Thursday, July 13, 2006

Hazleton Housecleaning

Just down the road in Hazleton, PA, Mayor Lou Barletta has submitted legislation (that is tonight being voted on by city council) that is making the national spotlight. The proposed ordinance is an attempt to crack down on illegal immigrants living and working within the city limits. The new law would focus on shutting down businesses that hire illegal immigrants, impose $1,000 fines on landlords who rent to them, and make English the city's official language. Some residents, particularly the Latino communities, are very upset about the pending ordinance citing that it is nothing more than discrimination, and have been holding demonstrations outside city hall for the last few days. What every needs to keep in mind is that the key word here is "illegal immigrants", not Hispanic, not Latino, not Chinese, and not Russian. The Mayor's plan is not to single out on any particular group, he's just trying to rid the city of illegal residents ... you know ... illegal, as in not legally here ... as in entering this country against the laws in which we are all bound. Good for you Mayor Lou Barletta, it's great to finally see someone in politics who has a spine and is not afraid to use it.


Blogger Texas Truth said...

It is GREAT to see a city institute this type of policy. Perhaps if the federal government would do the same, we could clean up the United States VERY FAST!!!

I have a post on my blog about this and other issues. Please feel free to stop by and leave your own opinions, no matter whether you agree or disagree. Free discussion of opposing points of view is one of the things what makes this country great.

July 13, 2006 8:52 PM  
Blogger JK said...

I agree 100%, it's about time someone had the nerve to throw PCness out the window and make a stand.

Thanks for reading.

July 13, 2006 9:33 PM  
Blogger Internet Esquire said...

While this may not apply to you, the vast majority of people who complain about illegal immigration are xenophobes who secretly harbor anti-immigrant and anti-minority sentiments. Xenophobes tend to conflate and demonize these three groups, and it seems pretty naive for someone to argue that the Hazleton ordinance will not be used to persecute United States citizens and legal residents who happen to be Latinos.

July 17, 2006 1:26 PM  
Blogger JK said...

There is no doubt that some people do harbor animosity toward foreign people, cultures, and practices for who knows what reason ... bad past experiences, warped parents, maybe got a bad dish of ethnic food somewhere along the line ... who knows.

But in the case of the Hazleton ordinance, singling somebody out because of their ethnic background doesn't seem to be the intent of residents. Sure there are close minded rednecks out there who may act as tipsters and turn in every person who "doesn't look right", but the law was written to only seek out and expel illegal residents. Those who came to this country legally have nothing to fear.

I understand your point, the new law DOES put the burden of proof on the resident, forcing them to show proper ID and papers (sometimes repeatedly) solely because of an anonymous tip from a caller who only has a suspicion about their neighbor.

We'll just have to see how the whole things plays out. I'll keep an eye on the local newspaper and keep you posted.

Thanks for reading.

July 17, 2006 7:57 PM  

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