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Evil Republicans to Unemployed: Drop Dead

June 25, 2010

Anyone clicking on the major news sites Thursday night would have been greeted by a startling headlines that would not exactly make one proud of being a member of the GOP. The headline, of course, is “Evil Republicans To Unemployed: Drop Dead.”

That wasn’t literally the headline…but close enough. The AP reported the failure of the Senate to pass HR4213, which would have — along with other things, such as $1 billion for some kind of “youth summer jobs initiative,”   — extended unemployment benefits for the long-term unemployed in “Republicans kill Senate jobless aid measure:

Republicans on Thursday defeated Democrats’ showcase election-year jobs        bill, including an extension of weekly unemployment benefits for millions of people out of work more than six months.

The 57-41 vote fell three votes short of the 60 required to crack a GOP filibuster, delivering a major blow to President Barack Obama and Democrats facing big losses of  House and Senate seats in the fall election.

The bill had been sharply pared back after weeks of negotiations with GOP moderates Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins of Maine. The most recent version, unveiled Wednesday night, contained new cuts to food stamps and scaled back the state aid provision to allow Democrats to claim the measure was fully paid for except for the unemployment insurance extension

That didn’t move Republicans like Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky.

“It adds new taxes and over $30 billion to an already staggering $13 trillion dollar national debt,” said McConnell.

Ouch! Dems are working so hard for the poor unemployed, but those Republicans, well, they just can’t be moved.

The Huffington Post covered the story with similarly, lamenting – first with the booming headline “THE JOBLESS GET JOBBED. Democrats Abandon Aid Package In The Face Of Unified Republican Filibuster,” then with ‘Jobs Bill Fails In Senate: Democrats Say Thursday’s Doomed Vote Was The Last Chance”  —  how noble Democrats like Jesus at a synagogue in Nazareth spoke out in compassion for the poor; only to fall on the stone ears of the Republicans.

This meme continued throughout most major publications. The Los Angeles Times, for example, losing the good will it gathered by interviewing AACONS co-founder Marie Stroughter, ran a headline that said “Senate GOP blocks jobless aid extension.” Wow…mean! Even FoxNews.com simply ran the AP version of events.

Most of these stories, strangely enough, did not mention why Republicans voted against this bill. Given that the unemployed are still allowed to vote, and Republicans want votes at least as much as Democrats, that would seem a reasonable question. Besides, isn’t “why” one of the Five Ws of journalism? The stories that did cover the “Why” behind Republican opposition generally featured a statement from Mitch McConnell’s office (or something along those lines) buried eight paragraphs down that essentially said ‘it raises the deficit too much.’ In other words, the mainstream media is painting the Republican Party once again being the Party of No, just as it was during the healthcare reform debate, with neither constructive ideas of its own nor with any concern for the least fortunate of those they are elected to represent.

However, just as in the healthcare debate, Republicans actually do seem to have the capacity to do more than simply vote against whatever the Democrats propose. Unfortunately, one would have to be extremely diligent, extremely intelligent, or extremely lucky to find any reporting of the Republican alternative in the mainstream media. I was extremely lucky. As it turns out, there is a Republican alternative to HR4213. As reported by AssociatedContent.com (),

The final vote, 57 – 41, reflected a gain of one vote in a week where Democrats cut and dropped and sliced to win bipartisan support. Senator Max Baucus, sponsor of the current version of the bill, said that about $100 billion had been taken away the original measure.

For Republicans, it still wasn’t enough.

Much of the Republican aversion to the bill, they have claimed, was that the unemployment benefits extension provision ($35.5 billion) was unpaid for, that there would be an increase in overall taxes, and that the bill would increase the national debt. Democrats countered their argument this week by agreeing to pay for some of the programs in the American Jobs and Tax Loopholes Act of 2010 with some of the unused and unallocated monies from the economic stimulus package and finding ways to pay for the unemployment extensions.

The problem now seems to be the raise in taxes. The taxes are all levied in the business sector.

A Republican version of the bill, sponsored by John Thune, provides for everything the Democrats have incorporated in their bill, actually decreases the deficit, and pays for everything as well. However, Thune’s version does not mention business taxes at all.

