The President embraces Newspeak

An illegal alien is, by definition, a criminal:  the person snuck into the United States in the dead of night (so to speak), and has no right to be here.

That’s not how our president sees it:

A student, who appeared via Skype, asked: “My question for the president is, why [is the government] saying that deportations have stopped — or the detention of many students like me, why is it that we are still receiving deportation letters like this one?”

Obama answered, “We have redesigned our enforcement practices under the law to make sure that we’re focusing primarily on criminals, and so our deportation of criminals are up about 70 percent. Our deportation of non-criminals are down, and that’s because we want to focus our resources on those folks who are destructive to the community.

“And for a young person like that young woman that we just spoke to who’s going to school, doing all the right things, we want them to succeed,” Obama said.

Hmm.  So the thief breaks into your house.  He doesn’t attack you physically.  You might not even know he’s there.  He simply empties your refrigerator, takes money from your safe, goes through your medicine cabinet and takes your books.  You call the police, but they tell you that, now that he’s in your house, and since he hasn’t hurt you, you should just be cool.  Indeed, they say, with luck, he’ll take all your possessions, and set himself up in his own house, with his own refrigerator, medicine cabinet, money and books.

I don’t like our president.  The more I learn about him, the less I like him.  I just keep telling myself that we (America and poor Israel) just have to hang in there for another 18 months.  Of course, considering that the American people imposed this walking disaster on us in the first place, perhaps I’m being foolishly optimistic in assuming they’ll collectively wise up by 2012.

I’m not the only one, incidentally, who is finding it unnerving to peer into the president’s psyche.  Zombie peered too, and finally figured out what’s going on (graphic reprinted with permission):

A society needs minimum standards

A lot of people look at laws that are hard to enforce and say, “let’s get rid of those laws.”  The three major recipients of this line of reasoning are drugs, prostitution and illegal immigration.  People ask, “Why criminalize these inevitable behaviors, especially since criminalizing them draws into the law enforcement net people who seem more like victims than bad actors?”

I happen to think that some behavior needs to be criminalized, because a society has to draw lines defining what its values are.  I won’t touch the drug question in this post, since I think it was well hashed out here in Don Quixote’s earlier post.  However, I would like to talk about prostitution and illegal immigration.  The first issue — whether we’re right to make prostitution illegal — seems to me to reflect two core values.  The first is respect for women.  We as a society refuse to allow women to be treated as pure sexual commodities.

Of course, in reality that principle teeters on the edge of a very slippery slope.  We allow pornography and Vogue Magazine, and sleazy TV shows and sex in movies, all of which arguably fall into the same category of female exploitation.  It’s hard to draw bright lines, because the relationship between men and women is always going to be sexualized.  More than that, women tend to do a lot of parading for each other, not in a sexual way, but in a boastful way.

As a perfect example of this last point, I urge you, if you can, to watch Chris Rock’s Good Hair, which examines the obsession so many black women have with avoiding the genetic legacy of “nappy” hair, opting instead to try to replicate straight, long, Anglo hair.  The link I included above advertises the video as “funny” and, in a way, it is.  Mostly, though, it’s tragic.  It turns out that black women who want Anglo hair have two choices:  dangerous chemicals or staggeringly expensive human hair weaves.  The irony with this Hobson’s choice is that the women’s real audience isn’t men or white people, it’s other black women.  I doubt white people notice black hair much.  (The last time I noticed was in the early 70s, when ‘fros were a political, not a fashion, statement.)  Even worse, the black men to whom Rock spoke hated the weaves:  they hated the time and money spent, and they hated the fact that weaves mean that black women will not allow anyone to touch their hair, nor will they engage in any activities that mess that precious hair.

My point about the black women’s hair is that, as is true with so many sexualized activities, those activities are actually aimed at women.  (Think:  fashion magazines.)  Prostitution, however, creates a direct dynamic between male and female that we, as a moral, Judeo-Christian culture, wish to avoid.  That we are frequently unsuccessful in that effort doesn’t mean we should give up trying.  This is a line — a moral, ethical and social line — that we draw to define who we are and what we value.  It sends a message to the people within our culture.  Those who argue that legalizing prostitution actually protects the prostitutes miss the point:  the whole institution is corrupt.  Legalizing it is a band-aid over a festering wound.  Certainly the British Muslims who turn British women into their sex slaves understand the real dynamic at work.  (Porn, by the way, isn’t much better.)

I can make much the same argument for doing away with the laws governing illegal immigration, all of which focus on the ills resulting from the immigration laws themselves:  (1) Mexicans are nice people; (2) children are the innocent victims of their parents’ illegal acts; (3) we need the labor and its wrong to turn workers into criminals; etc.  Those are all the details.  The bigger principle, however, is that a nation needs to protect its sovereignty, and that includes making decisions about who crosses its borders.  Defending borders is a use-it-or-lose it proposition.  Either you are a nation, or you are a patch of land over which people fight.  I’d prefer the former, as opposed to the anarchy of the latter.  With that overarching principle in mind, I’m willing to accept the challenges of enforcement, and the tragedy of divided families (a tragedy that wouldn’t happen, of course, if the parents hadn’t decided to gamble with their children’s lives).

I’m sorry if this is a bit of a wondering post, but my chaotic day has meant that I’ve been writing these six paragraphs over the last six hours.  I admit that I’m weaving in some random thoughts as they come along, but I’m hoping that y’all get my point — one with which you can agree or disagree.  I just feel relieved that I finally was able to sit down and wrap this thing up!

It’s no fun, being an illegal alien *UPDATED*

Life can be tough when you break the law.  The people who murdered Annie Mae Aquash discovered this fact when they were arrested and tried for murder 35 years after killing Aquash.  Sara Jane Olson, an SLA terrorist during the 1970s, discovered that when her quiet, suburban life in Minnesota was revealed and she spent several years in jail, despite the fact that she had three children.  My sister’s friend discovered this tough rule when he was hauled off to jail after unwittingly having had sex with an underage girl.  (That is, he wasn’t a predator.  Except for the absence of gray hair, the girl looked older than I do.)

Open today’s paper (I don’t care which paper; any paper), and you will read about someone who committed a crime and got hauled off to jail — and that is true whether the crime was old or new, whether the person acted knowingly or unknowingly, and whether the person had children or not.  As to that last, it’s worth noting that our American prisons are crawling with people who have left children outside.

How different is the story when the lawbreaker comes from Latin America, illegally, and drives around the streets of America, illegally.  That person, we are assured, is a law abiding citizen, other than all that illegal activity, and it’s just so unfair that such a person, not to mention his or her children, has to pay the for this illegal activity.  I’m not making up this maudlin outrage.  It comes courtesy of a front page story in today’s New York Times online (complete with illustration of one illegal lady hugging her daughter and, to amp up the emotions, her grown niece too):

It was just another suburban fender-bender. A car zoomed into an intersection and braked too late to stop at a red light. The Georgia woman driving it, an American citizen, left with a wrecked auto, a sore neck and a traffic fine.

But for Felipa Leonor Valencia, the Mexican woman who was driving the Jeep that was hit that day in March, the damage went far beyond a battered bumper. The crash led Ms. Valencia, an illegal immigrant who did not have a valid driver’s license, to 12 days in detention and the start of deportation proceedings — after 17 years of living in Georgia.

Read the rest here.  Depending on your political orientation, come prepared with either a handkerchief or a barf bucket.  The article’s push is to get driver’s licenses for illegal immigrants, because it’s so unfair that they’re currently out on the road, unlicensed, and running the risk that their illegal driving might reveal their illegal status.

This post, obviously, ties in with my earlier post about the DREAM Act which, while it takes into consideration the needs of children raised in this country, totally ignores the fact that it is an open incitement to illegal behavior.

Honestly, if one gets to pick and choose with impunity the laws with which one wishes to comply, why have laws at all?  This, by the way, is a familiar plaint on my part, since I routinely see judges, when ruling on a given case, decide who the underdog is and then proceed to rule in that party’s favor, regardless of the controlling law.

I’ve worked on a lot of those cases, and I’ll concede that my clients aren’t always nice or good, and the person on the other end is sometimes suffering a real hardship.  Having said that, though, on such cases, my client is totally within his rights under the law, and the other person doesn’t have a legal leg to stand on.  I’ll also concede that our common law has always had an “equitable” side that leans towards abstract fairness, but this ancient principle was always meant to flex the letter of the law, not ignore it entirely.

The problem with our modern approach, which views the law as an impediment to justice, is that it leaves us as a society in which there is no rule of law.  Our whole system of statutes and cases is just a pretense, since any given judge does what he or she wants at any given time.

Of course, without a system of laws, one inevitably descends into anarchy.  Laws may sometimes have harsh outcomes, but if they’re reliably enforced, people can actually plan to avoid those outcomes.  In a “legal” system in which the most pathetic person always wins, the only thing people need to do with their lives, whether in the world of contracts or the world of crime, is to plan on being pathetic losers.  You lose — you win!  This is no way to run a functioning, predictable, reliable, successful society.

Cross-posted at Right Wing News

UPDATE: Sadie sent me a link that’s perfectly apropos.

The morality of education and the DREAM Act

I don’t see Harry Reid having the political umph to pass the DREAM Act, but I also never imagined back in 2007 that Barack Obama would be President, so what do I know?

I do know that I have a problem with the DREAM Act, and that’s despite the fact that there are some very pragmatic reasons to pass it.  Michael Gerson articulates them well:

The legislation would create a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants brought to the United States as children. Applicants must have graduated from high school or have gotten a GED. They would be given a conditional legal status for six years, in which they must complete two years of college or serve at least two years in the military.

It would be difficult to define a more sympathetic group of potential Americans. They must demonstrate that they are law-abiding and education-oriented. Some seek to defend the country they hope to join. The Defense Department supports the Dream Act as a source of quality volunteers. Business groups welcome a supply of college-educated workers. The Department of Homeland Security endorses the legislation so it can focus on other, more threatening, groups of illegal immigrants.

Critics counter that the law would be a reward for illegal behavior and an incentive for future lawbreaking. But these immigrants, categorized as illegal, have done nothing illegal.

You can read the rest here.  Many of his points are good.  And it certainly would be good for the GOP to integrate more with the Hispanic community which has core values much more consistent with conservatives than with Progressives.  But….  There’s always a but….

