The Arizona Immigration Law--Good Policy?

Readers share their thoughts.

SHARE

Arizona Rep. Trent Franks argued in favor of the new law because border security is about national security; Illinois Rep. Luis Gutierrez said the immigration problem requires a federal solution. Your feedback:

Rep. Luis Gutierrez has the audacity to state "the border is as safe as it has ever been." Huh? The border is not even as safe as it was in the past. Just look at how the Mexicans are now oozing their killings into this country. When the druggies can have their people let out of prison in their own country to commit multiple murders with the help of the prison officials and guards, then the druggies are in total control of Mexico. The fences are not high enough, deep enough, or harsh enough to do what is really needed. We need Israel-type border fences from the Pacific Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico, with no breaks. Only the whining liberals and Mexican-boosters do not understand the issue. They want to let 11 million people here become instantly legal and to hell with those who are trying to enter the country legally. This country may need immigration, but it does not need illegal immigration. This country must continue to make people leave who are here illegally. We must give preference only to those who are entering this country by the book: those who are entering legally.

GERALD GIBSON Spring, Texas

Well and good to say we need a federal law reforming immigration, but until we have one, let the states do what they think is best. Illegal immigration is against the law. People who break other laws are subject to punishment. Illegal immigrants should be sent back to where they came from.

JACQUELINE JOHNSON Deerfield Beach, Fla.

Just stick to the facts, Rep. Franks. I agree with your position that the Arizona law does not promote racial profiling. What I find offensive is your deleted because it seems redundant/ktainsertion of your personal biases into the mix of facts, as if they were also facts. No one needs you to make statements like "as is so frequently the case, this administration's motivations have everything to do with political posturing." Such statements give you and other news sources a hypocritical appearance, because they are indications of your own political posturing. Just be objective and let readers make up their own minds about what's going on. The law does not promote racial profiling, and the bill has been distorted during translation by opponents. These are the facts; this is all we need. Keep your personal bias to yourself.

RICK DARTEZ Riverside, Calif.

All the fedslowercase seems ok to me because referring to federal official, not the Reserves/kta do is talk about doing something about the immigration problem. Let them get out of the way of Arizona, which is trying to do something about the problem.

SUE PECK Wellsville, Pa.

I believe illegal is illegal. However, there is no mention from the Republicans of the businesses who hire illegals because they can get them to do the work more cheaply. Why not suggest a system to make that more difficult, if not impossible? Children born to immigrants here illegally should not be automatic Americans. Although, from a hospital standpoint, this would prove extremely problematic. Many of these folks do pay taxes, Social Security, etc., and they will never receive benefits. Instead of everyone in power reacting for political reasons, they should put their heads together, let the gray cells work, and come up with a reasonable solution.

MARILYN MUELLER Alpharetta, Ga.

Will we never learn? The lesson of Prohibition was that making illegal something that a lot of people want gives power to a criminal element to provide the prohibited goods and services. The same is true for drugs. Forcing people to stop using drugs by law empowers those who supply the drugs outside of the law and results in criminal activity. Legislating against movement of people across the U.S.-Mexican border is another example. People have been crossing the border ever since there was a border. People moved both ways. When jobs were available in the United States, people came for a few months and went back. They provided needed services in return for money, and both nations benefited. Then, when we got concerned that Mexicans were taking jobs that Americans wanted, mostly in agriculture, we tried to stop them from coming. By making it difficult for them to come, we were also making it difficult for them to go home at the end of the harvest season. So they started bringing their families. The more we tried to stop them from coming, the more they were forced to stay. Now we have people who were brought here as small children and know nothing of their native country. What do we do with them? The immigration and drug problems are intertwined. Both are caused by making unenforceable laws to dictate behavior. Each effort to make the laws harsher will only increase the scope of the problem. We've got to find a better way to handle the drug problem to take the profit out so we do not continue to give power and wealth to drug traffickers. We've got to develop processes that allow people to go back and forth with less hassle so as to stop enriching "coyotes." And we have to try to help Mexico become a place where people want to stay. 

KENNETH VISTE Boise, Idaho  

It's sad that Arizona felt the need to pass this law. The federal laws are more sweeping and should be more than adequate. They are simply not being enforced. At least Arizona can still imprison employers that knowingly hire illegal aliens. This is the best tool we can use to solve the problem. As far as striking down the Arizona law goes, we haven't heard the end of it. Just wait until November.

AUBREY COLLINS Donalds, S.C. 

The Democrats' solution to illegal immigrants is to make them all legal. They refuse to call this amnesty, but that is exactly what it is. Meanwhile, Obama's enforcement policy consists of occasionally forcing companies to fire illegal aliens, but then leaving them in the United States to fend for themselves with no job, which leaves welfare or crime as the obvious alternatives. Liberals call this a humanitarian solution. And the congressional Republicans bluster and do nothing. Arizona has finally stepped forward with a viable plan to act at the state level, and immediately the liberals react using mischaracterizations, lawsuits, protests, and outright lies and intimidation. We do not want a "comprehensive" solution. We want safe, secure borders first. Then we want companies who hire illegal aliens punished in a meaningful fashion. Only those two steps will solve the problem of illegal immigration.

STEPHEN MABIE San Antonio, Texas

I don't understand what is wrong with carrying identity papers. Since I have been old enough to drive, and have a checking account or credit card, I have always had to be ready to show ID if, and when, asked. It was never considered racial profiling even though I am American Indian and have darker skin than some. 

KYMBERLY FISHER Edmond, Okla.

Illegals out. No amnesty. No "anchor babies." I support those that will clean house. If anyone wants to come to this country to work, then grant them working papers for six months, with renewal based on the need for them to continue their jobs. Citizenship, driver's licenses, etc., are definitely not an option. The powers that be revised because though the writer may have been making a play on the expression 'powers that be,' it was confusing./ktaseem unable to feel the pulse of the American public, which is beating furiously over this issue. I am glad some states, like Arizona, are taking the issue to heart and doing something real about it. Bravo.

MIKE STORCH Lowman, Idaho

  • Check out a roundup of editorial cartoons on immigration.
  • See which industries donate the most to Congress.
  • Become a political insider: Subscribe to U.S. News Weekly, our digital magazine.