Thursday, April 20, 2006

Commentary: Border Fence Would Clear Way to Aid Illegal Immigrants Now

President Bush blames Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.), and Reid blames Majority Leader Bill Frist (R., Tenn.), for the collapse of the hastily arranged immigration compromise bill. Hopefully, the two-week Senate recess provided a cooling-off period.

Months of posturing and pandering have not produced what America needs: a workable solution to the illegal-immigration crisis that is both just and fair. The two opposing sides - those who would prefer a bill consisting primarily of border-security measures and those who would prefer something that resembles amnesty - must now put the best interests of the nation above their self- interests as sparring politicians. Between the extremes of "border security only" and "amnesty only" lies the sensible middle ground: border security first, and broader immigration-law changes second.

The recent controversy over port security is a perfect harbinger of the firestorm that will rage if border security is not made the first priority in the immigration debate. When the American public fully understands the national-security threat posed by illegal immigrants coming into this country from Mexico - whose countries of origin include Iran, Syria, Libya, Chad, Afghanistan and Sudan - they will want to know why something wasn't done.

They will also rightly ask, "Why are people from terror-harboring and terror-sponsoring countries traveling to Mexico to cross our southern border illegally? Isn't it likely that at least some of them pose a threat to our national security?" It would take an imagination completely disconnected from post-9/11 reality to assume that illegal immigrants from "special interest" countries have traveled halfway around the world to enter the United States illegally so that they can pick strawberries.

How serious is the threat to national security from illegal immigration? In the last fiscal year, 649 people from "special interest" countries were caught crossing the U.S.-Mexico border. How many more eluded capture? Most experts agree that no more than one in three or one in four is apprehended. This suggests that about 2,000 "special interest" illegal immigrants may have gained entry into the United States in the last year alone. If the next terrorist attack on our nation is carried out by one or more people who came across our Southern border, the public outcry for immediate construction of a state-of-the-art border fence will be deafening - even if it is too late.

The time to build such a fence is now.

A high-tech border fence is the most essential, and most effective, component of any serious border-security proposal. Only a fence, backed up by an adequate force of Border Patrol agents, can address all of the dimensions of illegal immigration: economic migration, drug trafficking, human trafficking, organized crime and terrorism.

The WeNeedAFence.com project proposes a border-security system based upon the highly effective barriers in Israel, a design that is not easily compromised by climbing over, tunneling under, cutting or ramming. No one element of border security conveys seriousness of purpose as emphatically as a fence, but its greatest value may lie in its ability to break the stalemate in the legislative process.

The Senate appears to be committed to enacting some form of guest-worker program, while it proposes only token border-security measures. The House appears insistent on a proposal that prioritizes border security. The result is a stalemate. If it is not resolved, the American public will blame the Senate, the House and the President for failing to take action on one of our most pressing national challenges. They will not assign blame to one party, or one house of Congress, or one branch of government.

However, if an immigration bill calls for a fence to be constructed first, recent polling indicates that the public will more readily accept a temporary-worker program or some other form of legalization for the 12 million to 20 million illegal immigrants already here. If the public believes the tide of uncontrolled illegal immigration has finally been stemmed, it will be more inclined to be compassionate to those who now lack documentation and legal status.

Border security first, with other aspects of immigration liberalization implemented after a fence is constructed, is the best way to break the legislative stalemate and produce a bill that the President will sign. This is a solution that can truly unite our nation and create the working consensus that is necessary to get the job done.

John M. Templeton Jr. (webmaster@letfreedomringusa.com) is chairman of Let Freedom Ring Inc., which created the WeNeedAFence.com project.


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13 Comments:

At Thu Apr 20, 10:46:00 AM 2006, Blogger Publius said...

I too believe that we must secure the borders effectively BEFORE we even begin to discuss other immigration issues. To do otherwise is pointless. To sit and wait for Congress and the President to actually do something constructive is equally pointless. The Republicans represent big business and the cheap labor group. The Democrats see the guest workers as potential Democratic voters. The taxpaying middle class is left holding the financial bag. The security of the nation is in grave peril. The prosperity of our children and grandchildren is at stake.

What amazes me is that while we will whine, shout, argue and rant, we won't do the one major thing that will turn the tide....vote the current crop of misfits out of office and put patriotic Americans in place. It isn't rocket science. Less than half the eligible voters actually vote. The rest sit at home and gripe. I understand the anger at being forced to choose the lesser of two evils. I did it last election too. Now I have learned my lesson. I have not only shifted my support to the Constitution Party, I have volunteered to become an active party official and card carrying member. I want patriotic Americans who believe in the Constitution to represent me and my interests. I want to see America returned to the status it enjoyed for over a hundred and fifty years before it all went in the toilet in 1913. I want borders secured and all current immigration laws rigidly enforced, no matter where the illegal comes from.

