Who Can Afford The High Cost Of Patriotism


By: Ken Hughes

What would you be willing to pay for the opportunity to show your patriotism to the entire nation? Before you say yes ask the citizens of Riverside New Jersey if the principle is worth the price. The village of Riverside was one of the first in the nation to pass rigid anti-immigration laws. They were proud of their stand for the law and the American way. That is until the illegal immigrants moved on to neighboring communities and Riverside lost 50% of its economy. Now Riverside is actually recruiting to bring illegals back to their village. It seems the price of patriotism was more than they could endure.

Let’s not condemn Riverside New Jersey without a fair hearing, The citizens of Riverside wanted to be good Americans, they wanted to be the first to make a statement, “America First.” America is a land of laws that must be obeyed at any cost, [well almost any cost.] What the citizens of Riverside discovered was illegal immigrants contribute far more to the local economy than they cost it.

Many of the residence of Riverside who originally supported the laws regulating employment and living conditions education and health care of illegals in Riverside are now suffering the consequences of their enthusiasm to regulate illegal workers participation in their community. Businesses are closing, real-estate stands empty, and the tax base has been decimated to a mere nothing. There’s no federal program to help re-establish such communities. And now the Village has two law suites pending against it for discrimination all because they thought they were being good Americans. .

Bogus arguments abound, many think Riverside should suck it up and accept the consequences of doing the right thing. That’s easy for them to say, if they don’t have a horse in the race it’s easy to stand back and call the winners and losers. One argument is, some say their ancestors came from Europe legally. That’s not exactly true, immigrants in the last half of the 19th century and the first half of the 20th century came to Ellis Island in New York harbor and the Embarcadero in San Francisco uninvited and undocumented. They were processed, most were accepted some were rejected and sent back, at the time they stepped off the boats they were legally illegals.

Immigration policy changed in 1968 when Bobby Kennedy ran for president. He needed an issue that would unite the voters, other candidates were using the Vietnam War and Kennedy knew you can only beat a dead horse so much before those watching tire turn away. Kennedy was campaigning on the Texas Mexican boarder when some on in the audience ask him the question, “What he was going to do about the Mexicans workers coming across the boarder and working in the harvests taking jobs that rightfully belonged to Americans.” One simple question set off a controversy that would last nearly half a century and encompass the entire nation. It gave Bobby Kennedy the issue that set him apart from the rest of the candidates. Unfortunately the issue of illegal immigration survived and Bobby Kennedy didn’t.

Americans offer jobs health benefits education and a way of life only dreamed about in other countries. When illegals take advantage of Americas generosity for some reason they are the ones being blamed for any discomforts. That doesn’t make a lot of sense to reasonable people, at least not to this reasonable person.

There’s a simple solution to the immigration problem, scrap all that’s on the books now and go after immigration on an as needed basis not the politically expedient basis the government uses now. Green Cards should never be for sale for votes. Perhaps it’s time for an amendment to the constitution that covers immigration and other forms of visitation to this country, an amendment that would take the politics out of immigration. Breaking the law has become to easy and circumventing penalties are to frequent to

There are solutions to the illegal immigration problem but until the rewards for politicians, especially congress are cut off nothing is going to be done. Do I have a plan, dammed right I do but who will I find to listen?

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