Archive for February, 2006

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SB Sun

Usually glossed over in the debate about illegal immigration and border security is a seemingly endless battle fought in rural Mexican border towns, cities and political circles.

And like any battle, this one has casualties.

Since January 2005, more than 1,800 slayings have been tied to drug cartels in Mexico, according to the Mexican newspaper El Universal.

Mexican police do not keep a tally of narcotics killings, but according to El Universal, at least 176 people were killed in January alone. High-profile assassinations of law-enforcement officials are the latest manifestations of the war, according to experts.

“Intimidation, violence and death is the result of speaking out against the cartels,” said Hardrick Crawford Jr., a former special agent in charge of the FBI’s El Paso field office. “Sometimes it’s better to say nothing at all.”

The slayings, though stunning in their number and frequency, certainly aren’t anything new. Those who deal in drugs on the border have for years risked death on a near-daily basis. So have those trying to catch the drug-runners.

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They’ve got it easy. Illegals are said to cost California 10.5 billion a year.


State Auditor Phil Bryant’s report estimates 49,000 illegal immigrants in the state, costing over $25 million.

‘It’s the first time anyone in the State of Mississippi has tried to look at illegal immigrants and what it costs the taxpayer,’ Bryant said.

The report takes into account contributions from illegal aliens who pay more than $40 million in sales tax and more than $3 million in income tax each year. But the estimated costs are more than $69 million. That includes everything from education and healthcare to public safety and losses from income sent out of the country.

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News14 Charlotte

The cost of educating children of illegal immigrants is more than 20 times what it was 10 years ago, and some argue that the money would be better spent on other students.

A study by the Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill showed educating illegal immigrants’ children costs the state an estimated $210 million a year. Ten years before, the figure was less than $10 million.
The state has already been overwhelmed trying to pay for people who are supposed to be here, said Ron Woodard, director of the Cary-based group N.C. Listen, which advocates for greater immigration restrictions.

‘Why are we having to spend money on people who are here illegally?’ Woodard said in a series appearing this week in the News & Observer of Raleigh.

Others counter that money spent on the education of immigrants will pay off in future tax revenues from higher salaries. Poorly educated immigrants require more money for programs such as Medicaid or possibly jail time, they said.

‘It’s peanuts in the scheme of things,’ said James H. Johnson Jr., co-author of the Kenan Institute study. ‘What would we rather do, leave these people uneducated? It’s a form of enlightened self-interest to invest in these kids.’

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Desert Dispatch

The drunken motorist who fatally injured a California Highway Patrol officer Saturday night is a suspected illegal immigrant from Mexico who was driving without a license, officials said Monday.

Domingo Esqueda, 20, of Adelanto had a blood-alcohol level three times the legal limit when he veered off northbound Interstate 15 near Oak Hill Road and crashed into CHP Officer.

Gregory Bailey’s motorcycle and a parked pickup truck, CHP officials said.

Esqueda is scheduled to be arraigned in Superior Court in Victorville today. He is being held at West Valley Detention Center with bail set at $100,000, according to the sheriff’s booking log. He was arrested for vehicular manslaughter and drunken driving. At the time of his arrest, he was found in possession of multiple forms of identification with different names, officials said.

Bailey, 36, of Adelanto, was on his way home when he pulled over a pickup truck. He was talking with the pickup truck driver when Esqueda slammed into his motorcycle and the parked truck. Bailey was airlifted to Arrowhead Regional Medical Center where he died. Esqueda and the driver of the pickup, Francisco Trujillo, 52, of Lucerne Valley both suffered minor injuries.

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Dominican Today

U.S. actor and traitor Tommy Lee Jones called plans by United States lawmakers to build a high fence all along the border with Mexico ‘a great stupidity.’

‘We should take it only for the idiocy it is â?? a destructive, bad, impractical idea that anyway is not going to happen. Even if they get together enough money to do it, almost anybody can dig a hole under it or blow up a piece of it,’ the actor, who speaks fluent Spanish, said at a press conference here

Last December the U.S. House of Representatives approved a bill to strengthen immigration policy, which contemplates building five walls along the Mexican border to stop the influx of undocumented aliens.

Jones said that ‘people in politics and in the government (of the United States) trying to make themselves attractive become paranoid, hysterical dealing with issues like the border to identify themselves with a cause and so improve their political job security.’ He also criticized those in the United States who support civilian groups that patrol the Mexican border hunting immigrants.

