The Death of an American Hero...a Time to Reflect

Once again a family is separated by the broken system we call our national immigration policy. The family of US Border Patrol Agent Robert Wiley Rosas will no longer have their husband, father, son, or brother with them as he was senselessly murdered by illegal aliens crossing an unsecured border near San Diego, California. Agent Rosas (aged 30) leaves behind a wife and two young children. He had no choice about this separation. He was simply out doing the job that you and I hired him to do - That of defending the security of the borders of this nation. He was murdered for no other reason than he stood between crime and freedom.

Our immigration policy does not reflect the security, health or employment needs of our country. It is time we start coming together to fix this broken system. It is way too difficult for honest people to come to this country legally to make a better life and to contribute to our economy. At the same time, it is WAY too easy for other people to come here illegally for whatever reason they choose.

Obviously, the vast majority of illegal aliens are people who fall into the first category. They are honest, hard-working, family-oriented people (with conservative and what should be Republican values) who simply want to escape the poverty or other tragic issues of their country and make a better way in ours. They certainly want to earn a living through hard work and that is to be admired. Unfortunately, they are being convinced that Republicans are their enemy and Democrats are their friends. But if you look at their principled values, the exact opposite is true.

The time has come for us to all quit standing on street corners yelling at each other and find a sensible solution to our border security problem AND our broken immigration system. As a base point of discussion, we must insist that the federal government do its primary duty: that of defending this country against all enemies and invaders. The borders of this nation MUST be secured.

There has been progress this year from the federal government on this point. President Obama has sent more resources than before to help secure the border. He is also taking action to stop the smuggling of guns from the US to Mexico which contributes to the violence along the border. He has continued the policy started under the Bush administration of building secure fences along the border where appropriate and helping to create other surveillance systems along the border. This is progress and it should be recognized and it should continue.

But securing the border is only part of the problem. How do we then handle the needs of a recovering economy for more workers? And what do we do with the undocumented illegal aliens who are already in this country.

I think most rational people can agree that criminals who are in this country illegally need to be deported. A program like the ICE 297g program, that allows local law enforcement to become trained in identifying criminal illegal aliens, is a good start. Utilizing this program, Harris County has already identified and eliminated thousands of criminal illegal aliens from our streets. The City of Houston is now sending officers through this same training. Illegal aliens with criminal records must be identified wherever possible and eliminated from our country.

We need to develop a system to identify ALL illegal aliens in this country and assign them an identification card, record fingerprints and DNA information and issue them a taxpayer number. This does not grant them a permanent alien status or citizenship. It simply identifies them and provides them a way to begin legitimately paying income taxes into our system. It gives us a start in identifying, quantifying and factually evaluating the size and scope of the problem.

We need to continue to crack down on employers who misclassify day laborers as "employees" when they do not meet the criteria to be an independent contractor as established by the IRS. Typically these employers abuse their workers by not providing benefits due to their other employees such as Workmen's Compensation, overtime and reasonable pay for their work. Additionally, these unscrupulous employers use the ill-gotten benefits from this form of labor to obtain an unfair competitive advantage over businesses that do the right thing. They also deprive all of us of the money that should be flowing into the unemployment insurance pool and are not properly withholding child support in many cases.

It is NOT however, a time to open a blanket amnesty program or any kind of guaranteed pathway to American citizenship. Naturalization is not a gift; it is something to be earned. Once aliens are properly identified and their backgrounds are checked, workers should be allowed to remain as workers and not just be given citizenship. No shortcuts to citizenship!

Congressman Luis Gutierrez has a reasonable program on the table for this process and I will write more about that soon. But, in the meantime, let us begin the process of working together to find a sensible solution. We all know what the problem is. By working together we can find a solution – Yes We Can!

Comments

Excellent post Bob.  A few months ago, when working Tanner with you, I noticed how thin and drawn some of the men were. Their skin was like leather, and they were aged beyond their years. At that time, I began to  think, like you,  we need to solve this problem. We cannot open a flood gate for all of Mexico's poor to flow into our country. We need some sort of workers program, and a means to keep up with workers, to protect us and them. If micro-chipping weren't considered inhumane, I'd say chip them.  How many millions have we sent to Mexico over the years? How many millions have illegals sent home over the years?  Is there any way Mexico can be forced to bring itself into the 21st century? I'm concerned about their lack of education, history, and the reconquista movement.  Looking forward to your next post.


This is so logical and doable for all sides, one would think, if that is, there were no underlying victims, prey (that the Dems need) for agendas.

I too, like so many will keep Agent Rosas’ family in prayer.

Great write-up Bob, thanks for all you do.