So, Republicans had a reasoned argument against the Democrat bill, and suggested an alternative that would have taken a different – and, in my opinion, superior – route to achieve the same result that the Democrats claim that they want. Again, this was also the case in the healthcare reform debate, where the Republican argument became framed as either not wanting to burden insurance companies with the cost of actually insuring people or being willing to sacrifice the well-being of Americans simply to have an issue with which they could embarrass the president – never mind that the Republicans argued for healthcare reform involving interstate portability, tort reform, etc. both during and before the Obama administration (which Senator Obama opposed, by the way).

Unfortunately, the media resists reporting Republican ideas on any major issue, preferring instead to stick to their White House directed narrative that the GOP is the Party of No.

–DK

McChrystal, Obama, and Afghanistan by Coby Dillard

June 24, 2010

So, GEN McChrystal resigned. In fairness, he wasn’t fired, though he probably would have been-from his position as the top American and NATO commander in Afghanistan…and all because, it seems, he said that President Obama seemed “uncomfortable and intimidated” at a briefing that he thought seemed more of a “photo op.” Let’s look at what actually happened, whether his resignation was the best move, and what it means for the war in Afghanistan (and the 2012 presidential race).

What Was Said (and its ramifications)

In his article “The Runaway General,” Michael Hastings wrote (with emphasis added):

Even though he had voted for Obama, McChrystal and his new commander in chief failed from the outset to connect. The general first encountered Obama a week after he took office, when the president met with a dozen senior military officials in a room at the Pentagon known as the Tank. According to sources familiar with the meeting, McChrystal thought Obama looked “uncomfortable and intimidated” by the roomful of military brass.

It’s important to note that, throughout the entire article, the sentence at the end contains the only disparaging words of McChrystal towards Obama (the “Chaos-istan” comment stemmed from comments by Vice President Biden, and McChrystal had been previously counseled on that incident). Everything else-the “Biden-bite me” remark, for example-is attributed to “an aide” or “an adviser.”

That’s important. Article 88 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) states:

Any commissioned officer who uses contemptuous words against the President, the Vice President, Congress, the Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of a military department, the Secretary of Transportation, or the Governor or legislature of any State, Territory, Commonwealth, or possession in which he is on duty or present shall be punished as a court-martial may direct.

The UCMJ lists certain elements that must be present for a person to have violated this article:

(1) That the accused was a commissioned officer of the United States armed forces;

(2) That the accused used certain words against an official or legislature named in the article;

(3) That by an act of the accused these words came to the knowledge of a person other than the accused; and

(4) That the words used were contemptuous, either in themselves or by virtue of the circumstances under which they were used.

Numbers 1, 2, and 3 definitely apply. Does #4? Does calling someone “uncomfortable and disorganized” rise to the level of “contemptuous?” I don’t think so. The words of the various “aides” and “advisors,” though, definitely rise to that level and merit punishment. That won’t happen, though, because 1) they’re unnamed, and 2) McChrystal’s already taken the fall.

Why Resign?

Because this isn’t the first thing McChrystal’s done to set Obama off. And a fragile ego, already bruised, can only take so much before it has to strike back. Couple that with all the bad press that Obama’s received over the last few weeks, and you have the makings of a person who is well overdue for lashing out…and just needs the right spark.

With this incident —actually, the third— McChrystal was gone; the only question was how. But was it the right move for the overall strategy in Afghanistan?

Counterinsurgency operations-winning “hearts and minds” instead of winning through brute strength-require leaders who have gained the trust of the populations they work within. Building up that trust isn’t something that’s done overnight; it can take months or-at worst-years.

McChrystal had gained the trust of many Afghan leaders, including the country’s president:

“The president believes that Gen. McChrystal is the best commander that NATO and coalition forces have had in Afghanistan over the past nine years,” spokesman Waheed Omar said. Omar said McChrystal has worked closely with Karzai since he took command last year and that “lots of things have improved.”

