What I have always respected about Turn PW Blue, is the reasonable and logical way he approaches problem solving, while still taking into consideration the human perspective.  What PW proposes are solutions that are not only fair BUT can be implemented. I believe this is an approach that most people could support. Let’s talk about it!

Turn PW Blue, 23. July 2008, 10:05
OK, this is going to be long–not apologizing, just warning…

This issue, like so many others facing our nation today, has been brought down to a sound-bite level that does none of us any good. We want to boil it down into simplistic terms and arguments–you either “get the problem” or you’re an illegal alien sympathizer…if you question cracking down on illegal immigrants, you’re racist…you’re either with us or you’re against us.

Well, folks, it’s not that simple. There are shades of grey and nuances of position.

I have a problem with illegal immigration. I don’t think it’s right. I don’t believe there should be a blind eye to what is, after all is said and done, an illegal action. But I also don’t believe that rounding up everyone without proper documentation is the answer. I empathize with those who have risked an awful lot to try to make it to the United States simply on the ideal that a better life will await them. Isn’t that, after all, the message we try to send about America? It’s the land of boundless opportunity. Further, the economist and free-marketer in me sees the value of the ready flow of labor in the economy.

So I’m torn.

On one hand you have a group that has violated the law. They are here illegally. The law and order side of me says all else is not germane to the discussion. They broke a law. They should not be here. But the human side is not irrelevant. In fact, it is the very core of who we are as a nation. Are we not a nation of immigrants? Were we not founded by people seeking to escape persecution and to live free? Is that not the very premise upon which we founded this great republic?

So here’s my plan…my modest proposal, if you will.

One, our current immigration laws are broken. The quotas we have established are arbitrary. The process to become a legal citizen is overly complex and too restrictive. We need to reset our quotas and institute comprehensive immigration reform that includes temporary worker programs. We can look to the EU for some ideas on how such programs might work.

Second, we need to establish a path to citizenship for those who are already here and have been productive, law-abiding members of our society. It is all well and good to say that they are tainted by their first act of lawlessness and not fit for citizenship, but let’s be realistic. There are at least 12 million undocumented immigrants in the United States. It is neither rational nor feasible to even ponder a course of action that does not include some way to legitimize those who, except for the “original sin” of entering the country illegally, have lived model lives. We cannot deport 12 million+, so let’s not muddy the waters by even trying to contemplate how we can do that. So who qualifies? One, longevity counts. Show proof you’ve been in the country more than five years and you can enter the program. Been here less than five years? You can apply for a temporary worker visa or go home. Two, law breakers are out. Drive drunk? You go home. Steal? You go home. Any misdemeanor or felony is a ticket to deportation. Three, pass the naturalization exam.

Third, in conjunction with reform to our immigrations laws, we need to put some teeth in our immigration enforcement. So long as a viable worker visa program exists and quotas are set reasonably, there is no reason not to tighten up the border and crack down on those who attempt to enter the country through illegal means. Additionally, we need to go after those who provide the very incentive for people to risk everything to come here–employers. As part of our immigration reform, we need to put in place substantial penalties for those who hire and exploit undocumented workers. Large fines and jail time are appropriate for the most egregious and habitual violators. Eliminate the demand for cheap, immigrant labor and the supply will dry up. Put in a system to check immigration status that actually works (the current eVerify is a disaster).

At the local government level, get out of the immigration debate. All Corey Stewart has done is pawn off the problem on someone else, create a sense of ill-will with surrounding jurisdictions, and paint PWC as intolerant (at best) and bigoted (at worst). Local government should be dealing with local issues. With all the talk about illegal immigration and the time and effort expended on this issue, other core responsibilities of local government have been ignored (to our peril). Our roads are crowded and our schools are bursting. Our tax base is too reliant on residential. Far too many of our citizens are on the road 30 minutes to several hours a day commuting outside of PWC to find gainful employment. You want to make a name for yourself in PWC politics? Find a way to fix those issues and stop looking for cheap publicity by latching on to the newest “hot topic” in confrontational governing.

Notice that no where in this proposal do I talk about language or culture. We are a nation in constant flux. Our culture is an agglomeration of the cultures of our own ancestors with some homespun spice. You cannot legislate culture. You cannot legislate acculturation. Our “American” culture has survived past influxes of immigrants (who were, at the time, considered “undesirable” and a “threat” to the American way of life). We will survive and prosper through this one as well.

64 Thoughts to “Turn PW Blue suggests a clear, concise, reasonable, and humane solution to immigration!”

  1. Robb Pearson

    What I’m wondering is what everyone thinks “immigration law” is for. What is it about? What is its purpose?

  2. Rick Bentley

    Turn PW Blue, we don’t have to lift a finger to deport anyone. We just have to provide disincentive – make it impossible to get a job above-board, to rent a room, to buy a car, to collect any welfare or enroll a kid in school if you’re not legal, etc. etc.

