Friday, April 1

U.S. BORDER PATROL AS AMBIVALENT AS PRESIDENT BUSH?

The Immigration Blog is reporting in this post that the U.S. Border Patrol is seeking help from the public via a "community-based program," Operation Be Alert. Billboards with Border Patrol contact numbers have been placed along roadways, asking citizens to notify authorities if they observe illegal aliens or drug smugglers. The writer of this post, Chris Kelly, poses the provocative question: "Could this be a sideways endorsement of the MMP by the Border Patrol?" Well, Chris, I don't think so. A front page story below the fold in this morning's "Houston Chronicle" reports that the U.S. Border Patrol does not welcome the assistance of the MMP and describes its participants as "untrained" and possibly "members of extremist groups."

"MMP," of course, refers to volunteers from across the country, who are streaming into southern Arizona to form The Minuteman Project -- citizen activists, some armed, who will begin patrolling a stretch of the contiguous border between Arizona and Mexico as part of an organized protest "against entry into the United States by illegal aliens, drug dealers and potential terrorists."

President Bush has gone on record as calling the Minutemen "vigilantes." And, of course, Presidente Vicente Fox of Mexico doesn't want anyone messing with his country's tremendous revenue stream from the United States -- the huge remittances from illegal aliens working in America.

Incomprehensibly, the Department of Homeland Security (an absolute misnomer given the porosity of our nation's borders) has described itself as the "front line" in ensuring border security. It's just those sorts of comments given the backdrop of a huge, festering, illegal immigration problem that makes the new, multi-layered, cash-gobbling agency a laughingstock in some quarters of this country.

President Bush's favorable polling numbers have been dropping like a runaway elevator of late and many pundits have attributed it to his intervention in the Terri Schiavo controversy, his Social Security initiative, and the big spike in gasoline prices. I suspect it may have everything to do with the president's obstinate refusal to deal effectively with the number #1 domestic problem facing our country -- immigration reform.

I'm a conservative Republican who has voted for the president twice now and I'm fed up with his patronization of those of us in this country (and we are legion) who see the illegal alien problem as a tremendous tax drain, a serious terrorist threat, an a wholesale renting of this nation's social fabric.

Frank Laughter summed it up pretty well the other day:

What Bush and Congress are doing is criminal because they are abrogating their oaths to uphold the Constitution.

The essence of responsibility under the Constitution is that officials must FIRST defend the country and the people of the United States. — Open borders is a betrayal of their oaths and their offices.