 
At Thu Apr 20, 04:56:00 PM 2006, Blogger Charles R. Cherry said...

I think a fence is a great starting point. I read on another site that the fence would cost 150.00 per foot. Is that correct? That works out to 792,000.00 per mile. How many miles of fence do we need? Can you raise enough money from private citizens to accomplish this?

 
At Thu Apr 20, 05:23:00 PM 2006, Blogger sid6.7 said...

security first, then guest worker
program 2nd...but as i heard the
other day, we already have a
"guest worker" program its called
a "green card"...

 
At Thu Apr 20, 08:02:00 PM 2006, Blogger Conan said...

OH my gosh I so agree with Publius!!! What heppened to our Republican Party?? So now it is the private indivisuals who are doing the right thing. Best of luck, I will contribue $ shortly.

 
At Fri Apr 21, 03:55:00 AM 2006, Blogger Author_Unknown said...

There needs to be an understanding that a violation to the Article XI of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo has occured in that we are refusing to give equal treatment for incursions to our border "... it is solemnly agreed that all such incursions shall be forcibly restrained by the Government of the United States whensoever this may be necessary; and that when they cannot be prevented, they shall be punished by the said Government, and satisfaction for the same shall be exactedQall in the same way, and with equal diligence and energy, as if the same incursions were meditated or committed within its own territory, against its own citizens."

 
At Sat Apr 22, 02:24:00 PM 2006, Blogger Brett Keller said...

All the fencing in the world won't stop poor immigrants who want better jobs with which to support their families. The underlying social and especially economic differences between our two countries must be addressed before physical enforcement will work. Otherwise there will always be holes, tunnels, boats, bribery, and other loopholes to get people through.

Besides, don't you believe that 'all men are created with the inalienable right- the pursuit of happiness?' Maybe that just pertains to Americans.

 
At Sun Apr 23, 11:59:00 AM 2006, Blogger LitlBits said...

I am convinced that Traitor McCain has been receiving substantial campaign contributions from Vincente Fox. There can be no other explanation! Of course he wants the illegal vote - for you know that illegals, with their fake documents, will vote! There MUST be a way to have a secure voter ID card - one which includes, perhaps, thumbprint information which would be more difficult to fake! Many Americans complain about losing "freedom" and privacy with these cards, but I honestly believe we MUST have them! Did not the Real ID Act pass? Why has THAT not been enforced?
I am completely in favor of the fence and believe that Minutemen are, unlike the Pres. and Congress, obeying our Constitution with their actions.
I am working with the Stop the ACLU Coalition and would like to get more details of the confrontations with the ACLU that Chris Simcox talked about the other day on Hannity Show. We NEED the dirty little details so we can get that information out to our base - and start letting our citizens know. Had I not been watching that show, I never would have known about this! WE WANT TO HIGHLIGHT THIS! We want to let people know exactly how ANTI-AMERICAN the ACLU really is!
We'd like to join with the Minutemen in educating Americans to yet another attack on our culture!
I've checked with MMHQ and will do so again. But if anyone here can get me the details, I'd appreciate it.
The time to capitalize is NOW. Americans were so put off by the Illegal demonstrations, that they are - FINALLY - getting angry about illegals. And we'll see how badly we are affected by the economy boycott on May 1. Can you imagine these same idiots doing this in MEXICO??
Please - details about ACLU confrontations and/or contact information for Chris Simcox or anyone else there with whom I can discuss this!

 
At Sun Apr 30, 10:51:00 PM 2006, Blogger Panamena said...

To me, land does not inherently belong to a certain nationality. The Americas were born free; man divided them. Because of human nature, the powers in charge have not succeeded in maintaining these divisions, but they expect everyone to follow their laws while they are in power. Similarly, the United States expects prospective immigrants to meet the requirements to enter the country. Ironically, this respect did not exist in the American colonists who immigrated to Mexico in the 1800's either. The Mexican government offered certain right to foreigners but on the condition that they convert to the Catholic faith. I too consider that it is immoral to require religion from someone, but because they were in power, they thought they had the right to enforce whatever law they wished. In another Mexican decree, they also prohibited slavery. The settlers disobeyed the legislation by observing the Protestant faith and keeping slaves. They claimed that the slaves were providing their labor as servants with terms of 75 years. Interestingly enough, this caused the United States to give citizenship depending on a person's place of birth, which permits that the babies of illegal immigrants are born citizens. I am not in favor of anything so extreme as giving eight states back to Mexico, but I think remembering who immigrated first puts things in perspective. Before any European powers discovered this continent, the Indians lived here. I agree with the argument that it does not matter who got here first. Additionally, I don't think that what the colonists did justifies further disobedience by others. I take it to another level though. I don't consider it important who inhabited America first or the most recent victors. People reside in the WORLD. How can a human being be illegal? Despite the fact that the Indians were here first, they didn't consider themselves the owners because their customs did not present nature as property. I would like to close by saying that I prefer to look at borders as a place where two countries meet, not where they are divided.