Now, there’s no doubt that GEN Petraeus, who will replace McChrystal, is more than competent and capable of building the same level of trust with the Afghanistan’s national government (assuming he doesn’t have those relationships already). But what of the warlords that run large sections of the country? What of the villagers who have come to admire McChrystal’s painstaking-some would say overly so-avoidance of civilian causalities? Granted, Petraeus wrote the playbook that McChrystal used…but the people on the ground, on the local level, may not know him as well. So for them, it’s almost back to the beginning in building that trust. It may not take long to build, given Petraeus’ reputation-but it’s time that could be spent doing other things.

What It All Means

Will the overall strategy in Afghanistan change? Not at all. The professor’s running the show now, instead of the talented graduate assistant.

But will GEN Petreaus continue to serve as CENTCOM commander and the ISAF lead in Afghanistan, and can he effectively do both jobs? If the security situation there heads further south, will he recommend that our troops remain past the 2011 withdrawal objective?

And what’s the real reason for the selection of Petreaus? Clearly, he stands well above many of the names that were floated to take over for McChrystal. But is his selection to this post a vote of confidence in his abilities, or is it a ploy to keep him off the GOP’s presidential wish list in 2012?

These questions, and others, will ultimately decide what direction our efforts in Afghanistan take.

One thing is certain, though-with the appointment of his second general to head our mission in Afghanistan in a year-President Obama definitely owns this war. He has the people he selected in command and implementing the strategy he wanted.

Our success-or failure-there is completely in his hands…and not to be blamed on his predecessors.

About guest blogger Coby Dillard:

A blogger, Navy veteran, and activist, Coby W. Dillard seeks to apply conservative solutions to the problems of urban and inner city environments. He has worked with many grassroots organizations and is a co-founder of the Hampton Roads Tea Party. In 2009,  he worked on Gov. Bob McDonnell’s campaign as the director for veteran and African American outreach before briefly pursuing the Republican congressional nomination earlier this year in Virginia’s 3rd district.

Coby and his family live in Norfolk, where he is completing his undergraduate degree and working as a consultant.

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Of Lambs and Lions, by LTC Allen West

June 15, 2010

NOTE: African-American Conservatives is pleased to post this from LTC Allen B. West, who was gracious enough to give us an advance copy of his editorial for the July issue of Wheels on the Road Magazine:

Washingtoons

15 June 2010

Lieutenant Colonel Allen B West (US Army, Retired)

Of Lambs and Lions

“I do not fear an army of lions if they are led by a lamb. I do fear an army of sheep if they are led by a lion”.  —Alexander the Great

Greetings Wheels on the Road readers, fellow South Floridians, and indeed all Americans. It is time for our monthly political assessment and this one is rather personal. Last month we addressed what is at stake, and the response was the future of America. One of the factors affecting our Country right now relates to Alexander’s quote mentioned above.

Attorney General Eric Holder once lamented that America is a “nation of cowards”, that is far from the truth. The problem we have in America is that we are being led by lambs, by an effete ruling class elite. America is a nation of lions, warriors, but when we find ourselves being led by a cabal of weak, ineffective, and indecisive appeasers the result is evident.

Sure, the liberal progressives are dogged ideologues and tenacious poodles when it comes to nationalizing our production; healthcare, financial sector, energy sector, and automobile industry. They stand strong against the rule of law regarding illegal immigration. And there is no doubt no group will fight harder to redistribute wealth and turn America into a collective “balkanized” socialist Country.

However, what scares the liberals more than anything else is the “Warrior Class”. They abhor the men and women who find a commitment and conviction in believing in this Constitutional Republic and the principles which make America exceptional. This is a sentiment which over the past 30 days we witnessed being manifested  from the highest office in our land, the President.

When Barack Hussein Obama made the decision to take a “vacation” back to Chicago rather than attend Memorial Day ceremonies at Arlington National cemetery that was a complete disregard and disrespect to those who gave the “last full measure of devotion”. I know, those who suffer from Bush Derangement Syndrome are frothing and recounting that Pres GW Bush missed an Arlington ceremony….but he was at Normandy, a very appropriate place to be.

