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January 31, 2008

Immigration, states

This letter is in reference to “States focusing laws on illegals” (1/26, A-1).

It will be a sad day for Missouri and Kansas if our elected officials pass immigration legislation similar to Oklahoma’s.

Proposed laws would extend local police jurisdiction to the enforcement of federal immigration law. As a social worker in the urban core, I submit that our police force is already over-burdened with municipal law enforcement, and is ill-equipped to handle the complex jurisdiction of Immigration Customs Enforcement.

Proposals would increase penalties for employers hiring undocumented workers and landlords renting to undocumented families. They would also criminalize assisting or transporting undocumented people. Have we lost our minds?

To create a system that would produce unemployed and homeless individuals and families, rather than examine other, more compassionate solutions is an insane suggestion for public policy. It is immoral.

Our reliance on this population of undocumented immigrants is a national economic reality. Every person is a human being, who, regardless of legal status, has a basic right to health care, food, housing and decent employment.

We can’t honestly believe that these people will simply go away if we throw the legislative temper-tantrums demonstrated by our representatives’ latest immigration-reform suggestions.

Vicki Kline
Kansas City



Seems as if there is a strong majority opinion on this matter. It also seemed that way when the "immigration” bill came up. With this strong backing by public opinion why can't we get something done? Of course almost all of the mass media, as typified by The Star, seem to favor illegal immigration by whatever name they call it.


Actually, law enforcement officers are already allowed to enforce immigration law. Its part of federal law:

Excert U.S. Code 8, 1324

§ 1324. Bringing in and harboring certain aliens

(c) * Authority to arrest *
No officer or person shall have authority to make any arrests for a violation of any provision of this section except officers and employees of the Service designated by the Attorney General, either individually or as a member of a class, and "all other officers whose duty it is to enforce criminal laws".

and if that isn't plain enough, the statute goes on to add:

(e) * Outreach program *
The Secretary of Homeland Security, in consultation with the Attorney General and the Secretary of State, as appropriate, shall develop and implement an outreach program to educate the public in the United States and abroad about the penalties for bringing in and harboring aliens in violation of this section.

Police, being part of the public themselves, might seem to qualify for participation in this outreach program.

Rather than depend on my excerpts (the need for brevity) you can read the entire relevant section of the U.S. Code at: U.S. Code Title 8, 1324 or you can use the following link to the Law Library at Cornell University:



Off topic, but since there weren't any smoking ban letters today, this is as good a place as any.


It may seem a little crazy right now, but the theft of our liberties will overtake us in small steps, followed shortly by our national sovereignty.


“It is pathetic to me that states and local law enforcment have to do the Federal Governments job.” - wellpaidscientist

Agree and apparently Vicki Kline is getting upset because the job is going to get done anyway.


It is pathetic to me that states and local law enforcment have to do the Federal Governments job.


Kate thanks for the research, seeing is indeed believing.


If Ms. Kline didn’t tell us her occupation, would anyone be unable to guess it?

“We can’t honestly believe that these people will simply go away if we throw the legislative temper-tantrums demonstrated by our representatives’ latest immigration-reform suggestions.”

Seeing is believing. Honestly.

In Oklahoma: “Since 1804 was approved in Oklahoma, 15,000-25,000 illegal immigrants have left Tulsa County, the Greater Tulsa Hispanic Chamber of Commerce says. Executive director Francisco Trevi bases the estimate on school enrollment, church attendance and reports from bus companies with service to Mexico.”

"People are leaving to Mexico or Canada or other states," says Jim Garcia, manager of Tulsa's El Mercadito, a Hispanic grocery. He says sales have fallen 40% since Nov. 1. "A lot of people are going to Missouri or Arkansas because they think it's safer." http://www.usatoday.com/printedition/news/20080110/1a_cover09.art.htm?loc=interstitialskip

And in Arizona: “There's no way to know how many illegal immigrants are leaving Arizona, especially now with many returning home for normal holidays visits. But economists, immigration lawyers and people who work in the immigrant community agree it's happening.”