Before I get to my “but,” though, let me clarify one thing.  I would be entirely for the DREAM Act if it was limited to young people who serve in America’s armed forces.  That service is an entirely giving thing — giving to ones chosen country — although I do think those who serve take something away too, in terms of skills, discipline, and self-respect.  If you’re willing to risk dying for this country, something I, fortunate enough to be born here, was not willing to do, you deserve citizenship.

My sticking point is the education thing.  Yes, it’s nice to have an educated population, although it’s useful to remember that education lately has little to do with the three “Rs” and a whole lot to do with politically correct thinking that’s often extremely hostile to America.  (Indeed, it seems that those pushing hardest for the DREAM Act are the ones most hostile to America and her values, and the ones who feel much more strongly affiliated with Latin America and Leftism.)  Still, even the meanest school teaches some minimal form of literacy and math . . . maybe.  However, the primary beneficiary of education is the student.  This student has a better chance of success in our world, and it’s nice to have successful people.

Also, I disagree with Gerson’s conclusion that adding yet another incentive to the pile of incentives we already offer to illegal aliens won’t have an effect on the decision-making process some poverty-stricken soul, living in the failed state of Mexico, makes as he looks at his growing family.  After all, it’s a great deal:  Sneak over the border, and your kids get a better life.  I’d do it for my kids if I was in those shoes.  But it’s not a great deal for us.  In California, for example, the children of illegal immigrants get first dibs on university slots over out-of-state students who are legally in America.  (It’s also not a good deal for the Mexicans who remain behind, since their government uses the money sent back by illegal immigrants, and the safety-valve of the emigration itself, as a way to prop up a government that is overwhelmingly dysfunctional, not to mention dangerous.)

If education is an incentive, imagine how great an incentive education plus citizenship would be?  So it’s foolish for people to say that “the kids are already here.”  Yes, they are here.  But it doesn’t stop there.  Enact the DREAM Act and tomorrow more and more kids will be here, as we create one more incentive for the suffering of Mexico to disregard our border laws.

As for the argument that “they’re only children and it’s not fair that they suffer,” that’s a camel’s nose that, once allowed in the tent, brings in the whole camel.  You see, the sad fact is that it’s always the children who suffer.  Dad’s committed a crime?  We don’t let the fact that it will destroy the family stop us from convicting him and sending him to jail — unless, of course, Dad’s crime was sneaking over the border.  Mom’s an alcoholic or a narcissist or a histrionic personality who is turning her children into front-of-the-line candidates for a psychiatrist’s couch?  As long as she can take care of them in a basic way, they have to suffer.  For some, life is pain.

It is a cruel fact of life that we cannot right all wrongs parents do to their children.  Further, as in the case of children whose parents are “ordinary,” as opposed to politically correct, criminals, we make no effort to protect the children from the effects of their parents’ wrongdoings.  The best thing we can do is enforce the law as written, so that parents don’t subject their children to this suffering in the first place.  After all, they knew when they came here that they were consigning their children to a shadow world.

Yes, I know I sound heartless.  I am heartless.  My children are lucky enough to be in a stable, loving, legal home, and I am grateful for that fact.  I am terribly sad for those children who are not similarly situated, but I am also sufficiently invested in my own children that I have no desire to turn our whole society upside down and, possibly, destroy it, to remedy a wrong that can never really be righted.  I know that I shouldn’t malevolently visit the sins of the father on the child, but the fact remains that not all sins can be avoided, without enormous destruction flowing from that avoidance.

So far, as I hope you’ve all surmised, I’ve been speaking of obvious ills flowing from giving a free pass to illegal immigrants.  Those ills are more illegal immigrants, with all the attendant economic, social and national security risks.

There’s a more subtle ill, though, that flows from rewarding an illegal act, and that’s the lesson we teach our children:  Cheating pays, especially when it comes to education.  This is not an inconsequential lesson.  You see, if the illegals can cheat — and win — everybody should be able to cheat and win, an approach that pretty much destroys education as we know it (not to mention just about anything else we can think of). 

I blogged a few weeks ago about a New York Times publication for children that commented on the prevalence of plagiarism thanks to the internet (although the writer could not make himself offer any opinion about the immorality of that cheating).  It turns out that this rot runs much deeper than “blocking and copying” someone’s paragraph off of the internet (although that is bad enough).  A recent edition of the Chronicle of Higher Education has a very disturbing article detailing the shadowy world of college level papers — including doctoral theses — written by people who are virtually illiterate.  As the writer, who publishes anonymously, explains, he’s produced a lot of product, and he’s only one of many offering the same services:

In the past year, I’ve written roughly 5,000 pages of scholarly literature, most on very tight deadlines. But you won’t find my name on a single paper.

I’ve written toward a master’s degree in cognitive psychology, a Ph.D. in sociology, and a handful of postgraduate credits in international diplomacy. I’ve worked on bachelor’s degrees in hospitality, business administration, and accounting. I’ve written for courses in history, cinema, labor relations, pharmacology, theology, sports management, maritime security, airline services, sustainability, municipal budgeting, marketing, philosophy, ethics, Eastern religion, postmodern architecture, anthropology, literature, and public administration. I’ve attended three dozen online universities. I’ve completed 12 graduate theses of 50 pages or more. All for someone else.

The article is rightly written as a scathing indictment of the education system, one that churns out illiterate, ill-informed youngsters, and teachers who cannot, or will not recognize the chasm between the unintelligible, illiterate youngster in their presence and the polished paper that same youngster offers as his own work.  It’s also a scathing indictment, however, of a moral system that says cheating is fine.  Sure, if you’re caught blatantly cheating, you might get in trouble, but the fact remains that the illegal alien sitting next to you is also cheating, but he (or she) still gets welfare, health care, public education, preferential college admission and tuition, etc.  If some cheaters not only prosper, but do say blatantly with government encouragement, it’s reasonable for all of us to abandon our stuff propriety and give dishonesty a try.

Cross-posted at Right Wing News

Even Marinites aren’t thrilled about taxpayer funded tuition for illegals

You may have read that the California Supreme Court ruled that California taxpayers have to pay for illegal immigrants to attend state colleges and universities — and that these illegals get preference over legal Americans from other states.

I was therefore surprised this morning when I went to the home page for our local paper — the Marin IJ — and saw that one of the little unscientific poll they always run showed readers outraged at the notion.  I have no idea if the poll was gamed — it is, as I said, unscientific — but it was a funny thing to see on a liberal Marin newspaper webpage.  (The poll is in the lower right hand corner of the captured screen shot, below.)

A couple of AP articles that caught my eye, both for what they say and for what they don’t say *UPDATED*

I was very surprised to see an AP wire story reporting that Islamic militants (as opposed to mere “militants” or “insurgents”) were holding “Christians” (as opposed to mere “people”) hostage.  Even more surprising, the AP reported that the Islamic militants were probably affiliated with Al Qaeda in Iraq, an entity one apparently couldn’t acknowledge during the Bush years.

Just as I was thinking to myself, “Well, that AP worm has certainly turned, with this surprisingly honest report,” I read another wire story about the Chandra Levy murder trial.  You remember that story, right?  A decade ago, Rep. Gary Condit’s career was destroyed when an affair he had with Levy (which was definitely an unprincipled, immoral thing to do, since he was married), got morphed by the media into an unofficial murder charge.  Now, the probable actual murderer is on trial.

This is what the AP says about the defendant:  “Ingmar Guandique, a native of El Salvador, is on trial for the murder and attempted sexual assault of Levy nearly a decade ago.”

Now I, not having been born yesterday, verbalized yet another thought to myself:  “What are the odds that Guandique is an illegal immigrant?”  Turns out the odds are 100%.  Somehow, though, the AP just couldn’t bring itself to put that adjective out there.

Let me remind the open borders crowd that one of the virtues of having legal as opposed to illegal immigration, is that it enhances our government’s ability to weed out the killers before they cross our borders.

UPDATE:  This Philip Terzian post about the WaPo best seller list seems like an appropriate coda to a post on media bias.  I especially like the way Terzian describes the media’s inability to recognize its own bias:

One of the inherent difficulties of defining left-wing bias in the press to journalists is that it is something like describing the ocean to fish: It is so pervasive, and such a comfortable, nurturing environment, that it is hardly noticed.

Yeah — what he said.

I’m not defending Whitman — but she’s right

What do you do if you’re a reasonably honest thinker, forced to quarrel with your own political party — you start weaseling, that’s what you do.  Rick Oltman has been forced to confront the fact that Meg Whitman did absolutely nothing wrong with regard to her housekeeper.  I commend Oltman for his honesty.  However, he made that honesty petty by simultaneously acknowledging that Whitman was correct, but still refusing to admit that she was worthy of any defense.  It’s all there, in the second paragraph:

THE Meg Whitman-illegal immigrant housekeeper story continues to entertain. The real story has been missed in the coverage of this gotcha game that is being played for obvious political reasons.

I am not defending Meg Whitman. But, from what I can deduce from all the news coverage, interviews and documents that have been presented on television and on the Internet, she did what she was supposed to do when hiring an employee.

Read the rest here.

(The one thing I’ll concede is that, given that Oltman is affiliated with groups opposed to illegal immigration, he may be trying to shy away from harming Whitman’s campaign by speaking out openly in her favor.  That’s just supposition, though.)

Sex and the next generation of young immigrant women — by guestblogger Lulu

Some days seem to crystallize some of our society’s more discouraging trends. In my mental health work on the front lines I see a great deal of what the chattering classes cluelessly opine about. Today, for some reason, I saw, one after the other, a series of young women with similar problems and, as I spent time with them, I found myself thinking sadly of the things they had in common. (Some details have been changed to protect the privacy of the individuals described, but one feature they all have in common is that they are either illegal immigrants themselves, or the children of illegal immigrants.)

I spent a great deal of time today talking with a young woman who was asking for help with her nine year old son. He was out of control. Defiant and oppositional, even in elementary school, he refused to do his work or get up in the morning to get ready for school. He preferred to hang out outside with other kids, some of them older. Mom admitted that she had not paid much attention to him. She let him go outside because she couldn’t deal with him.  She also couldn’t deal with his father. She was totally overwhelmed by her responsibilities.

The problem was that she was way too young to shoulder these responsibilities. Heavily pregnant with her fifth child, this 23 year old woman had three others under the age of five. Remarkably, she was still with the 33 year old former gang member who father the nine year old.  The father, now toiling away at several jobs to support his ever growing brood, spend almost no time with them.  The children were growing up fatherless, though there was a father, and virtually motherless, though there was a mother.