But it was not just the missing Memorial Day, it was also the lack of any recognition of the 66th anniversary of D-Day. It was the failure to address Flag Day which was also the 235th birthday of the US Army. Lastly, Obama’s refusal for the second year in a row to attend the “Gold Star Family” events clearly telegraphs his regard for our military does not go beyond photo opportunities.

The malignant narcissism of the President, and the liberal progressives, is laser focused on the disrespect and the destruction of the American Warrior class. They detest anyone who has the courage of conviction and love of America, something which they find unconscionable.

It starts with a national security strategy which refuses to address the enemy of our Nation, Islamic totalitarianism and radical islamic state sponsored terrorism. We have sheep who are so oblivious to the threats to our security that the Obama administation’s terrorism expert, John Brennan, stated that “terrorism is a state of mind and jihadism is a legitimate tenet of Islam”. When at the highest levels we project a recalcitrance to confront our enemy, you only embolden them.

When an enemy is emboldened, such as this one, they launch a “humanitarian aid” flotilla which is nothing more than a cover to supply a terrorist organization, Hamas. When you have a Sovereign State seek to protect itself, and even institute insidious rules of engagement, and yet is condemned for protecting its warriors, we are upside down……we are being led by sheep. Nothing pleasures wolves more than fresh lamb meat, and we are serving that up at every instance.

This seemingly is not just an American phenomenon, but a worldwide epidemic. North Korea sinks a South Korean naval vessel and we ask for an apology. The international community demands that Israel apologize and submit to an investigation.

We have created rules of engagement in Afghanistan which allows the enemy every opportunity to kill our men and women. We have considered such horrible ideas such as an award for “courageous restraint”. We even allow former Taliban members who have attacked, and maybe even killed, our troops to be released from detainment based upon a “pledge” signed by their fathers and tribal leaders.

Yet, we have our own Warriors such a Army 1LT Michael Behenna serving a 15 year prison sentence for killing a known Al Qaeda operative who attacked him. Worse however, is the fact that exculpatory evidence in his case was withheld by the Army prosecutors who also withheld a key witness. There in the military prison at Ft Leavenworth sit 10 Army Soldiers while Taliban fighters are being released. We just witnessed some of our finest Warriors, US Navy SEALS, having to endure a courts-martial because they “punched” a terrorist.

That is why I will be heading to Ft Leavenworth in September to rally for the release of our Soldiers so that they can be reunited with their families. Those families who willingly sacrificed their loved ones, believing that they could be severely wounded, or even killed….but never imprisoned for doing what we ask Warriors to do.

In the past 30 days we watched the House of Representatives so concerned about the military that they just could not wait, and voted to repeal “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.” This was done against the counsel of the Service Chiefs who asked for an opportunity to allow the men and women in uniform to offer their suggestions and insights. No, it is more important to have the military accommodate behavior rather than respect the professionalism of those Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen.

We have seen the President nominate someone for Supreme Court justice who attacked the Solomon Amendment, allowing ROTC activities on our college campuses. We are willing to allow an Islamic victory tribute to be erected at Ground Zero in New York City because we have leaders who just cannot find the courage to stand….sheep.

We have a running gun battle occurring on our southern border but we allowed a foreign leader to demean our laws and attack a Governor of a sovereign American State.

There has never been a more critical time for our Republic and yet we find the worse possible individuals in control for this time. We have a Nation of men and women who embrace victory and detest the stench of defeat. However, all we get is more speeches, talk, empty rhetoric, and never an action plan….at least not an action plan which is commensurate with the foundational principles of America.

I stated earlier that this subject is personal to me and that is because of my story from Iraq in 2003. Yes, I fired my service 9mm over the head of a detainee to ensure my men were protected. Yes, I was removed from command and fined $5000. Yes, I withstood the attacks from the liberal sheep and will continue to do so because I am part of the Warrior class. I retired with Honor and remain a respected member of that group of men and women who feel pride when the National Anthem is played, and tear up at Taps.

When I look at Pelosi, Frank, Weiner, Clyburn, Klein, and Obama I see lambs, certainly not leaders. I see mundane deliberators, not decisive people of character. This 2010 election cycle has the most Veterans running for office since WW II and there is a simple reason.

America will not survive as a Nation in a world of wolves being led by sheep, it will take Lions.

