This will appear in the Farmerville Gazette, Farmerville, Louisiana, USA the week of July 14th.

America has long been a land of the free, the land of opportunity, a place that a person can achieve great things if only a person worked hard and smart. A person could achieve great things in America; but first a person must get here. Arnold Schwarzenegger came to America from Austria. In a magazine interview many years ago he said that Americans are not very smart. He went to say that there are so many opportunities in America and the average American does not see them. Arriving in America penniless, he used his bodybuilding to open doors and went on to graduate with a degree in marketing. He exceled in business and finally became a world class actor, businessman and then Governor of California. The American dream was realized.
Unless a person is an American Indian, you come from a family of immigrants. My grandmother told me of how she remembered coming to America in the early 1900s. How they sailed past the Statue of Liberty with the inscription “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free”. Then landed at Ellis Island, New York’s entry to America. Then on to a small home in Carson Valley at the foot of Lake Tahoe. And this story is repeated millions of times over a century as America becomes settled by immigrants that turned their backs on their native countries to find a better and build the greatest country in the world.
While Europe and Russia came through New York and New Orleans, Chinese and other Asians came to America through California. America was an amalgamation of cultures, races and religions. This is what made America great. Wide open expanses for settling, sweat shops for sewing and factory jobs for the abled bodied provided jobs for those that wanted them. America was growing and anyone that wanted to come to our great country was welcome.
The first naturalization law was enacted in in 1790 and declared any free white man of good moral character could apply for citizenship after living in America for two years. By 1798 the law changed to fourteen years of residency. In 1868 the law was changed to provide automatic citizenship to anyone born in America, regardless of the citizenship of the parents. In 1882 America began limiting immigration. That year Chinese were no longer allowed into the country. Finally in 1921 the United States enacted quotas for people wanted to immigrate to America. During the Great Depression all immigration stopped and between 500,000 and 2,000,000 Mexicans were deported. Our immigration laws have changed over time but one thing has remained constant, America is the place to go and the place to live.
Over the years we have seen an influx of immigrants crossing our southern border looking a better way of life. National policy never really changed and there were no innovative ideas adopted for handling the influx of illegals. This has been a disaster. We have no workable solution to the increasing illegal immigrant population and we are now encouraging a mass exodus from Central America with the final stop the United States of America.
Today we hear of thousands of children coming from Central America, crossing hundreds of miles of Mexican wilderness, braving thieves, rapist and drug cartels en-route to America. Many are encouraged with comments made recently pertaining to children in America. We now have a problem of epidemic proportions with no sign of subsiding. We hear from Washington that most will be returned to their countries. Not so. The majority are sent to processing points around the country with a promise to return in two weeks for a hearing. Only 20% return while the other 80% disappear into the back streets of America. And of those that return for a hearing, the court system will take up to five years to hear the cases. When we think of this we imagine hoards of faceless immigrants intent to destroy our moral fiber. Then the images appear on television and we see the terrified faces of incent children with eyes pleading for help. For me, I become angry; not at the ones pleading for help and risking everything to live in the land of the free, no I am angry at a government that is not fixing a policy and sets of laws that are antiquated and broken.
We must provide a means to allow aliens to easily enter the country to perform work that we in America cannot adequately provide labor for. We then need to have a means to truly track where the labor force is living and insure that the laborers are living up to the laws that allow them to work in America. If laws are broken, the privilege of working in America is revoked. We must insure that taxes are collected and the laborers are not a burden on American tax payers. It is imperative that we take control of our borders and anyone crossing it is immediately returned. If asylum is being requested, we have the judges ready to hear the cases with two weeks and if the case is not legitimate, immediately send the alien back to his country of origin. Any alien working in America and harbors an illegal worker will have their right to be in this country revoked.
It is important to understand that if we deport every illegal alien in America today we will be catastrophically economically impacted. This must be realized when real reform takes place.
I heard that the children coming across our borders is a humanitarian disaster. It is not. It is a total failure of our Federal Immigration Policy.

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