The relationship of the mother and father began with illegal sex between a young minor and a grown man. From the age of 14 and her pregnancy, she lived with him, playing house with a live child, as she grew up. Perhaps because he had been a man, not a teenage boy himself when he got involved with his child-girlfriend, the father did not abandon the mother. But, like so many men who choose children to dominate, he kept her subjugated and trapped under his patriarchal thumb.

Shortly after this meeting, I coincidentally met with a large group of teenage girls who wanted to learn about how to feel more empowered. None of them knew what a healthy relationship was, how to say “no” to unwanted advances,or even  how to plan for a better tomorrow.

I looked around the room. Quite a few of the girls were pregnant. One I remembered well from my previous encounters with her. My heart sank to see her expanding belly. She was only 15, unbelievably immature, extraordinarily angry. She was the kind of girl who got into fights and picked on other kids. She was desperately wounded inside. Her dad had abandoned the family when she was small. The mother left her with other relatives and never bothered to call. She had not been nurtured or cared for, making her exactly the sort so needy for love that she would run after any show of affection.  Sadly, “any affection” always ends up being sexual.  A baby will love her, right? It will be someone, her damaged core dreams, she can keep.

The girl is perhaps borderline retarded, perhaps just never taught how to think by her miserable upbringing. Who knows who the father of her baby is. Will he last more than a few months in her life, if he is even still around? Surely he won’t stay. She is hard to love or even like, thanks to her rage.

Over and over I have found that the girls I meet who are the least emotionally ready and capable of being parents are always the ones who end up pregnant the youngest. What makes them a burden on society is also what makes them a draw to the sleazy guys — often, grown men — who see their vulnerability and sexual availability. And none of these girls, ever, think of adoption.

I then meet individually with another young teenager, sobbing because she has just miscarried. She has been sexually active since she was twelve when she was date-raped, though she does not realize then that, when he forced her to have sex, that was rape. She has an absent father and an emotionally absent mother and the guys that offer her affection in exchange for sex sex sort of compensate for the deep emotional wound she carries. She knows that she is not ready to be a mother, but the loss of the pregnancy that shouldn’t have been, and the loss of the 35 year old lover, who now sits in jail, makes her weep.  She needs to grow up, to have a future. She needs a mother to nurture her, a father who takes the time to be a presence so she doesn’t have to find love in the arms of an adult sleazebag. The medical professionals who saw her gave her advice on safe sex and contraception. No adult, at home or in school, or in medical offices has ever told her that she could wait or even say no. They just figure she is having sex anyway.

I have found that the group of young girls is hungry for the permission to say “no.”  Their attitude isn’t about how much they enjoy teenage sex. It is about how pressured they feel, how sex is the only way they can have a boyfriend, and how they are aware that women have lowered the standards for guys and that the guys themselves have been lowered.

These children learn in school how to have safe sex, but they are not taught about commitment, nor about emotional and social responsibility. The thinking that predominates in the schools is that teaching values is judgmental. The educators cannot comprehend that teaching these girls that all teenagers are sexually active is, in fact, also teaching a value. These girls are the victims. They want guys who respect them and they never meet them.

The girls admit they accept crumbs from guys because otherwise they won’t have boyfriends. There is no such thing as restraint or protective love, or even courting. Everything ends up in a sex act — oral, vaginal.  “Dating” boils down to getting together and humping. The girl hopes this will lead to love and commitment or dreaming that the sex is a sign of love and commitment.  The boy is king of the world, a rooster strutting among his hens.

The whole day saddens me. I am sad for our society for the burden all these people place on taxpayers. We are paying for the social crises that a generation has transported across our border without our consent.  As a compassionate person I feel for their sorrows and deprivations and try to help as best I can, but as an American I cannot help but feel some resentment that this burden should be here at all.

I am certain that at least some of these innocent babies will become everyone’s problem. At least some will become the children in foster care, juvenile detention, and prison. At least some will receive free breakfasts and lunches in school, food stamps, public assistance, and time and attention from gang units in the police department, defacing our public buildings with graffiti and filling our streets with gang warfare. They will be high school dropouts or marginally skilled and marginally educated.  At least some will sell or use drugs, or become parents themselves at young ages. The babies will be US citizens, but they will live on the fringes.

Throughout the day I observed the toll and burden of illegal immigration on this country, and I observed the sorrowful emotional toll of the utter collapse of courtship and sexual restraint on our youth. Certainly, their physical desires are not stronger than any generation of young people that preceded them. Rather, they are inundated with messages, by their celebrities, TV shows, music, internet culture and on and on, messages not of self-control and dignity, but of sexual hotness. They learn that if a guy waits two months for sex it is a really long time, because the expectation is that no waiting is necessary.

Sex is empty. It is loveless, though she may think she is in love.  It is a tragic consequence of the sexual revolution that ended formal courtship and replaced it with the human equivalent of dogs humping. It lowered men and debased women, and the innocent little babies born to these needy, immature, sexually active, under-nurtured, lost young  souls makes me truly sad. Everything is backwards. First sex. Then a relationship . . . maybe. Then maybe, after a few kids, marriage one day — if they are still together.

One thing I’m sure of, after pondering about the young women I saw today and the societal message they have — in order to civilize young men once again, our young women will have to believe that they deserve better, and to refuse to sleep with men who, aside from the minimal necessity of an occasional flattering word, treat the girls like a hole in the mattress, rather like  a cherished person. The girls must be whole in order to insist that the men be whole as well.

[Bookworm here, adding one link that graphically illustrates the terrible economic consequences flowing from the social devastation Lulu describes.]

About Meg Whitman’s maid *UPDATED*

I keep meaning to blog about Meg Whitman’s maid, and then I don’t.  Factually, it’s an insanely stupid story, although the lurid headlines in California’s lefty papers may be enough to confuse some independents into abandoning any vague ideas they may have been having about voting for Whitman.  In other words, the story is ridiculous (at best), but still potentially important.  Meaning that really should blog about it . . . but, as I said, I don’t.

Fortunately, Dafydd, at Big Lizards, has paid attention to Gloria Allred’s nasty pro-Brown campaign, so if you’re interested in all that you need to know about the story, check out his post.

UPDATE:  Another good summary of this sordid (from the Brown side) story, along with a good question:  Do Californians still have the critical reasoning skills to understand that they are being conned?

Dennis Prager on immigration — exactly what I’ve always wanted to say

I don’t think as well as Dennis Prager, so I’ve never been able to organize my thoughts as beautifully as he did in this column about illegal immigration and the reason legal Hispanic immigrants should look to conservatism as their political home.  This hits every moral nail squarely on the head.

It’s all the Republicans’ fault because they hate gays (or so the media would have us believe)

The media is very disappointed that a defense spending bill went down in flames, not over the question of spending, but over the issue of DADT.  The headline at Politico says it all:

Senate Republicans block ‘Don’t ask, don’t tell’ repeal.

You see, Republicans hate gay people.  Really, really hate them.  Or at least that’s the message the media wants to leave with Americans, the vast majority of whom don’t hate gay people.

But it’s never as simple as the media would have a credulous public believe.  Yes, it’s true that Senate Republicans solidly refused to allow cloture on the bill.  Except that the headline above hides a c0uple of balls:

1.  The most obvious hidden point is that Senate Republicans can’t do diddly-squat without Democratic complicity.  Recall, if you will, that Democrats currently hold a strong majority in the Senate.  What made the bill fail is that two Democrats — Blanche Lincoln and Mark Pryor — both sided with the Republicans.  Even Harry Reid voted against the bill, although he did so on procedural grounds.

2.  The other little thing that the Politico article that I linked to above entirely ignores is that what should have been a straightforward spending bill to support our troops also included the DREAM Act, which would have given automatic citizenship to illegal aliens who attend college or join the military. I have huge problems with giving citizenship to illegal alien kids who take up space at American universities.  They’re resource hogs — since American kids are finding it hard to get to college, especially since not just classroom space but also money, goes to illegals — and they shouldn’t get reward for that.

I’m okay with giving citizenship to kids who serve in the military, provided that these children came to the US when they were very small.  Putting that condition on their service and their citizenship separates a dependent child from his parents’ illegal acts.  I think this approach address’s VDH’s concern about the DREAM Act, which is that it sets a horrible precedent by letting achievement in one sphere erase sin in another.  That, of course, is a typical Progressive way of thinking.  Jack Abbott is a perfect example:  Because they liked his writing, Progressives readily forgave him his murders, setting him free so that he could kill again.

In other words, contrary to media spin, evil Republicans didn’t block DADT because they hate gays.  Instead, minority Republicans, joined by Democrats, blocked a bill that would have opened the door to citizenship for illegal aliens.  I’m sure that DADT was a factor for some of the Republicans voting on the bill, but I’d bet my money on the fact that the DREAM Act was an even bigger factor — and I also suspect that, if Americans are paying attention, they’re wouldn’t be so thrilled about the DREAM Act either.

The DREAM Act: blending baby with bath water *UPDATED*

I heartily disapprove of half of the DREAM Act.  For those who are unfamiliar with it, the WSJ describes it as follows:

The bill would grant six years of legal residency to high-school graduates who have lived in the U.S. continuously for five years and arrived by the age of 15. They would become eligible for citizenship if they attend college or serve in the military for two years during the legal residency period.

While I don’t have any problem with granting citizenship to people who are willing to fight and, if necessary, die for our country, I cannot for the life of me see why we should grant citizenship to illegal aliens who have taken up space at American colleges and universities that could otherwise have gone to children who reside legally in the United States.  Can you explain to me why kids who are hogging American resources should be rewarded with citizenship?

By the way, please don’t tell me that it’s not fair that these kids should be penalized just because their parents came here illegally.  Life is tough.  We routinely penalize kids whose parents don’t raise them well.  If your Mom and Dad are dumb as posts, and cannot climb the socioeconomic ladder, we don’t offer you rewards because of that.  Parents make choices and kids suffer them.  That’s life.

If you would like to see the current iteration of the DREAM Act tabled, Michelle Malkin has info about what you can do.

UPDATEVDH doesn’t even like the military part of the DREAM Act.  He says, logically enough, that a right one sphere of human behavior shouldn’t be used as a pass for a wrong in another sphere of human behavior.  I agree with that for those who came illegally to this country as adults.  However, for those who were children — say, under 14 when they came here — I think it is a good way to allow the child to get away from the parents’ sins.