 
At Tue May 16, 06:25:00 PM 2006, Blogger Tim Farnsworth said...

-the physical fence(s) proposed would represent exceptional cost amidst a technological era where it is obsolete
-however, we clearly need comprehensive physical border security along all 4 US state borders w/ Mexico - and Canada and elsewhere eventually - (to further complement our overall immigration policy/bills)
-the most economically feasible and most effective would be a combination of the already present physical boundaries that are at least near 100% effective, coupled w/ an electronic net of sensors - multiple sets of lines (3?), above ground and below ground, where each set is seperated by miles - specifics of which are undisclosed
-this would signigicantly reduce effectiveness of tunnel-digging and essentially eliminate a human's ability to cross the physical border above ground as well, why?
-all signals from all of these cheaply manufactured sensors - powered by solar energy receptors and very small - are aggregated on mass computer server farm via wireless connectivity
-this server is then capable of detecting any movement by human-sized objects, at any time and then sends a broadcast page to all border agents who are near the security breach (based on the server farm's connection w/ ea. border agent pager)
-assuming also that the server farm has sw cable of immediately decoding GPS coordinate data from all other sensory data

-in the meant-time, I find it prudent to use National Guard and other military services to support current Border Patrol efforts

Tim Farnsworth
Golden, CO

 
At Wed May 17, 03:51:00 AM 2006, Blogger bakana said...

Let me just start off and be straightforward, I am not a believer in your cause. I believe that people whom follow your cause are either gullible, can't formulate their own opinion, or have less than a double digit I.Q. While my statements here may shock and offend you, unlike your political party, I will back up what I say with facts. Not misrepresentations of the truth! Let's just start with the notion that illegal immigrants cost Americans their jobs. When is the last time you saw hundreds of Americans lining up to help do landscaping work for a few mere dollars per day? When is the last time you saw an American willing to get paid less than $5 per hour, for a job most other people don't want in the first place? I bet none of the people who whole heartedly believe in this weneedafence cause would be fighting for a landscaping job, pulling out weeds for nothing an hour, working 12+ hour days, being mistreated, and still coming back to work the next day. I don't see any of you people lining up around the block to wipe feces off toilets for a living. The whole illegal immigrants stole my job notion is one big fabricated lie. On top of that, in order to obtain work at an establishment where an American might want to work, will have taxes taken out of their paycheck, get benefits, and actually make minimum wage the person who is getting hired is supposed to have a valid SSN. If the employer fails to live up to their lawful requirement to make sure they are hiring whom they think they are hiring then the fault lies on the employer for giving away a job to an illegal immigrant. But that is beside the point. As far as the millions of tax dollars that immigrants cost us. Let's reexamine this notion as well. The INS, border patrol, and other government agencies are expenses that the US government chooses to have. The illegal immigrants aren't forcing us to have them; obviously they are still making it into the country. According to your misleading "facts" you estimated 20,000,000 have made it illegally and 6,000 come over everyday. So obviously those government agencies don't work and are expenses the US government doesn’t need to waste, they obviously don't work. The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. Also, illegal immigrants are consumers as well, so they pay sales taxes every time they have to buy something. As they all have to do since they can't drive to Mexico or Canada to buy products they need everyday. So not only are they helping the economy out by being consumers, they are also giving money back to the government through taxes. Now lets tackle this misrepresentation of numbers, this site and other sites want you to think we are wasting a lot of money on illegal immigrants in prison. "Every day another 6,000 immigrants will arrive in our Country, many of them illegally” Taken from www.TnRIP.org who says they got it from the Bear Stern report. Now if that were true that would mean the about 2,190,000 immigrants are getting in per year. Keep in mind that the prison population all over the US just hit over 2 million. "In some prison systems as many as 28% of the prisoners are immigrants, causing tremendous taxpayer expense." Another quotation taken from the same sight as above and according to them also taken from the same report as the first. This doesn't take into account that they might be talking about some small hick town of prison population of several hundred. It just use the percentage to mask the true numbers, and loose vocabulary to omit as much of the truth as possible. "If someone will break the laws of our Country and our State to come here ILLEGALLY, why should we think that they will respect our other laws if they prove inconvenient? The answer is that they won't and they don't!" This statement makes it blatant that every immigrant that comes here illegally will break other laws. Now true there aren't any solid numbers on people committing crimes, just people who get caught. But the law of probability catches up to everyone; there would be way more illegal immigrants in jail if all of the illegal immigrants, even if some of the illegal immigrants were breaking our laws. But these people don't want you to think and read between their lines of propaganda. Like I said earlier they want to misrepresent the truth. There are tons of more "facts" that they try to state which are nothing more than air filled lies. Now the numbers aside, let’s be honest. Just about every American is a descendant of an illegal immigrant. Period. We didn't own this land; we came over and stole it from the natives. Then mass immigration ensued until the US government started to limit the numbers some. And even still plenty of European immigrants came in waves, illegally. Do you think "Paul O’Connor" is thinking about that when he signs into this website? NO! He is being a hypocrite and going against his own roots trying to keep out other immigrants. America was built by immigration, if by nothing else. Here is my ultimate proof that you guys are misguided. President Bush, supposedly your honored leader, the man most of the supporters of this website voted into office last time around. President Bush pleaded with the illegal immigrants not to strike during business hours. He wanted them to wait till after business hours were over. And why would he do that, because he understood that a lot of businesses in America rely on the work that illegal immigrants do. All be it, jobs most regular Americans wouldn't want. That is confirmation enough for me.