  3. Leila

    TPWB, Thank you for clarifying. I thought jaywalking was a class 4 misdemeanor based on a comment I found online by a Va. police officer, but perhaps he was in error. In any case, I would still say there are plenty of class 4 or other misdemeanors that should not rise to the level of deportable offense under your extremely reasonable plan.

  4. Rick Bentley

    Or even just enforce “Rule of Law” and turn them over for depoprtation when they are found – make it risky to drive a car or to walk the street.

  5. Leila

    Well that’s fascinating Rick. You support the rule of law you say, but you have no problem violating the Constitution as interpreted by Supreme Court rulings. The Court has ruled education is a right for a child regardless of parental status. There is also no basis to stop a person just walking down the street. In your world it appears that every person who appeared to be Latino would be open to interrogation and harassment at will.

    Why am I not surprised? You have already advocated torture for illegal immigrants being deported and branding for identification. Yes, waterboarding is torture. It has been considered such when done to Americans and prosecuted as such.

  6. Moon-howler

    ‘Rule of Law’ has become such a conservative buzzword, Leila. It sort of hits me like fingernails on a chalk board. Half the people who say it probably have no idea what they are shrieking.

    You have made some excellent points about selective enforcement as well as cherry picking what parts of the Constitution we are going to abide by.

  7. Pat from Woodbridge

    A couple of comments. First I think those who came to this country illegally but have broken no other law should have to pay some sort of fine as a part of process to become legal. It only fair to those who have play by the rules Second as far as those employer who hire repeatly those who not in this country legally I would not only fine and put them in prison but I would take their business licenses. They have clearly shown that they put profits over the “Rule of Law”…..funny that no one hears anything from Corey Stewart about this.

    This whole debate about immigration has been for the most part fought by those who want no border enforcement at all and those who will stop at nothing to demonize and harass all immigrants legal and illegal.

  8. These are great suggestions, and definitely a good starting point for discussions. One issue I do have is the “zero tolerance” on misdemeanors.

    With the current climate, many undocumented immigrants are put into the position of committing misdemeanors in the course of everyday life. Can’t get a driver’s license, registration, or insurance without proof of residency, and can’t hold a job without a car. So, our undocumented immigrants commit misdemeanors by driving without.

    Can’t rent an apartment without proof of residency, so our undocumented immigrants rent illegally or use forged papers. Can’t hold a job without proof of residency, so our undocumented immigrants forge papers (pay other to forge for them), or otherwise commit misdemeanors by using fake documents.

    So we really need to think about what crimes should be grounds for denying amnesty and allowing a path to residency and citizenship.

  9. Moon-howler


    I see what you are saying, I think. But, how do you accomplish that without saying its ok to drive without a license or its ok use forged papers. Unlicensed drivers cost the rest of us a fortune. If you are involved in an accident with an unlicensed driver, even if you are sitting at a stop light, minding your own business, you pay to have your own car repaired. Forged papers often take years to clear up if your name or social is any way involved with identity theft.

    These are not victimless crimes. Most Americans aren’t going to be real forgiving about these misdemeanors. How do you sell the American people on your ideas?

    I do see a huge catch-22.

  10. Moon-howler,

    I don’t know how to sell the “American People,” which includes you and I, on granting amnesty to undocumented immigrants committing misdemeanors as a means of survival.

    Perhaps we do it the way we’re doing it on this and similar sites. One person at a time, spelling out the real facts, and trusting that enough decent Americans will accept the truth and be willing to act on facts.

    I will say that unlicensed drivers are not costing us as much as the insurance company driven MSM narrative would have us believe. I don’t feel like researching right now to get the hard numbers, but several years back I was living in Mississippi when the state was shifting from “insurance optional” to “insurance mandatory.” This shift, of course, was being pushed by the insurance companies and they touted the cost saving that would result from us “responsible drivers” not having to pay for those “irresponsible” uninsured motorists.

    True to form, the state approved laws mandating drivers liability insurance (I believe Mississippi was one of the very last states to do so); and true to form, my insurance rates went up, not down as the pre-laws-change hype claimed it would.

  11. Rick Bentley

    Leila, Pyler vs. Doe needs to be challenged and put before the Supreme Court again. It ios such a nonsensical non-intuitive ruling and has lead to the current problem.

  12. Moon-howler

    Rick, How do you think that having illegal immigrant children not in school would ever be of benefit to anyone?

    Ron, I don’t have an answer for you. n I would probably go ballistic if I heard that someone who had cost another person thousands of dollars got by with it. I really believe in people taking responsibility for their own actions.

    I suppose if they law says don’t drive without a license, then take a bus, get a ride of walk. If I did it, then I would expect to have to pay the consequences.

    Try driving on a suspended license. How is this different?

  13. The Freedom of Migration Act proposal http://www.henrykkowalczyk.com/immigration.htm is simply a better solution.

    Reasonings behind it are at http://www.henrykkowalczyk.com/Migration.htm

  14. […] Elena offers up a “humane solution“.  Elena’s plan is to put teeth in immigration enforcement and to offer current […]

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