Steadfast and Loyal,

LTC(R) A B West

Modeling Democracy: Teaching Kids to Vote

June 8, 2010

Most who follow our blog, social media feeds, or listen to our radio show, know that I am a homeschooling mom of three. My favorite teaching days of the year come in the form of election days! In this post, I will share some ideas with those who wish to model democracy-in-action to assist in shaping our children into curious, non-apathetic critical thinkers!

Vote! The first and foremost thing you must do, is model the virtue yourself! Some of my fondest memories as a child (growing up in a liberal household!) was the kids’ area at our local polling place. They had this antique voting “doo-hickey” that they allowed the children to play with. I felt so grown up . . . like I was actually “voting!”

With the advent of permanent absentee ballots, you can still model voting by letting your children see you pouring over your voter’s pamphlets, looking at campaign websites, viewing candidates on television or online debates, and going with you to the post office or polling place to drop off your ballot.

Be involved! If there is a particular race you feel strongly about, or a ballot measure you strongly support or oppose, get involved! My children know certain candidates by name because they saw me work on their campaigns; attend fundraisers; collect , distribute and post yard signs; canvass for them; and interview candidates for our radio show.

Educate! Educate yourself on the issues, and talk to your children about what you are learning (age appropriately). Have your children research an issue (pro and con), or learn about the elections process. Around the time of the presidential election in 2008, I had my oldest learn about the electoral college. Last week, my daughter (who already had a passing knowledge of the subject), studied more about women in the suffrage movement to commemorate the 90th anniversary of women casting votes for the first time in as presidential election! We have also held mock elections using cartoon, literary, or fictional (movie) characters, complete with a replica of a voting booth and “I Voted!” stickers!

Watch election related programming: My kids have watched all of the Schoolhouse Rock segments, but we do “real world” programming, too. We watch inaugurations (whether we supported the candidate or not), and watch the election night returns, complete with snacks (a tradition dating back to my childhood, where the adults would stay up late into the night watching returns with donuts and coffee!).

There are so many websites with wonderfully rich resources to help children learn about democracy. Here are just a few, all of which, from what I know, are free of party affiliation:

The Democracy Project

Congress For Kids

Kids Voting

Books:

The United States Constitution

The U.S. Constitution and You

Suffrage:

Stand Up For Your Rights

Women’s Suffrage Movement

Women’s Suffrage

Women and Minorities Vote:

The Right to Vote

A History of Black Voting Rights

–MS

Why Bill Maher is Not Racist

May 30, 2010

I suspect the reason why the term ‘racist’ is such an easy term to use nowadays is because it is a word without  standard or objective criteria. And since “racist” is such a subjective term, like “hot” or “cool,” one can apply it to anything or anyone, without fear of contradiction, or charges of unfairness, or charges of hypocrisy.

If it were not so, then how could someone on the Left so shamelessly behave as if s/he is an official arbiter of what is racist? Without the obligation of having to define the word, those on the Left obviously feel free to use it in any manner that suits their fancy, and what suits their fancy is to use the word to bludgeon anyone who does not share their progressive, atheistic worldview, all the while absolving their ideological soulmates from it, regardless of what they say or do.

Take for example this comment on Obama’s handling of the BP oil spill: “I thought when we elected a black president, we were going to get a black president. You know, this [BP oil spill] is where I want a real black president. I want him in a meeting with the BP CEOs, you know, where he lifts up his shirt where you can see the gun in his pants. That’s — (in black man voice) we’ve got a ‘motherf***ing problem here?’ Shoot somebody in the foot.”  Would you think this person is a racist?

How about if I told you the originator of the quote above once said “I don’t know, it was just, it was just a crappy week for America. The oil spill making a huge mess. And Arizona deporting all the people who mop up.” Is that racist?

What if this same someone was sued by an African-American ex-girlfriend for physical and verbal abuse, including making “degrading racial comments?” By now you would have to conclude that the person I’m referring to is clearly a racist. After all, Rush Limbaugh, who played a song parody called “Barack, the Magic Negro,” based on a column by an African-American writer calling Barack Obama a “magic Negro,” is called a racist. Tea Partiers who protest Obama because of his policies are called racist. Surely anyone depicting our first African-American president as a stereotypical  gangsta thug would be called a racist as well.