Jones was here to present his film ‘The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada,’ which premiered Friday in Mexico and with which he made his debut as a director on the big screen.

The movie takes place on the Mexico-United States border, and tells the story of Pete (Jones), a U.S. rancher who after the death of his friend Melquiades (Julio Cesar Cedillo), a Mexican cowboy who entered the U.S. without immigration documents, makes a trip to Mexico to bury his friend there according to his wishes.

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    Sen. Joseph R. Biden (D-DE) - 202-224-5042
    Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS) - 202-224-6521
    Sen. Thomas A. Coburn (R-OK) - 202-224-5754

    Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) - 202-224-2934
    Sen. Mike DeWine (R-OH) - 202-224-2315
    Sen. Richard J. Durbin (D-IL) - 202-224-2152

    Sen. Russ Feingold (D-WI) - 202-224-5323
    Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) - 202-224-3841
    Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (R-SC) - 202-224-5972

    Sen. Charles E. Grassley (R-IA) - 202-224-3744
    Sen. Orrin G. Hatch (R-UT) - 202-224-5251
    Sen. Jon L. Kyl (R-AZ) - 202-224-4521

    Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-MA) - 202-224-4543
    Sen. Herbert H. Kohl (D-WI) - 202-224-5653
    Sen. Patrick J. Leahy (D-VT) - 202-224-4242

    Sen. Charles E. Schumer (D-NY) - 202-224-6542
    Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) - 202-224-4124
    Sen. Arlen Specter (R-PA) - 202-224-4254

This .pdf file by NumbersUSA has all the dirt on the Specter bill.

Even though the plan by Sen. Specter (R-PA) would amnesty 10 million or more illegal aliens, double permanent immigration greencards, and create an unlimited foreign guestworker program, Senate Democrats apparently believe even that isn’t radical enough.

Senate sources tell us that Sen. Kennedy (D-MA) intends to offer the McCain amnesty as a substitute for Specter’s bill at the very beginning of Judiciary Committee deliberations on Thursday.

At the moment, Kennedy has the votes to win because three of the Republicans on the committee are as open borders as Kennedy and McCain:

Sen. DeWine (R-OH)
Sen. Graham (R-SC)
Sen. Brownback (R-KS)

One Democrat on the committee may be willing to stand up for American workers, the U.S. environment and Americans’ right to some relief from constantly increasing congestion:

Sen. Feinstein (D-CA)

McCain’s amnesty would give illegal aliens U.S. citizenship while Specter’s would just give them indefinite right to stay and work here without citizenship.

As you are calling Members of the Judiciary Committee, remember that the following are up for re-election this year:

Hatch (R-UT)
Kyl (R-AZ)
DeWine (R-OH)
Kennedy (D-MA)
Kohl (D-WI)
Feinstein (D-CA)

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We must let these Senators know that the Specter bill is so outrageous that we can’t imagine any Senator even giving it a second glance. It should be dismissed outright, and Specter be asked to come back later with a serious bill.

Below are all the Members of the Senate Judiciary Committee. Please concentrate on calling their DC offices, but you may also want to call home office numbers that are local for you.

1st Priority: Call Senators from your home state or from states for which you can claim a special relationship.

2nd Priority: Call Senators with whom you otherwise share a great connection based on political ideology, ethnicity, religion, alma mater, or agreement on some other issue. Start your phone call by stressing some agreement or congenial identity and then express your concern about what the Senator may do with the Specter bill.

Remember, you will not be talking to the Senator or to a top staffer. Just ask for the Senator’s Judiciary or immigration staffer. If the receptionist asks to take your comment, go ahead and give it.

Your point of calling Monday is for the staffers to tell their bosses that the public knows about the Specter plan and is outraged.

The NumbersUSA Capitol Hill Team members were at their desks all weekend analyzing the hundreds of pages of the bill to get a clear assessment of what it would do. We will provide the results when they are finished sometime tomorrow.

It appears that the Specter bill that the Judiciary Committee will begin debating on Thursday (and which Majority Leader Frist has said may come to the Senate floor for a final vote on March 27) would:

* Grant amnesty to nearly all the 12-20 million illegal aliens in the country

* Open up every job in America to competition from unlimited numbers of foreign guest workers each year.

