Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Immigration standards and crime

The juxtaposition of a Red Star report on a Somali writer from Minneapolis who is being charged with sexual assault on a minor, and Governor Pawlenty's proposed immigration reforms should generate discussion on what kind of people are entering to our country, legally or illegally.

While there is nothing in the Red Star story on Mr. Mahamud Abdullahi Isse to indicate he had a prior criminal history before coming to America, does anyone know one way or another? We assume he came legally, as that issue has not been raised, and it is certainly more difficult for people from far away lands like Somalia to enter illicitly, but what criminal background screening took place? Mr. Isse is 70 years old; is it reasonable to assume that the alleged molestation is the first time? Maybe it is, maybe not. But do we really know?

Anti-Strib has been all over the criminal illegal alien story. Why are very bad people allowed to cross our borders? We have enough scumbags of our own without importing the world's refuse.

As with most conservatives, Rambix welcomes orderly and screened legal immigrants to our country. They should be screened of disease and criminal background and mental health. Few would argue with that.

The problem is, too many criminals are entering our borders. If they make their way to a major city, they are shielded by the likes of the Minneapolis City Council and mayor Ryback, and all the socialists who put political correctness and multiculturalism ahead of public safety and common sense.

Governor Pawlenty's proposal attacks many of these holes in our safety net:

• Establish a 10-member Minnesota Illegal Immigration Enforcement Team that would be federally trained and authorized to question, detain and arrest suspected illegal immigrants.

• Override city ordinances in Minneapolis and St. Paul that prohibit police officers from taking action against illegal immigrants unless they are arrested for a separate crime. Pawlenty said the ordinances violate federal law.

• Put into law a 2002 state administrative rule that prominently marks driver’s licenses of legal foreign visitors with their visa expiration dates. That proposal was a central theme of the Republican governor’s 2002 election campaign, but it was blocked by the DFL-controlled Senate. The Department of Public Safety under Gov. Jesse Ventura implemented the license designation by administrative rule and it continues in force.

• Toughen and add penalties for possession, creation and sale of false IDs. Currently, it is not a crime in Minnesota to possess a false ID unless an intent to commit a crime can be proven.

• Require officers to note the citizenship and immigration status of all arrestees at booking.

• Increase felony penalties for human trafficking when minors are exploited to up to 20 years in prison. In addition, a task force would be set up to seek ways to combat human trafficking.

• Add a state fine of as much as $5,000 to a current federal penalty of $11,000 for employers who knowingly hire or recruit illegal immigrants. In addition, state contracts would prohibit the use of illegal immigrants to perform contracted services.

These common sense proposals will be vilified by the one-world crowd, despite the lessons of 9/11.

Many immigrants are very good, hard-working people. We need to filter the inflow to accept the good folks, and exclude the troublemakers.