However, if you are a liberal, you probably won’t, because the person I’m quoting is Bill Maher, who has become somewhat of a spokesperson for progressivism over the years, thanks to his shows on ABC and, now, HBO. In fact, not only can’t Maher be a racist, he — in his role as liberal commentator — gets to determine who is indeed a racist. But that determination is easy, it is simply anyone with an R next to their name on their voter registration card. As Maher said on ABC’s This Week, “I would never say, and I have never said, because it’s not true that Republicans, all Republicans are racists. That would be silly and wrong. But nowadays, if you are racist, you’re probably a Republican.”

In a rational world, Bill Maher would be denounced for what he is — a racist — regardless of how he votes. However, in the world that we have, it is only possible to label a person a racist if someone finds a few copies of The Weekly Standard in a brown paper bag hidden on the top shelf in his or her closet, even if that person is African-American. A white person, however, is by definition a non-racist, even if caught burning a cross on a black family’s lawn, if he or she drives up to that lawn in a car that has the appropriate “Hope and Change” bumper sticker . . .

–DK

Arizona’s Flawed Immigration Law

May 11, 2010

Courtesy of Stock Xchange

On the List of the Obvious, the recent debate regarding whether the police should have the right to ask someone they have stopped for just cause if  s/he is a legal citizen — especially if the policeman has reason to believe that person isn’t — ranks right up there with offshore drilling.  It seems especially a no-brainer if the policeman patrols an area so infested by illegal immigrants (and illegal immigrant crime) that it has turned his or her state into the kidnapping capital of America. Yet, somehow, this has become a debate, and a rather contentious one at that.

The law has been called “racist” and “worthy of Nazi Germany,” and has sparked demonstrations. Some of these demonstrations even turned violent, although much of the violence was merely Al Sharpton and other celebrities elbowing each other out of the way to get in front of the cameras. President Obama himself has found this commonsense law worthy of his attention – unlike, say, the recent Tennessee flood that killed 30 people and caused over $1 billion dollars in damage. According to Obama, the Arizona law “singles out people because of who they look like, how they talk, and how they dress.” Apparently the same sort of policeman who behaved so “stupidly” in Massachusetts months ago, would now have nothing better to do than harass Hispanics over ‘taking their kid out for ice cream.’

Incredibly, even the sports world has been dragged into this. The Phoenix Suns were supposedly so ashamed of their state  – and their fans, given that about 70% of them approve of this law – to wear “Phoenix” on their jerseys. If only my hometown team, the 12-70 NJ Nets, would be as ashamed of their state — or at least make a jersey with the “NJ” but without the “Nets” part!  Jesse Jackson further carried the attack on the sports world by asking MLB Commissioner Bud Selig to move the 2011 All-Star game from Arizona. Bit of a dangerous precedent, guys! This Arizona law is not going to be the only controversial law passed by a state that has a professional sports team. Are we to boycott the Lakers if California doesn’t pass a gay marriage amendment? Should the Texas Rangers just call themselves the Rangers because they are from a capital punishment state? Hopefully this is a slippery slope the sports world won’t be stepping on.

I was also amused by some of the celebrity protests of this law. Shakira, for one, made a point of going to Arizona to protest this law. If she wanted to protest the treatment of illegals from her native Colombia, why didn’t she go to Venezuela, where stories of ‘Colombian illegals being rounded and deported after having their homes and crops burned’ have been typical for decades now? Or, why doesn’t Mexican-American Linda Ronstadt, instead of protesting the treatment of illegals from Mexico, protest the treatment of illegals in Mexico, where they face some of the harshest immigration laws in the world? Why protest Americans, who are the most immigration friendly people in the world?