Bob and I have known each other for quite some time now. We have both stood together on those side walks and viewed the travesty of our border system. I admit that some times standing out there yelling at an opponent appeared to work some of the stress out but one has to admit that in the end it did not help anything. We were ignored by law enforcement, the Mayor, the Aldermen, the Governor, even the aliens. So we blew hot air I am afraid. That is other than bringing up to the general public a problem we face. Yes, more has been done recently on the border but I fear it is still too little, and maybe too late. I fear the crime that has and still is coming at us from the South. I fear for my family, my friends, and my nation. I can't help it I have a strong love of country. I have in the past been called a racist for my desire to seal the border. But like Bob, I really wish to stop the illegal immigration only. Legal immigration is the only way to keep a check on the criminals coming in. On the disease that may be following on these people. And unfortunately the loss of jobs for our American people during a time when jobs are oh so hard to come by. I agree that naturalization needs to be a little more stream lined. But we do need to instill pride in citizenship. We do need to be sure that a person coming here is indeed wanting to be a citizen and not just here for other means. I feel for those in the South that flee due to disease, hunger, fear, etc. But like here in the United States it is up to the citizen of the country to make sure their country is safe, secure and healthy for all involved. Blanket amnesty is not the solution. For in such an amnesty their is no control. We need to quit overlooking the problem. Dig in and enforce our laws and if those here wish to come back legally, so be it. I myself will hold a hand out in friendship and brotherly love. But to come here disregarding our laws is not the answer. Neither is coming here spouting hatred for our country, burning our flag or yelling Atzlan causes. That will not help immigrants who really desire citizenship. It is up to those who care, to help to make sure our elected officials listen to us and do their duty. I am neither a Democrat nor Republican. I am afraid I do not trust either of them for now. The Republican party has recently come a long way towards reconciling with the people. But as yet just partial attempts have been made. We need strong people to run for office. We need good people to run for office. And if that person is a strong, good Republican, or Democrat for that matter... then so mote it be. But my love is for my country. Not for any political party. Bobs way is just. But the road is hard and twisted. I wish you well Bob. Call if I can help.

What a wonderful post!  I don't see how any thoughtful person can find fault with anything you've written.  If we all just work together, we can find a solution that works for everyone.

The people below who have responded to this article are some of the men and women I have had the honor of standing next to in the process of keeping immigration reform and border security in the forefront of local and statewide discussion.

The media tries to paint these people as radical racist haters. As you can see, this is not the case. These are people who care about their country... OUR COUNTRY! People who got up off their couches and for several years, stood the front lines of this battle over immigration. Reasonable people can have a reasonable discussion.

It is time we all sit down together and find a sensible solution to these problems before a solution we cannot accept is shoved down our throats.

How about the rest of you out there? What do you think?

Good grief. I hear a lot of hand wringing out there. No, I am not talking about this blog, well about this blog but not necessarily on this blog as I have not read the other comments yet ... my phone is ringing off the hook. Now, as I do not attend the meetings Bob goes to, I don't know exactly what is said. But I agree that one has to attend some meetings to know what the opponent is up to. Even in war time, meetings are held, negotiations etc. When I posted my comment I was trying to say that I agree with a lot of what Bob says. Not all, but yes, a good portion of it. Like I do not agree with the following paragraph:

"We need to develop a system to identify ALL illegal aliens in this country and assign them an identification card, record fingerprints and DNA information and issue them a taxpayer number. This does not grant them a permanent alien status or citizenship. It simply identifies them and provides them a way to begin legitimately paying income taxes into our system. It gives us a start in identifying, quantifying and factually evaluating the size and scope of the problem."

That to me is too much like blanket amnesty. As I told Bob on the phone tonight, I feel we need to first secure the border. Second come down hard on the corporations that still hire illegal aliens. Heavy fines, jail time for the executives. Even the lawn maintenance guys out there... pokey time if you are caught. End of story.

As law enforcement finds illegal aliens we do need to turn them over to ICE and deport them. Law enforcement should not be able to pick and choose which laws to enforce. Their job is to enforce the laws, PERIOD! To not enforce the law is criminal. And the officer not doing so should be reprimanded. If caught again, terminated! Even if it is the Sheriff or even Chief Hurtt. 

I do not believe in giving illegals ID's and allowing them to work. I feel that when the jobs come available for American people, at decent wages, and not the cut down wages the illegals make... then the work force will bounce back. Corporations hire illegals because they are cheap. That is the down and dirty of it. They do not get benefits, workers comp etc. That goes back to the Hospitals, when some one is injured working, and go into the hospital saying they are unemployed because their employer told them to say that, ... that is FRAUD! I see it every day.

