21 April 2005

Rio Grande

I spend at least an hour in my car everyday driving for work. During that time I typically listen to CDs or talk radio. Lately on talk radio they've been discussing the illegal immigrant issues. Here's where my confusion (igonrance) comes in. It is illegal for people to cross boarders onto US soil without a visa/green card/passport/etc.. If they are caught doing so, they are arrested or shot. However, once in the US they are treated as equals. In Tennessee (I know) they allow non-registered immigrants to receive drivers licences and many local companies hire them regardless of the fact that they don't speak english.

Now I agree with George W. when he says that many of these people are (for the most part) good for the economy, in that they are willing to work the lower-end jobs that many Americans aren't willing to work. Through these jobs they pay federal taxes, they spend money in the states and communites in which they live, and they fill a role in society that many are too proud to fill. For many Americans these jobs and lives are the lowest of the low, but for many of these immigrants this is a step in the upward direction...a better life.

Here's where it gets tricky. It is a crime for them to enter the US. It is also a crime to break into a house and steal property or murder someone. However, when you commit any of the latter crimes you are sought out by authorities and (hopefully) detained and sentenced to jail. When you commit the former, and if you do so succesfully, it is like a free pass. It's like the US is saying "Congratualtions, you made it past our Boarder Patrol. Enjoy your stay here and be sure to pick up your drivers license ASAP, even though you have no SSN or Birth Certificate."

I guess it is hard to seek these people out once they are in, but it seems that agencies like INS et. al. are not making many good efforts to either A) seek these people out and deport them or B) admit that they're short-handed and hire more people. With more illegal people paying federal taxes there should be a few extra bucks to hire some more help.

Now, keep in mind that I know all of this is a far fetch and my only real point is that these people are treated as equal once they've commited a crime when they should be punished. But I created this blog and I can talk about what I please.


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