Despite the controversy however, the Arizona law itself falls a somewhat short of “Schlinder’s List.”  The actual language of the law specifically states that a suspected illegal cannot be harassed simply for taking the niños for Ben and Jerry’s; rather, it states that the suspect can only be stopped as a result of “lawful stop, detention or arrest [which] must be in the enforcement of any other law or ordinance of a county, city or town or this state.” The police, then, would need a reason for stopping someone other than thinking that he or she snuck over the border. This reason – the law also specifically states – “may not solely consider race, color or national origin;” reinforcing that the police officer has to have more of a reason to question a suspect’s citizenship other than that s/he is Hispanic.

Furthermore, this law is hardly different from the federal law. As the Washington Times reports, “Arizona’s new immigration enforcement law is designed to mirror federal immigration laws already in place. Federal law mandates that aliens register and carry their documentation. Arizona’s new law functions the same way.”  So it seems specious that the complaint is now that the law imposes a new or undue burden on Hispanic Arizonians by asking to see their driver’s license (or some such equivalent) to prove their citizenship.

Therefore, a fair reading of the law clearly shows that any real problem with the law does not derive from the language of the law, but rather in the way the law would possibly be enforced. However, that indeed is a real problem, because, as fairly as the law may be written, it seems overly optimistic to presume that the law will always be enforced fairly.

That a police officer – through overzealousness to protect his or her community from criminal illegals, or perhaps through prejudice, or even carelessness – will stop a Hispanic without just cause in order to check his or her immigration status, seems an eventuality. Even if the law is enforced 1,000 times and the officer gets it right 99% of the time, that will still be 10 American citizens harassed for no other reason than their skin color and accent. This seems like a fair trade-off unless you find the thought of this loathsome, or you are one of those 10 Americans, or especially if you are a minority, even a minority conservative, which would make you more sensitive to this possibility; such as the initial disapproval of the law from Latino Conservatives such as Marco Rubio, and Linda Chavez. The “overzealous” scenario does not even take into account the number of times the police officer will behave properly, yet charged with abuse, nonetheless. Either scenario will result in lawsuits that will tie up the Arizona courts and cost the state millions in taxpayer dollars.

It is for this reason that I do not embrace this law, despite my belief that the intent of the law is good, and that the law is necessary. Instead of allowing police offers to check the immigration status of people those “where reasonable suspicion exists that the person is an alien who is unlawfully present,” it should be  changed so that police officers are required to check the immigration status of everyone who is lawfully stopped.  This would remove the ugly possibility, as well as the charges – legitimate and unfounded– of racial profiling. Make the law similar to the procedure one must endure when entering a federal building, which is a nuisance, but no charges of discrimination or harassment are ever placed,  because it is not left to the officer to deem to which persons are of reasonable suspicion to check. An officer must not only check the ID of guests who look like George Lopez, but those who look like George Clooney as well. If you want to inspect the Jennifer Garners of the world, I want you to inspect the Jennifer Lopezes as well. It is that simple, although actually, I want to inspect the Jennifer Lopezes of the world myself. But you get my point.

It is such an obvious solution, that it is a mystery as to why it has not been put forward as the answer to this problem. Perhaps the primary reason why more haven’t suggested it, is because there is a complete lack of desire in Washington, particularly within the Democrat party, to do anything but about illegal immigration.

But also, based on my own personal observations, especially at airports, a lot of the hesitation to call for universal citizenship verification comes from the same sort of people who may not mind the inspectors sifting through the luggage of the person in front of them, but resent having their own undies manhandled. This is particularly true of some Americans of non Middle Eastern descent, who tediously argue that the TSA should racially profile airline passengers. Since, they argue, statistically terrorists are young Arab men from particular countries, why not only inspect them and leave the rest of “us” alone? (This, despite not only the immorality of racial profiling, and clear evidence that al Qaeda can get Whites, or someone who looks White, or even someone who looks like Betty White, to do their dirty work.)

Perhaps this will also be the case in Arizona. Statistically, it may be deemed too much of a waste of time to check non-Latinos for citizenship – though it should not be too much of a burden for either the law officer or the person stopped. After all, it only requires checking a card, usually a driver’s license, which a cop has to check anyway. Who is not used to having to provide that when stopped by the police?

–DK

Podcast: Happy Days Are Here Again, But Happy Meals Are Not

May 6, 2010

Listen to our latest podcast here …  Enjoy!