* Eliminate math and science professions as jobs for American students to pursue because it provides for an unlimited number of foreign math and science students to permanently take U.S. jobs each year.

* Almost double the numbers of foreign workers and their families who get permanent residency each year, adding nearly a million a year to our already over-congested communities.

Those are preliminary readings of the bill. Be sure to look for our final analysis later Monday at the NumbersUSA website.


    Sen. Sessions, Jeff
    Washington, DC 20510

    341 Federal Building,
    Birmingham, AL 35203

    41 West I-65 Service Road,
    North Mobile, AL 36608

    Huntsville, AL 35801

    7550 Halcyon Summit Drive,
    Montgomery, AL 36117


    Sen. Kyl, Jon
    Washington, DC 20510

    7315 North Oracle - Suite 220,
    Tucson, AZ 85704

    2200 East Camelback Road - Suite 120,
    Phoenix, AZ 85016


    Sen. Feinstein, Dianne
    United States Senate,
    Washington, DC 20510

    11111 San Monica Blvd. - Suite 915,
    Los Angeles, CA 90025

    2500 Tulare Street,
    Fresno, AL 93721

    750 B Street - Suite 1030,
    San Diego, CA 92101


    Sen. Biden, Joseph
    Washington, DC 20510

    24 NW Front St.,
    Milford, DE 19963

    1105 N. Market St.,
    Wilmington, DE 19801


    Sen. Durbin, Richard
    Washington, DC 20510

    Mercantile Bank Building,
    Marion, IL 62959

    Henson Robinsion House,
    Springfield, IL 62703

    Kluczynski Federal Building,
    Chicago, IL 60604


    Sen. Grassley, Charles
    Washington, DC 20510

    116 Federal Building,
    Davenport, IA 52801

    721 Federal Building,
    Des Moines, IA 50309

    206 Federal Building,
    Cedar Rapids, IA 52401

    210 Waterloo Building,
    Waterloo, IA 50701

    307 Federal Building,
    Council Bluffs, IA 51501

    103 Federal Courthouse Building,
    Sioux City, IA 51101


    Sen. Brownback, Sam
    Washington, DC 20510

    21001-C N. Broadway,
    Pittsburgh, KS 66762

    225 N. Market - Suite 120,
    Wichita, KS 67202

    11111 West 95th - Suite 245,
    Overland Park, KS 66214

    116 East Chestnut - Suite 104B,
    Garden City, KS 67846

    612 S. Kansas Ave.,
    Topeka, KS 66603


    Sen. Kennedy, Edward
    Washington, DC 20510

    John F. Kennedy Federal Building,
    Boston, MA 02203

    New York

    Sen. Schumer, Charles
    Washington, DC 20510

    100 State Street,
    Rochester, NY 14614

    PO Box A,
    Red Hook, NY 12571

    100 S. Clinton St.,
    Syracuse, NY 13261

    145 Pine Lawn Road,
    Melville, NY 11747

    15 Henry Street,
    Binghamton, NY 13901

    Leo O’Brien Bldg.,
    Albany, NY 12207

    757 Third Ave.,
    New York, NY 10017

    28 Church Street,
    Buffalo, NY 14202


    Sen. DeWine, Mike
    Washington, DC 20510

    105 East 4th Street - Room 1515,
    Cincinnati, OH 45202

    100 West Main Street,
    Xenia, OH 45385

    420 Madison Avenue - Room 1225,
    Toledo, OH 43604

    121 Putnam Street,
    Marietta, OH 45750

    600 East Superior Avenue - Suite 2450,
    Cleveland, OH 44114

    37 West Broad Street - Room 970,
    Columbus, OH 43215


    Sen. Coburn, Tom
    U.S. Senate,
    Washington, DC 20515


    Sen. Specter, Arlen
    Washington, DC 20510

    Federal Building,
    Erie, PA 16501

    7 N. Wilkes Barre Blvd.,
    Wilkes-Barre, PA 18702

    310 Spruce Street,
    Scranton, PA 18503

    Federal Building,
    Harrisburg, PA 17101

    Royal Enterprise Tower,
    Pittsburgh, PA 15219

    600 Arch Street - Suite 9400,
    Philadelphia, PA 19106

    Suite 3814 Federal Office Bldg.,
    Allentown, PA 18101

    South Carolina

    Sen. Graham, Lindsey
    SR - 290,
    Washington, DC 20510

    530 Johnnie Dodd Blvd.,
    Mount Pleasant, SC 29464

    101 East Washington Street, Suite 220,
    Greenville, SC 29601


    Sen. Cornyn, John
    SH - 517,
    Washington, DC 20510

    5005 LBJ Freeway,
    Dallas, TX 75244

    3405 22nd St.,
    Lubbock, TX 79410

    600 Navarro,
    San Antonio, TX 78205

    221 West 6th Street,
    Austin, TX 78701

    100 East Ferguson Street,
    Tyler, TX 75702

    222 East Van Buren,
    Harlingen, TX 78550