Ah, the irony

People who sneak into this country with impunity are not only not arrested, they are protected.  Someone who has the impunity to speak out against this flagrant illegal activity — is arrested.  Life in Orwell’s America.

A perfect illustration of how the Left counterattacks

The mosque debate in America has been instructive when it comes to Leftist rhetorical tactics.  Ordinary Americans make an argument — “the mosque is inappropriate on secular sacred ground.”  The Left then responds, not substantively, but with personal attacks — “you’re racist, Islamophobic, xenophobic and stupid.”

If you think this approach to debate is limited to the American Left, think again.  Precisely the same thing is playing out in Germany.  There, Thilo Sarrazin, a German central bank board member and former senior city official in Berlin, has given an interview and published a book, both of which carry the same message:  Germany is being destroyed by its Muslim immigrants, who take a disproportionate amount of welfare relative to their contributions, who do not contribute to the nation’s intellectual life, and who are having children at a much faster rate than the Germans themselves.

The Leftist response has been predictable.  They’ve produced carefully detailed statistics showing the major economic and social contributions that Muslim immigrants are making to Germany society, and proved that the birthrate argument is a fallacy.  In the face of these reasoned arguments, Sarrazin has backed down.  They’ve hurled myriad personal insults at Sarrazin, and threatened his right to free speech:

Sarrazin’s comments have also made waves outside of the SPD. Green Party head Cem Özdemir called Sarrazin a “tribal leader in the mold of bin Laden” in an interview with SPIEGEL ONLINE and said that he has done a “disservice to efforts aimed at improving the dramatic social inequalities in our country, and not just among immigrants.” He said he was disappointed because “the ongoing debate over mutual expectations of Germans and immigrants is much more rational than Sarrazin makes it seem.”

Chancellor Angela Merkel is likewise unimpressed. Through her spokesman Steffen Seibert, she said on Wednesday that Sarrazin’s offerings were “extremely injurious, defamatory and very polemical.” She also called them “completely unhelpful” and said that “a different tone is necessary.”

[snip]

Following Sarrazin’s comments last autumn, the SPD began proceedings to kick him out of the party, but the attempt failed in March. He was, however, disciplined by the German Central Bank, which stripped him of his previous responsibility for cash management as a result of the Lettre International interview. It is unclear whether the SPD will make another effort to strike him from the rolls.

No matter in which country you drop a Leftist, he’s still a Leftist, committed to doctrinal purity regardless of objective reality.

Did Obama just cede U.S. sovereignty over Arizona to the UN?

I had heard that, now that Obama placed the U.S. into the grossly misnamed UN Human Rights Council, the U.S. was suddenly obligated to file a self-report card.  Although much of the report card is concerned with boasting about the Obama administration’s wonderfulness, it turns out that other parts are devoted to the usual Leftist flagellation about America’s myriad imperialist sins — including the newest blemish occurring in Arizona.

Aside from the very real embarrassment of our President castigating a state before a national forum — and a state, moreover, that is trying to enforce federal law — there is a bigger problem with the report:  By confessing this “sin” before the UN, Obama has now given the UN authority to impose a “fix” on the situation, with which the U.S. must “voluntarily” comply unless it wants to be on the receiving end of involuntary sanctions.

Palestinian corruption — on your dime *UPDATED*

I’m sorry I didn’t blog today.  I have a half finished post on my screen, but can’t seem to get it entirely finished.  Sometimes, when that happens, I just abandon the idea and move on to other things, but sometimes I just get mentally blocked up.  I seem to need to work this one out before I can move on.

Anyway, so that today isn’t a total blank slate, I’d like you to check out a video at Brutally Honest.  Lots of people should see it.

Also, if you’re in the mood for upsetting videos, get the inside look at a protest against the Arizona law.  (It took a lot of courage to shoot this footage, by the way.)

UPDATE:  While I’m still organizing my thoughts, you can depress yourself by reading how the Obama Justice Department is hard at work to get the vote to felons (reliable Democratic voters), while it shows a malevolent apathy towards the voting rights of those who fight and are willing to die for this country (who tend to vote more conservative).

The march of PC euphemisms continues

Government organizations certainly get points for creativity.

Hat tip:  Sadie

PC toilets coming your way soon

Several years ago, my family and I visited Pompeii, which is one of the most wondrous tourist destinations in the world.  To maximize our experience, we hired a highly recommended guide who walked us over the grounds, explaining everything before us.  This guide’s particular passion was plumbing.  He had no words for the wonders of Roman plumbing, many of which are still visible in Pompeii, and the European tragedy that saw this sophisticated plumbing disappear for around 1800 years.  This was also a British tragedy, since England had once enjoyed the benefits of Roman plumbing, only to forget that benefit for centuries, along with the rest of the European world.

I am certainly a fan of modern plumbing.  Indeed, when I lived in England thirty years ago, one of the things that stamped it as a civilized country in my mind was the fact that, no matter where one went, one could find clean, functioning public toilets.  (We will ignore, for purposes of this post, the execrable toilet paper that accompanied that lovely plumbing.)  For a tourist with a small bladder, this was a very big deal.

Perhaps I shouldn’t have been so surprised by England’s heightened appreciation for clean toilets.  After all, Thomas Crapper, the father of the modern toilet, was a British subject.  Although he may not have invented the modern flush toilet, it was he who brought it to the masses, allowing people to break free from chamber pots that needed to be emptied by hand (usually into the street) or squalid pit toilets in smelly back yards.

Sadly, however, England seems to be retreating to a pre-modern era when it comes to plumbing.  In order to accommodate the overwhelmingly delicate sensibilities of new immigrants who have not, in their home countries, enjoyed the blessings of modern plumbing, at least one major commercial outlet in Britain has installed pit toilets, over which one squats, rather than our nice, Western-style thrones:

For centuries, the great British loo has been a matter of envy to the rest of the world.

Thanks to the efforts of pioneers like the legendary Thomas Crapper, we have long since led the world in comfort and hygiene.

Now, however, that could be about to change.

For most of us, the squat toilet is nothing more than a staple of horror stories about old-fashioned French service stations or the exploits of adventurous backpackers in far-flung parts of India.

But this basic form of plumbing, also known as a Turkish toilet or Nile pan, could be coming to a shopping centre near you – and all in the name of cultural sensitivity.

From next week, shoppers in Rochdale who push open the cubicle door expecting the reassuring sight of a modern, clean lavatory could instead be faced with little more than a hole in the ground.

Bosses of the Greater Manchester town’s Exchange mall have installed two as part of an upgrade costing several thousand pounds after attending a cultural awareness course run by a local Muslim community activist.

A familiar sight in parts of the Middle East, and still sometimes seen in France and Italy, the toilets require users to squat above them, rather than sitting.

With one in ten of Rochdale’s population of Pakistani or Bangladeshi origin, centre managers say they have been told some members of the local Asian community prefer them for cultural reasons.

You can read more on this cultural regression here.

I continue to believe that, when immigrants arrive legally in a new country, they should have made available to them all the opportunities that country affords, that they should not be subject to discrimination because of their immigrant status and that, in the privacy of their own homes and the comforts of their own communities, they should be allowed to surround themselves with the trappings of their home culture, if they so desire.

I have never believed, however, that the destination country should be forced by political correctness to re-make itself into a reasonable simulacrum of the country left behind.  After all, I have to assume immigrants move for a reason, which reason, presumably, is that the destination country offers opportunities denied them in their homeland.  To turn England into a primitive Pakistani village is ludicrous, and offensive both to the British themselves and to those immigrants who genuinely sought a new life in a new culture.

The problem is Washington, D.C. — by guestblogger Sally Zelikovsky

[Note from Bookworm:  As of now, the video embed of Pete Stark you’ll see in the post below has only 97 hits.  It should have a million hits.  Pete Stark is, and always has been, an exceptionally nasty piece of work.  However, Democratic acts in Washington make it clear that what he says is what they think.  Also, please note his disdain and dislike for the people he represents and for Americans in general.  And now, back to Sally….]

Do you doubt whether or not your representatives are listening to you?

Do you question their sincerity in doing their job?

Do you wonder if they truly understand what their responsibilities are in representing their districts in Washington DC?

Do you suspect that your representative has nothing but disdain for the average American citizen?

Do you hear rumors about representatives maligning and mocking their constituents, not taking them seriously and being woefully misinformed on the issues important to every day Americans, the guys and gals on Main Street?

If you answered “yes” to any of the above questions, then watch this representative in action and see for yourself, firsthand, what Washington DC thinks of you.

The problem is not Main Street or Wall Street.  It’s Pennsylvania Avenue and Capitol Hill!

[Bookworm here again:  For those of you who don’t know who Sally Zelikovsky is, especially those of you who are Bay Area conservatives, please check out the Bay Area Patriots website, which is her baby — and a lovely baby it is.]

Jan Brewer hits back, hard

The feds may be planning on suing Arizona for having the temerity to try to comply with federal law, but Jan Brewer isn’t taking things lying down:

Hat tip:  American Digest

Why Obama Wants You to “Turn On, Tune Out, and Drop Out” — by Guest Blogger Robin of Berkeley

To:  American Citizens
From:  Your Government
Date:  Today

It has come to our attention that citizens on your side of the aisle (“WN’s”, aka Wing Nuts) are doing a lot of talking.  What in the world are you gabbing about?

Talk Radio, talking amongst yourselves, chatting on the Internet.   What is with you people?  Haven’t you ever heard of:   “Turn on, Tune in, and Drop Out?”

This government feels that all this talking is in direct violation of the First Amendment.  Regulations Czar Cass Sunstein is working out the details.

In the meantime,  your government is issuing the following directive regarding inappropriate conversation topics.    Because we are the most transparent government in the history of humankind, we will also include a comprehensive list of acceptable topics.

Unacceptable Topics:

1. Radical Islam:

Why are you WN’s making a big fuss about Islam?  Muslims are conservative, religious people with big families.  Aren’t they just like Christians, only their wives aren’t as hot?

President Obama is working night and day to befriend our Muslim neighbors.  In fact, he may or may not be one of them.

Didn’t you people ever listen to Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood?  Remember a stranger is just a friend you haven’t met yet.

Your judging and criticizing our new friends’ lifestyle is not acceptable in any way, shape or form.   Thus, we are requiring the following new terminology, effective immediately:

“Jihad” — instead please use the term, “religious freedom.”