I do feel we could make it like this. If an illegal alien is caught by law enforcement they should be deported. Given no quarter and like the law is now... made to wait a number of years before they can petition for citizenship. However I would like to make another route for them. If they come forward willingly to self deport, once deported, they be given a card that identifies them as such and allow them to try to go through the process of citizenship. Right then and there. But they have to first leave, then do it legally. Thus they have a choice. Deport yourself now, or wait an be deported. If you are caught, a long wait ensues. But it all revolves around the border being secure in the first place. That is a must. I have always said, I am not against immigration. I am against illegal invasions.

I do think that the immigration process could be made a little more user friendly. I still feel they have to do all the requirements as in speaking English, learning the pledge, the history, background checks, health checks and such. But you and I know that anything coming from government has a mountain of paperwork involved. Thus.... cut the paperwork down some to make it easier. I am sure it can be done. This in itself should speed things up some.

Now as for the Churches. I myself get extremely riled when I see a church get political and try to help them by protesting etc. To me that is aiding and abetting. Now I have no problem with a church giving a family food, clothing etc. But as for pushing politics, protesting, or holding governmental meetings ... I feel they should loose their tax status if they continue.

Now I have been talking all nicey, nice here but I do have some thing I need to say. REALLY need to say. Yes, some people come here to better themselves. These are the ones that get abused, used and hurt in the process. I feel for them. Times are tuff in their countries, but... the law is the law for a reason. But aside from these nice people that are good at heart... there are those out there that have no desire at all to be citizens. These are the hard core criminals and there are a bunch of them. More than anyone gives them credit for. Gang members, child molesters, robbers, rapist, thugs of all kinds. Slave traders, drug runners. Houston is a hub city in more ways than people think of. Out there on the streets, I have seen a lot. I have seen people that would slit your throat as soon as look at you. I have been threatened, assaulted, followed in my car, etc. Yes, I worry for my family. I watch over my shoulder. But I will tell you. Their are sick, ugly people out there and that is not being discussed! Neither hear nor in the news. Watch the Chronicle online. If you pay attention, you will see just how much crime is out there. No not all of it stems from illegal aliens... but a lot does. And a sick disgusting lot it is. Make no bones about it. Houston is a dangerous city. Sanctuary city policies are not helping it. Now, I will stop my rant. Back to you Bob.

"That to me is too much like blanket amnesty. As I told Bob on the phone tonight, I feel we need to first secure the border. Second come down hard on the corporations that still hire illegal aliens. Heavy fines, jail time for the executives. Even the lawn maintenance guys out there... pokey time if you are caught. End of story."

and WHEN i see these corporatists, and the elites, to the ceo's, to the medium sized business owners to the small business owners start going to jail, and WHEN hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens are not waltzing thru the Texas border ( where they are coming in from now that Arizona and California have gotten a little more serious about border security ), THEN and ONLY THEN will I START to believe that the REAL agenda is NOT amnesty.  Secure the border, slam it closed NOW, put business owners that employ illegal aliens in jail, and THEN we can talk.

The discussion continues and that is a good thing. As long as reasonable people can talk and debate an issue our nation is healthy and we can move the ball forward.

There seems to be a misreading of my article. Somehow people are getting the idea that I am abandoning a long held position against amnesty for illegal aliens. That is absolutely not true. We are a nation of laws and the laws of our country must be enforced justly and fairly. There is also no abandonment of the principle that the borders of the United States of America MUST be secured.

Bullwhip discussed that a police officer should not be allowed to “pick and choose” what laws he or she will enforce or ignore. "Picking and Choosing" is simply is not the case. Police officers are over worked and way understaffed. They make judgment calls every day about which laws they must enforce and those laws they must ignore. How many times does a police officer drive by a minor offense he witnesses while on his way to an armed robbery? Application of the law has never been black and white. There are always shades of grey.

As a nation, we have established a strong system of laws with a very weak mechanism for effectively enforcing them. How many times do student visas expire without any follow up from the government as to whether the person left the country or not? How many times does an immigration court order “self deportation” and release the person back into our society with no procedure for follow up? We have set up a system that turns a blind eye to the security of our border and practically invited the invasion of illegal immigrants, drug smugglers and potential and actual terrorists.

The law should be enforced. But the laws themselves are dysfunctional and they MUST be fixed. So the real question is who is going to fix them and how will the new laws be written? Do we as Conservatives want to sit at the table and help shape the new policy of this country? Or, would we rather stand outside and wonder what is going on and just wait for it to happen?

The entire point of my blogging on TexasGOPVote is to stimulate discussion between groups of people who have disagreed in the past and who need to find resolution to a very important issue. Apparently discussion has been stimulated. I hope we can continue to talk…

 

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