Happy Cinco de Mayo to Jessica Colotl!
Because there’s no better way to celebrate Mexico defeating France than by graduating from an American college.
Miss Colotl, arrested at Kennesaw State University jail for not having a drivers’ license, was turned over to federal authorities and held in Alabama for more than a month. Since sending her to Alabama wasn’t punishment enough, Colotl was convicted in Cobb State Court of driving without a license, given 3 days in jail and a $1,000 fine. While that sentence is being appealed, Immigration and Customs Enforcement has extended the year-long deferment of her deportation hearing for another year, which will allow her to graduate college and possibly become a law student.
There’s no question that the immigration issue in America is a direct result of the abysmal failure of the federal government to secure our nations’ borders. Continuing federal incompetence prevents any meaningful discussion of what America’s immigration policy should be, foments anger and resentment, and has caused the deaths of thousands of Hispanics and more than a few Americans. The ongoing federal failure has also resulted in a backlash from states seeking to address the perceived effects of illegal immigration, since most states are powerless to do anything about the cause.
Those perceived effects basically boil down to costs –the costs of overcrowded schools and emergency room visits being the most often-cited examples. But since Plyler v Doe in 1982, it’s been a federal crime to deny free K-12 education to children in this country illegally. And since the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act act of 1986, It’s been a federal crime to deny ANYone medical treatment in an emergency room, regardless of citizenship or ability to pay. That’s right, during the “Reagan era” of untrammeled greed, America began giving away free education and healthcare to anyone who could get here –and Reagan himself signed a law granting amnesty to illegal immigrants.
Which leaves the states dealing with the consequences. Arizona has a famous law, Utah an improved, but less-noticed version. Georgia House Bill 87, which requires businesses to use the e-Verify system for their employees and gives police the authority to check the immigration status of anyone they have probable cause to believe has committed a crime –but which explicitly bans racial profiling– sits on Governor Deals desk. He’s promised to sign the bill, but is being pressured by immigrant activists not to. We shall see.
Jessica Colotl did not cause the problem of illegal immigration –though her case has brought some changes, including a new rule from the University system barring illegal immigrants from Georgia university that have had to turn qualified legal applicants away. She presumably wants to stay and become an American citizen:
We hear a lot about how “the rest of the world” resents America -our material goods, our standard of living, our way of life. It’s refreshing to hear someone born elsewhere say she believes in American values. I hope you’ll raise a glass to Jessica Colotl while you are out celebrating Cinco de Mayo tonight, because Americans should welcome and celebrate those people who want to join us, regardless of the criminally stupid failures of our federal government.