“Honor killings” — “family values”

“Terrorists” — “freedom fighters”

“Clitoridectomies” — “cosmetic surgery”

2.  Undocumented Workers:

Again, you WN’s are a bunch of sourpusses.  What is wrong with having a bunch more pals from South of the Border?  You act like some of them are drug runners, rapists, kidnappers, and thieves.

Didn’t you people learn to share as children?  The Obama Administration has simply embraced what your mom and dad taught.  We want you to share your emergency rooms, wages,  public schools, and health care with these new friends.

3.  President Obama:

Again, all these questions:  Where was Obama born?  Were his parents Communists?  Where are his school records?  Is he a Muslim?  Why doesn’t he like America?  What are his ties to domestic terrorist Bill Ayers?

Blah, blah, blah.  Yada, yada, yada.  All you need to know is this:  He’s black.  He’s cool.  He dances, he parties, and he has amazing pecs.   And, most importantly, he is not George W. Bush.

This information satisfies liberals — why not you?

4.  The Czars:

Yes it’s true that President Obama has appointed over 30 (sorry, we’ve lost count) Czars.  No, they are not vetted by Congress.   Yes, many appear to be card-carrying socialists or recent discharges from a psych ward.

However, this secret cadre of Czars is absolutely essential to this administration’s agenda.  How in the world can the Democrats radically transform America if you busybodies are all up in their business?

5.  Criticism of Congress:

Public approval of Congress keeps reaching new lows.  Why all this distrust?   When there was a Republican government,  any and all attacks,  demonstrations, and ambushes were necessary.

But this is a Democratic government.  We are the good guys.  When the Democrats are in office, the country can relax.  Leave the driving to us, dude, and take a chill pill.

6.The Mainstream Media:

You people have objected loudly to the MSM’s  swooning over Obama.  Aren’t you being a tad unfair?

Yes it’s true that reporters have been head over heels for Barack.  But these reporters are living, breathing human beings.  Don’t they have needs and desires like any other person?

7.  Misogyny on the Left:

Some of you keep criticizing the Left’s bad treatment of women.     Yes, it’s true that it’s been open season on women, like objectifying Sarah Palin and abusing Michelle Malkin.  True, the Left is not known for giving women any respect.

I hate to break the news to you, ladies.  But liberals don’t give a whit about sexism.  The only “ism” that’s making headlines is racism.

Sexism is so 1970’s.

8.  Black on White (and Asian) Crime:

Yes the statistics are alarming.  But that’s only if you actually read them and publicize them.

True, in San Francisco, 85% of the strong arm robberies are blacks against Asians.   And yes, there have been reports that blacks murder whites at 50 times the rate of the reverse.   There were over a million violent black on white crimes in 1992, compared to over 100,000 white on black crimes.

And we’ll concede that the gang culture, enabled by liberalism, glorifies violence toward others, particularly police and women.    Of course, it’s true that liberal attitudes have so infected the schools and the courts that the perps barely get a slap on the wrist.

But let me make one thing perfectly clear:  this is an unacceptable topic.   Why?  I think you know why by now, you racist.

Acceptable Topics

There are many topics that all citizens are free to discuss at will.

George W. Bush — especially his association to the Prince of Darkness.

Sarah Palin — particularly how crazy she is.

Israel — as long as words like “occupier” and “apartheid” are used.

Tea Parties — especially ties to Neo Nazis and the KKK.

Sincerely,

Your Government

Robin is a licensed psychotherapist and a recovering liberal in Berkeley.   She has written numerous articles for American Thinker.  You can send her an email at robinofberkeley@hotmail.com.

Ray Stevens on illegal immigration — at home and abroad

Put this one in the Immigration “I told you so” category

In a couple of posts, I’ve opined that the liberal/statist/Progressive/Democratic pro-immigration crowd is, in practical effect, horribly anti-Hispanic.  My reasoning has been that illegal immigration allows corrupt South of the Border governments, especially Mexico, to siphon off to America its unemployed and its criminals.  In return, these people, none of whom are committed to America, despite the benefits they draw, send billions of dollars back home.  With their deadwood gone and the money flowing in, corrupt Latin American governments get to keep on being corrupt, to keep on oppressing their citizens, and to keep on failing to put in place functional economic policies.  Pity the poor people left back home in Latin America, whose government, supported by the American Left, can just keep on being rotten.

Well, until today, that was simply my opinion.  Today, though, I learned that at least some Mexican officials have explicitly admitted that this is precisely what’s going on:

Nine state legislators from the Mexican state of Sonora traveled to Tucson to complain about Arizona ‘s new crackdown on illegal’s from Mexico .

It seems that many Mexican illegals are now returning to their hometowns and the officials in the Sonora state government are ticked off about it.

A delegation of nine state legislators from Sonora was in Tucson on Tuesday to say Arizona ‘s new illegal alien sanctions law will have a devastating effect on the Mexican state.

At a news conference, the legislators said Sonora – Arizona ‘s southern neighbor, made up of mostly small towns – cannot handle the demand for housing, jobs and schools it will face as illegal Mexican workers here return to their hometowns without jobs or money.

The law punishes individuals who don’t have valid legal documents to live and work in the United States.

The Mexican legislators are angry because their own citizens are returning to their hometowns, placing a burden on their state government.

‘How can they pass a law like this?’ asked Mexican Rep. Leticia Amparano-Gamez, who represents Nogales.
‘There is not one person living in Sonora who does not have a friend or relative working in Arizona,’she said, speaking only in Spanish.

‘Mexico is not prepared for this, for the tremendous problems it will face as more and more Mexicans working in Arizona and sending money to theirfamilies return to hometowns in Sonora without jobs,’she said. ‘We are one family, socially and economically,’she said of the people of Sonora and Arizona .

Hat tip:  American Thinker

Color me stupid, but I don’t know why legal immigrants support illegal immigration

Turns out that Hispanics, who are probably as misinformed as Eric Holder about the actual contents of the Arizona immigration law, are opposed to it in vast numbers.  I don’t get it.  When the illegal immigrants pour into American communities, bringing with them all their pathologies (gangs, drugs, alcoholism, violence, and poverty), they’re not coming to my neighborhood.  Nope.  Instead, these nightmare neighbors are moving into established Hispanic neighborhoods.

If American could control the flow of immigrants, she would be able to say no to gang bangers and drug runners.  But since political correctness disallows our nation a voice into the immigration process, which has become completely self-selecting, every Hispanic community in America gets as its new residents a whole bunch of bad guys.

This, of course, is the insanity of identity politics.  It’s the same insanity that sees gays saying, “Because I’m gay, I must be politically Left, and if I’m politically Left, it must mean I support the beleaguered Palestinians, and I do so despite the fact that Palestinians kills gays, and Palestinian gays are trying to immigrate to the safe haven of Israel.”  (An alternative version of this identity politics line of thinking goes, “Because I’m gay, I must be politically Left, and that means I complain about America bullying poor Iran, despite the fact that Iran is able to boast about the absence of homosexuals only because it routinely kills them.”)

This same identity politics insanity shows up in the black community.  There, you get blacks saying that, “Because I’m black, I have to hate cops, who are all racist pigs, including all the black cops in my community — who, incidentally, are putting their lives on the line to protect me against the number one risk I face:  fellow blacks.”

I’ve also blogged here about the fact that pro-illegal immigration groups, including the same Hispanics who are welcoming predators to their own community, are doing a profound disservice to those Hispanics (the vast majority, really) who remain behind in Latin America, especially in Mexico.  As long as these governments have America as a safety valve to which they can send their criminals and poorest people, and from which they can get vast sums of money that illegal immigrants (who are not emotionally invested in America) send home, these governments, especially Mexico, have no interest in changing their feckless and corrupt ways.  And as long as they continue to be feckless and corrupt, their citizens continue to suffer.

So color me stupid, or perplexed, or maybe just unfettered by identity politics, but it makes absolutely no sense to me that American Hispanics oppose a law that will improve the quality of their own lives, as well as the lives of Hispanics remaining behind in their countries of origin.

An email that’s making the rounds, relating one vet’s story *UPDATED*

UPDATE:  I’m reprinting here Baseballmaven’s comment:

This was sent to me also–researching on Snopes,  while the d’Lynn part wasn’t there; however, the part about the welfare recipient in Florida was there and turned out to be NOT TRUE..variations have been circulating since 2004. The original example actually came from Canada, and even there wasn’t validated. http://www.snopes.com/politics/immigration/refugees.asp Ironically, of course, sadly it rings true to us that a vet would be ill used compared to an illegal immigrant, especially under the current regime.

So, enjoy it for what it’s worth, but it’s not true.  It would be interesting, though, if someone would take the time to compare benefits for an illegal immigrant with four children, versus those for a disabled Vietnam Vet.  I don’t know what the result would be, but I’d like to see it.  It would clarify things to know the facts.

*************************

I can’t vouch for whether this is true or not.  That is, I don’t know if “d’Lynn” even exists, nor do I know if the facts related regarding the different treatment meted out to vets and illegals are true.  I checked on Snopes, and this email hasn’t been subject to any “urban legend” analysis.  I therefore pass this email on to you so that you can make your own judgment calls, based up0n your own knowledge of how the world works:

Vets Alert

image001

My name is d’Lynn – I’m a disabled Vietnam vet.., don’t look too bad for a beat-up old fart, do I? .., and that’s my ride.., she’s looking pretty good looking also.., especially when you consider that she’ll turn twenty this summer – that’s right .., it’s a 1990 with a 1990 sidecar.., I can’t ride a solo bike…, ergo – the sidecar rig. It’s my sole means of transportation – rain, or shine.., snow, or wind.., and this summer also marks a mile stone.., in both of our lives…, as I will finally be able to pay her off. 20 years old? What? Why did it take so long ? You weren’t paying attention, were you? It’s right at the beginning of this paragraph. I am a disabled vet.., which means I receive a veterans administration disability pension.., which also means; “I’m broke!” .., just one step ahead of being homeless every month.., and that’s not an idle statement.., or an: “oh., whoa is me” .., dire complaint. There is a point to this., so hang in there a minute, or two.., and read on.

There’s a 25 year old illegal immigrant women living in Florida ., with eight kids. Yes., eight “anchor babies”. .., and she receives just shy of $1,500 per month…, per kid…, plus, medical.., plus food stamps. Oh, wait.., I’ve been informed that I shouldn’t call them Food Stamps anymore – that’s not PC. It’s all called – ‘Social Assistance’.., now. You do the math on that yourself. I’d say that she was schooled early in how to make it in the system. 25 years old.., eight kids…, yep – she started early.

