Friday, April 28, 2006

Illegals Plan to Set Back Their Cause

The illegal alien lobby is about to once again do a phenomenal job of setting itself back in the hearts and minds of Americans. So to get there, they are staging walk-outs, and are threatening to shut down U.S. cities on Monday. The original idea was to walk out of work to show how important the illegal community is to our economy.

But presuming that all 11 million did walk out, which is highly unlikely, how would it be any different than Yom Kippur or Columbus Day when many do not work? Certainly some businesses would be slower and there are some that would be halted for a day. The response, however, would be to fire those who didn't show for work, as there are other Mexican immigrants with less political goals who would gladly take their place on a moment's notice. The protesters would return on Tuesday to find themselves replaced by fellow Latinos.

But if they are going to protest by not participating in the economy to show what would happen if they were not in our country, they may want to make the picture all the more complete by failing to take advantage of our welfare system and other legal benefits of which they regularly avail themselves. Don't pick up AFDC checks or food stamps, don't use Medicaid, don't apply for such assistance, don't allow others to cross the border on that day, don't give birth to children who will automatically become citizens, and pay for everything out of your own wages that day. Consistency in such a noble goal would indeed be unpleasant, though, so they won't.

But a protest on behalf of lawbreakers who are not Americans, with the goal of shutting down American cities and cramming the Mexican flag down our throats won't further the cause of illegals. The basic gist of their protests is that because they broke the law, they are entitled to special rights. That doesn't resonate with too many people. And the idea of clogging American cities to make such a statement isn't all that welcoming. When Americans seem eager to stem the flow of illegal immigration, something like this will likely make a penalty-oriented bill more appeasing than a hybrid guest worker/border fence proposal.

It's one thing to take an affirmative action approach, but the day of that type of appeal is also passing. It is quite another to come from a foreign land, demand access to free health care, tax-free jobs and demand squatters rights like a spoiled and ungrateful bunch of brats.

We have folks who are here illegally who want nothing more than just to work and better themselves. Their status and mode of entry are bad, but for hard workers with good attitudes, America has room. But if these illegal activists pull a stunt as planned for Monday, they will do a great disservice to the notion of a generous immigration system with Mexico.

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