    5300 Memorial Drive,
    Houston, TX 77007


    Sen. Hatch, Orrin
    Washington, DC 20510

    197 East Tabernacle - Room 2,
    St. George, UT 84770

    Federal Building,
    Salt Lake City, UT 84138

    51 South University Avenue - Suite 320,
    Provo, UT 84606

    2390 West Highway 56 - P. O. Box 99,
    Cedar City, UT 84720

    Federal Building,
    Ogden, UT 84401


    Sen. Leahy, Patrick
    Washington, DC 20510

    Federal Building,
    Montpelier, VT 05602

    Courthouse Plaza,
    Burlington, VT 05401


    Sen. Feingold, Russell
    SH 506,
    Washington, DC 20510

    8383 Greenway Boulevard,
    Middleton, WI 53562

    1640 Main Street,
    Green Bay, WI 54302

    425 State Street - Room 225,
    LaCrosse, WI 54603

    317 First Street - Room 107,
    Wausau, WI 54401

    517 East Wisconsin Avenue,
    Milwaukee, WI 53202

    Sen. Kohl, Herb
    Washington, DC 20510

    425 State Street - Suite 202,
    LaCrosse, WI 54601

    14 West Muffin Street - Suite 312,
    Madison, WI 53703

    402 Graham Avenue - Suite 206,
    Eau Claire, WI 54701

    4321 West College Ave.,
    Appleton, WI 54914

    310 West Wisconsin Avenue - Suite 950,
    Milwaukee, WI 53203

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LA Times

Eight Latino laborers without proof of legal U.S. residency were arrested Friday morning in front of the Home Depot in Orange and taken to an immigration checkpoint, from which they could be deported.

Orange police said the men were soliciting work outside the store and were cited for violating a city law that prohibits it.

A police spokesman said the arrests were made at the request of Home Depot and its customers. Company spokeswoman Kathryn Gallagher said store officials did not call police and were unaware that arrests were to happen.

The arrests drew applause from opponents of illegal immigration and raised concerns among immigrant advocates.

Both groups, however, agreed that the arrests were uncommon, despite the large number of day laborers who solicit work at Home Depot stores and elsewhere throughout Southern California.

“It is unusual, but I think it’s wonderful. These people are criminals in violation of federal immigration law,” said Barbara Coe of Huntington Beach, chairwoman of the California Coalition for Immigration Reform.

The arrests alarmed immigrant activists, including Nativo Lopez of Santa Ana, national president of the immigrant advocacy organization Hermandad Mexicana, who wants to work to overturn the local law.

Lopez said he believed that police violated the workers’ due-process rights because the workers did not have a chance to challenge what could have been an improper arrest.

Cities with similar laws have faced legal challenges. In May, a federal judge struck down a Glendale law that barred day laborers from soliciting work at curbsides, arguing that the law violated the workers’ free speech rights.

Orange Councilman Steven F. Ambriz said he was unaware that police were targeting the workers, and said he would request a report from the Police Department.

Eight of nine men arrested did not have proper identification and were taken to a Border Patrol checkpoint in Dana Point, said Orange Police Sgt. Fred Lopez.

Another man who did have identification was cited and released.

The citation carries a fine that must be determined in Orange County Superior Court, said the sergeant.

“These are not immigration sweeps,” said Fred Lopez. “We are arresting people who are violating our laws.” He said the solicitors had violated city code, and police chose to enforce the law Friday because workers were soliciting work on property where signs in English and Spanish prohibiting it have long been posted.

The Home Depot is in an area of the city in which the code prohibits soliciting work during certain hours on public or private property from a person in a vehicle.

Leo Donati, 31, of Orange was arrested and released because he had an identification card, he said later. He said that about 7:30 a.m. Friday, a motorist in a van asked him and others if they were looking for work. When they approached, police arrived in a second van.

