Friday, July 30, 2010

Dear Arizona,

Rooftop in the South Bronx, New York City.
It's a complicated issue no doubt, but what I always come back to regarding people in our country illegally is this: Are we really treating these people fairly and humanely? Since most people seem to think the only illegals in our country are Hispanic (which of course, isn't true), I'm going to to assume that's the case for the sake of this post.

We make money
on their backs, we rip apart their families without concern about what happens to those left behind, and we blame them for crime, which in Arizona, is actually down. Even in reference to the kidnappings in Arizona’s capital city, Phoenix police Sgt. Tommy Thompson said, “I have no fear that my kids or grandkids will be victims.” The real fact about crime is, according to Stephen H. Legomsky who wrote a piece for the Southern Illinois University Law Journal, is that immigrants are neither more nor less law-abiding than the native-born U.S. population.

Figures from the Arizona Department of Public Safety and the FBI actually show that violent crime rates in the state — as well as along the entire Southwest border — have been dropping for some time. According to those two agencies, here are crime facts for Arizona and the border states:

* Violent crimes in Arizona — murder, rape, robbery, and aggravated assault — are down by 15 percent since 2006, and have been dropping every year.

* Per-capita violent crime rate in Arizona dropped 22 percent in that same time period.

* Crime has gone down nationally, but Arizona’s drop in violent crime was actually twice as big as the national average.

* Border cities are among the nation’s safest. Yes, that includes Phoenix, where kidnappings of human smugglers and their associates have spiked. In other words, unless you’re a smuggler of humans into the United States, you’re safer in Phoenix than in say, Charlotte, NC.

* Counties along the Southwest border have some of the lowest rates of violent crime per capita in the nation, with rates dropping by more than 30 percent since the 1990s.

* There is no evidence of “spillover” of violence from Mexico. Example: El Paso is next to Juarez, Mexico, which has seen brutal drug wars take thousands of lives. El Paso, by contrast, had 12 murders last year, down from 17 in 2008. And finally, the stats that would drive the bigots nuts, if they were able to admit they’re wrong:

* Cities with high numbers of immigrants are actually safer.

Here is the actual report if you don't want to take my word for it.

So what really, is the problem? I have heard, just in my personal interaction with people around the country, remarks that lead me to believe it's largely driven by the fact that these people are Hispanic. I've never heard anyone, anywhere, at anytime make a remark about a Canadian, the stripper with the Australian accent they met at the bar the other night or the bellman with the English accent who took their bags to their resort hotel room. (I use that last example because I actually worked at a resort with a guy from England who no one ever questioned).

Just recently, when I was stopped on the Interstate while a car on the shoulder was burning, a guy came up to my driver side window to find out what happened (since I had the CB and all). In the course of our conversation, he made a comment about "them Mexican illegals who need to go back where they belong." Racist, much?
This recent article points out some of the challenges that have been faced by both Obama and before him, Bush. Reagan, whom many regard as one of the best Republican Presidents of our time, signed a bill that granted amnesty to three million immigrants. A former speech writer for Ronald Reagan said, "It was in Ronald Reagan's bones -- it was part of his understanding of America -- that the country was fundamentally open to those who wanted to join us here."

In fact, what Reagan actually said was, "I've spoken of the shining city all my political life, but I don't know if I ever quite communicated what I saw when I said it. But in my mind, it was a tall proud city built on rocks stronger than oceans, wind-swept, God-blessed, and teeming with people of all kinds living in harmony and peace; a city with free ports that hummed with commerce and creativity. And if there had to be city walls, the walls had doors and the doors were open to anyone with the will and the heart to get here."

I feel the same way. People who have the will and heart to come here to make a better life for themselves and their families should have the chance. I've known MANY "illegals" in my life; I've had a few as friends, and I've even had one in my own family. And they were as hard working, or harder working than the people I know who spout off at the mouth about them being here.

We have millions of acres of vacant land in this country. I don't see why we can't embrace people coming here to make a better life for themsevles and find a solution that doesn't demonize or exploit them. It was noted in the course of this article, that immigration is a fundamental aspect of American history.

As the product of immigrant ancestors, I still believe immigration is fundamental to our country.



~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
1 YEAR AGO: Come Sit In Our Cab For A Spell And Let us Take You On The Road!
2 YEARS AGO: How Well Do You Know Your Stringed Instruments?
3 YEARS AGO: Meat. The Old Fashioned Way.
4 YEARS AGO: Kicking The Hell Out Of Texas
5 YEARS AGO: Look, Mary!

30 comments:

Lipstick Trucker said...

Well said!

Louise's Son-in-law said...

