DREAM Act Dead For Now

Brent Finnegan -- September 22nd, 2010

The DREAM Act, the bill that would grant a path to permanent residency for many children of unauthorized immigrants, was effectively killed in the Senate Tuesday. The Washington Post reports:

Republicans used a procedural vote to block the bill. Immigration advocates accused Republicans of sacrificing the well-being of thousands of young people to cater to nativist sentiment.

The bill was included as an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act. The DREAM Act was introduced and tabled in 2007, and re-introduced in 2009. It may be re-introduced again. Some advocates want it to be re-introduced as a stand-alone bill this year.

We have previously written about Harrisonburg connections to the DREAM Act several times on hburgnews.

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176 Responses to “DREAM Act Dead For Now”

  1. Where’s the “Like” button?

  2. Daniel says:

    I’m with ya, Dave. The more I hear about this proposal the more lame it becomes.

  3. Daniel says:

    Sure, Lowell. The kids are illegal. It does not matter how they got here, but now that they’re 18-years old, it’s time to either go home, or do what necessary to become a legal resident. Their parents made the decision to bring them to the USA for any number of reasons. Legal tax payers, weather they like it or not, paid to educate these illegals and gave them benefits to survive. A lot has been done for these kids already, yet they want more and more. Allowing them to stay here in the first place was not enough. Educating them was not enough. Government benefits were not enough. They want more and feel it’s owed to them.

    It’s pretty cut-and-dry. If you’re illegal, go home. The United States is not your home. There are policies in place to make the United States your home if you’re interested in doing so. But getting a free pass to live here just because you did what was expected of you during your visit is not a reason to grant citizenship. If you feel that is not fair to you, go bother your parents, or who ever brought you here, and complain to them. This is not a civil rights issue because you have no rights. Just go home, you’ve done enough.

    • Brooke Lohr says:

      Perhaps I’m missing something, but that argument seems to fall short.

      So we’ve already invested so much in illegal immigrants, we should deport them? Wouldn’t it seem more logical, from an economical standpoint, to provide them with a path to earn their citizenship so they can begin contributing back to the tax pool they’ve drawn from or be held accountable? As part of the DREAM Act, they would also be required to either serve in our military or attend an institution of higher education, thus, further contributing back into the United States economy.

      • Perhaps, this is the problem, Brooke?

        Both of my boys had to show birth certificates when they registered at Peak View, and now at Cub Run. It wasn’t even an option not to.

        Perhaps, if we cut off the education option to illegals and start prosecuting both the illegals and their employers then our investment would be cut to a minimum.

        • Undocumented kids usually have birth certificates too…your kids didn’t have to prove their citizenship, just their real age. If someone can’t provide a birth certificate (which can be from a foreign country, btw), their parents have to sign a sworn statement of their age.

          But let me make sure I understand your position: you would like schools to defy the Supreme Court decision of Plyler v. Doe (1982, with a majority of justices having been appointed by Republican presidents) by finding a way to deny education to children of undocumented immigrants?

          • Jeremy,

            Take a few classes in law before you start puking up cases to me.

            I know what the Supreme Court said…they once opined that blacks were 3/5 of a person, too.

          • Ad hominem abuse it is, then! :-)

          • Well, are you saying blacks never were 3/5 of a person, or they were and then encountered some sort of evolution which caused them to be whole people?

          • Slaves (not blacks) weren’t considered 3/5 of a person because of the Supreme Court, as someone who is an expert in law must surely remember. That was the result of the three-fifths compromise during the Constitutional Convention, before the Supreme Court had even been created.

            It’s certainly an interesting tactic to try to tie that to the 1982 decision regarding the equal protection clause as it relates to children of undocumented immigrants, though!

            By ad hominem abuse, I was referring to you making conditions on my participation in this discussion.

          • How do I make “conditions” for anyone to participate in a discussion on hburgnews.com?

            I hold no administrative powers to censor, as some are prone to do.

            And slaves weren’t persons at the time of the 3/5s compromise, Jeremy, they were PROPERTY and thus, had no rights, so it was blacks that the 3/5 compromise applied to.

            From Article I, Section 2:

            “…Representatives and direct taxes shall be apportioned among the several states which may be included within this union, according to their respective numbers, which shall be determined by adding to the whole number of free persons, including those bound to service for a term of years, and excluding Indians not taxed, three fifths of all other Persons.”

            So as you can see, Indians weren’t taxed, free persons counted as a whole person, other persons counted as 3/5 of a person…but slaves were property, not persons…obviously pointing to the blacks in the north.

          • Sorry, Jeremy, I misread what you wrote.

            And there’s only one area of law I consider myself in and that’s child support law.

            On the other hand, your interpretation of law always seems to come up short.

          • Jeremy Aldrich says:

            Srsly? Do you not understand that some blacks were free persons, and the three-fifths compromise was all about slavery? It’s easy to verify that…

            Maybe a license to teach history trumps a paralegal certification in some respects, after all? ;-)

            As for conditions, you stated “Take a few classes in law before you start puking up cases to me.” Sorry, I’ll try to dot the lines a little better next time.

          • No, really? GTF out of here, there were free black people back then? Who the hell would know?

            And what’s that government benefit you said I’m taking?

      • Claudia says:

        Please educate yourself before expressing your views. Undocummented immigrants do not claim income taxes, but taxes are taken out of their paychecks. Hence,many are already contributing economically to this country. Additionally, undocummented immigrants do not qualify for any type of social services. So, they are not sitting in front of their televisions waiting for their welfare check to come every first of the month, like MANY do. So, how is this country really investing in this population? You were right, though to indicate that a path to citizenship is needed. We are now experiencing the comming of the secon generation of undocummented immigrants (college-age students) who are more than willing to contribute economically, by obtaining a college education and becoming working professionals. Unfortunately, if the DREAM Act continues to debunked, that will never happened. This whole immigration issue, is a race issue because the majority of the undocummented population is brown! I wonder if we would be having this problem if the undocummented population were white?

    • Bazrik says:

      The reason this is a different case is that these people – kids of illegals – did not have a choice. They were friggin’ kids. They weren’t on a “visit”, as you said. They were brought here, which actually is different than coming here illegally as an adult.

      I am in favor of more strict border security and in cracking down on illegal immigration. But use some common sense and SEPARATE that issue from what was done to these people when they were kids. It’s different, I swear.

      Now, you’ll probably come back with “No, it’s not. It’s not different. They’re illegal – they should go home”.

      Well, frankly, that’s the kind of uncompromising, black-and-white thinking that divides this country, gets us nowhere. It turns us into screaming ninnies that are on one “side” or another… eliminating any possibility of a middle ground.

    • Where’s the “Like” button, again?

  4. Lowell Fulk says:

    O.k., I’ve heard many speak of doing what is necessary to become legal. Please explain what that would entail for those to whom the Dream Act would apply.
    And what is your understanding of what the Dream Act would require?

  5. Delataire says:

    Let these illegal aliens apply for a student visa and pay the same fees that all legally applied foreign exchange students pay. Isn’t that fair? Oh I’ve forgotten, these illegal aliens do not believe in fairness, they want benefits and privileges on top of everything else they’ve acquired by using a profound lack of moral character.

    • David Miller says:

      dude! Do you not realize the amount of money that each immigrant pays into the system? We’ve got so many taxes tagged onto their paychecks and purchases and then demonize them for their presence that we should be ashamed that this conversation is even taking place. Then you have the nerve to attack their moral character. I’d like to see your moral character step up and help the meek in our society instead of attacking them! This us vs them crap is getting old. Do some homework and stop repeating talking points that you don’t even understand.

    • Bazrik says:

      “These illegal aliens do not believe in fairness”, …they have a “profound lack of moral character”? Well I’d definitely call those broad and wild generalizations. To be blunt, how on earth would you know?

      This is what kills me – we start having a good debate about immigration – a truly sticky, complex subject – and pretty soon people start casting aspersions on a race or nationality. They change the conversation …and do NOT say that’s not what you’re doing here, Delataire. The minute you start casting blanket aspersions on a group, you’ve changed the subject completely.

      Believe it or not, I’m on the same page as you on some of these issues! But you ruin our validity when you start down that path. Please – cut it out.

    • “benefits and privileges” such as getting beaten and thrown in a metal cell in an ICE detention center.