“When immigrants don't have jobs, they don't stick around, said Dawn McLaren, a research economist at Arizona State University who specializes in illegal immigration.” http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2007-12-22-immigration-leaving_N.htm


Vicky, are you suggesting that local police only enforce local laws? So it would be local police enforce only local ordinances. Sheriffs enforce only county laws. HP only enforce State laws. Everything else is left to the feds. Doesn't sound like a good idea to me.

The feds have failed to act. Their owners won't allow it. So the States are acting. Now the feds are going to bend every effort to prevent the States from enforcing their laws. Can't have a "patch work" you know.

Once again the entire debate is a red herring. AS long as there is no meaningful immigration reform, employers can continue getting cheap labor with no rights. As soon as their is reform, then how many immigrants per year are necessary to keep wages down MUST be openly discussed.

That, in the end, is the real issue.

Dr Coles

Illegal Aliens and Immigration is NOT the same thing. Immigrant is a legal status granted by a sovereign country. We have to many folks who do not know and are ignorant or outright deceivers, confusing illegal alien workers calling them illegal immigrants with immigrants. Criminals did NOT build America; Citizens and LEGAL immigrants built it. 80% of the American people want an end to anarchy! This is NOT a Democrat, Republican, Independent issue. It's an American Issue.

Illegal aliens are criminals, those who hire them are criminals and those who aid-and-abet them are criminals.

Illegal aliens in America have NO rights. We are required by law to arrest and prosecute, deport them. (Title 8 U.S. Code) To report illegal aliens call the DHS National Hotline 1 866 DHS 2ICE. (1-866-347-2523)

No, matter your political party affiliation, and setting aside your thoughts on issues. We all need to remember what it is to be an American Citizen. We need to make sure our elected representatives obey their Oath of Office and keep their Oath of Allegiance. See http://tinyurl.com/2znnvl Know whom you are voting for.


Is Vicki Kline an alias for Barbara Shelley? I have read anything like this since Shelley compared illegal aliens to the offense of jaywalking. I have a friend in Oklahoma who says the illegals are running and flying to get out of Oklahoma. At lease one state has taken some action, one can only hope the other 48 do as well; or in the alternative our Federal government finally shows some courage and enforces the borders and gets rid of the illegal aliens.


"To create a system that would produce unemployed and homeless individuals and families, rather than examine other, more compassionate solutions is an insane suggestion for public policy. It is immoral."

It seems to me like the root cause of the mass unemployment and homelessness Vicki references would be the illegal act itself, not the law that applies consequense to action.

I'm with Sol, if I have a chance I think I'll attend the MM open meeting tonight to hear their platform in their own words.

Joe Barone

I'm glad that it's finally beginning to occur to a few, at least, that a lot of this immigration falderol is an attack on U.S. businesses and employers.


Good morning friends,

The other day when I said I'd be at the Obama rally is was speaking metaphorically. I do intend to go, pay the $10 and attend the MM Q&A and view the movie titled "the Border". Sounds like an interesting evening at the Uptown.


Complexed jurisdiction? You are either legal or illegal. Simple as that.
Like being pergnant, you either are or not.
Of course Vicki being a socialist worker, it is no wonder she believes people are entitled to everything for free, even when they are illegal.
Legal status does matter Vicki.
Families and Americans just like me end up paying for your "compassion".
Take from others to give to those that have not earned it.
What a grand idea, can you say SOCIALISM!
Speaking of over burdened, our HHS should be cut by 75%. A real simple fix. You are either disabled or not, if not get a job and learn to live on what you earn. Don;t like what you earn? Then get a better job. Can't? Who's fault is that?


How crazy can it get Vicki. Penalizing employers and others who knowingly aide criminals!(oops UNDOCUMENTED IMMIGRANTS) What is the world coming to!
I am amazed at people like Vicki who change a word (illegal to undocumented) and think that makes it OK.

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