Saturday, December 11, 2004

Former New York City Police Commissioner Bernard Kerik had to withdraw his name for consideration for Homeland Security Chief due to "nanny problems." The same problems that Zoe Baird and Linda Chavez encountered with employing illegal aliens.

I know I will get a lot of flak for this, but I feel the whole issue is ridiculous. We are losing a good man for this job over someone his wife probably hired and he didn't even know about. Even with Zoe Baird during the Clinton administration I felt that way.

Living in Texas and in a large city near the Mexican border, employing illegal aliens is commonplace. I know what your going to is still illegal. Which is one of the reasons this guest worker program should take affect. A lot of Republicans have a problem with Bush's immigration policies, but I understand where he is coming from. I know we have a security problem now, but Mexicans are not the ones we fear. This guest worker program will at least identify those here and coming in.

Just like Hillary Clinton, I too see mexicans standing on corners in the morning waiting for someone to pick them up to work. Unlike her, I feel they should be given a chance in the guest worker program. These people work hard at jobs that you and I wouldn't do for a high wage. I don't many people who would get up at 5am everyday and wait for a backbreaking job that no one wants. At least with the guest worker program the employer will be alot less likey to take advantage of these workers with extremely low pay and such.

I know there are scores of people out there who think the border control thing is out of control. But just like the middle east situation, you might not like what Bush is doing, but at least he is doing something.

As President Bush said when he introduced this program:

"Reform must begin by confronting a basic fact of life and economics: some of the jobs being generated in America's growing economy are jobs American citizens are not filling. Yet these jobs represent a tremendous opportunity for workers from abroad who want to work and fulfill their duties as a husband or a wife, a son or a daughter.
Their search for a better life is one of the most basic desires of human beings. Many undocumented workers have walked mile after mile, through the heat of the day and the cold of the night. Some have risked their lives in dangerous desert border crossings, or entrusted their lives to the brutal rings of heartless human smugglers. Workers who seek only to earn a living end up in the shadows of American life -- fearful, often abused and exploited. When they are victimized by crime, they are afraid to call the police, or seek recourse in the legal system. They are cut off from their families far away, fearing if they leave our country to visit relatives back home, they might never be able to return to their jobs.

The situation I described is wrong. It is not the American way. Out of common sense and fairness, our laws should allow willing workers to enter our country and fill jobs that Americans have are not filling. We must make our immigration laws more rational, and more humane."

Many of us living near the border have seen what these people go through to have a better life. Just like Cubans, they risk their life to come to this land of opportunity. If your problem is the flooding of the schools and the teaching in Spanish instead of English, and the free healthcare we provide, then lets deal with those issues in a fair way. But allowing Mexicans to work within legal guidelines also allow them to report income, buy insurance, or get jobs that provide healthcare.

President Bush has lived where I have lived. He has seen what I have seen. He has known these people who strive to better their lives. Knowing a problem on a personal level allows one to have a better understanding of it.

When I lived in Dallas I had the same Mexican housekeeper for 11 years. I helped her to become a citizen and she allowed me to understand what life was like for poor immigrants.
One time I remarked on what a great job she did. Almost as if she loved what she did. (something I cannot begin to understand since I HATE cleaning) She told me she did like what she did. She said to me:

"I use to work in the fields picking beans. In Mexico I worked hot long days into the night until my hands bled, sometimes for nothing more than something to eat. I now work in beautiful airconditioned homes. I touch beautiful things and dream of owning something beautiful one day. I learn English better so I can speak to my daughters in English. The day my husband and I bought our first truck was one of the most exciting days of our lives. We owned our very own truck! Cleaning isn't a chore for me, it is a dream job."

Bush has known people like this. He has known those who took advantage of our educational system and became professionals. He knows what America means to them.

This is what drives President Bush. This is at the heart of it all. Disagree all you wish, but you can't argue the sincerity from which it comes.

Finally, we have lost what probably would have been the best Homeland Security Chief we could have asked for.

And that is just a crying shame.