“There are people out there all the time,” he said.

“Nothing like this has ever happened.”

Comments 9 Comments »

Okay, I’m almost not sure if I should laugh or cry at this one. There are thousands of wanted illegal alien felons on the loose in the United States, and thousands attempting to cross the border every day, and tons of cocaine and methamphetamine crosses the border from Mexico and ICE has been investigating the smuggling of DINOSAUR EGGS AND PINECONES?

TUCSON â?? Acting on a lead received through Interpol, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents executed a seizure warrant at the Tucson Gem, Mineral, and Fossil Showcase earlier this month, seizing nearly eight tons of rare fossils, including prehistoric pinecones and dinosaur eggs.

ICE obtained the seizure warrant after receiving information that a vendor at one of the nationâ??s largest gem and mineral shows was potentially selling fossils illegally smuggled out of Argentina. ICE agents conducted undercover surveillance and obtained digital images of the suspicious specimens. After examining the images and conferring with representatives of the Argentinean Paleontological Society, authorities at Interpol advised ICE that the fossils have significant scientific value and it was â??highly probableâ? they are of Argentinean origin.

Thanks for the link Contessa!

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Bellingham Herald

The Minuteman Civil Defense Corps plan to return Whatcom Countyâ??s northern border with Canada this weekend.

About 12 to 15 volunteers will man points between Blaine and Sumas beginning Saturday morning, said Tom Williams, a Deming resident who is the chapter leader of the Washington Minuteman Detachment.

He said volunteers will prepare for a coming monthlong watch in April, in concert with other Minutemen across the country.

This would be the sixth border watch for the group in Whatcom County.

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Bwa! Ha! Ha! Ha!

A high-ranking official with Mexico’s National Human Rights Commission was forced to cancel a talk at the University of Arizona today after several Tucsonans who favor a crackdown on illegal immigration became disruptive because he was speaking in Spanish.

Mauricio Farah, a national inspector for the Mexican commission, walked out of a packed room at the University Services Annex after some audience members demanded an interpreter or that he discuss the scheduled topic, â??Migration, Shared Responsibility,â? in English.

When their demands were not met, the group became loudly disruptive, accusing Farah and other Mexican officials of being disrespectful for speaking Spanish in a public meeting.

UA Police were called to the scene to restore order.

Farahâ??s visit comes less than a month after the commission cancelled an agreement with Tucson’s Humane Borders to publish thousands of maps showing highways, rescue beacons and water tanks in the Arizona desert.

The maps, which sparked U.S. criticism, were to be distributed in Mexico.

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Call Senate Judiciary Chairman Arlen Specter’s office (202) 224-4254 and let him know what you think of his war on the American worker.

Senator Arlen Specter (R-PA) has put forward a 305 page bill for next week’s Judiciary Committee consideration that can only be described as a nightmare for American workers and a dream come true for the Chamber of Commerce.

If you are employed in any job in virtually any industry and think your job is secure, think again. The number of guest workers permitted in this bill is unlimited and available to every sector of the U.S. economy. No job will be spared unfair competition from cheap foreign workers and employers chomping at the bit to reduce labor costs.

Guest workers

Unlimited in number annually and available to all economic sectors
Translation-Say good bye to the middle class.

Family members/dependents may accompany new guest workers.
Translation-Even more competition for your jobs and greater likelihood that they will never return to their home country.

Guest worker visas for three years and renewable once for a total of six years. These workers are then required to return home for one year before reapplying for another six years.
Translation - if they were working illegally before, why would they not stay and revert to illegal status?

Protections for American workers are no stronger than an employer’s promise that he first looked for American workers.
Translation-No protections for U.S. workers.

Legal immigration

New visa created for students seeking advanced science degrees with a fast track to legal permanent residency status.

Exempts aliens with advanced degrees from the annual numerical cap.

Exempts relatives of employment-based visas from the annual cap.

Professional workers

Increases the H-1B high tech guest worker program from 65,000 to 115,000 annually, a 71 percent increase and exempts all advanced degree holders from the annual cap.
Translation-Tell your children to forget about pursuing advanced science degrees, because those jobs will be closed to all but cheap foreign workers.

FAIR will provide a complete bill analysis very soon.

Comments 2 Comments »


Most Charlotteans probably remember Min Chang, the 18-year-old UNCC freshman killed by an illegal immigrant driving the wrong way on I-485 in November.

