By Peyton Knight
October 29, 2002
Following the killing spree alleged to be the act of John Muhammed and his associate, Lee Malvo, Americans learned that the teenager was an illegal alien, originally from Jamaica. Moreover, early indications suggest that Muhammed was engaged in the smuggling of illegal aliens into this nation. Largely unknown to most Americans is the large percentage of the nation's incarcerated criminal population representing the failure of those agencies responsible to protect this nation against the dangers posed by illegal aliens.
From the time you woke this morning to the time you go to sleep tonight, 10,000 illegal aliens will have flooded into the United States from and through Mexico. Tomorrow, the same will happen. In the past 7 years, the estimated number of illegal aliens residing in the U.S. has grown from 5 million to between 9 and 11 million.
In any given day, roughly one-third of the immigrants penetrating our borders will be nabbed by authorities, returned, only to try again the next day or even within the next few hours. It's like a children's game of cops and robbers, only it is played with real guns, real money and real consequences.
Clearly, if a nation is to exist, it must have borders-definitive boundaries that separate the government, laws, ideas, traditions, history and culture of one territory from another. There are issues of millions of dollars in taxes, social services, and other subsidies involved. It makes even less sense when those receiving government handouts and services are not even citizens of the subsidizing nation. That is exactly what is happening in the United States of America.
Current policy on illegal immigration in America is a bungled, confusing, mixed message. On the one hand, the mere fact that we label undocumented citizens who dwell within our borders "illegal aliens" tells us that these folks are breaking the law simply by being here. As illegal aliens, they are not entitled to the same constitutional protections and rights afforded US citizens. Moreover, our government commits sizable, though still woefully inadequate, resources to both preventing illegal aliens from penetrating our borders and locating them for deportation. In addition to the illegal aliens, there are an estimated 300,000 "absconders", those who have overstayed their visa time limits are in this nation.
The same government that spends millions annually in a supposed effort to stamp out illegal immigration is actually luring and enticing illegal immigrants to come here! Sound crazy? It is. An absurd ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1982 declared that children of illegal immigrants have a constitutional right to free public education. It prohibited schools from denying illegal aliens access to education based on the status of their citizenship. John Lee Malvo was enrolled in two schools during his illegal stay.
The court, in reference to ILLEGAL aliens, declared that undocumented, non-citizens are entitled to the same, free public education to which Joe Taxpayer is entitled. And for what reason? Because as long as ILLEGAL aliens are identifiable and present, rather than deport them for ILLEGALLY residing in the U.S., we should do our best to turn them into upstanding, working, non-taxpaying ILLEGAL aliens. Such was the logic of the highest court in the land.
Then, as if the glaring inconsistency of our government's policy weren't evident enough, the court also barred any communication between public schools and the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS). It said schools were not to cooperate with the INS in any way that might "jeopardize immigrant students and their right of access."
The Urban Institute has estimated that 15% of all kindergarten through high school kids in California are illegal immigrants. This alone costs taxpayers $1.6 billion a year. Public schools, teachers' unions and the department of education are constantly blaming their putrid performances in the education arena on "lack of funds" or "large class sizes." Neither makes mention of this massive, unaccountable drain on taxpayers who finance this undocumented, illegal influx in our nation's classrooms.
The total cost of providing federally mandated education and health care to illegal aliens is estimated at more than $5 billion annually. That's $5 billion dollars worth of lost education and lost health care for American citizens. One in seven inmates in California state prisons is an illegal alien. The estimated yearly cost of incarcerating illegal immigrants in the United States is $500 million.
Hospitals, too, are required by law to treat any illegal alien that shows up for medical care. Of course, the little issue of "who pays for these unaccountable treatments" is not covered in this law. As a result, many hospitals along the border between the U.S. and Mexico have either been forced to close their doors or are facing severe financial crises as mandatory healthcare treatment to illegal aliens gobbles up their resources.
At a time when America is under attack by Islamist holy warriors, the Census Bureau estimates that there are currently as many as 115,000 illegal immigrants from Middle Eastern countries living in the United States. In addition, there are over 400,000 illegal immigrants who continue to live in the U.S. despite having received orders from judges to be deported.
Both the Democrat and Republican parties are busy climbing over one another in an effort to win over the Hispanic voting bloc at the expense of sound immigration policy and national security. One congressman has put forth a bill that will solve many of the problems we currently face with illegal immigration in this country. Rep. George Gekas (R-PA) has introduced H.R. 5013, the "Securing America's Future through Enforcement Reform Act" (SAFER).
The concern over our nation's security has reached a zenith not seen since World War II. The most basic step in bolstering national security, while preserving the rights of American citizens, is to secure our borders to insure we don't give terrorists a free pass to roam the country.
© 2002 Peyton Knight - All Rights Reserved
Peyton Knight is Director of Legislative Affairs for the American Policy Center. Headquartered in Warrenton, Virginia, the Center is an activist, grassroots think tank. It maintains an Internet site at www.americanpolicy.org