  6. David Miller says:

    Oh wait I forgot, that poor corn farmer from Mexico who used to be able to feed his family before NAFTA came to town is a criminal. He fled his homeland because of starvation. Fled to the one nation that was both close enough to get to and prosperous enough to offer hope. He brought his family and integrated into our society. He unceremoniously followed all laws except the one barring his initial entry. He raised his children to be hard workers and sent them to school everyday so that they would one day have a chance at the American Dream. The entire time he’s been here his employer deducted Social Security, Federal and State taxes from his paychecks. Every purchase he has made including on every scrap of food purchased has been taxed. His every labor has added to the American treasury. Illegal Immigration as you put it is a a direct result of the US subsidy on corn that drove hundreds of thousands of sustaining farmers from their family farms and ruined similar economies all through Central and South America. These immigrants were pawns in the global economic balance. These are not bad people who chose to live the life of luxury in America, in reality they slave in our tomato fields or wherever we want to generalize their labor pool working for less than a living wage and yet they make it. They send their children to school, they get by on the very least in our society. Who are we to attack their moral character?

    • Delataire says:

      If NAFTA is your example’s problem, let him do what he can to get rid of it. Not break a law. Why can’t you understand that these people have no moral character? If you broke a law, and then hid from justice, wouldn’t you have a lack of moral character?

      • Jeremy Aldrich says:

        Harriet Tubman, Anne Frank, Frederick Douglass…seem like pretty decent folks to me.

        • Just as you probably think Bill Clinton was impeached over having an extra-marital affair.

          • No, Bill Clinton was impeached because a bunch of clueless rightwing congressmen decided to follow Newt Gingrich down a dark alley, before they found out that he was a philandering hypocrite fool. Thank god we never heard from Newt again!

          • Really? Newt had his first affair in the early 80s…so your statement makes no sense.

            I actualyl thought Clinton was impeached because he lied to a federal grand jury and was found to be in contempt of court, and was ultimately disbarred and unable to assume the practice of law.

          • Bill Clinton’s sexual affairs are not the subject of conversation, and thus a deliberate non sequitor. you’re clearly trying to evade Mr. Aldrich’s point, which indicates that it was a relatively astute one.

      • David Miller says:

        Yep, if I lived in this world with no empathy I’d probably agree with your principled stand.

        “The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread.”

      • Claudia says:

        You are the epitome of white privilege

  7. Daniel says:

    You just described every American farmer, legal or not.

    Watch the movie King Corn. It’s not just the poor little immigrant who gets treated this way.

  8. Daniel says:

    “what the Dream Act would require?”
    It asks immigrants (who got here under the age of 16, and who are now between the age of 16 and 35) to get a degree in higher education, or to serve two years in the uniformed services. If they do this, with good behavior, they’ll be eligible to become a US citizen.

    “I’ve heard many speak of doing what is necessary to become legal. Please explain what that would entail for those to whom the Dream Act would apply.”
    They go back home and apply for a Green Card to come to the States legally; something that should have been done in the first place. From there they can then start the process of applying for citizenship. It’s a process that would take several years, but as long as they stay out of jail it should be easy for someone who’s lived here and who was educated here.

    • David Miller says:

      So that’s your response? “Go home”

    • Jeremy Aldrich says:

      “They go back home and apply for a Green Card to come to the States legally; something that should have been done in the first place” What visa category would a high school educated 18-year old be eligible for? How about their parents when they “should have” done that years ago? Please point one out to me that’s realistic for them to “do the right thing”…

      “This is not a civil rights issue because you have no rights. Just go home, you’ve done enough.”
      No civil rights? What do you base that presumption upon? Have you ever read the 14th amendment to the (ahem) US CONSTITUTION?
      And what have they “done enough” of?

      • Jeremy, the 14th Amendment of the Constitution doesn’t apply to everybody around the world. And it certainly shouldn’t apply to anyone who illegally penetrates our borders — but we apply it to them anyhow.

  9. Jeremy Aldrich says:

    “No State shall… deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

    Seems pretty clear to me who that does and doesn’t apply to.

    • What you wrote is exactly what I wrote…and illegals get equal protection and due process under the 14th Amendment.


      You never have explained how a Libertarian becomes a bleeding heart socialist/marxist…how’d that happen to you…not fond of freedom?

      • Maybe you’re not understanding, Dave, that I was replying to Daniel’s statement that undocumented immigrants “have no [civil] rights”. That is demonstrably false according to our Constitution.

        Your question is absurd, as I am neither a bleeding heart nor a marxist, since I don’t advocate a proletarian revolution. “Socialist” is in the eye of the beholder, as I’m sure someone who takes government benefits, uses government services, and is married to a government employee would understand.

        As has been brought up before, my position on immigration is a lot closer to the Libertarian position than yours…would it make sense, then, to turn your final question around for your response?

        Actually, I don’t really care to hear your response, I just want you to not turn a discussion about immigration into a critique of my worldview.

  10. Yeah, that’s why the LP will never be elected…their purist platform.

    What government benefit do I take, Jeremy?

  11. David Miller says:

    Roads, standardized internet protocols that are subsidized by our Federal Gov that enable us to have these dialogues, HEC, your children go to public school, public water/sewer, social security and medicare eventually, court protection for your guns and your right to wave them around campuses ;)

    just to name a few

    • David, I pay for my internet access (not via taxes), I pay for my electricity from SVEC which likely has no direct government subsidies, 75% of my property taxes and who knows how much of my federal taxes got to the operation of the schools, as I’m self-employed I pay twice what “regular employees” pay in payroll taxes for SS and medicare, and the Constitution gives me the right to maintain and carry firearms, and Virginia law permits me to “wave” them around campus’.

      • David Miller says:

        Dave, I know you pay for your internet. My point was that federal funding for standards of protocol and positioning of copyright laws enable the dialogue that we are currently sharing.

        The reason we got off on a tangent was someone’s derailment into their belief that the government couldn’t or didn’t serve a positive role. I made the point that it could. Not to be blunt or rude but now can we continue where we were discussing how the government might play a positive role in facilitating the various need of its citizens?

      • Dany Fleming says:

        Dave, SVEC exists today because of the huge federal subsidies it received for so long through the Rural Electrification Act. The rural counties of the Valley have electricity because of that government intervention (they weren’t profitable otherwise) and the poultry industry’s become what it is today directly because of that.

        Of course, the Internet was developed through federal subsidies and grants and the development of Internet II continues to be heavily federally subsidized – just checkout the grants to the major tech research universities. So, your taxes still contribute to many parts of your Internet access.

  12. citydweller says:

    re david miller: in dave briggman’s defense…all those example you just cited as government services that dave takes are actually incorrect. yes dave uses those services, but he does not take those services. he pays for them with his tax dollars.

  13. David Miller says:

    What’s the difference, you mean like taking unemployment insurance vs using highways? What’s the point of drawing the contrast? They’re both services that the government provides via tax dollars.

  14. citydweller says:

    re david miller: you are missing my point. dave briggman is paying his taxes for use of those services. thus your statement that he is taking from the government is not true. he is paying the government for those services.

    • Jeremy Aldrich says:

      I doubt many of us in this discussion pay more in taxes than what federal, state, and local governments spend on our behalf, per capita (aka our “fair share”), calculated by one website as $20,757 per person in the USA. If you have kids, be sure to calculate them in your household “fair share” too!

  15. David Miller says:

    I never said otherwise. We all pay our taxes for the benefits and services we receive from our government.

  16. David Miller says:

    The reason we got off on a tangent was someone’s derailment into their belief that the government couldn’t or didn’t serve a positive role. I made the point that it could. Not to be blunt or rude but now can we continue where we were discussing how the government might play a positive role in facilitating the various needs of its citizens?

    • Delataire says:

      Miller writes:

      ” how the government might play a positive role in facilitating the various needs of its citizens?”

      The US government is supposed to care for US citizens. Not these illegal aliens. The illegal aliens are the responsibility of the government of their home countries. Not the US.

      • David Miller says:

        Whether or not your conscience deems it necessary our Constitution requires that we protect all persons within our borders.
        One thing that all parties must believe and hold true is that an attack on our justice system is an attack on our core. If we knowingly and willingly allow our government to ignore the rights of immigrants amongst us then we do not deserve the very rights that we are withholding from them. Equal Protection my friend is a universal value, I dare you to argue against it!

        • Delataire says:

          Then these illegal aliens by breaking our immigration laws/justice system are attacking our core.

          Illegal aliens are not immigrants. Immigrants have followed the immigration laws. Illegal aliens have not. What is your problem with understanding this?

          My question is why must these illegal aliens engage in wanton unadulterated greed? If you desire fairness, then fairness would be having the illegal aliens pay the fines required by immigration law. (Dave B. can yet again post the links if he cares to.) And then pay the same tuition rates and fees that legal foreign exchange students pay. after applying for and being granted a student visa.

          Yet we never hear of a single illegal alien wanting to do this. It’s always the “We should pay instate tuition” “We shouldn’t be fined for being here illegally” “We shouldn’t be punished for being “undocumented””. That is greed. When does it end?