There was genuine outrage in this community over a promising life cut short, and barbs were traded among some illegal immigration critics and pro-Latino advocates. But aside from police and a few district attorneys, no one took much notice of the fate of Tony Grier, 49, an African American security guard who was killed in March while walking along Sharon Amity Road. Geronimo Leocadio Villa-Gomez had a blood-alcohol level of .20 when he ran off the road and plowed into Grier, who died at the scene. Officials with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) say Villa-Gomez was in this country illegally.

In May, Shawn Michael Robinson, a 23-year-old auto mechanic who’d moved to Charlotte from Alaska was killed while riding his bike on East Peterson Street. Driver Mauro Aristides Dominguez Campos, who police reports say was intoxicated, hit Robinson from behind. The impact was so great that Robinson’s body was thrown 70 feet. Campos fled the scene. ICE says Campos, too, was in the country illegally.

So were the drunk drivers who killed 21-year-old Jasmine Lawrence and Roberto Casillas, 47. Frank “Buddy” Cline, 33, was killed on his way to his job as a third-shift conductor for Norfolk Southern Railroad when another illegal drunk driver crossed a median on North Tryon Street and crashed into him head-on. Cline left behind a 2-year-old son and a wife who was eight months pregnant with a daughter he never got to see.

A lot of people — including me, until recently — assumed most of the drunk drivers killing people on the county’s roads were American citizens whose cases never get the media attention showered upon Jorge Hernandez Soto, the driver responsible for Chang’s death. As it turns out, that assumption is wrong.

At the moment, 11 drunk-driving cases that resulted in the death of another person are pending in our court system. In six of those cases, the drivers are in this country illegally.

Mecklenburg County Assistant District Attorney Marsha Goodenow says her office prosecuted every drunk driver who killed someone during that period. None had charges against them dismissed, which means the DA’s office isn’t singling out illegal immigrants for prosecution.

At least three of the six men have been charged with drunk driving at least once before. I say “at least” because, as a group, the six men have about two dozen aliases. While the jail system is supposed to assign just one prisoner identification number (PID) to each person, one of the men, Noel Moreno, has two prisoner identification numbers and is known to the county criminal justice system as two different people, both of whom have drunk driving charges. Two of the men had North Carolina driver’s licenses.

The hardest thing for me to get past in cases like these is that if our politicians had enforced our immigration laws, the victims in these cases, who died horrible deaths, would likely still be alive.

At the point in my research when I got so mad I couldn’t see straight, I ran across 26-year-old Geronimo Villa-Gomez’s mug shot, taken in the hours after he ran over and killed Grier. On Villa-Gomez’s face is one of the most perfectly captured expressions of human anguish and devastation I’ve ever seen, and it stopped me cold. In a sense, he’s a victim here, too. Like every other illegal alien who has breached our borders, his first act upon stepping foot in our country was to break our immigration laws. Working here meant breaking more of them. Why should we expect Villa-Gomez, who is now charged with second-degree murder, to be able to distinguish the laws we’re serious about (drunk driving) from the ones we aren’t (being in the country illegally)?

If our national politicians plan to continue pretending these people don’t live in our country, then they need to set up information kiosks near the border that spit out pamphlets delineating which laws we intend to enforce and why. The current plan just isn’t working.

In the meantime, we clearly can’t leave it to a handful of crusaders in Mecklenburg’s Latino community to educate these drivers, because at the current rate, within a decade, inexperienced illegal drivers will get drunk and kill roughly 70 people in this county.

It’s time for a communitywide effort that begins with acknowledging there’s a problem and that these drivers aren’t going away.

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Tom Tancredo, R-Colo., on Thursday challenged a guest-worker program promoted by Sen. John McCain and offered to debate the Arizona Republican on immigration policy.

The challenge came as McCain prepared for a national tour to promote the guest-worker proposal. A spokeswoman for McCain was not immediately available to comment.

McCain and co-sponsor Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., have said their proposal would help employers and secure the borders by better regulating immigration. It also would help illegal workers earn legal status.

The Senate is expected to consider their bill and others this spring.

Last December, Tancredo helped pass legislation to tighten border security and prevent illegal immigrants from getting jobs.

“We could present our two views of immigration reform so the American people could compare our approaches side-by-side,” Tancredo wrote to McCain.

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