By Keith Burton Ė Gulf Coast News.com - Editor
What is it going to take to get our elected officials to start paying attention to illegal immigration?
It seems that nothing anyone says or does is enough to warrant enforcement of laws that keep illegal aliens, mostly from Mexico, overrunning our country and yes, our state.
These immigrants are not here to make a better living doing jobs that no one wants. What a bunch of crap that explanation has been for the immigration apologists such as President Bush, and most of Congress in both parties. They are here taking jobs from citizens, jobs Mississippians need. And they are costing the state more and more as their numbers grow.
In the last several months, a Federal investigation has found illegal immigrants from Mexico using false identification papers getting jobs at oil refineries along the Mississippi River in Louisiana, in Mobile, Alabama, and just recently in Pascagoula, Mississippi. The arrests, apparently, are part of a continuing investigation underway by the Homeland Security agency.
But hereís what really is galling. These illegal aliens got or were seeking jobs that paid well. Especially for jobs in Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana. Jobs that would have gone to citizens. Any company that employs an illegal alien, even if the individual used false papers, should be heavily fined and punished.
Oil refineries are strategic facilities, they are important to our economy and the nationís security. But the ease in which these Mexicans got work, it is logical to assume that illegals can get into even more sensitive areas, say shipyards like those at Northrop Grumman in Pascagoula.
Getting into sensitive areas in other states has happened. On March 14th, the Washington Times reported that illegal aliens using false identification, managed to get jobs as painters for a subcontractor working at a nuclear power plant in Florida.
Illegal aliens are criminals. And they are dangerous to our communities. Even a cursory search on Google will result in numerous articles across the country on the detrimental impact of illegal aliens, mostly from Mexico. Stories on dangerous health issues, crime and the high cost of social services make any argument for cheap labor ridiculous.
And then with all of this, you have the element of terrorism. It is clear that we are all in grave danger in that the illegal alien problem proves the ease in which true terrorists could penetrate our country and cities. The internal security at home, along with skyrocketing deficits and debt, are far bigger threats than the terrorists abroad, which seems to draw most people's attention.
On the Coast, illegal Mexican immigrants can be seen walking to wherever their jobs are or packed in vans and pickups. They are vagrants with no real home.
And since illegals are the responsibility of the federal government, local officials can do very little to stop the influx of more of them.
While Mississippi is not a rich state, we are among the leading states the nation regarding the rate of increase of illegal immigrants. The Immigration and Naturalization Service estimated some 8,000 illegal immigrants were in Mississippi in the year 2000, a 300 percent increase over 1996.
On March 21st, an independent study by the Pew Hispanic Center found that there are nearly 11-million illegal immigrants, mostly from Mexico currently in the United States. Their study reported that the population of illegal immigrants in Mississippi now stands between 25,000 to 35,000 people, a staggering increase since 2000.
Who knows how many more are on their way.
A few state legislatures across the country are taking notice and are beginning to pass bills restricting services to illegals. Thatís because illegals run up high costs in government services. From medical care at hospitals to costs in schools. And these services are to people who do not pay the taxes that support those services. If you want to see what illegal immigration has done, look at California and see what their citizens pay in taxes. Arizona residents have passed laws to try to stop the costs of illegal immigration, even over resistance from the political establishment in their state and in Washington D.C..
Mississippi lawmakers have noticed the illegal immigration problem, but only one measure regarding handling illegal immigration is on this yearís agenda. Itís a lame concurrent resolution that begs Congress to do something.
Illegal immigration nationwide has already cost Mississippi in a major way. The increases in population in western states from illegal immigration shifted the population balance of how Congressional seats are determined. Mississippi LOST a seat in Congress as a direct result following the 2000 census. This weakened our state's already meager influence in the national capitol. You can only imagine the negative affect that has had on Keesler, the Pascagoula shipyard and more.
It is far past time that our elected officials get off their proverbial arses and get serious about illegal immigration.
It seems to me that our government is failing to protect us in every way possible. What good is fighting overseas when our home is under a "silent" invasion just as insidious?
Immigration Sell Out - Be Aware That We Are Living Through Times Of Great Historical Import. The America We Know Is Changing. With It Are Ramifications Far Beyond Anything We Have Yet Been Told - By Perry Hicks - Special to GCN