 
At Sat May 27, 06:21:00 PM 2006, Blogger Billy M said...

I find the posting entitled ILLEGAL ALIEN PROBLEM at
http://www.think-discuss.com
has seven topics that I believe are appropriate to, and should be included in, any discussion of this subject.

1. Build a fence or wall . . .
2. Documented or “guest” worker program . . .
3. Illegal aliens should not be granted an opportunity . . . until . . .
4. What message will we, the United States, be sending . . .
5. It is widely said, and correctly so, that we should show compassion . . .
6. The hiring of illegal aliens should be made a crime . . .
7. Persons drawing unemployment compensation and/or . . .

I copied the following and faxed it to my two U S SENATORS and CONGRESSMAN on April 10.

Thursday, April 06, 2006
ILLEGAL ALIEN PROBLEM
05 April 2006

The nation’s ILLEGAL ALIEN PROBLEM goes back to the failure of Congress and the Administrations for several decades, not just the 109th Congress and the Bush Presidency.
The members of Congress, both House and Senate, are continually informing us of the great difficulty involved in finding a solution to the problem of ILLEGAL ALIENS. A problem they found so easy to create by not doing the job for which they were elected; which was to administer the affairs of the nation and see that the CONSTITUTION and the LAWS PASSED BY CONGRESS are enforced.
I find the solution very simple:
1. Build a fence or wall from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Ocean. It may be difficult for members of congress and the president to find the gumption to have this done, but it will be very, very easy for me TO NOT VOTE for reelection of any one, in this or following elections, if this has not been completed by NOVEMBER 1, 2006.

 
At Sat May 27, 06:22:00 PM 2006, Blogger Billy M said...

I find the posting entitled ILLEGAL ALIEN PROBLEM at
http://www.think-discuss.com
has seven topics that I believe are appropriate to, and should be included in, any discussion of this subject.

1. Build a fence or wall . . .
2. Documented or “guest” worker program . . .
3. Illegal aliens should not be granted an opportunity . . . until . . .
4. What message will we, the United States, be sending . . .
5. It is widely said, and correctly so, that we should show compassion . . .
6. The hiring of illegal aliens should be made a crime . . .
7. Persons drawing unemployment compensation and/or . . .

I copied the following and faxed it to my two U S SENATORS and CONGRESSMAN on April 10.

Thursday, April 06, 2006
ILLEGAL ALIEN PROBLEM
05 April 2006

The nation’s ILLEGAL ALIEN PROBLEM goes back to the failure of Congress and the Administrations for several decades, not just the 109th Congress and the Bush Presidency.
The members of Congress, both House and Senate, are continually informing us of the great difficulty involved in finding a solution to the problem of ILLEGAL ALIENS. A problem they found so easy to create by not doing the job for which they were elected; which was to administer the affairs of the nation and see that the CONSTITUTION and the LAWS PASSED BY CONGRESS are enforced.
I find the solution very simple:
1. Build a fence or wall from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Ocean. It may be difficult for members of congress and the president to find the gumption to have this done, but it will be very, very easy for me TO NOT VOTE for reelection of any one, in this or following elections, if this has not been completed by NOVEMBER 1, 2006.

 
At Wed May 31, 05:31:00 PM 2006, Blogger yabbermouth said...

I believe one of the designated jobs for our federal government is to secure our borders. They're not doing
their job. Why can't we submit a recall on all congressmen/senators if
the borders aren't secure within, lets
say, 1 year from today...if we don't have secure borders, we need to fire
them all and get someone in office who
will do the job they're put there to do. We don't need to fix blame, we need to fix the borders...we can do a tally of all public servants who vote against doing their job and get rid of them...seems fair to me...if I don't do my job, I wouldn't last very long either...why are they given all this respect/breaks???go

 

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