Sunday, May 16, 2010

Hypocrisy and Immigration go together

First off, let me congratulate the Governor of Arizona for a bold immigration bill. More about that later. And, before I get into it let me tell you where I stand - I believe illegal immigrants are illegals and a nation has the right to manage who moves in.

Now, to the specifics. The Arizona law is bold but I am not sure it will solve the problem. It does polarize the populace and bring more visibility to the issue. Maybe, that is what the governor wanted. Or, maybe it was just signaling to the people who tend to support that party just like the Healthcare "reform" that the federal government passed. Contrary to what has been reported, I don't think the law is racist. In fact, the law does not talk anything about race or color. But, as a recent Newsweek report said "Your baby is racist", we are all racist. So, the folks who are going to implement the law are going to do so with their own prejudices. So, its implementation might be. I wonder how many white people will be stopped. I wish they would stop the white illegal immigrants. Interestingly, the illegal immigrants that I have come across in Chicago have all been whites.

I wonder what those who feel that stopping people and asking them for ID is an infringement on this liberties and is racist feel about people asked to provide ID, present themselves for "random" security checks to board a flight. Ah, you are ok with that because your life depends on that. I have been subject to these random checks - about 6 out of 8 times I flew out of Detroit back in 2002. This is when my boarding pass had "CORPORATE" stamped on it. You want security; you have to give up some of the "liberties." This is an imperfect world.

For the folks from the Church and other religious institutions that have taken the case of illegal immigrants I wonder what your stance would be if Mexico had been an Islamic state and the guys crossing over are the ones with beards. I think I know the answer.

And, finally for the folks who repeatedly point out that the nation was built on immigrants, so illegal immigrants are ok why keep quotes on legal immigration then? Let’s do away with the border security, INS etc... we will save lot of money. The US has changed a lot and so has the world. The US now feels the need to manage the immigration process that means both legal and illegal.

I love to watch how the seats on the CTA "L" fillip. You see people's preferences for color. The seats next to African American males generally tend to go last. Over the last few years I have seen a better uptake on the seats next to Indians - coincides with India's emerging economic muscle. I think there is a statistically significant bias/preference to certain type of seat partners. I bet none of the people on the train will identify themselves as racist just like my former colleagues who quite often confused me for the other brown guy in the office (we were an office of 30 people with 2 brown guys).

I feel sorry for the illegal immigrants - their economic plight forces them to take risks. I wish any immigration reform treats companies and people who employ (and, exploit) illegal immigrants with strict fines. And, I think "Winner takes all" economic treaties do not work. There needs to be economic incentives that make sure that they have a reason to remain in their nation.

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