Librarians aren’t exactly experts on terror, drug operations, or the nuances of federal law enforcement.
So one would think it wouldn’t be wise to have them screen - or more accurately - issue carte blanche identification cards that would give illegals a toe-hold on legitimacy in the United States.
Los Angeles is pondering a proposal to use the library to issue identification cards to illegals so they can open bank accounts and access municipal services. It is similar to existing systems in San Francisco and Oakland except they don’t tie the city-issued ID cards to the library system.
The goal is noble. Los Angeles council members are worried about illegals that have to use payday operations to cash paychecks and then become big targets for criminals when they carry around large sums of cash. LA - the latest city whose elected leaders somehow believe they have the collective power of duly elected members of Congress - are concerned illegals can’t legally get official forms of identification required to open bank account such as driver’s licenses and Social Security numbers.
Hold it. Isn’t it illegal for a business to issue a paycheck to someone who doesn’t have a Social Security number? So how do illegals get paychecks anyway?
If LA’s leaders believe there are 300,000 illegals forced to use payday outlets to cash paychecks then that must mean there are a heck of a lot of employers in LA that are breaking federal law.
Of course, the illegals themselves even if they haven’t violated laws during their occupation of the United States they most certainly did break the law by being here illegally.
So what LA proposes to do is sanction blatant and wanton breaking of federal laws that law-abiding businesses and American citizens follow.
Everyone - and every city - in this country needs to follow federal laws that have been upheld by the courts. The entire idea of being a sovereign nation is not to do as you please when it comes to the law simply because you don’t like it. Laws need to be followed or - if the majority agrees through their elected representatives or else a court decision dictates - changed.
There is little doubt that our policies and enforcement regarding illegals need to change. There are two issues - securing our borders and the illegals who are already here being productive and otherwise law-abiding occupiers who should be allowed to become citizens through an amnesty-style program.
It should require basic requirements. The illegals must prove they have been in this country and employed in some fashion or another for at least a year. They must pass the same citizenship test as legal immigrants including learning basic English.
At the same time, we need to triple down efforts to stem the flow of illegals and make it clear after the proverbial line in the sand is drawn - the starting date for amnesty - all illegals stopped in this country after that date will be arrested, detained, and deported.
In a way it benefits the illegals that are already here, working, and taking steps to become citizens. That’s because the flow of cheap, undocumented labor should start drying up forcing everyone in the commerce chain from those hiring nannies to corporate America to follow wage and labor. That will improve the lot of working illegals who are already here that do some of the most undesirable jobs at substandard pay.
That would then get at the real reason enforcement now doesn’t work. It benefits too many concerns - especially those large companies with the financial means to deal with federal investigations and handle fines -that find minimal risk in flaunting federal law.
This column is the opinion of managing editor, Dennis Wyatt, and does not necessarily represent the opinion of The Bulletin or Morris Newspaper Corp. of CA. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or 209-249-3519.