As always - GO SALENA!

Doris said...

WOW. You Seriously Rock. YOu have managed to say all the feelings I have thought about on the subject and you have articulated them in words so well. THank you so much for this entry. I have seen so many facebook status applauding this law and then a bunch of likes and comments in support. Very few opposing. I normally don't say anything but this subject has made me want to speak out but I have not been able to express my feelings into words. The links to articles and statistics are great too.

THANK YOU

ps. Would you mind if I linked this entry a few people on my frineds list? lol

elh said...

you're all so wrong!!

elh said...

I'm in total agreement with arizona and the other 15 states considering this type of law..if our cowardly politicions would have done their job from the beginning none of this would be necessary..these people are hurting many industries and are being exploited and abused..we must first secure our borders then take time to consider the correct action needed for everyone..
I feel the revolution begins this november..the conservatives will take over and throw the lefties out and finally serve us and realize we're the bosses and we do have control..GO TEA PARTY!!!!

The Daily Rant said...

Lipstick: Thank you, my little Canadian friend!

LSIL: Right back at ya!

Doris: You're VERY welcome. And yeah, I kinda do rock. :)

elh: I do agree that these people are being exploited and abused...that's evident. As for you guys being the "bosses" come November...I'm not sure that your "control" is what this country really needs. We're still trying to right the wrongs from your last 8 years in control.

ELH said...

please remember we conservatives are no fans of bush,mccain,gingrich,etc...they're all part of the status quo...the moderates and libs must be replaced this november with fiscal conservatives if our nation is to have a chanch of coming back...the current commy in chief must be stopped at all costs, i can't remember a more dangerous person in the white house...you lefties can't be serious about this guy..are all of you that naive???
as your comment,don't forget it is a dem controlled congress that got us here...

The Daily Rant said...

ELH: What is your vision for the country? Who would you like to see in the office of the President?

dixie said...

After thinking this over, I think we should take down the fences, set up legal entries and have the foreigners register; then give them 30 days to get a job, verifiable, and check back in. They have to check in each month for a period of time to ensure they are earning their right to be here.

The Daily Rant said...

Dixie: I like that idea. Sounds very doable and it does provide a solution. I like it.

Anonymous said...

how about this idea. since technically they did break the law by coming here & not registering first--and jumping past those who are waiting in line--if they are given amnesty and a path to citizenship, how about every american citizen also gets one "free pass." you could use it for one situation of your choice. for example: a traffic or parking ticket (some minor infraction of the law) would be erased from your record, & no fine. not putting a traffic infraction on the same level as entering a country illegally, but at least then current citizens would feel a direct benefit from amnesty. i do not see much sign of creative thinking from any of our leaders. i have worked overseas and every country (including mexico)has tough immigration laws & temporary worker laws. if i had started demanding citizenship, i would have been kicked out on my butt immediately. we are a very generous country indeed, & i would hope that any new citizen would appreciate that.

Anonymous said...

Salena,

I enjoy reading your website, & this very interesting, well-writeen post.
As a related issue:
what about the current efforts (in Congress, I believe) to make it legal for Mexican truckers to drive into & around the States? It is part of NAFTA, and the Mexican government has been raising tariffs since they feel it is not fair that the U.S. currently doesn't allow Mexican truckers to drive around the States.
If it happens, would this not bring wages down for all truck drivers? Not to mention, the drivers & condition of Mexican trucks likely are not operating under the same standard of safety that U.S. truckers are required to. For those of you in the trucking industry, I am curious to know what your opinion is on this issue?

Anonymous said...

No parties are going to stop the flow of cheap labor coming into this country because it just costs too much money to police so many people, and there is no incentive for the companies who hire these people to stop hiring them. They are here for work. Period. There is no other reason.

The Republicans are going to clean up everything. ROFLMAO!!!!!!!!! There is no way that will ever happen and YES BUSH, CHENEY, RUMSFELD, RICE, MCCAIN, GINGRICH, PALIN ETC. ETC. are the darlings of the Republican Party. It seems as if ELH is maintaining the status quo by instantly contradicting his or her own statement. Love is hate, work is freedom, Republicans don't like McCain, Republicans don't like Gingrich. Republicans.....the party of insanity. Vote for us and we will pretend that we are making less government, while increasing government. We will allow terrorists to easily take over aircraft and kill more Americans on our own soil since the Civil War. We will deregulate the banks and allow people who shouldn't have homes and could never afford homes to buy elaborate homes and allow the banks to raise the value of the homes crashing the US economy to the extent that it will take over a decade to recover.