          • I consider my “core” to be my relationship with God, not the “immigration laws” and the “justice system” of the US, a political state that committed atrocities against my ancestors.

            “why must these illegal aliens engage in wanton unadulterated greed?” We are talking about people who make at most eight dollars an hour. (As someone whose worked as an agrarian day-laborer, I know it is back-breaking labor) Are Arby’s employees participating in “wanton unadulterated greed” by toiling away assembling beef patties at minimum wage?

            “after applying for and being granted a student visa.” Most Latino immigrants cannot afford to attend school at EMU or JMU. Most Euro-American and Afro-American locals cannot afford to attend school at EMU or JMU either. This shows how wonderful “student citizenship” is, in most cases it comes with the condition of debt. But speaking out on the greed of the ruling-class will distract us on blaming our fellow workers.

            ““We shouldn’t be punished for being ‘undocumented’. That is greed.” Not wanting to be harassed and arrested by police and immigration officials is “greed”? Talk about victim-blaming….

          • Nobody cares about your opinion, Rocktown Rebel.

  17. David Miller says:

    NO, you’re ignoring our constitutional requirement to protect all persons within our borders and that is my point. These are human beings we’re talking about. I’m not proposing anything except that these humans are treated as such.

  18. David Miller says:

    Can we agree to treating immigrants as human beings and then work from that towards a discussion?

  19. Sam Nickels says:

    I am dismayed at Briggman’s arrogance and callousness toward other human beings. Your remarks look at them as paperwork and not human beings.

    They came here like out ancestors, looking for a better life, many of ours came undocumented. From the American Indian perspective we are all still illegal.

    The Dream young people’s parents have paid most, and often all, the taxes I have, some for many more years in VA than I have — utility taxes, retail state tax, state income tax, property tax to support schools thru their rent. If they are undocumented and working under the table, it’s primarily federal taxes they are not paying. Let’s face it, we all know many Americans who work on the side or underreport the sale price of their car to avoid taxes.

    Immigrant bring crime with them, was a comment from Delatair — theirs a study that shows 1st generation immigrants have a far lower incarceration rate than native born Americans, 2nd generation continue to have a bit lower, and finally 3rd generation immigrants have caught up and become fully assimilated, having the same high rate of crime as the rest of us.

    This debate is about kids who have grown up here and have family here and school friends and teachers who love them and parents who have paid their fair share of taxes, and all they want is equal treatment. DONT PUT THEM DOWN AS IF THEY ARE ASKING FOR MORE AND MORE – their parents probably work harder longer hours for far less pay in our factories and I know some of these young people who work several part time ow-wage jobs and go to school at the same time, which is more than my kids have to do.

    Sam Nickels

    • So many of you people have so much white guilt you’re carrying around, that I’m pretty sure will end of being the death of you…perhaps you’re at the top of the list, Nickles?

      The American Indians were conquered, Sam. Bad example, just as the Mexicans who once occupied the southwestern United States were.

      The United States is now a sovereign nation — much as the current President would like to make it otherwise. Sovereign nations have boarders, most of whom choose to protect those boarders by setting up laws by which some people are admitted, and some are not.

      It kind of the same thing as you owning or renting your home, but locking the doors to keep those people who you don’t want in your house out. Are you showing callousness by not leaving your home open and accessible to those who don’t belong at all times?

      Exactly what “arrogance and callousness” am I showing toward these people?

      Why not cite your study? No, this debate about people who were once children who are now adults. We’ve schooled them at our expense. They obviously know they’re here illegally and should return back to their native countries. You can’t prove their parents have paid any taxes, except for, perhaps, sales taxes. Equal treatment, since they’re here illegally is to send them back to their own countries under the civil deportation process.

      If their parents are working in factories, or they are working in part time jobs, then the employers are violating federal laws and should be dealt with accordingly.

      What the hell does their employment have to do with what your kids “have to do”?

    • Oh and Nickles:

      There, their, they’re…learn the difference. :-)

  20. David Miller says:

    Thanks Sam, you put that pretty well.

  21. Delataire says:

    Sam writes:

    “This debate is about kids who have grown up here and have family here and school friends and teachers who love them and parents who have paid their fair share of taxes, and all they want is equal treatment. DONT PUT THEM DOWN AS IF THEY ARE ASKING FOR MORE AND MORE ”

    Sam, since the DNR makes you out to be the local Mexican expert. Would you explain the hypocrisy between the way Mexico treats it’s illegal aliens, while complaining about how the US treats illegal aliens?

    Can you explain the hypocrisy between the latin american casta system and how the illegal alien population here likes to label anyone who does not cater to them as a racist?

    Like it or not every illegal alien is a criminal who has broken immigration law; regardless of his or her age. To hide and “live in the shadows” only exacerbates the problem. Rather than reciting an endless list of needs and wants as so often demostrated on TV3 and the DNR, why can’t these illegal aliens simply appologize, admit their guilt and reasons for coming here and politely without being smug, ask for help?

    • Because if that were done, they’d be conceding that they are here illegally.

    • “Would you explain the hypocrisy between the way Mexico treats it’s illegal aliens, while complaining about how the US treats illegal aliens? ”

      I don’t consider myself a “Mexican expert” but both the Mexico and the US are corrupt political states whose immigration laws will not be respected by any decent person, much less someone struggling for economic survival.

  22. David Miller says:

    Or should I say Americana humanity

  23. Bill Branner says:

    What rubbish! Who ever saw so much passion and humanity devoted to criminal behavior before? Maybe you Americana humanists could reserve a little of your pain for the millions of aliens who went to the trouble of becoming immigrants and citizens the legal way. We regularly see on the pages of the DNR the ceremonies conferring citizenship on numbers of people who have put in the effort and expense to earn it, we applaud and welcome them, we celebrate their accomplishment and stand ready to help them however possible. But, what the heck, surely they won’t care if we ‘DREAM” up a way to show them we are actually working feverishly to grant amnesty to illegal’s any way we can, but thanks for their hard work anyway.

    Dave Brigman’s points are quite clear to me. We have laws. That includes laws covering who is allowed within our borders, which of those people are or may become citizens, and criminal statutes covering those here illegally. They are not ‘maybe’ laws that apply only when there are no sad stories to ameliorate them. THEY ARE FRIGGIN LAWS. It doesn’t matter if you’re talking about a poor starving corn farmer, a high school valedictorian, or a drug runner … if they are in this country illegally, they are all breaking at least one law, and there are not variants on the meaning of the word illegal.

    What do they have to do to become citizens? How the hell should I know? There is no question of my citizenship or legality, I have no reason to know that. I DO know that there ARE legal ways to apply for and be granted things such as ‘green cards’, visas, and citizenship. I know that there is no such thing as ‘fairness’ in selective amnesty.

    “They came here like out ancestors, looking for a better life” is hogwash. Our ancestors were not sneaking in trying to gain legal status by short circuiting established immigration laws. They were invading and conquering in a totally different world completely irrelevant to the realities and conditions of today. And how far do you think you’d have gotten back then whining about how good you’d been while violating the rules? We are supposedly discussing legalities here, not emotions.

    Finally, about that equal protection clause: yep, all law abiding people within the state’s jurisdiction can expect to be protected equally from the criminal population. All inmates have equal opportunity to remain incarcerated, all convicted felons have equal restriction against owning firearms, and all illegal aliens are equally obligated to obtain residence legally or be deported. The state is not obligated under this clause to provide college educations or welfare to inmates, nor is it obligated to provide amnesty to illegal aliens.
    As is usually the case whenever this argument arises, the tangential, emotional, irrelevant, and often dishonest yells and screams from both sides do a pretty good job of drowning out the simple facts and truths. The simple bottom line here is that we have laws in this country concerning legal residence and citizenship. Every person in the country is bound by the same laws. If you don’t like the provisions of the US Constitution and the existing laws of the land, there are legal means of changing them … pursue them. But don’t think it’s OK to just bypass or subvert the ones that don’t fit your personal ideas of ‘fair’. ‘Fix’ things if they need it, but enforce the way in the meantime. Just say ‘NO’ to illegal amnesty.

  24. Chris F-B says:

    I’m not quite sure when this conversation got off track and turned into the same generic immigration debate people have been having every minute of everyday since I can remember, but it’s pretty funny to see comments like “THEY ARE FRIGGIN LAWS” when the Dream Act was about changing the law.


    • And the DREAM Act wasn’t passed, so the current law remains in full force and effect.

      Nice posting, Bill. Welcome to the local liberal infestation known as hburgnews.com !

    • Bill Branner says:

      To Chris … go back and read it again, old top … maybe several times … see if anything seeps in.

