wednesday, January 11, 2012, 11:30am
IBEW Central Electrical Training Center
33309 Hwy 99E
Tangent, OR, 97389

Lincoln County Town Hall
Wednesday, January 11, 2012, 5:00 pm
Toledo Fire Department
285 NE Burgess Rd
Toledo, OR 97391

Tillamook County Town Hall
Thursday, January 12, 2012, 1:00 pm
Bay City Arts Center
5680 A Street
Bay City, OR 97107

Clatsop County Town Hall
Thursday, January 12, 2012, 4:00 pm
Cannon Beach Community Hall
207 N. Spruce St.
Cannon Beach, OR 97110

Washington County Town Hall
Tuesday, January 17, 2012, 10:00 am
Tigard Public Library
13125 SW Hall Blvd.
Tigard, OR 97223

Clackamas County Town Hall
Tuesday, January 17, 2012, 1:00 pm
Hope Village
1535 S. Ivy St.
Canby, OR 97013

Columbia County Town Hall
Tuesday, January 17, 2012, 4:45 pm
Clatskanie Middle/High School
Norm Makela Commons
471 NW Bel Air Drive
Clatskanie, OR 97016 
 

Illegal Immigration Is Immoral

Illegal immigration has been in the news daily during the Republican primary campaign, even though a depressed economy here, stronger border enforcement, and vast new finds of petroleum in Latin America may soon radically curtail the number of illegal entrants into the United States. But for now, conservatives are warned that coming down hard on illegal immigration (i.e., enforcing federal statutes) would lose them the all-critical Hispanic vote. Meanwhile, in California, some legislators want to grant de facto state amnesty to illegal residents. But lost in the continuing furor, pro and con, is the moral dimension. The strange notion has developed that supporting something as immoral as illegal immigration is somehow ethical. It is not, and there are several reasons why.

1. Entry-level labor. Real wages for the working poor in the United States have been stagnant for decades, especially in the Southwest — largely because of the influx of millions of illegal aliens, who, at least for a time, will work for considerably lower wages than Americans. In the last three decades, we have written off an entire class of Americans on the premise that "They won't do the work." Here in a California of 10 percent–plus unemployment, everyone from farmers to landscapers complains from experience that the citizen poor cannot or will not work manually. But in theory, why should they, when employers have a constant option of undercutting their wages, and when expanding entitlements make entry-level work an unattractive alternative, both financially and socially? We have expanded social services and decreased workers incentives, and then we wonder that a subsidized welfare class lacks the spunk of people crossing the border illegally from an impoverished Mexico. Yet there is something abhorrent about the present American notion of giving up on incentives to promote American labor — among which would be the prevention of cheaper foreign workers entering the country illegally and undercutting wages. Advocacy for illegal immigration is now a de facto lack of concern for the American underclass.

2. Ethnic chauvinism. Illegal immigration is primarily a Hispanic phenomenon, in general from Latin America and in particular from Mexico. Advocates for open borders, other than cynical employers, are today largely Hispanic activists or those who seek political advantage by catering to them. They argue for changes in or relaxation of immigration law, both out of an understandable sense of ethnic solidarity and real concern for the downtrodden, and, yet in some cases, out of a more dubious notion that the more Latin Americans who enter the country by any means necessary, the more power will eventually accrue to Spanish-speaking American elites who represent the collective interest. Or as Los Angeles County supervisor Gloria Molina put it in an infamous 1996 rant, "We are going to talk to all of those young people that need to become registered voters and go out to vote, and we're politicizing every single one of those new citizens that are becoming citizens of this country. And what we are saying is by November we will have one million additional Latino voters in this country, and we're gonna march, and our vote is going to be important. But I gotta tell you, there's a lot of people that are saying, I'm gonna go out there and vote because I want to pay them back!"

Immigration lobbyists, remember, are not really worried about the plight of Chinese or Indian students who overstay their visas. Somehow ethnic chauvinism has been cloaked with a thin humanitarian veneer, when in fact the concern is not for illegal aliens per se, but for a particular category of illegal aliens. Try a thought experiment. Ask the National Council of La Raza whether it would support offering fast-track citizenship to a commensurate 15 million economic refugees from an imploding Europe or an impoverished Africa, even on conditions not imposed on those from Latin America, such as legality, mastery of English, a college degree, and proof of sustenance. Unfortunately, present advocacy for illegal immigration assumes that race and race-based identity politics shall determine the winners and losers in the immigration lottery. And that seems to me immoral to the core.

3. Legal immigration. Hundreds of thousands from Asia, Africa, and Europe wait patiently and in legal fashion to apply for citizenship. "Crowding to the front of the line" is not a cheap talking point, but an accurate description of those who ignore the rules while others suffer. In essence, the United States has established that several million foreign nationals have precedence for citizenship by virtue of the facts that (a) they have already broken the law in entering the U.S., (b) they are currently residing illegally in the U.S., and (c) they are of a particular ethnic group. To question why a Ph.D. in electrical engineering from India must wait for years to gain permanent residence in the U.S. while someone from Oaxaca without a high-school diploma is exempt from such scrutiny is deemed illiberal; in fact, the reality, not the description of it, is the real illiberality.

