Sunday, April 30, 2006

"A Day without an (illegal) Immigrant"

"A Day without an Immigrant" - this is the name for a massive protest/boycott/general strike that is scheduled tomorrow (May 1), where organizers are hoping for millions of immigrant workers to stay away from work, in protest against proposed US legislation to crack down on illegal immigration.

As a foreign worker myself, I am decidedly unimpressed by all this, as I'm sure many in my situation are also. As I recently wrote about the proposed legislation, the only people who the US is cracking down on are illegal immigrants - people who broke the law by evading US legal authorities and circumventing US border controls to enter the country without permission. And so, most of the people behind this protest are either illegal immigrants themselves, or their supporters. Let me make this clear: legal immigrants generally don't mind the US getting its border under control, it's only illegals who have something to be concerned with.

Let's pause for a moment and consider just how stupid this whole protest is. If you are doing something illegal, is it really wise to go out in a public protest and draw attention to yourself? Can you imagine a group of drug dealers holding a street protest against a crackdown on drug smuggling? Or, how about a group of pedophiles holding a protest against a crackdown on kiddie porn? Of course not! However, in the case of the illegal immigrants, they seem to sense that the Department of Homeland Security lacks the spine and/or political will to do what common sense suggests here...

Like coming up with a new name for this protest: The Great American Round-Up. You start by sending out the National Guard and Homeland Security officers to the parade sites to round up as many protesters as they can catch. Then, you check each person's legal status in the US, and deport the ones who don't belong. After the rest of the protesters figure out what's going on, most will scatter in panic and *poof*, no more protest. Then, as the next stage in the "Great American Round-Up", you set up an anonymous tip line, for coworkers and employers to report people who did not show up for work on Monday, prompting checks on each person's legal status.

Wishful thinking, unfortunately... I'm sure the protesters are correct that Department of Homeland Security lacks the spine for an operation like this.