      Ya see, guy, I was kind of talking about the illegal aliens who are already in this country. The implication is that we currently have laws on the books and we currently have people here in violation of those laws. That in turn means they have broken the law, which in most circles is considered a criminal act.

      Perhaps if you had read farther down before getting a hot flash, you would have noticed one of the last things I wrote: “If you don’t like the provisions of the US Constitution and the existing laws of the land, there are legal means of changing them … pursue them.”. Now really, Chris, does that sound like “YOU CAN’T CHANGE THE LAW! IT’S THE LAW!” to you?

      But, to address your confusion, “I’m not quite sure when this conversation got off track”, let me take your little hand in mine and I’ll lead you back and point it out for you.

      The first diversion came when Brooke Lohr said “So we’ve already invested so much in illegal immigrants, we should deport them?” That digressed into a lengthy talk about birth certificates, slaves, and the percentage of blacks that used to be considered people.

      Moving right along, next Delataire suggested “Let these illegal aliens apply for a student visa and pay the same fees that all legally applied foreign exchange students pay.”. From there we roared off track to discuss what taxes illegal aliens do or do not pay, then how many work ‘under the table’, next endured David Miller’s near hysterical emotional appeal for the poor Mexican corn farmer who clawed his way here only to endure the yoke of America’s taxes “on every scrap of food purchased”. It was downhill again from there for a while, too.

      We spent a while on civil rights issues, the 14th Amendment, benefits (governmental and non-governmental) and who pays for them, and what role the federal government should have in the provision of services to illegal aliens. So far, it’s ‘OFF-TRACK R US’ here, eh Chris?

      THEN, poor dismayed Sam Nickels deplored the “arrogance and callousness toward other human beings” as a lead-in to another totally off-track outpouring of emotion and feel-good pleading. Sam is so confused he can’t tell the difference between his ancestors’ screwing the American Indian and the illegal alien invasion screwing us. He next treats us to a rundown on the taxes DREAM student’s parents pay and a summary on immigrant crime (which is totally irrelevant, as we are discussing illegal alien crime). Finally there is the plea that their parents and teachers love the DREAM kids and all they want is equal treatment (as long as it’s not equal to the work and sacrifices legal immigrants had to undergo for citizenship).

      I could keep going, but both of our hands are getting tired by now, aren’t they Chris? You can read the rest of the thread if you want to, but you should by now be getting the idea of where “this conversation got off track”.

      And by the way … the reason we keep having “the same generic immigration debate people have been having every minute of everyday” is that until they are changed, we do have the same laws, every minute of every day, but there are always so many people trying to take the conversation off track to avoid or nullify them.

      I hope that helped.

      • Where’s the “Love” button for Bill’s comment?

      • Jeremy Aldrich says:

        Like with the 3/5 compromise, and whether or not undocumented immigrants pay taxes, and whether or not they had a legal way to come, your ignorance seems to be exceeded only by your pomposity.

        Do tell, what are the almighty “current laws” that people are seeking to “avoid or nullify”? The reality is that the federal approach to undocumented immigration is so ambiguous (and has been for decades under both Republican and Democratic administrations) that both sides of the immigration debate are advocating for new laws to push us out of a crazy mishmash of competing goals.

        • Bill Branner says:

          Ah, but you do have to keep a sense of humor to be able to enjoy the retort of the flailing ‘progressive’. When all else fails, when you have no reasonable debate response to ONE single point, fall back to name-calling. Perhaps if you had been a little specific about which of my points were ignorant or pompous, and why, you’d have achieved a hint of credibility, little fellow.

          And while you’re at it, could you explain what ‘undocumented immigration’ might be, as a lead-in to your showing how the federal approach to it is ambiguous? If you’re having trouble with that, perhaps you could enlist the newly minted immigrants who were just recently granted citizenship to help you fill in a few blanks.

  25. Jeremy, as I’ve stated before, a large part of the problem is that you, and people like you, can’t even start with the honest premise that these people aren’t undocumented (you yourself stated they use their foreign birth certificates to register for school) they are simply in our county ILLEGALLY, as in ILLEGAL ALIENS.

    Consequently, Bill’s quite correct in stating that you, and people like you, continue to attempt to evade current law which requires a civil deportation on the first offense, and upon subsequent occasions of illegally penetrating our borders, felony charges.

    Since you, and those like you, can’t even concede these people are in our country illegally, we’re going to keep going around in circles accomplishing NOTHING.

    • Am I the only one having deja vu? I have said many times that crossing the border illegally is a misdemeanor crime. The question is how best to respond to that misdemeanor, and what to do with those who are undocumented for other reasons, such as overstaying visas. Kind of like, if you speed when you’re driving to work, should you be fired and kicked out of your city, even though you weren’t caught? Should your kids not be allowed to go to school because they were in your speeding car? Your position is that yes, it naturally follows that because a misdemeanor was committed then normal life should be suspended until the crime is punished. My position is: get real.

      Delataire, we covered 8 U.S.C. § 1325 quite thoroughly in a previous conversation here.

  26. Jeremy,

    I don’t recall that you ever answered the question as to whether you lock the doors to your house at night, and if so, for what purpose?

    • July 21, 2010 at 11:16 pm

      I do lock the doors on my private property, but I don’t lock the gates to the public park to keep out folks I don’t want there, or bar the roadways from drivers I don’t care for, even those who drive without a license!

      New for September 2010:
      Do you drive with a valid license nowadays, Dave? When you didn’t, were you an “unlicensed driver” (even though you HAD a license, just an invalid one), or were you an “illegal driver”?

      • You want us to use terms coined by the AP or Hispanic Journalists?


        Weeks ago, when I used the term ILLEGAL ALIEN, I believe Brent made some reference to UFOs.

        During the time my license was illegally suspended, I was an ILLEGAL DRIVER, under Virginia law. I have two convictions from two Circuit Courts which verify that.

        Tell us, Jeremy. Why do you lock the doors to your home?

        Nevermind, I’ll answer for you. You lock the doors to keep either people you don’t know or you don’t want from coming into your house. Same principle, larger scale.

  27. Delataire says:

    Jeremy, Sam, Dave M.,

    These related terms are often used in deliberately confusing and conflicting ways. Here is a set of definitions that will help you sort out the difference.

    IMMIGRANT: In popular usage, an “immigrant” is generally understood to be a person who migrates to another country, usually for permanent residence. Under this definition, therefore, an “immigrant” is an alien admitted to the U.S. as a lawful permanent resident. The emphasis in this definition is upon the presumptions that (1) the immigrant followed U.S. laws and procedures in establishing residence in our country; (2) he or she wishes to reside here permanently; and (3) he or she swears allegiance to our country or at least solemnly affirms that he/she will observe and respect our laws and our Constitution.

    ALIEN: By contrast, an “alien” is generally understood to be a foreigner — a person who comes from a foreign country — who does not owe allegiance to our country.

    ILLEGAL ALIEN: An “illegal alien” is a foreigner who (1) does not owe allegiance to our country; and (2) who has violated our laws and customs in establishing residence in our country. He or she is therefore a criminal under applicable U.S. laws.

    The term “illegal alien” is used by U.S. citizens who believe that non-citizens entering our country must comply with our immigration laws.

    The term “illegal alien” is predicated upon U.S. immigration law which requires foreigners entering the U.S. to comply with our country’s rules and laws regarding entry into, and residence within, our country.

    UNDOCUMENTED IMMIGRANT: The term “undocumented immigrant” is an oxymoron (the parts conflict). An immigrant is synonymous with “permanent legal resident.” The old term for the document authorizing a permanent legal resident is “green card.” The term “undocumented” is derived from the accurate term “undocumented aliens” who are often called “border crossers.” Proper terms are “illegal alien” or “undocumented alien” but not “undocumented immigrant.” Although not commonly used, the term “documented alien” accurately refers to foreign nationals who have an unexpired non-immigrant visa such as H-1B.

    Most U.S. citizens do not use the term “undocumented immigrant” and prefer, instead, the more descriptive and accurate term “illegal alien”.

    The term “undocumented immigrant” is used by those who believe in “open borders”, i.e., non-regulation of foreigners entering into and assuming residence in the U.S., including even those foreigners who owe allegiance to a foreign government and/or who may intend harm to the U.S.

    • I suggest you stick to guidance from the US legal code rather than the site from which you cut and pasted that uninformed diatribe. BTW, do you feel that you are, like the site’s tagline, a “victim of reverse discrimination”?

      Here is some more advice from the Natl Assoc. of Hispanic Journalists and from the AP on what terminology to use. I personally think undocumented immigrant and unauthorized immigrant are the most correct terms covering the widest range of people usually referred to in that way.