4. The law. Much of the discussion focuses on the fact that illegal immigration flouts federal law. But the problem is less the initial entry into the U.S. without documentation, and more the succession of law-breaking that needs must follow. If one crosses the border illegally, then one is not likely to state the truth on dozens of subsequent official documents, from matters of identification to certification of employment and entitlement. At each juncture, the law itself is insidiously eroded and the calls for it to be ignored increase. The real immorality is not a law that is found oppressive, but the notion that anyone, most ironically a foreign national, has the right to pick and choose which laws he will obey. No civilization can survive when the law hinges on individual interpretation. If foreign nationals are not required to abide by U.S. law, why would American citizens think that they must?

5. Mexico. The largest ethical myth of illegal immigration is the notion of a Mexico morally concerned about the treatment of its expatriates. Of all the players in the illegal-immigration tragedy, the government of Mexico has proven the most heartless. It facilitates its own citizens leaving, going so far as to publish comic books on how to do it (apparently assuming both that its potential emigrants are illiterate and that they should act illegally). It counts on remittances as its second-largest source of foreign exchange, apparently cruelly calibrating that while it won't fully support its own people, they should help support it once they leave the country. It has opened dozens of new consulates to facilitate help for illegal aliens in the United States, when Mexican citizens in Mexico are in far more need of such government concern. And while Mexico is far more interested in luring wealthy Americans southward with prospects of selling vacation homes in Baja California than it is in helping its own people find housing in Oaxaca, it somehow poses as the protector of the rights of Mexicans in America, whom it never troubled to help when they were in Mexico. Without illegal immigration, Mexico would lose American cash, have to reform its own social and economic policies, and forfeit leverage on U.S. social and foreign policy.

6. Poverty. We do not know how many billions of dollars leave the U.S. economy each year bound for Latin America. Before the recession, the number was estimated at anywhere between $25 billion and $50 billion, more than half of it believed sent to Mexico. If it is true that millions of illegal aliens, who are the primarily remitters, are poor and at some point in need of public assistance for their housing, sustenance, and health care, then their sending dollars home is a direct subsidy by American taxpayers to foreign governments. In California the cost of providing support for illegal aliens ranges from $8 billion to some $12 billion a year, a figure that might roughly match the amount of money sent to Mexico from California each year. In a moral universe, illegal aliens would not remit money home and then expect their hosts to make up the difference; a moral Mexico in turn would not expect its most impoverished to work abroad and live cheaply, in order to send billions home to alleviate Mexico City's responsibility for its own poor. And in a moral universe, to suggest all that would not be deemed a thought crime.

7. Moral racketeering. One of the most disturbing aspects surrounding illegal immigration is the attempt to silence debate with charges of racism, nativism, and bias. In fact, there are legitimate concerns that have nothing to do with race or ethnicity, but simply are not being voiced about the consequences of millions arriving illegally, without capital or education, and without English. At present, there may be anywhere from 20,000 to 30,000 illegal aliens incarcerated in the California penal system (exact figures are rarely released). The high-school dropout rate among first- and second-generation Hispanic males in California now nears 60 percent. To say out loud that millions of illegal aliens have some connection to California's declining test scores, its insolvent finances, and the exodus of California citizens from the state is absolutely taboo, but it is generally and quietly assumed. More disturbingly, an entire edifice of victimization has been built on American culpability for purported oppression on the basis of class and race. It has now reached the point of an eerie Orwellianism, in which many in the Hispanic political establishment make moral claims against an America unwilling to grant blanket amnesty, and yet must simultaneously assume that such a morally suspect entity is a far more desirable place than is Mexico — though the reasons for that tacit assumption must never be voiced. A disturbing example of how this plays out was the recent booing of the American national soccer team in the Los Angeles Coliseum by the "hometown" crowd. A psychiatrist is needed to explain why thousands were booing symbols of a country that they risked their lives to reach, while cheering on a country that they were dying to leave. That schizophrenia was inculcated largely in America.

8. Politics. The Republican candidates have been advised to tread carefully in talking about illegal immigration, in fear of the wrath of Hispanic voters, which has so effectively been massaged by President Obama (punish our enemies, "alligators and moats"). Indeed, even to talk of illegal immigration in any but the vaguest terms is considered near suicidal to one's career and reputation. But such a calculus ignores long-term reality. Closing the borders will hasten assimilation, integration, and intermarriage, as the success of third- and fourth-generation Mexican-Americans attests. Compliance with the law is the only mechanism to allow the full expression of a naturally conservative Hispanic culture. The Mexican-American community deals first-hand with the chaos of massive illegal immigration and is not always happy about the consequences. In contrast, open borders and amnesty will ensure a constant influx of illegal immigrants who become constituents of those who facilitate illegal entry and residence.

There are ways that are both moral and practical to deport recent arrivals, felons, and those entirely on public assistance, while offering mechanisms for long-residing aliens, employed and not convicted of felonies, to apply for citizenship — without automatic approval, however, and only after meeting logical criteria and paying fines. The only real issue is whether the qualified should obtain temporary residence cards while waiting for adjudication of their requests, or must return to Mexico to apply; but that is a decision that follows, not precedes, an end to open borders. A fence, changed economic conditions in both the United States and Latin America, and new public doubts about illegal immigration are already beginning to slow down the influx, suggesting that it is time to address the issue in ways that will lay the groundwork for better policies in the future.

But for now, it is also time to change the entire tenor of the discussion, and accept that the proponents of illegal immigration have lost all moral credibility.

 

NRO contributor Victor Davis Hanson is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and the author most recently of the just-released The End of Sparta, a novel about ancient freedom.

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