We will give no-bid contracts to the people who you elect into office and arbitrarirly allow the oil companies (who are in our back pocket because they put us on the election ticket to begin with) to raise the price of oil and then lie about the reasons why we are doing it. Yeah, the Republicans are my favorite party of choice. Bring back the Republicans.

I don't think that the Democrats are the answer either, but the Republicans have shown that they should NEVER be in any position of power again. If they are elected, it will show just how apathetic the American people are about their government, and just how easily the media manipulates public opinion allowing the Republicans to constantly keep coming back and back and back. Think about it, if you bought a Ford and it blew up and killed all of your Freinds and Family, would you ever buy another one? Then how could the Republicans ever be re-elected? And why?

It is my love of this country that makes me care about who is in charge and it is my knowledge of how our system works that helps me understand why these corrupt people still keep coming back year after year. And it is no surprise to me that the poor easily manipulated people who are uninformed, continue to blindly follow anyone after the media spends billions a year pumping out the same crap. Would you be willing to die for any politician? If you answer yes, then you are a fool.

ELH said...

I am for a completely new beginning..both parties are worthless and sellouts..don't we all know this?? we may not agree on much but i'm sure that point we can agree...as you can tell i'm very conservative, i could and never would run my affairs like the govt does,and i;m sure none of you do either.so what's a person to do? i hate the dems,i don;t trust the republicans is a third party a possanbility? would this work or just assure more of the same crap as usual?
I think we can all agree a major change is needed,we the people are who they work for,they don't get that do they?
I so fear that the course we're on is leading to mass destruction..and you know what? all the politicians will still get their paychecks,fat pensions,caddy benefits, while the rest of us live in squolar..what a choice..
do you really think either party cares or you???
I would love to see a consrevative revolution,libertarian this november.. I nominate neal boortz out of atlanta,the man is pure common sense,give him a try,he has no obligations to anyone..four more of th same and we're all doomed!!!

Anonymous said...

Hey Selena,just wanted to let you know i enjoy your site..I'm sure we don't share the same viewpoints on much, but it's nice to have a place for open honest debate..
I enjoy your stories from the road.
keep truckin girl!!

Anonymous said...

that last one was from me,sorry i hit the annom button..

Gil said...

I think I had to read this at least three times before commenting. First of all the Republicans stole control of a country that Bill Clinton left in great shape and put it on the brink of bankruptcy! Also, they benefit the most from work done by illegals. I read something about the lack of water in Mexico and other countries will force more and more people North to the USA.

Finally, it totally amazes me that people from all over the World except from Spanish speaking countries come to the USA speaking English. Yes some of it isn't the best but a lot of these immigrants speak English as good as we do!

Thanks for trying to educate us....

The Daily Rant said...

Anonymous 4:50 PM:
I don’t think giving every American citizen a pass so they get a “direct benefit” from amnesty. I see where you’re going with that idea – trying to come up with a creative solution, but I’m not sure that’s it. You said you’ve worked in other countries – if you decided to stay in any of those countries and seek work, you’d be in the same position more than half of our immigrants are in.

According to the Pew Research Center (http://tinyurl.com/PewCenterResearch), of the 11.5 to 12 million unauthorized migrants in our country, 6 to 7 million entered illegally and 4.5 to 6 million of them entered this country LEGALLY. Yet I don’t really feel as if the vitriol being spewed everywhere has anything to do with a student, businessman or tourist who overstayed their Visa. Seems to be directed primarily toward Mexicans, which is why I mention and believe it’s predominately racially driven.

And this article (http://tinyurl.com/ObamaDeport) points out the following: “The Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency expects to deport about 400,000 people this fiscal year, nearly 10 percent above the Bush administration’s 2008 total and 25 percent more than were deported in 2007. The pace of company audits has roughly quadrupled since President George W. Bush’s final year in office.”

Anonymous 5:07 PM:
I have no problem with Mexican truckers driving in and around the United States. They would be following the same regulations the Canadian drivers currently have to abide by – cabotage (transporting goods between states) is prohibited and they would have to abide by the safety standards for equipment that we all adhere to (according to a Congressional Research Service report, it appears that Mexican truck safety is comparable with U.S. trucks). The American Trucking Association also supports allowing Mexican truckers coming to the United States. As for Mexico enacting tariffs, they only did that on 90 products – not all products. You can read more about this here: http://tinyurl.com/MexicanTruckAccess

