Friday, 26 August 2016 18:42

Trump's illegal immigration nuances are a good thing

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trump campaignIs Donald Trump “softening” on illegal immigration?


But the nuances are developing, and that’s a very good thing.

If Trump wants to show how absurd President Obama’s refusal to enforce U.S. immigration laws is, he can fly into “Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport,” which is NOT in “New Orleans,” not near anywhere Armstrong lived, and not at all near the no-longer-existing “Storyville,” where Armstrong blew his trumpet before becoming the most engaging trumpet player in the world.

But don’t let the truth stop you.

The airport’s in Kenner, Louisiana, which houses the largest community of Honduran nationals in the world– outside of the Republic of Honduras itself.

How many of Kenner’s Hondurans are illegally resident in the United States?

Soooooooo many!

Enough so that the Honduran Consulate in New Orleans started issuing their own Honduran- Louisiana identity cards– cards that look amazingly similar to legitimate Louisiana driver’s licenses.

U.S. citizens and legal residents can be arrested or at least fined for driving without a valid driver’s license.

But what happens when an illegal Honduran is stopped, and produces their Honduran-Louisiana identity card?

These days, nothing. President Obama says he wants illegal Hondurans to carry on, drive on, just be themselves. For President Obama and his former Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, a Honduran-Louisiana identity card is just as good as a valid driver’s license.

Now, imagine this: You’re a contractor, building a private home. The homeowner tells you that he wants to hire two Honduran brothers, Carlos and Fernando, to put in the flooring. You don’t supervise Carlos or Fernando, and they’ve only been there a few days to put in the flooring on top of your subflooring. The owner supervises Carlos’s and Fernando’s work.

You’re out of it– or so you think.

One day, you get a letter from the Louisiana Worker’s Compensation Board that says one of your employees, Maria, was injured and has filed a worker’s compensation claim.

Maria? You wonder. Who’s Maria?

Maria claims she cut off three of her fingers while working for you.

You shake your head.

You’d remember if you had a woman on your work crew– not that you’re prejudiced, but a woman would stand out, since none work for you and none ever has.

You tell the Worker’s Compensation Board that you’ve never met Maria, never hired Maria, and have no idea who Maria is.

In court, you find out. Maria is Carlos’s second wife, and she, like Carlos, is a Honduran national illegally resident in Kenner, Louisiana.

When you protest that you would never hire Maria, the judge gives you a big lecture about women’s rights, exploitation, slavery, and taking care of your workers.

After this first hearing, you hire a lawyer. Then, the lawyer hires a private investigator.

What do you discover?

You discover that Carlos has a first wife, Dora, who lives in Honduras with her and Carlos’s two daughters who were born in Kenner before Dora was caught in a routine traffic stop and deported in the pre-Obama days, without a Honduran-Louisiana identity card that looks just like a legitimate Louisiana driver’s license. When Dora learns that Carlos has hooked up with Maria and is trying to divorce Dora for the sin of being deported back to Honduras, devious Dora sends the daughters to live with Carlos and Maria in a small apartment overcrowded with Honduran nationals who all have Honduran-Louisiana identity cards that look just like valid Louisiana driver’s licenses. Maria, infuriated, then drove to the house where Carlos and Fernando were working earlier, turned on Carlos’s power saw, and stuck her hand in it.

The ambulance report indicates the ambulance arrived at 8:00 PM. The Worker’s Compensation accident report form, filled out shakily by Carlos and Fernando, falsely states that the accident occurred at 5:30 PM. You know for sure that you closed down your work site at 4:30 PM– before even the “fake” accident time.

But Maria’s lawyer is adamant– Maria is YOUR employee because...because...well, heck! Because she cut off her fingers with Carlos’s power saw at a location where YOU were working hours earlier!

The judge screams: “Shame on you for making Maria work so late at night!”

Maria falsely claims you paid her in cash, and this is why there’s no evidence of her employment.

And, just in time for trial, Maria shows up...pregnant with a future U.S. citizen.

You have insurance, so things are not quite so terrible– for you. But what about the American taxpayer? The award to Maria for an injury she “suffered” without Maria having to prove her employment by ANYONE has a cost– and insurance companies pass that cost on to other contractors who buy insurance, to other workers who won’t make as much money because contractors need to keep costs down, to the home-owning public, and then on to the taxpaying public in general.

Do you sympathize with the plight of people who are illegally resident in the United States?

Don’t let the truth stop you.

Donald Trump’s not “softening” on illegal immigration.

But the nuances are developing, and that’s a very good thing.


Last modified on Friday, 26 August 2016 20:28
Sarah Whalen

sarahw2Sarah Whalen is a university journalism instructor, attorney and author.

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