You can whip-out the calculator if you want.., but this women who never has paid a dime in taxes of any kind.., [ and still doesn’t – she’s ‘illegal’ – remember?] .., is here, in this country illegally.., paid not one cent in medical for all the ‘anchor babies’.., makes more in one month, legally, then I receive in over a year and half in disability payments…, and I can’t even get food stamps ! Oops – I mean.., Social Assistance.

Technically – I am eligible for ‘Social Assistance’.., I was told it would be a walk through – a gimme – being disabled., no problem.., and in the very next breath was also informed that under the law, the amount I received in ‘Social Assistance’., would be deducted from my disability pension.

Let’s say I take a great photograph. It was just luck., a one of a kind accidental – in the right place at the right time, shot. My local newspaper offers me fifty bucks to use the photo in a featured story. [ I live in a small town – fifty bucks is all they could afford.] I have to report that fifty dollars to the VA as earned income – which will immediately be deducted from my next months disability check. If I don’t report it, I am in violation of federal law., and technically they can stop my disability pension and prosecute me under a federal felony. Pretty cool, eh? For fifty bucks.

I see no point in dealing with two federal bureaucracies.., so I don’t bother. What’s the point ?

She’s here illegally – and with just one kid.., would make over twice what I receive per month. She…, has eight.., and she is not a stand-out case.., she is not alone. That’s the way the system works. Millions of illegal immigrants know this.., know how the system works.., and know how to use it. [ Haven’t you seen the pamphlet? It’s handed out all along our borders – “The Illegal Immigrants’ Guide to Keeping America Just The Way It Is.”].., and that’s just the way it works.

Did you know that the federal government provides a ‘refugee’ in this country with a monthly ‘stipend’ of $1,890 – plus $580 a month in ‘Social Assistance’., ? That $2,470 a month. Tax free. That’s two and half times what I am allowed to receive as a disabled vet. And just what did they do to earn this? All’s you have to do is show up on our collective door step – raise you right hand and swear that you’re a refugee and bingo – receive $30,000 a year, tax free. That’s more then someone making $15 an hour., and they have to pay taxes to boot!

Now.., in defense of the Veterans Administration.., they are doing what they can – with what they’ve got. This is precious little compared to what they should have to get the job done. At least this country has a VA. It’s the Senate that keeps passing laws, rules and guidelines, cutting their budget.., denying requests for more staff, and computer systems to handle the massive work flow. Their hands are tied – by the very government that’s suppose to give them what they need to get the job done – by the government you voted into office. Don’t scream at the VA.., I have. It’s misguided anger.

The point to this story? Just why are you paying such high taxes to support this incredibly screwed-up government? Why !? .., and I am not proposing you stop paying your taxes. That’s wrong. There are good programs and reasons to pay your taxes and support our government.

What am I proposing? It’s quite simple. Vote.

The government.., our government.., is broken.., and we as the voters serve as the maintenance crew. We fix it.., by voting.

I will say that it ties in with something I heard on Sean Hannity today, to the effect that illegal immigrants serve a necessary function by providing “cheap” labor. As Sean’s correspondent pointed out, when one looks at all the government benefits that can be rained down upon a single illegal and his family, the cost to society far exceeds the “cheap” labor this non-taxpayer provides.

Berkeley students begin hunger strike to protest Arizona law

I’ve never understood hunger strikes.  That is, I’ve never found them a compelling means of moral persuasion.  To me, they’re a form of emotional blackmail in lieu of reasoned argument.  Still, that doesn’t stop their popularity, and some Berkeley students are now abstaining from food to protest an Arizona law that gives Arizona law enforcement the right to enforce federal law.

Given that a strong majority of Americans support Arizona’s law (perhaps because they have a better understanding of the law and the chaos in Arizona border communities than do Berkeley’s perpetually agitated and undereducated students), I foresee the students either eating or dying without having any effect whatsoever on public policy.

The passive aggressive selfishness and racism of the open borders crowd *UPDATED*

The next big thing on the political agenda is, again, immigration “reform.”  As someone said, it’s 2006 all over again, right down to the conveniently available, often Communist-provided signs.

The matter might have sat around for a little longer, but Arizona pulled the trigger on debate by looking at its impressive levels of border crime and welfare, and then enacting a law that authorizes it to act within the parameters of existing federal law regarding illegal immigration.  The Progressives (and by now that means most of the loud mouths in the Democratic party) are incensed.  They’re likening Arizona to Nazi Germany for having the temerity to ask people to show their citizenship papers.  Given the point of origin for most illegal immigrants (hint:  it’s not Denmark), those most likely to be asked are Hispanics.  Quell coincidence!

Rush, of course, instantly pointed out the most obvious hypocrisy behind the Progressive hue-and-cry:  Progressives have enacted and strenuously support a law requiring every American citizen to show papers to the IRS or risk a fine; but they are shocked beyond measure that a state rife with crime may want to enforce pre-existing law that allows them to ask people to prove that they even belong in the country in the first place.

“Belonging in the country” is where things really get interesting.  As best as I can tell, the Open Borders crowd is convinced that the illegals here do really belong in the country.  Whether they’re making hopey-changey arguments; or “we Hispanics were here first” arguments (a line of argument that actually applies only to Native Americans, with everyone else being an invader); or “we’ve imposed so much misery on oppressed people of the world we deserve to suffer” arguments, the gist of the Progressive world view is that it’s simply unfair that people south of the Border live in poverty.

For purposes of this post, I’m going to accept the Progressive argument at face value:  it’s horribly unfair that people south of the Border live in countries rife with crime, sexual violence, drugs and poverty, when we have this perfectly nice, clean, relatively safe country just hovering north of them as a perpetual enticement.  And if you buy that it’s all our fault that they suffer so terribly down there, it’s even more unfair.

The easy answer, the answer the Progressive’s espouse, is simply to open the borders and let some of the tired, poor, huddled masses from down south pour in.  Not only will they get to live in a nicer place (if you think urban slums and crime ridden border towns are nicer), but we Americans will be forced to pay a perpetual penance in the form of fewer jobs for legal citizens, higher taxes to cover welfare for illegals, and increased crime rates everywhere illegals are.  We deserve to be punished, right?

What the Progressive’s refuse to recognize is that their cute little game of allow a continuous trickle of illegal aliens over the border is a cop-out.  No matter how many come in here, there are still a much larger number abandoned way back there.  And what’s even worse is that, by allowing utterly corrupt governments (Mexico comes to mind) to have this safety valve, we are giving those governments carte blanche to continue in their reckless, corrupt, abusive ways.  As long as we siphon off the poorest and, sometimes, the most criminal citizens, the same governments that are grossly abusing their citizens continue to get a free pass.

If Progressives actually wanted to make a change South of the Border, they’d close our border and start putting really serious pressure on Latin American countries to start engaging in true reform.  The Mexican government, denied a safety valve (plus the billions of dollars the illegals send home to float the Mexican economy), would have to reform or, probably, collapse.  Clearing out that rot, allow room for true reform and real Democratic impulses, would be the true gift we, as Americans, could give people South of the Border.

Right now, all that the shrill, abusive Progressive rhetoric is doing is propping up tyrants, demagogues, criminals and incompetents.  That the Progressives’ goal is to punish Americans, not to aid Latin American, is made manifest by the fact that they aggressively refuse to help the greater number of Hispanics repair the situation at home, choosing instead to abuse their own country by putting small percentages of Hispanics in ghettos in America, all the while implicitly and explicitly supporting the same horrible regimes that sent these people fleeing in the first place.

UPDATE:  Speaking of Mexico, Michelle Malkin explains how Mexico treats its illegal immigrants.  Unconstrained by PC guilt, it’s not pretty.  Also, it was the Anchoress who said it’s 2006 all over again, and now I’ve got a good link to that effect.

Seeking information about the prevalence of illegal immigration propaganda in America’s classrooms

Back in January, I blogged about the fact that my daughter’s Spanish class sat through La Misma Luna — which is a movie that uses the travails of a charming and pathetic little boy to make the case that our laws against illegal immigrants are cruel. That’s not just my opinion.  Here’s a piece of a review from an immigration action website promoting the movie:

The story, in which a mother must leave her son in her native Mexico to try to build him a better life in the United States, is not mere fantasy, but is based on the countless true stories in which people risk their lives to cross a border that not only separates Mexico from the U.S., but, poverty from prosperity.

The propaganda in this movie (which was funded in part by the Mexican government) is so crude and obvious that even the New York Times derides it.

I’ve since received emails from other parents telling me that their children have also seen this film in school.  I’m curious now how prevalent this movie is becoming in the American curriculum.  After all, it was released in the U.S. only in 2008, so it hasn’t even had the chance to be around long enough to be called a “classic.”  So, if you wouldn’t mind, please take my little poll, and asked your friends to as well.


http://www.blogpolls.com/poll/62429.js
Blog Polls

Liberals don’t believe natural consequences should apply to illegal acts *UPDATED*

One of my favorite parenting tools is “the law of natural consequences.”  For example, on a cold day, I can force my older child to wear a jacket, which engenders a big fight and a lot of lingering resentment.  Alternatively, I can advise my child that it’s cold and suggest that a jacket will be a good idea.  If my child ignores my advice and spends a miserable day — voila! a natural consequence.  I don’t have to play the heavy, and my child learns a valuable lesson about hard information (“it’s 50 degrees out there”) and taking advice from someone trustworthy.

Natural consequences arise a lot if you intentionally take a risk or break a rule.  If I speed on the highway, I know that, statistically, I’m not likely to be caught.  However, I also know that, if I’m caught, I have no recourse.  “You pays your money, and you takes your chances.”

Except that, if illegal immigration activists have their way, the whole deal about natural or inevitable consequences becomes irrelevant  because “it’s not fair.”  You see, if you come to this country illegally, knowing that you might get kicked out, and you marry and have children, still knowing that you might get kicked out, and you get caught — you shouldn’t get kicked out:

Immigrants’ rights advocates brought forth a family of five Monday to illustrate what they called the human consequences of San Francisco’s deportation crackdown: a Muni driver, his Australian wife and three children soon to be separated because a 13-year-old boy punched a schoolmate and stole 46 cents.

“I feel like they’ve taken my right to have a family,” Charles Washington, 42, said at a news conference in the San Francisco office of the Asian Law Caucus.