As for my PERSONAL opinion on them being here and whether they will bring down the wages for all truck drivers….I have no problem with them being here as long as they abide by the regulations set forth for them. As for them bringing down wages, I don’t feel I will personally be affected by that. I believe your implication is that they’ll work for less (as is the case in many of the jobs they take), so that means everyone will have to take less. I don’t believe that to the case. There is cheap freight out there right now that people haul. Freight we won’t touch. That affects me more than Mexican truckers being here. There will ALWAYS be a driver that’ll take a load for $1.37 a mile. We only haul freight at or above $2.00 per mile. So if someone wants that $1.37 load – have at it. What’s funny is that for YEARS (and to this day) people complain about the driver shortage – that we don’t have enough truck drivers. Seems to me that letting Mexican drivers in here would solve that problem. Also – Canadians have been allowed in the U.S. for years to haul freight. We’d essentially have the same deal with Mexico that we have with Canada – so why do people have a problem with that? Again – I believe it’s because they’re MEXICAN. I don’t ever hear anyone bellyaching about the Canadian drivers that come here.

The Daily Rant said...

Anonymous 5:21 PM:
I agree completely about neither party wanting to stop the flow of cheap labor , as it seems to benefit everyone. That said, what I think people REALLY should be up in arms about, instead of demonizing hard working immigrants looking for a better life, is the outsourcing of all of our jobs to other countries. Perhaps if we weren’t having t-shirts made in Sri Lanka, trinkets made in China and clothing made in Vietnam, we’d be able to employ people here in the United States and open our factories again. Until you’ve driven around the U.S. like we have, and had the opportunity to see all the depressed areas and closed factories (Detroit, anyone?) you have no idea how the outsourcing of this labor has cost us. The unemployment rate wouldn’t be an issue and we’d have PLENTY of jobs to go around if our manufacturing was done HERE and our call centers were staffed with Americans. THAT’s what people should start being outraged about. And you’re likely right about neither party being the answer.

ELH:
Yes, a new beginning would be nice – but I don’t think we’d ever be able to successfully have a party that everyone feels comfortable with. As far as people not running their affairs as the government does – I’m not sure I completely agree with that. If that were the case, no one in this country would be in debt. Your statement is kind of broad, so what do you mean by that? In what ways are you “very conservative”? As for the course we’re on “leading to mass destruction” and the fact that four more years of the same means “we’re all doomed” is a little dramatic, don’t you think? Nothing is going to cause mass destruction and if we made it through eight years of Bush depleting the surplus our country had, we can certainly make it through whatever is going on now. Historically, we’ve made it through everything. This is no different.

Anonymous 7:40 PM:
I don’t mind if we disagree – glad you’re here and I appreciate the readership. Please come back and pipe in anytime! 

Gil:
Exactly what I was thinking – Bill Clinton left us in great shape and W. ran through that money like a drunken frat boy. As for educating anyone…I try my best to get informed on issues I’m not familiar with…I wish everyone would do the same. Although I think there’s too much information on any one subject to have a good handle on it without boggling your mind.

Anonymous said...

Hi,

I'm the anonymous poster who asked about opening the border to Mexican drivers. Thanks for responding. I learned alot from your reply, and will read more at the link you suggested. It's always great to hear from someone who ask first-hand experience & knowledge. I agree that people should really focus on the outsourcing of our industrial base, & not immigrants. Great points. Since I'm considering getting my CDL & driving otr, one thing you mentioned really piqued my interest. $2.00 for a mile? Wow, that is making me think about maybe becoming an owner-operator one day, if everything works out after being a company driver for a few years. For new drivers, the range seems to be about .25-.26 cents a mile (for company drivers). If you don't mind me asking one more question on this comment section here, I'm wondering about how much of a year's total gross would you say you spend on fuel? I'm guessing about half, but I have no clue, just guessing. Thanks again, and keep up the great blog!

Anonymous said...

this seeks like a obama loving lib chick fest???

Anonymous said...

for all ours sake, let's hope we can neuter obama in november and send his lefty hate america group packin in 12..tea party!!!

The Daily Rant said...

Anonymous 3:27 PM:
Hey there future trucker! I’m more than happy to help providing some information for you. I think becoming an owner-operator is the way to go. Of course you’ll need to get some experience and during that time, the most important thing is your driving record – make sure to keep it spotless. You really have to know your operating costs in order to profit as an owner-operator. As for what is spent on fuel, every truck is different based on what kind of fuel mileage they get. OOIDA has a great section of spreadsheet to help you figure out what your cost per mile will be.