  28. Oh, this is such a retread.

    1) So, this is about the killing of the DREAM Act, which action is then being praised by Dave B. and others. But the debate is over whether it should have passed or not. That makes all the “they are illegals” the bwawhawha. The law was to allow them to stop being illegal and to contribute meaningfully to the society that has educated them rather than shipping them back to places most of them barely know and from where they have little chance of returning to the land they have considered home, even if they were illegally doing so.

    2) Delataire: you seem to have stopped with all the garbage about how immoral these young people are and how terribly selfish they are. Somebody brought here at a very young age and sent to school without knowing what is up is immoral? They were supposed to run away from home and return “home” when they learned of their status at age 12 or whenever? This is such flaming nonsense. And you do not think that the majority of people opposing the DREAM Act are not doing so for selfish and immoral reasons?

    3) Dave B. You really need to drop this house argument; it is so utterly absurd. When someone breaks into your house, they are usually there to rob, rape, or murder you. When someone illegally enters the US they are usually here to get a job and pay taxes, if someone will allow them to. Not remotely equivalent. (And do keep in mind that even illegal aliens have lower crime rates than citizens, so do not try to pull a “they are here to rob, rape, and murder us,” even some of them do that.)

    4) Also, to Dave. Your answer to Jeremy about the LP does not cut it. You admit that the LP’s position is “pure,” too pure for them to get elected. In effect, you admit that they are morally correct and that the consistent libertarian position is to minimize these police state actions of rounding up these people and shipping them back to their (non)-“homes.” But you wish to deviate from this “purity” to placate immoral popular opinion on this matter. Not something I would be too proud of, frankly.

    • Daniel says:

      I’d like to see where you got your information in paragraph #3.

      Not to mention 100% of the illegal’s have broken the law.

    • How do you know what you’ve alleged in paragraph three, Professor Rosser?

      You don’t like the “house” argument because it’s valid. One locks their door to keep people out who don’t belong in. Period. There’s no need to extrapolate further. It’s a really simple answer.

      I’ve posted statistics previously which demonstrate the illegal aliens have a higher rate of crime than the indigenous population…saying that they do not doesn’t make it so.

      Also, with respect to paragraph four, the argument that the LP’s positions (their “platform”) is morally correct is without any foundation. I don’t agree with many of the positions in the party’s platform — the open borders position being one of them.

      Nobody believes we should round up the 12 million illegals in the US and ship them home…but it is finally reasonable to ship them home as we find them. Statistics that just were released by the Republic of Texas indicate fully 1/3 of the students in government schools there are ILLEGAL. Given that Texas has the largest systems of government schools in the country, we’re talking about huge amounts of money citizens of Texas are spending to educate children who lack legal status. Across the Country, illegals comprise fully 25% of the children in government schools.

      Thus, in my view, it’s cheaper to send them home as we come across them through whatever legal means necessary.

      • Dave,

        There are still parts of the country where people leave their doors unlocked. They do not mind the people who might walk in because they are not afraid of them committing crimes beyond that of having technically trespassed, a violation of the law. Most of us lock our doors because we are afraid of these other things, robbery, rape, murder, etc. If they walked in to ask for a job, and we did not offer it, they would presumably walk back out again.

        Regarding the illegals’ crime rates, these are seriously unknown. I’ve looked at the studies, and they are all off-the-wall estimates. Here is a fact: violant and property crime rates in AZ declined during 2005-2008, even as the number of illegals rose, and total population rose by 600,000. See http://articles.cnn.com/2010-04-29/justice/arizona.immigration.crime_1_sen-russell-pearce-illegal-immigration-immigration-law?_s=PM:CRIME . If I did not get that quite right, I am sure you can track it down.

        Gains to the economy by illegal immigrants are less than legal, but some of that is due to our unwillingness to legalize them. Your argument about Texas is hilarious. Quite aside from the fact that Texas is doing very well economically, partly thanks to the large presence of all sorts of immigrants, thank you, it is obviously stupid to waste all that money on educating the illegals and then not take advantage of their education. This is the key argument all along here.

        I think part of the reason that you guys are so worked up here is that deep down you realize that it is morally wrong to dump on innocent people, and do not dare to give us this garbage about how these kids are immoral because they are “illegal” any further, given that it is not they who consciously engaged in the illegal acts (and do not try to get around this very hard moral bottom line). All of you have driven above the speed limit, and I have no doubt you do not sit around thinking about how immoral you are for having done so.

    • Bill Branner says:

      “The law was to allow them to stop being illegal.” Duh! So I gather the ‘law’ would be 2 or 3 times as nice if we extended it to all 20 or 30 million illegals and just “allowed them to stop being illegal”. Do you support blanket amnesty for ALL illegal aliens or do you prefer differentiating according to ‘classes’ of illegality? And you have the nerve to call anybody else’s opinion “flaming nonsense”?

      And then you have the audacity to claim that the majority of the opposition to this madness are selfish and immoral? Well, unlike you, I can’t speak for everyone, but I can damned sure tell you I am NOT selfish OR immoral for believing in the rule of law in this country. What would your views on selfishness and morality be when YOU were caught sneaking into Mexico illegally? If you don’t like our laws, work to have them changed, but you don’t get to pick the ones you like and ignore the rest.

      You are clearly in no position to be calling anyone’s arguments “utterly absurd”, and I see absolutely nothing that you SHOULD be “too proud of, frankly”.

  29. I put in an extra “not” in my comments to Delataire. Intended meaning should be clear.

    In any case, I see nothing at all good to come out of this. Economically, immigrants are a net plus, even if many do not believe this. It is a terrible waste to ship these kids back wherever after we have educated them. The DREAM Act was very reasonable and moral. Punishing these young people has absolutely nothing moral about it, nothing whatsoever.

  30. Delataire says:


    Consider, if five of your students were in a car, they drive by another group of kids on the street, one pulls out a gun and fires it. They speed away. Are they then all guilty of a driveby shooting, or just the person who fired the gun?

    To me they are all guilty. That’s how I feel about the illegal aliens, it doesn’t matter if they were 5 or 25 when the broke immigration laws.

    I will ask you as I did above, Why can’t these “kids” acknowledge that they are here illegally, offer to make amends and do so without being smug and arrogant. Why is it everytime one of these “kids” is brought up they’re always saying “give us this, that and the other” “You owe us”.

    • It’s not just the illegals who can’t concede that they broke the law…the many who live on this blog also suffer, greatly, from white guilt.

      • Dave, you admitted being an illegal (driver). So here we go:

        Daniel suggests: “It’s pretty cut-and-dry. If you’re illegal, go home. The United States is not your home…This is not a civil rights issue because you have no rights. Just go home, you’ve done enough.” – I’m sorry, Dave, but this is both cut AND dry. You have no rights because you committed a serious misdemeanor. Go home to the land of your ancestors…Briggman is a German name, ja?

        Delataire notes: “[You] illegal[s] do not believe in fairness, [you] want benefits and privileges on top of everything else [you’ve] acquired by using a profound lack of moral character.” – Dave, Dave, Dave…is this true?

        Bill Branner reminds you that: “until they are changed, we do have the same laws, every minute of every day, but there are always so many people trying to take the conversation off track to avoid or nullify them.” – Stop talking about others’ supposed “white guilt” (I think most of us simply call it a “conscience”, btw) and go turn yourself in for all the times you WEREN’T caught driving without a license. Stop trying to avoid or nullify your guilt.

        You yourself suggested: “Perhaps, if we cut off the education option to illegals and start prosecuting both the illegals and their employers then our investment would be cut to a minimum.” – seems a little harsh, but fair is fair. Who is your employer, and how often did you drive without a valid license to do work-related tasks? And to whom should we appeal to cut off your “education options”, whatever that means?


        • Daniel says:

          If I drive illegally, I expect to be punished as the Judge see’s fit. Whether it’s a first offense or my tenth. Sooner or later I’ll be in jail serving a sentence.

      • Deb SF says:

        Oh, Dave.

        It’s not white guilt. It’s just the start of an understanding that being white in the US affords an advantage that can only be understood distantly and incompletely by a white person smack in the middle of society.

        It reminds me of the story in David Foster Wallace’s wonderful graduation speech at Keynon College some years ago.

        “There are these two young fish swimming along, and they happen to meet an older fish swimming the other way, who nods at them and says, “Morning, boys, how’s the water?” And the two young fish swim on for a bit, and then eventually one of them looks over at the other and goes, “What the hell is water?”

        • Deb, the white male is the single most discriminated-against entity in the U.S. You being a female, you likely wouldn’t understand that.

          It’s white guilt.

          • Deb SF says:

            Sigh. I’m still white, buster. So I don’t know anything about anything because I’m a girl?

