Today’s Washington Post demonstrates some policy alternatives offered by the illegal alien lobby, courtesy of Walter Tejada, Chairman of the Arlington Board of County Supervisors. It’s a fascinating mixture of blatant contempt for Virginia law and diversion of scarce taxpayer dollars to perpetuate and even encourage the unlawful presence of illegal aliens in Virginia. You’d think that someone who so willfully violates his oath of office and his responsibility to protect the citizens in his jurisdiction wouldn’t be so brazen about this irresponsible behavior, but then this is Walter Tejada we’re speaking of here.
First was the establishment of a publicly-funded day laborer facility called the “Shirlington Employment and Education Center”, which encourages persons without a contractor’s license, bonding or insurance as is required under Virginia law (e.g. Code § 54.1-1115) to perform as contractors, many of which are also clearly illegal aliens and not authorized to work under federal law in any capacity. The center provides identification documents for the day laborers, free internet access so they can read the news from El Salvador, and even provides Spanish-language movies to help prevent them from getting bored while waiting to obtain jobs they aren’t legally allowed to have. There’s even employment training, so these day laborers can be more effective at their unlawful jobs, and county officials to act as collection agents to make sure these folks get all the illegal money they’re entitled to.
Then there was the passage of a resolution that encouraged illegal aliens to unlawfully reside in Arlington County, as if there weren’t enough there already.
After being invited to the county, “stress, anxiety and depression” apparently set in for many of these illegal aliens. They found it increasingly difficult to obtain unlawful employment due to an economic downturn, increased public understanding that hiring illegal alien day laborers is against the law, and a few publicized cases where illegal alien day laborers have stolen property from the houses they were working on or even murdered the persons who hired them. The Post reports that these persons apparently turned to drug and alcohol abuse in significant numbers as a result. This required Walter Tejada’s nanny state to then provide — again, at taxpayer expense — mental health services to known illegal aliens to help them deal with inconvenient realization that breaking the law sometimes has consequences, even in the liberal nirvana Arlington County.
So now Arlington County residents get to contend with this:
One worker blamed the lack of work on the anti-immigrant mood in the country. “People are afraid to hire you if you don’t have papers,” he said.
He was quickly interrupted. “It doesn’t matter if you have papers; there isn’t work for anyone,” another said.
Another worker, clearly drunk at 9:30 in the morning, was roundly criticized by the others. “If you get the job, you’ll ruin it for the rest of us!” one said.
“Who would want to take a drunk to their house?” another scolded. “You’ll do a bad job and then [employers] won’t come back.”
So how does Walter Tejada respond to all of this? With a level of pandering in favor of those who break the law that is just as absolutely stunning as his belief that Arlington County taxpayers are obligated to fund not only this willful disregard for the law, but shoulder every burden this disregard imposes. County residents get hit on both sides of this outrage, the fostering of a lawless environment and all of its troublesome effects.
“We have a history in Arlington of being a caring, inclusive community that values diversity. And we support people who are here trying to improve the quality of their lives in our region through hard work,” Tejada said. “There are people looking for work and employers looking for workers. And if that activity takes place — and it will take place — the government needs to coordinate it so that it happens in some kind of orderly manner, that the needs and demands of work are met.
“We realize that this is a divisive issue in some places,” he said, “but it does not need to be.”
I’m sure if we all just agreed that laws were meant to be broken, all this divisiveness would come to a screeching halt in Tejada’s eyes. Perhaps Arlington County taxpayers could apply this same philosophy to their benefit and stop paying the taxes that fund this outrage, or decide to disobey parking regulations and then claim that while these decisions might cause “divisiveness”, it really doesn’t need to be that way. I’m sure such decisions will be of equal benefit to Arlington County.
If anyone doubts that this story is about illegal aliens, and the above quote about not “having papers” isn’t sufficiently descriptive, the story concludes with another pretty strong indicator. I haven’t heard of too many legal residents that had to take out a loan in order to pay smugglers to get them into the country:
Benavides said that as times have gotten rough, he’s seen tough workers curled up in a corner crying. Some people borrowed thousands of dollars to pay smugglers to get them into the country. And now that they can’t pay their loans, the smugglers are harassing their families. “That’s really tough for them,” he said.
A worker who had lost his apartment and could no longer share custody of his children was ecstatic when he got a temporary job, Benavides said. He was showing off, inviting his friends for drinks.
But he drank so much that he passed out. And his friends stole his money. Now he’s homeless.
There is an easy solution here. If this guy gets deported, he’ll be home. It beats the heck out of providing him with such lavish public benefits in the United States that will only perpetuate his clearly unlawful presence.
This is the alternative policy option that the illegal alien lobby would have us adopt. It might sound all nice and happy, but without a doubt it’s nothing but terribly bad idea. And Walter Tejada is just chock-full of those.
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