Check it out here: http://www.ooida.com/Education&BusinessTools/Trucking_Tools/Index.shtml/

The worksheet will allow you to figure how much money will go towards fuel and what will be left for your profit. Like I said, everyone’s figures will be different based on what your expenses are. I did two columns on Big Truck TV about owner-operators. You can read those here: http://businessknowledgeresource.blog.bigtrucktv.com/bttv_expert/salena_lettera


Anonymous 7:29 PM:
Yes, I guess there are quite a few Obama lovers here. And yes, some of them are women. But that’s okay with me because we outnumber men in this country by more than 4.5 million, so there’s always time to persuade more women to join our “lib chick fest”. And if you know any woman worth her salt, it’s likely she gets her way most of the time.

Anonymous 7:32PM:
You know what? Even if Obama doesn’t get a second term, we will always have the historical moment in time that WE created. That HE made happen by bringing together people from all over this country in an unprecedented effort. It was probably the proudest political moment I’ve experienced in my life…nothing can top Barack Obama overwhelmingly winning the election and becoming my President. I can live with that.

Anonymous said...

Hopeful future trucker here,

Thank you for the links. I will check out those articles. I appreciate your help!

Cheers

Anonymous said...

obama is the greatest divider ever to occupy the white house,,his approval is at 41,everyone knows this guy is a complete fraud and has always been one,, be honest now the only reason he got in is because he's black..he's a black jimmy carter, a total looser and i can't wait till he's kicked out..
don;t worry,once he's out he'll make plenty of money traveling from one lib university to another
preaching all his hate america crap and be the darling of lefties..
he's a typacil big govt lib,tax the crap out of everyone and grow more big govt...
I'm really shocked at you being a o/o and not being able to see the destruction this man will do in the future..
he's a disgusting idealog who will promote liberalism and the country be dammed..don't you see this??
this man is dangerous!!!

The Daily Rant said...

Anonymous 8:17PM:
Gee, yeah, I can see how you'd think our Columbia University and Harvard Law educated President is a "looser". I actually think you meant LOSER, not LOOSER like slot machines that pay well or pants that are too big.

You must not know much about being an owner-operator if you think I'm worried about the "destruction" coming from this man in the future. I'm really curious as to what destruction you speak of?

What I find more dangerous to our country than this forward thinking man are intolerant, ignorant, disgusting, hate mongering racists like you.

Oh - and lacking the ability to spell kind of annoys me too.

Anonymous said...

obama is a educated idiot who hates capitolism,i fear for you and your future..that you can put so much faith in such a liberal//
no racism here just plain ol common sense//try it you may find it helpful

The Daily Rant said...

Anonymous 8:33PM:
I'll take my chances with Obama. An educated idiot is always so much better than an uneducated idiot. Thanks for reminding me of that.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, here is what is really going on in this country and why people like Glenn Beck are extremely highly paid. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glenn_Beck
Meanwhile people like Mike Malloy work out of their houses for pennies.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mike_Malloy

Mega corporations are handily sending jobs overseas for numerous reasons, non of which are patriotic. Corporations have one goal. The bottom line. There are no reasons for any corporation to remain in the US or help the US. They merely want the citizens of this country to pay and starve and they use people like Glenn Beck and the Tea Party people to drum up fears about false ideals.

They want everyone scared into not looking behind the curtain at the wizard. Where were the Tea Party people when the banks were deregulated? Where were the Tea Party people when GW announced "Mission Accomplished". Where were they when Haliburton was given No-Bid contracts?

Where? No where to be found. And now all of a sudden a Democrat is in the White House and BAM!! A new political faction has sprung up yelling BS about more crap you HAVE to be scared about.

What ever you do, don't look behind the curtain! Stay away from the curtain! "Look, they are raising our taxes and spreading communism and socialism across the land!!!"

Don't look behind the curtain!!

Meanwhile the corporations are shelling out billions to the mdeia outlets to keep cranking out crap and keep real journalists from actually getting their stories told.

At the end of the day, where will your kids work? And their kids? And their kids? Where? Look! Another corporation is shipping a factory to Mexico or China. Look! Another mega company is housing its tax shelter over seas and paying NO taxes meanwhile they pump millions and billions into the media outlets to shut them up. If you cast a negative light on the wrong company, you might be sued into submission.

This is the America of today and the country that is being left to our future generations and no political party is going to change it. Why should they? They are all rich because they protect the real slave owners of the US.

Republicans, Tea Party, Democrats, Libertarians it makes no difference what you call them, they are not where they are because of the little guy. They are in place to control society and keep the masses in check. Keep everyone scared and make sure that no one disrupts the handy corporate control that is crushing the life out of the future of the US.

Sure you can still get a job. Sure you can work for some company for 30 years and put some money away. In today's world, while the corporations are generating record profits, they are simultaneously laying people off. Because they can and they don't care about America.

Put that in your pipe and smoke it!! Political HACKS!

pcorn54 said...

Outstanding!!!