            I, like “the many who live on this blog,” have not only a bit of intelligence and wisdom but some capacity for both sympathy and empathy and thus can in part understand those who are not precisely, specifically, absolutely exactly just like us.

    • Deletaire,

      Should have replied to this earlier, but your drive by shooting argument is far worse than Dave’s house trespass one. At least with that one the act of trespassing does bear some resemblance upfront to illegally entering the country. Yours has no such similarity.

      Illegally entering the country is a non-violent, non-property damaging, victimless crime. A drive by shooting most definitely is not that, and indeed may involve murder, about as bad as it gets.

      Second, you did not describe the status of the other occupants. Are they a gang where all were focusing on and knew the shooting was coming and got in the car willingly knowing this? And, are they all adults?

      To make your analogy, let us suppose that the inhabitants of the car a family, with the father/husband possessing a gun not to the knowledge of his wife and three minor children. If he suddenly pulls it out on the road and fires at somebody, they will almost certainly be let off. Your example is just totally ridiculous.

      • Professor Rosser, illegal entry into this country violates the sovereignty of this nation’s borders — unless you don’t believe our country is a sovereign nation.

        • Dave,

          Come on. You really want to equate “violates the sovereignty of this nation’s borders” with a drive by shooting? At least your home trespassing example had some surface similarity. This stuff is just totally off the wall, especially when you throw in the matter of the nature and identity of the other occupants of the car, who are probably neither minors nor ignorant ahead of time of what is going down.

  31. Delataire says:

    Jeremy, you would rather use politically correct terms. However, the law is the law, and the law as stated in your link to Cornell states numerous times alien/s.

    You asked if I felt that I am a victim of reverse discrimination. I’ll summarize an answer for you. There is a rampant anti-White agenda in this country as well as
    “The West”. Brought on through political correctness, multiculturalism and diversity.

    We’ll leave it at that, becuase it deserves an entirely different thread.

    Now since the dream act has failed again, and Obama will not issue an executive order federalizing all law enforcement officers and empowering them to enforce immigration laws. Nor will the (pick a number) illegal aliens be rounded up and deported due to politics. What do you think should be done with the little misses, Isabel and Maria?

    • Lowell Fulk says:

      No, we won’t leave it at that. Answer the question. No dancing around with a summary. Just answer the question.
      Have you experienced being a victim of reverse discrimination?…

      Locking our doors to our private residence is one of the dumbest arguments I have yet heard. (speaking to another aspect of this thread) I don’t lock my doors. Never have. Probably never will. I don’t live in fear because I’m not a coward. Find another and better argument. Grow some stones if you want to live in America… Real Americans don’t quiver in fear.

      • Delataire says:

        Everyday in this country that used to be called America.

        This country has been anti-White heterosexual male for far too long.

        That fact that people have mentioned “White guilt” and “White privilege” in this thread proves it.

        Go to wiki






        Recall Kipling’s poem and ask when we began to hate.

        • Lowell Fulk says:

          I don’t need links, answer the question:
          Have you experienced being a victim of reverse discrimination?…

          • Delataire says:

            Read the first sentence in the above post.

            The point the links make is that american society and the West have become anti-White heterosexual male. White heterosexual males are the only group that can openly criticised and insulted. Call out anyone else and it’s a hate crime.

          • Lowell Fulk says:

            Have you experienced being a victim of reverse discrimination?…

        • Scott says:

          “This country has been anti-White heterosexual male for far too long.”

          Yes! I can’t count the number of times I have had to deal with people muttering “honky” or “cracker” at me under their breath as I’m walking down the street. And I’m always being overlooked for that next big promotion because of my goofy dancing and my inability to slam dunk a basketball. It is so hard to live a normal life when our society is always trying to bring the white man down.

          Get real. Do you have any friends who aren’t white? Have you ever asked them what their experiences are like as compared to your own? This whole reverse-discrimination argument comes across as little else than thinly veiled racism.

        • Deletaire,

          Good question that one about “when we began to hate.” Yes, I am wondering: when did you start to hate so much? That is all that your attitude to young illegals brought by their parents amounts to, irrational hatred.

          • Delataire says:


            Having illegal aliens here is a symptom of the disease. My hate is directed towards that. As for hate, that began in the 7th grade.

        • Bazrik says:

          Wow that’s the biggest load I’ve heard in a while. The oppressed white man?? Really??? Are you going to tell us about the struggles of the upper class next?

          Spend one week in Compton, inner city Atlanta, etc. and then tell me about all the white oppression you see.

          • Scott says:

            I would be willing to bet that Delataire has never spent so much as a few minutes with anyone who isn’t white.

            If I am wrong about this, please be so kind as to share your experiences as I have already requested.

          • Scott says:

            Also, I realize that I am falling into the tangential nature of this thread and that is not my intent. There have been many people posting who are interested in engaging in an honest debate about the merits of the DREAM act. Many of them, on both sides, have valid points that should at least be considered by all. But when Delataire starts posting about the “anti-White heterosexual male” bias in our society it is not only disingenuous, but offensive to me and many others. Delataire is doing a disservice to those opposed to this act by making remarks that come across as nothing more than misinformed, bigoted rants.

      • Gee, Lowell, I wonder if you’d lock your doors if you lived in, say, Harris Gardens…perhaps Kelley Street?

        Ever driven through north or southeast DC?

        I know a former VT cop of lived over on Kelley Street…his doors were locked 24/7/365…and I’m sure he’s dealt with people with more “stones” that you.

        Caution is a lot more different than fear…but then I’m sure you could “absorb” a home invasion of two…because you’ve got stones, right?

        • Lowell Fulk says:

          Dave, you are going to have to be much more clear to this farm boy, for me to even comprehend what it is I’m supposed to be afraid of… I don’t live on Kelly Street, and I don’t even know what “Caution is a lot more different than fear…but then I’m sure you could “absorb” a home invasion of two…because you’ve got stones, right?” means…

          • Lowell Fulk says:

            But I will repeat, real Americans don’t quiver in fear…

          • Ross says:

            Just quoting;
            “people like Briggman are cowards”, and the others you refer to. Could it be the way they were brought up? What were the circumstances they went through as children and so forth? I’m just saying, ya know.

          • JGFitzgerald says:

            Uh, John, I’m not Briggman’s biggest fan, but give the man his due. He’s not a coward. Many things, but not that.

          • I’m done with you…

            Call if you’d like…leave and name and number and I’ll return your call during the day tomorrow.

            I suspect given your unwillingness to identify yourself in this forum, that I’ll hear from you.

  32. JGFitzgerald says:

    Somebody check my math. If it takes a “deportation agent” two work days to send somebody “home,” and we’re paying him 50k a year, plus benefits, then just the salaries and benefits to send home 11M undocumented people are about $6.3 billion. (We’re not going to pay the judges, jail attendants, and airline pilots.) If only a quarter of those people deported are employed, at $20K/year, we lose roughly $5.5 billion just in Social Security taxes. At the end of the year we’re out $12 billion or so, the immigrants are all gone, and we’ve got 90,000 unemployed deportation agents. What’s Plan B?

  33. Lowell Fulk says:

    Excuse me please, but this whole conversation has, for me at least, gone over into the world of the bizarre…

    The Dream Act was/is good and pragmatic legislation. And I would suggest that Kipling’s “The White Man’s Burden” should be studied a bit more toward understanding before being used as justification for a particular stance as opposition to such legislation…

    I’d just like to offer, that I believe in the John Wayne style philosophy: I’m not afraid, and I don’t choose to walk in fear, I don’t cower, I will not be swayed by fear for my safety, and I will not be coerced. This is what being American means to me.

    Perhaps I am wrong, but I don’t carry a gun to church, and brown people don’t frighten me. In fact, I’m simply not frightened as I live life…

    I live in the best country in the world, with the best government ever devised, among the best people who could exist, with the best opportunities possible, with the most protections for my liberty, and the most possible guaranteed comforts for my rights as have ever existed in written history.
    My life is good. The life of my children is good. I could ask for no more…

    • Daniel says:

      Quit politicking. No one votes for you anyway.

      • JGFitzgerald says:

        Lowell’s had more votes in the 26th District than any Democrat in our lifetimes. Just sayin’.

        • Joe,

          You can have all of the votes in the world…but if they don’t get you a win, they don’t really matter.

          And for the record, I supported Lowell in his run for the seat.

          • JGFitzgerald says:


            The response was to the fellow above with the overly broad definition of “no one.”

          • Lowell Fulk says:

            And I appreciate your support, Dave. And your friendship.

            And I also appreciate your support, Joe. And your friendship.

            A man can’t have too many good friends…

            And Daniel, I’m not politicking, I’m simply making a statement of opinion and philosophy. In case you hadn’t noticed, I’m not running for anything. It’s quite refreshing really, just being able to state my opinion without worry that it might cost me votes. I think I’ve lived enough life in that fashion, and I wasn’t particularly adept at not stepping on toes anyway. Now I don’t need to worry about it all that much.