Beside him sat his wife of 11 months, Tracey Washington, holding her 5-year-old son. With them were Washington’s 12-year-old daughter from a previous marriage and his 13-year-old stepson, his wife’s child.

On Friday, Tracey Washington and her two children are scheduled to be deported to Australia for staying in the United States after their legal status expired in May. They applied for legal residence in December based on her marriage to a U.S. citizen, but a lawyer said those hopes were doomed by the 13-year-old’s schoolyard folly and the city’s crackdown.

If this “it’s not fair to the family, even tho’ I knew going in that this was a risk” argument is the new gold standard for illegal activities, I think it ought to be applied in other areas as well.

“Yes, I knew it was illegal for me to commit armed robbery, but it’s not fair to the family if I go to jail.”

“Yes, I knew it was illegal for me to assault Nancy Pelosi, but it’s not fair to the family if I go to jail.”

“Yes, I knew it was illegal for me to run an illegal and dangerously explosive meth lab out of my home, but it’s not fair to shut it down, because it’s how I support my family.”

And, as always, the Jews have a joke for it:

What’s the definition of chutzpah?  The man who murders his parents and then throws himself at the mercy of the court because he’s an orphan.

UPDATE: Eric Odessit makes an extremely important point about the facts of this case, and I agree with every word he says:

Bookworm,
I think this is the first time when I happen to disagree with you. I am not a lawyer, but, as a naturalized American, I am somewhat aware of the issues involved. From the article you linked to it seems that this family did follow the rules. Apparently the immigration authorities told them that there was no deadline to apply, and that was why they waited, just saving the money. Now, as a natural consequence of belated Government crackdown, they are being penalized for playing by the rules. The Government needs to demonstrate action in the aftermath of the murder of that family in San Francisco by the illegal alien gang member. So, they are doing the easiest thing possible: going after people who are out in the open, those filling out applications. Reminds me of another story, right after 9/11. Back then they were also demonstrating action and went after a British woman who was married to an American killed in the Towers. She did have a Green Card, but the first 2 years of marriage a Green Card is conditional: the marriage has to last longer. But the guy was killed before the 2 years were up, so they were deporting her. There was also a similar situation fairly recently in Massachusetts: a woman was married to a soldier that was killed in Iraq. Luckily, in that case someone helped her and their baby, so they were allowed to stay in the US.
This is in no way a defense of illegal immigration. But ridiculous enforcement of the rules and a situation when sneaking into the country illegally is easier than immigrating legally are a big part of the overall problem. And I completely agree with David’s comment above.
By the way, I don’t like calling those who come to this illegally or legally country and then refuse to assimilate “immigrants”. Here is my proposal for solving the problem:
http://conservativlib.wordpress.com/2007/08/04/reclaiming-the-terms-part-2-immigrant/
Eric.

However, now that I’ve said I agree, let me add here my response to Eric, because I was actually focusing like a laser (admittedly a slightly blinkered laser) on a different notion, which is the way in which advocates for illegal immigrants, rather than trying to fix what’s broken about the law, want to do away with it entirely, and how they use the aberrant sob stories to achieve this goal:

You make an excellent point, Eric, about this specific case and the others in which people get entangled in bureaucracy and then attacked. As you know, I hate bureaucracy, considering it an invariably trap for the unwary, as well as an unconscionable expense and drag upon the body politic and economic.

The problem, though, is that these legitimate exceptions are always used as a wedge issue to drive through the liberal agenda.

Help wanted regarding immigration statistics

I had a most fascinating (and surprisingly polite) discussion with a liberal the other day regarding illegal immigrants. My friend kept arguing that we owe the illegal immigrants in our country citizenship, welfare, health care, education, etc., because they’re here and we can’t humanely deny them access to those benefits. I argued that, if we denied illegal aliens protected workplaces, citizenship, welfare, health care, education, etc., they wouldn’t keep coming illegally to America. The same services his emotions tell him to provide for them are the incentives that bring them here in the first place.

My friend absolutely rejected my cause/effect argument. He said a minute number might be rational actors seeking all the benefits America provides, but the others come for “hope.” I responded that this “hope” is all tied up in the services we offer. And so this endless loop of a conversation kept rolling along, with him saying they’re coming anyway, so we should just ignore our sovereignty and owe them services, and I saying that they’re coming only because we give them services, and we have the right to control immigration.

I finally brought the conversation to an end when I said that history will reveal which came first in this chicken and egg argument: Did illegal immigration escalate when the courts ruled that America, instead of deporting immigrants, had to prevent employers from checking their immigration status, educate their children, give them full (as opposed to emergency) health care, and provide them with all welfare services? My bottom line was that, if those rulings sparked a huge uptick in illegal immigration, I am right, and the illegal immigrants are rational actors responding to American incentives. If one takes away those incentives one would dramatically decrease illegal immigration. Of course, if the statistic show the opposite — that the the ever increasing flow of benefits does not correlate to increased illegal immigration — my friend has a point, and I’ll have to revisit my theories.

The only problem is that I don’t quite know how to go about finding data matching welfare benefit outlays to the rate of illegal immigration. Google or Bing searches leave me inundated with information and I simply can’t process it all. Do any of you know of a single study or a single website that focuses on the long-term relationship between the freebies we offer and the flow across the border?

By the way, we did argue about myriad other immigration issues (mostly pure emotion versus rational sovereignty and economics), but he was really stuck on the fact that he believes they’ll come regardless of whether we make it easy or hard for them to be here, so that seemed like the best angle of education and attack.

Thanks for any help you can give.

Creating sympathy for illegal immigrants amongst middle schoolers

My daughter’s Spanish class has spent the last couple of days watching a movie.  I know many people who learned English by watching American television, so I don’t have a problem with using movies as a teaching device.  I do, however, have a big problem with the movie chosen — La Misma la Luna — which is a movie that uses the travails of a charming and pathetic little boy to make the case that our laws against illegal immigrants are cruel:

The film tells the story of Rosario (del Castillo), a mother who emigrated illegally to the United States, and her nine-year-old son, Carlitos (Alonso). Rosario and Carlitos have not seen each other in four years, when Carlitos was only five. Rosario, now living in Los Angeles, California, calls her son, still in Mexico, every Sunday. Carlitos lives in a small Mexican village with his sick grandmother. Carlitos encounters two immigrant transporters, Marta (Ferrera) and David (Garcia). When his grandmother passes away, he crosses the border with them. After getting separated, Carlitos continues the journey, pairing up with another illegal immigrant named Enrique. Although Enrique (Eugenio Derbez) initially refuses to help Carlitos, he soon grows a bond with him. One day, Carlitos is sleeping on a park bench and almost gets caught by the police but Enrique throws food at the police, getting caught instead. Carlitos flees and arrives at the bus stop from which his mother called him. He sees her across the street at the payphone, and they are reunited at last.

This is not just me being a conservative contrarian, with a knee-jerk reaction to anything that depicts illegal immigrants  positively or American immigration policies negatively.  Even the New York Times figured out that this movie is pro-immigration propaganda (although, typically, the Times writer seems most upset about the fact that the propaganda is too obvious to be effective):

“Under the Same Moon,” an “Incredible Journey” for the socially conscience-stricken, arrives in theaters trailing a standing ovation from last year’s Sundance Film Festival and more than a whiff of sanctimony. And even allowing that Sundance audiences are notoriously unreliable arbiters of quality — for every “Spanking the Monkey,” there’s a “Spitfire Grill” and a “Quinceañera” — their wholehearted embrace of this manipulative, saccharin product is dispiriting.

[snip]

This is screenwriting by numbers. Unlike, say, Ken Loach’s marvelous “Bread and Roses,” “Under the Same Moon” is too busy sanctifying its protagonists and prodding our tear ducts to say anything remotely novel about immigration policies or their helpless victims. The filmmakers know that middlebrow movie audiences prefer their thorny social issues served lite and with a side order of ham, an opportunity to shed happy tears and enjoy a guilt-free drive home to the (let us hope, legal) baby sitter.

“Under the Same Moon” is rated PG-13 (Parents strongly cautioned). It has bad white people, hard-working brown people and morally ambivalent people of mixed race.  (Emphasis mine.)

So here we have a movie that is such obvious propaganda that even people who agree with the message are offended by it, and this is the movie our local middle school chooses to show the 11, 12 and 13 year olds who are taking Spanish.

The fact that it’s being taught in a Spanish class is important.  Theoretically, if it was being taught in a Social Studies class, it would be part of a discussion about illegal immigration, national sovereignty, secure borders, social policy, etc.  (I say “theoretically” because, in American schools today, it’s just as likely to be used as a stirring battle cry to man the barricades against the INS agents).  In Spanish class, however, the kids just take it as it comes, all the while identifying with the plucky little boy separated from his mother only by America’s cruel laws.  The only bow to addressing the issue was a question, “What do you think of illegal immigration?” which the kids had to answer in their beginner Spanish.  My daughter, bless her heart, replied, “I think it’s a bad idea.”

The fact is that, whether the issue is illegal immigration, gay rights, or national security, there are always going to be people in a minority situation who do not benefit from the legal status quo and who are, in fact, hurt by it.  I’d be willing to bet that most (although certainly not all) illegal immigrants who come here are decent, hard-working people, who truly want to make a better life for themselves and their families.  Their sad stories, though, don’t change the fact that, collectively, their presence here is damaging to America’s well-being, nor do they change the fact that there is nothing morally wrong or unjust about a country protecting its borders, preserving its national sovereignty, and enforcing its laws.

The Left’s appeal to emotions — especially with kids as the symbol and the target — is what happens when you have a perpetually moving moral touchstone.  I’m reading Paul Johnson’s masterful A History of the Jews right now, and found interesting his discussion about the Jewish belief in a single all-powerful God who articulates huge moral precepts (and a bunch of very specific contractual rules), as opposed to the Pagan gods, who were completely random.  They were not fixed in name, location, principles, or anything.  Morality, such as it was, was always decided by the whim of the moment of the God of the moment.  There were rules, but there was no justice, at least as we understand it.

The same holds true with Leftist political positions, which emanate from feelings, not from fixed principles.  Whoever feels most strongly wins.  Sometimes those strong feelings march with morality, justice, common sense, and societal needs; and sometimes they don’t.  But they’re so seldom grounded in anything more than “I feel your pain.”  (Incidentally, I’m not arguing that beliefs grounded in traditional Judeo-Christian principles can’t and shouldn’t change.  The Jews themselves are a perfect example of moral and doctrinal development over the centuries.  I’m just arguing for fixed points other than “I feel your pain,” at least when we’re contemplating remaking society.)

Emotional angst is an especially good propaganda tool for young people.  Pre-teens and early teens live in a flurry of emotions anyway.  They are reasonable creatures, but that’s not their first response to any situation.  It takes work, patience, information and intelligence to create a fact-based, reasoned argument that will be comprehensible to a very young adult.  On the other hand, pathetic pictures of puppies, big-eyed kids and bad guys are instant winners for the younger set.  I hope that Scott Brown’s victory, which resulted from independent Americans really seeing the Left for the first time, marks a culture shift that has Americans more vigilant about the creeping Leftism, not in D.C., but in every school in America.

(I should add here that I acquit my children’s school of intentionally using this film as propaganda qua propaganda.  For these people, imbued in a Leftist world view, this movie is as American as Superman insofar as it has clearly delineated and, to them, entirely appropriately drawn good guys and bad guys.)

Illegal immigrants, gay rights, gun safety, and other stuff *UPDATED*

This is a portmanteau post, filled with interesting things I read today, some of which come in neatly matched sets.

Opening today’s San Francisco Moronicle, the first thing I saw was that an illegal teen’s arrest is causing a stir in San Francisco’s halls of power.  You see, San Francisco is a sanctuary city, and its official policy is to refuse to allow police to notify the federal government when arrestees prove to be illegal immigrants.  As has happened before, one of those nice legal illegal immigrants is, in fact, a cold-blooded murderer.  This particular 15 year old is accused of having held the two victims in place so that his compadres c0uld execute them.  The hoo-ha is happening because someone in City government, disgusted by the legal travesty that encourages people like this to make themselves free of our cities and our country, reported the kid to the INS, which is now on the case.  The liberals in the City ask “How dare a San Francisco employee help enforce federal immigration law?” My question, of course, is a little different:  “Why doesn’t the fed withdraw every single penny of funding from sanctuary cities?”  After all, I was raised to believe that he who pays the piper calls the tune.

As you’re thinking about the above travesty of law and justice (and the two dead kids executed in San Francisco), take a few minutes to read this American Thinker article about California’s self-immolation, a Democratic autodestruct sequence driven, in part, by the state’s embrace of illegal immigrants.  Illegal immigrants place a huge economic burden on California’s already over-taxed individuals and businesses.

The next Moronicle article that drew my eye was about the ongoing Prop. 8 trial taking place in San Francisco.  As you recall, Prop. 8 reflected the will of California voters, who wanted to affirm that marriage is between a man and a woman.  Prop. 8’s opponents are trying to prove that voters had impure thoughts when they cast their ballots, making the entire proposition an illegal exercise of unconstitutional prejudice.  Prop. 8 backers are arguing that you can support traditional marriage (as President Obama has claimed to do), without harboring bad thoughts about the GLBT community.

As you think about the ramifications of that lawsuit, I’d like to introduce you to Chai R. Feldblum, who is President Obama’s nominee to the EEOC.  She has a law professor at Georgetown, who really thinks that people’s brains should be purged of evil thoughts, especially evil religious thoughts:

Chai Feldblum, the Georgetown University law professor nominated by President Obama to serve on the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, has written that society should “not tolerate” any “private beliefs,” including religious beliefs, that may negatively affect homosexual “equality.”

[snip]

“Just as we do not tolerate private racial beliefs that adversely affect African-Americans in the commercial arena, even if such beliefs are based on religious views, we should similarly not tolerate private beliefs about sexual orientation and gender identity that adversely affect LGBT [lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender] people,” the Georgetown law professor argued.

Feldblum’s admittedly “radical” view is based on what she sees as a “zero-sum game” between religious freedom and the homosexual agenda, where “a gain for one side necessarily entails a corresponding loss for the other side.”

“For those who believe that a homosexual or bisexual orientation is not morally neutral, and that an individual who acts on his or her homosexual orientation is acting in a sinful or harmful manner (to himself or herself and to others), it is problematic when the government passes a law that gives such individuals equal access to all societal institutions,” Feldblum wrote.

“Conversely, for those who believe that any sexual orientation, including a homosexual or bisexual orientation, is morally neutral, and that an individual who acts on his or her homosexual or bisexual orientation acts in an honest and good manner, it is problematic when the government fails to pass laws providing equality to such individuals.”

Feldblum argues that in order for “gay rights” to triumph in this “zero-sum game,” the constitutional rights of all Americans should be placed on a “spectrum” so they can be balanced against legitimate government duties.

All beliefs should be equal, regardless of their source, Feldblum says. “A belief derived from a religious faith should be accorded no more weight—and no less weight—than a belief derived from a non-religious source.” According to Feldman, the source of a person’s belief – be it God, spiritual energy, or the five senses – “has no relevance.”

[snip]

Feldblum does recognize that elements of the homosexual agenda may infringe on Americans’ religious liberties. However, Feldblum argues that society should “come down on the side” of homosexual equality at the expense of religious liberty. Because the conflict between the two is “irreconcilable,” religious liberty — which she also calls “belief liberty” — must be placed second to the “identity liberty” of homosexuals.

“And, in making the decision in this zero sum game, I am convinced society should come down on the side of protecting the liberty of LGBT people,” she wrote.

I don’t think Harry Truman would have understood or appreciated Feldblum’s effort to quash religious freedom in the U.S.  He was someone who was able to separate his acts from his prejudices in all the right ways.  As I like to tell my children, he was a racist who integrated the American military; and an anti-Semite who helped create the State of Israel.

I believe all people should be treated equally under the law.  I do not believe, though, that this means that religions should be wiped out, or that Americans should be subject to the thought-police so that their impure ideology is brought in line with the identity politics of the left.  I believe most Americans are capable of being Harry Truman:  that is, they can recognize that their own personal prejudices against a lifestyle, a skin color or a religion, cannot be elevated to legal doctrine.  One of my problems with Islamists is that they’re no Harry Trumans.  They want to do away with the rule of law and, instead, substitute their 6th Century desert theocratic code.

Moving on, at this weekend’s soccer games, the other moms and I were speaking about a gal who is quite possibly the worst teacher in middle school.  She’s a lousy teacher, which is bad enough, but one can layer over that the fact that she is vindictive, mean-spirited and lazy.  Everyone I know has vociferously complained about her to the school administration.  And yet there is is.  She’s too young to have tenure, so I asked, rhetorically, why don’t they just fire her?  One mom’s answer told everything we need to know:  “The union makes it impossible to fire people.”

At least one union leader, at least, is trying to make it so that the American Federation of Teachers is less of a tyrannical dictatorship holding children as hostage, and more of an institution aimed at helping to educate children.  I don’t think Randi Weingarten is going to turn unions around, nor will she much change my opinion of unions.  Historically, I think unions were necessary and important.  In certain low-wage, low-skill, low-education fields (meat packing springs to mind), I still think they’re potentially useful.  Overall, though, I have a deep dislike for unions that goes back to my dad’s years as a member of the various teachers’ unions controlling California public schools.  The unions did minimal work helping to raise my Dad’s wage (he earned $21,000 annually in 1987, the year he retired), but were excellent at (1) kick-backs to administrators, who got great wages; (2) beginning what became the profound devaluation in the quality of California’s education; and (3) making sure that bad, insane and malevolent teachers were impossible fire.

Other unionized businesses are just as bad.  Hospital worker unions make a certain amount of sense.  The 24 hour a day nature of a hospital makes it easy to abuse nurses and other care givers.  However, when I was a young college student who got a summer job in the virology lab (an interesting time, since AIDS was first appearing on the radar as a series of bizarre diseases in gay men), I took over for a secretary who was leaving on maternity leave.  Although a secretary, she was unionized too, which explained why, despite disposing of old sandwiches in her file cabinet, and being incapable of getting her researcher bosses to the medical publishers (a primary part of her job description), she could not be fired.  This was not for want of trying.  It was simply that the unions had made it impossible to fire people like her.  They’d also made it impossible to fire people like the nurse I had many years later who, the first night after I’d had major abdominal surgery, refused to give me any painkillers and isolated me from any other caregivers.  Apparently I had said something that offended her.  Sadly, this was not her first time playing this kind of sadistic game.  But there she was, thanks to the unions.

On a more cheerful note, guns don’t kill people, guns rescue people from sinking cars.

And lastly, Steve Schippert highly recommends today’s Daily Briefing at Threats Watch, so I do too.

UPDATE:  Please visit A Conservative Lesbian for a thoughtful take on the nexus between religious belief and gay rights.  No knee jerk liberalism here; instead, a good analysis about religious freedom and minority rights.

An initiative requiring large employers to comply with the law in Novato

I received the following email, which I pass on to you directly:

Hello CLEC and friends,

I am the leader of a group that is gathering signatures to get a petition on the November 2010 ballot in Novato [California].  We have over 50% of the signatures we need.  The group is called “Citizens for Legal Employment and Contracting,” CLEC, and the website is http://clecnovato.com.

CLEC’s initiative protects American jobs and Novato tax payer money.  The goal of the initiative is to ensure that the people whose salaries are paid with Novato taxpayer money are citizens or legal immigrants.  More specifically, our initiative requires that big contractors with the city of Novato use E-Verify to confirm that their new hires are citizens or legal immigrants.  The initiative does not apply to small businesses.

Supporting workplace enforcement is popular not just with most Republicans but with independents and moderate Democrats.  In March 2009, the Rasmussen polling company surveyed the support for workplace enforcement.  Not only did more than three quarters of Republicans express support for that sentiment, but over seventy percent of independents did, and over half of Democrats as well.

Although our initiative applies only to Novato, it will be popular with non-liberals across Marin County and it can be easily franchised to other cities or the county.  Further, it sends a message that Marin County believes in enforcing immigration laws.

As I said, we have over 50% of the required number of signatures.  We need to gather 1,500 valid signatures from Novato voters before April to be on the November 2010 ballot in Novato.  Here is what CLEC needs to get on the ballot:

1.    Opportunities to gather signatures.  See our website.
2.    Volunteers to help in signature gathering.  Volunteers do not need to live in Novato.
3.    Donations to pay for professional signature gatherers.  $6,000 buys the signatures we need.

Thank you,

clecnovato@yahoo.com
http://clecnovato.com