  34. DebSF says:

    White males are at the top of the food chain. It’s just that women and other races have closed the gap somemewhat. It’s fascinating how this movement towards fairness that treats people more equitably by gender and race is being interpreted by some white men as discrimination.

    I think at the root, the difficulty here is that being white in America means acknowledging that some of what we have is unearned. As a white woman, I walk through the world with white privilege. If I apply for a job, or hunt for an apartment, I don’t look threatening. Almost all of the people evaluating me for those things look like me–they are white. They see in me a reflection of themselves, and in a racist world that is an advantage. I smile. I am white. I am one of them. I am not dangerous. Even when I voice critical opinions, I am cut some slack. After all, I’m a white girl. I grew up in fertile farm country in New England, a country taken by force from non-white indigenous people. I was educated in a well-funded, virtually all-white Catholic school system in which I learned that white people like me made this country great. White male priests were the ultimate authority figures. There I also was taught a variety of skills, including how to take standardized tests written by and for white people. All my life I have been hired for jobs by white people. I was accepted for graduate school by white people. I was taught by white men. My first real job was at JMU, hired for a teaching position at the predominantly white school, which had a white male president, in a college headed by a white male dean and in a department with a white male chairman. At this time in my career, every person above me in my organization is a white male.

    Like everyone, I have overcome certain hardships in my life. I have worked hard to get where I am, and I work hard to stay there. But merit alone did not get me to this point in my life. I can acknowledge that in addition to all that hard work, I got a significant boost from white privilege, which continues to protect me every day of my life from certain hardships.

    • Delataire says:

      I refute any concept of White privilege.

      You’re describing this


      “Dominant privilege is a concept in critical theory describing the unearned advantages enjoyed by members of the dominant culture. It includes three presumptions[1]:

      Innocence: I am not looked to as the cause of problems in society.
      Worthiness: I am presumed worthy of society’s trust and wealth.
      Competence: I am expected to be skillful, successful, and autonomous.
      Examples of dominant privilege include White privilege, male privilege, and heterosexual privilege.

      The above is only applied in the West. No one speaks of Asian privilege in Asia, or Black privilege in Africa. Yet those are the dominant groups there. It’s not spoken of because no one wants to be labeled as a racist for doing so. It’s all bullshit.

  35. Dany Fleming says:

    I don’t detect any guilt in Deb’s assessment, just an acknowledgment of the reality of what she’s had to navigate. Acknowledging the “free passes” I’ve gotten from being a middle-class white guy is not at all driven by guilt.

    Calling efforts at “leveling the playing field” as “white guilt” driven is uninformed and smacks of fear. I know many white guys view the equality gains of people of color and women as somehow an attack on their basic rights and don’t want to acknowledge their unearned, inherited privilege. That’s just a self-interested view and ignores looking at the reality of “unprivileged” folks.

    Research shows that black students get graded down for the equivalent work of white students and it’s certainly what I’ve observed. In plenty of blind studies, black students receive a C for the same work that a white student receives a B. It’s often unintentional bias from well-intentioned teachers. But you’ll also find it’s no surprise to black parents and of little comfort knowing it’s unintentional. That type of unequal start puts most kids in a hole that gets only token help from things like minority scholarship efforts. Of course, women also don’t find the gender pay gap as surprising news.

    Despite Harrisonburg’s diverse population, our city administration and public school staff are anything but diverse. Minority job seekers understand all-too-well that Harrisonburg is comfortable with that lack of diversity. (That’s also a general statement. There are absolutely folks around here bucking that trend and I’m grateful for their courage and determination).

    If you view white males at the top of the “being discriminated” list, then you’re standing on your head. Show a little courage and try finding out what it’s like for the folks really at the head of that list. There’s no guilt in that.

  36. Bill Branner says:

    ‘Curiouser and curiouser!’ cried Alice (she was so much surprised, that for the moment she quite forgot how to speak good English). Wow, do I ever know how she felt. This blog makes the rabbit hole look sane.

    Here’s where it started:
    “The DREAM Act, the bill that would grant a path to permanent residency for many children of unauthorized immigrants, was effectively killed in the Senate Tuesday. The bill was included as an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act.”

    Since then, it has proved to be impossible to remain on subject. The simple fact is that the DREAM bill is a blanket amnesty bill for a certain class of illegal aliens which was recently voted down by the Congress. It’s supporters, not accepting of defeat, then had the unmitigated gall to attach it to an essential but totally unrelated bill in an attempt to slip it through. That failed as well.

    It would seem to follow that a discussion would follow addressing things like the appropriateness of the defined class, the pros and cons of the DREAM act, arguments for or against current immigration law, etc.

    What HAS followed is practically beyond belief. Eventually, Mr Lowell Fulk said it very accurately … “this whole conversation has … gone over into the world of the bizarre… “. Take a look at how far … here’s the basic run-down:

    – What we have invested in this ‘class’ of illegal aliens.
    – Taxes paid/not paid by illegal aliens.
    – Crime rates among illegal aliens and within the general population.
    – An expert opinion on Mexican and U.S. immigration laws by someone who says he is no expert.
    – A contention that illegally entering the country is a misdemeanor akin to improper driving.
    – A discussion on locked doors, public parks, and roadways.
    – A treatise on “white guilt” with the moral that those of us who know what water is “can in part understand those who are not precisely, specifically, absolutely exactly just like us”.
    – An exhaustive treatise on the accuracy of an analogy of illegal entry to drive-by shootings.
    – A lively mix of the pro’s and con’s of reverse discrimination and locked doors.
    – An accounting of the cost of deporting illegal aliens.
    – A couple of totally irrelevant dissertations on race and gender and privilege in America and in Harrisonburg.

    As for me, I forthwith abstain. I would say the full moon is holding too much sway, but these discussions seem to always go this way. There are, in fact, very few actual facts in play here. They are hard facts, not emotions or wishes. It should be possible to debate them rationally. It obviously is not. This assertion will, no doubt, be proven by the onslaught of subsequent comments subsequent to this post.

    Carry on, ye hale and hearty. In Mr Fulk’s words, this has become too bizarre for me. Goodbye, All.

    • Jeremy Aldrich says:

      Let’s put some facts out here:
      What is your working definition of “amnesty”?
      If crossing illegally is not a misdemeanor, what is it?
      Do you agree that for the vast majority of undocumented immigrants, under current law there was no legal way to come make a better life for their family?

      • Bill Branner says:

        Darn. I said I was through. Why can’t I leave well enough alone?

        Amnesty: A general pardon granted by a government, especially for political offenses.

        I didn’t say it was not a misdemeanor. I said it was wound up in a discussion with improper driving. How irrelevant can you get on a topic?

        I don’t agree that I either individually or collectively as the United States owe it to the rest of the world to provide everyone with a better way of life. I think we have enough to do trying to provide for our own citizens with legitimate needs. I have no qualms with people who are willing to meet the requirements of naturalization and assimilation as Americans doing so. I in fact applaud them. I damned sure do not ‘owe’ people who are by definition illegal a better life or anything else.

        • Jeremy Aldrich says:

          Bill, thanks for continuing to discuss.

          Your definition of amnesty looks good. Now I’m struggling to understand why you see the DREAM Act as a general pardon, when it is in fact very conditional on successfully completing either 2 years of college or 2 years of military service, in addition to qualifying by being in a pretty narrow group.

          The illegal driving (without a valid license) comparison came up for two reasons: one, because the comparison to locking doors kept being made about me personally. Two, because lots of generalized statements were made about people who committed the misdemeanor offense of crossing illegally: that they had “a profound lack of moral character”, they were more likely to commit other crimes, etc. Do we believe those things about people who commit other misdemeanors? Do we call for similarly harsh treatment? Those was the attempted points.

          On the third point, you’re kind of weaving around the question. You have made the comparison several times to legal immigrants who CAN earn citizenship eventually, and how you applaud that. But since the vast majority of unauthorized immigrants never had a way of coming legally and getting on a path to citizenship, the comparison is misleading.

          For me, people’s approach to the DREAM Act is pretty indicative of whether there is any room in their mind for a democratic compromise on the touchy issue of immigration. If we can’t even agree on what to do about people brought here as children, who want to contribute to our country and who we have already invested thousands of dollars in educating, then we don’t seem to have a lot of hope for deciding what to do with people whose status is murkier.

          • And Jeremy, a misdemeanor offense of driving while suspended can, in no way, affect the security of our country.

            On the otherhand, illegal penetration of our border affects both the economic and tactical security of the United States.

    • Bill,

      The people exhibiting the “unmitigated gall” are those voting against and opposing this very reasonable bill with all sorts of self-righteous and highly questionable arguments. Most of the deviations from topic were introduced by the opponents of the DREAM Act, telling us all about how terrible illegal immigrants are in general, as opposed to the young ones affected by this, or denouncing the young ones as immoral and other utter nonsense.

      • Not really…if the Bill is a “good” bill, then it should have been brought up, by ITSELF, and allowed to pass or die on its own…

        • Lowell Fulk says:

          I tend to agree with you here, Dave. But unfortunately, it wasn’t… Same with DADT repeal. I’d like to see how they would fare on their own, then the results could be appraised honestly. That’s how the system works however…

      • Bill Branner says:


        As stated earlier, I’m not sure why I’m still in this.

        First, as you of course know, I totally disagree that DREAM is in any way a reasonable bill, and I damned sure don’t find myself self-righteous or highly questionable in opposing it. You are further incorrect about the source of the derailments. I have 2 or 3 times attempted to offer what I believe to be reasoned arguments in this thread. Every point I make is summarily ignored while respondents go flaking off on another primrose path.

        That having been said, once again my point is totally skewed by your response. What IS it with you people that you can NOT stay on subject? I didn’t say one damned word about WHO was exhibiting “unmitigated gall”. That was not my point and you have sense enough to know that. My point was that it took pure gall to try to railroad a failed bill through by attaching it to a totally unrelated but essential bill. Your stinking bill couldn’t pass on it’s own merit, so they try to sneak it through on the coattails of a military spending bill. If you don’t think that took ‘gall’ or worse, you are either dishonest or stupid. I do not, for the record, think you are in the least stupid. I do think you tried to distort the conversation to turn it to your liking, and I think that is dishonest.

        Finally, while I certainly do not classify all illegal aliens as ‘terrible’, I just as certainly recognize all of them as being in violation of our laws and therefore ‘illegal’. As for the ‘young ones’ (I assume this designation confers special status to you), they have gotten a free ride on their status up until now, and as I understand it, the only thing they are further prohibited from is applying for student aid for higher education. Yes, I find it immoral to continue to expect law abiding America to continue financing this. And your labeling that as ‘utter nonsense’ in no way makes it so.

        • Lowell Fulk says:

          Bill, I really don’t care to wade through the above morass to read what you’ve written previously. Could you please summarize why you don’t find yourself in support of the Dream Act? I would greatly appreciate your patience with me as I catch up.

          • Lowell,
            They are “illegal” and therefore undeserving, and have gotten this “free ride,” so rather than have them work and pay taxes to cover their educations, we’ll toss them out of the country. I think that is about it from the non-self-righteous Bill B.

          • Bill Branner says:

            Mr. Rosser –

            (1) Mr Fulk plainly addressed his request to ‘Bill’ (that would be me, NOT you).
            (2) You have just demonstrated a total lack of ability to paraphrase along with a continuing determination to be deceptive, misleading, and dishonest.

            So, express your lofty and ethereal opinions and pretend that yours are the only ideas that matter as you like, but kindly do not EVER again presume to speak for me.

            Mr Lowell Fulk is a gentleman and an honest and respectful debater. I will respond to his request in due time, and I am certain he and I will have a forthright and reasoned discussion. I regret that such a discussion would be impossible with you.

          • Branner,

            At least Dave Briggman provides links to data, even if some of it is not too solid. I have too. Have you?

            Sorry, but you have mostly engaged in rhetoric devoid of facts, and pretty ugly rhetoric at that. So be it, but get off your high horse, please.

          • Bill B.,

            Unsurprisingly, you have lied here. You said that you had not specified who had “unmigitagated gall,” but in fact you clearly did, it being those who had attached the DREAM bill to other legislation, even if you did not name specific names. But we know who those people are. So, come off your high horse.

            BTW, I fully agree that Lowell is much more of a gentleman than I am. He is the very epitome of one, whereas I am a junkyard dog who bears nasty scars from the wars of the econoblogosphere and so bites hard when I bite. However, I generally have facts and logic on my side when I do so.

  37. Delataire says:

    Well I’m certainly glad to see that John and I are both anti-christian. Though I wonder if John will take it to the logical conclusion and be opposed to all the asiatic abrahamic religions?

  38. FYI: I have unapproved John’s comments. So far, all his comments have been trollish, and his identity is questionable. “John”, if you would like to have your comments approved for the future, please send an email to editors (at) hburgnews.com explaining your situation and giving a non-anonymous email address. Thanks!

    • John says:

      No need to send an e-mail to you as I have no “situation.” I am not a troll but i do have a beef with Dave Briggman. Apparently you allow his vitriol but no one else’s. As for the e-mail address? It’s valid.

  39. Jeremy,

    You can delete all of my comments which reference his…please.

  40. Delataire says:


    I’m not going to expect you to understand the difference between comrades, friends, and associates. Merely note that each can be of any race. What we have in common are the same end goals.

    I have dated “multiracial” women. I’m using the “PC” term to be polite. And we’ll leave it at that as there is no need to go into an anti-“bling” diatribe.

    Your last post appears that you oppose the dream act?

    • Scott says:

      I wouldn’t say that I oppose it, I just believe that there are valid points on both sides. Points that merit examination without turning the conversation toward what people should or shouldn’t believe or feel entitled to based on their race. As far as my statement above goes, I was unnecessarily exaggerating by suggesting that you had spent no time whatsoever with people who don’t share your complexion. Based on your comments here and elsewhere, however, I get the impression that you have had few opportunities to discuss what actual oppression based on stereotyping feels like with those who’ve experienced it first hand. And I’m not talking about the kind that makes it harder for you to get into Yale.

  41. MB Green says:

    There is already a path for these kids to become legal residents – serve in the military for 8 years. All that needs to happen is better advertising of that fact.

  42. republitarian says:

    Now John,

    Why would someone with a problem with Dave bother with him on here? Seems to me that if you have a problem with Dave, why not take it up with him?

  43. Delataire says:

    “President by Executive order shall designate as a period in which Armed Forces of the United States are or were engaged in military operations involving armed conflict with a hostile foreign force,…” “…whether or not he has been lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence”

    Seems pretty clear Jeremy. One does not have to be lawfully admitted to the country, therefore one can be an illegal alien. It’s another little legal loophole. Bush’s exec order created an “amnesty” that some but not all illegal aliens have used. Because no one wants to “fight in Bush’s war”.

    Maybe Obama will “bring some change” and order Bush’s order ended. I doubt it, as israel needs proxies to die for it’s “greater sphere”.

    • Jeremy Aldrich says:

      For someone who thinks so much about immigration, you sure don’t seem to know much about it. You have to be legally in the country to join the military. You have to be in the military to earn naturalization through active duty. Therefore, you have to be legally in the country to earn naturalization through active duty.

      Your quotation leaves out a chunk that makes it clear the part you’re quoting has nothing to do with whether or not undocumented immigrants can currently serve in the US military.

      Here is the longer quotation, for those who don’t care to follow the link and search for it themselves:
      “Any person who, while an alien or a noncitizen national of the United States, has served honorably in an active-duty status in the military, air, or naval forces of the United States during either World War I or during a period beginning September 1, 1939, and ending December 31, 1946, or during a period beginning June 25, 1950, and ending July 1, 1955, or during a period beginning February 28, 1961, and ending on a date designated by the President by Executive order as the date of termination of the Vietnam hostilities, or thereafter during any other period which the President by Executive order shall designate as a period in which Armed Forces of the United States are or were engaged in military operations involving armed conflict with a hostile foreign force, and who, if separated from such service, was separated under honorable conditions, may be naturalized as provided in this section if (1) at the time of enlistment or induction such person shall have been in the United States, the Canal Zone, America Samoa, or Swains Island, whether or not he has been lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence, or (2) at any time subsequent to enlistment or induction such person shall have been lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence.” This primarily has to do with people who fought in previous US wars.

      I refer you to the website I linked to before, a recruiting site run by the DoD: “CITIZENSHIP REQUIREMENTS: U.S. citizens or Permanent Resident Aliens (people who have an INS I-151/I-551 ‘Green Card’) may join the U.S. Military.”

      Here’s an interesting news story related to a recruiter who got in trouble for providing undocumented immigrants with fake green cards so they could enlist, which also reiterates what I’ve been saying.

      Now, there is a pilot project called MAVNI that is making it possible for certain noncitizens to get in the military, and thus on the path to expedited naturalization, without a green card, but they still have to be legal immigrants of other varieties (such as refugees).

      If you’re still unclear about this, talk to a military recruiter (or SGT Star at goarmy.com) and report back on what they tell you.

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