Onesie!

onesie

Nothing has ever brought me more joy and fear as receiving this as a gift from my girlfriend (at the time, later to be my wife). My first thought was how the hell am I ever going to fit into that and what weird kinky things is she into but when she started to rub her belly and she gave me the note that was underneath the onesie, reality hit like the house on the witch in the Wizard of Oz. I was no longer in Kansas and toto would be born 8 and half months later and weigh over 7 pounds and be 26 inches long.

Onesie!

onesie

Nothing has ever brought me more joy and fear as receiving this as a gift from my girlfriend (at the time, later to be my wife). My first thought was how the hell am I ever going to fit into that and what weird kinky things is she into but when she started to rub her belly and she gave me the note that was underneath the onesie, reality hit like the house on the witch in the Wizard of Oz. I was no longer in Kansas and toto would be born 8 and half months later and weigh over 7 pounds and be 26 inches long.

IMMIGRATION: A TIME HONORED TRADITION

pilgrims

Remember when immigration was not only wanted but needed. The Mayflower arrived in Plymouth Harbor in 1620, after first stopping near today’s Provincetown. According to oral tradition, Plymouth Rock was the site where William Bradford and other Pilgrims first set foot on land. Back then immigration seemed like a right, today it’s looked upon as an infringement of our rights. This aversion to people immigrating is a brand new phenomenon that has taken place in the last 50 years or so. Prior to that, we used to have a big ol’ welcome mat. To reaffirm this thought, ICE, the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency was formed in 2003, just 15 years ago, most likely in response to the Twin Tour attacks. While ICE was mainly used to search for criminal elements they are now being used indiscriminately.

Do we remember why those pilgrims immigrated in the first place and why we had a revolutionary war? It was because of a monarchy that was seen as tyrannical and didn’t offer the right to progress. Now we have other people that live in the same conditions as what was going on in England, France, Germany and other countries around the world that were led by the brute force of a monarchy. They come from countries that are either dictatorships, i.e. Cuba, Venezuela, N. Korea etc., or countries that are overrun (present tense because it’s currently happening) with corruption, violence and crime. These people that are immigrating are trying to escape what the pilgrims were trying to escape those many years ago. To turn a blind eye to their problems is to deny our own past. It is my feeling that these countries, that are so close to our borders, present a threat to our national security. We want to build walls, they’re not going to work by the way, which is like giving a tylenol to cancer, rather then to address the situation with full on chemotherapy. I don’t blame anyone for immigrating, legally or illegally, since there isn’t any new lands to discover or migrate to. Being the biggest, best and strongest super power, we should be a lot more proactive in our approach in solving these matters. Now we have people that say that are country is degrading due to immigration, I wonder if that’s what the Native Americans thought, and call for ICE to both be abolished by one side and to work overtime by the other, another example of a country divided by issues that seem well within the realm of compromise.

I don’t disagree with their use, ICE, and it’s the U.S. Attorney General’s discretion as how they are to be used. You can’t complain about them being used when what they are doing falls within the guidance of the law. By that, I mean, they aren’t out there and just trying to focus on one group of people, in contradiction to current laws and case law i.e. Armstrong v United States, they’re out there enforcing the law no matter who you are. It used to be that they prioritized their case load, that doesn’t seem to be the directive these days, with that, I do disagree. It’s like telling a cop to handle what’s in front of them no matter what else is going on i.e., going after the person that jaywalked that is right in front of him/her instead of responding to a violent act in progress. The reason we prioritize is so we can get the people that will actually do harm instead of the people that jaywalked.  The same goes for immigration, in my opinion. You want the people that pose a greater threat and then when they are taken care of, then you go after the people that are contributing to a civil society, if needed, you know, in your own sweet time. I believe in enforcing the law, but I believe that you have to prioritize.

Final thought on the matter is that, as a society, we can’t think about how the problem affects us, personally, but about fixing the problem itself and maybe why it exists.

Dedicated to my onesy……

 

Immigration, It Isn’t For Everyone.

The Current immigration debate has Americans has us pitting against one another. The fears that our country will be overrun by illegal immigrants and

Immigration

that our society will unravel has many people concerned. The current administration  has taken a hard stance on illegal immigrants. They have chosen stricter enforcement and to treat each instance as an attack on our freedoms. I, respectfully, disagree

with their stance. I understand that there are laws in place and that those laws are meant for the better welfare of our country and that no one, no matter who you are, is above the law. The question I have is, if those laws are meant to justify our societies actions then why are they not being followed as it was designed to do. Illegal immigration, or entering the country without permission is not a felony. In other words, the crime they have committed under 8 USC 1325 is less than driving under the influence. Most cases are handled administratively, unless you committed another crime that is more serious, and hardly any see, well… used to see, the inside of a jail. These people are still citizens, albeit illegal, while they are inside our borders. According to the Supreme Court, our nations highest court, illegal citizens have the same right to due process as anyone here legally. Would you separate a family who committed a misdemeanor and traumatize children for a crime that doesn’t rate more than 6 months in jail? The most likely scenario would be to keep the mother with the children, incarcerate the father, if necessary and have them appear in court or immediate departure for the whole family. In other words, the Justice Department can reason that safety for the children is more important than incarceration for a misdemeanor. Can’t they?

I get taking a hard stance when a caravan of people come to your border and defy your warnings but how harsh does your stance have to be? Of course, this is just my opinion, Immigration 1but I feel that you can house the mothers with the children and separate the dads, if a separation needs to be done. If you look at it, what you did is incarcerate everyone separately, for a crime as dumb as and equal to driving without a license. That is an extreme and hard line to take. Extreme, most fitting this scenario. Maybe we should explore the reason why people immigrate in the first place and why we were tolerant of those that did.

Illegal immigration is usually a financial crime in disguise. People come here to make money and send it home to their families so they can survive. Some people say that we shouldn’t be burdened with their countries inability to provide for their citizens but the truth is that we already have decided to help those countries. We send money to third world countries all the time to try and help. We send resources and we try and stave off dictatorships and promote democracy. That’s what America does. To say that we shouldn’t and that we should let those country’s democracy fail is a big mistake because eventually dictatorships will erode our country. America and and other democracies are aware of what happens when dictatorships, i.e. Cuba, North Korea, Iran, Iraq, Venezuela and some other countries, take hold. It leads to crazy rulers deciding that they want a little more and start invading other countries, i.e. Iraq/Kuwait. Their thirst for power is never quenched and they will always pose a threat. So, illegal immigration from democracies, while not want we want, helps us in that battle, at least little. We can’t provide enough money to other countries to become like us, we can provide a little help, and if illegal immigrants sometimes make it across the border and work in jobs that Americans will not then where is the actual harm in that misdemeanor. I’m not saying to let them in, I’m saying that we should focus on the carp’s or criminal alien requiring prison, or aliens that have violent felonies and are returning or have returned into our country not people that have never done anything and because of someone’s biased views decided to call ICE and have them deported.

This doesn’t mean that we should let them run wild through our borders but that if they do slip through, then let them deliver the pizza, let them serve you your food and drinks, let them help you build your home, let them care for your children, let them make a living to help us help them (because in this country those are unfortunately the only jobs they would be able to pursue with proper paperwork) like we already do and if they screw up, they already know, paycheck is gone, money that you were sending home is gone, and your gone. This is the win win scenario, at least to me. The bible says help thy neighbor and you will be rewarded in heaven, or something like that. I’ve learned the hard way that the Justice Department can choose which case to prosecute and which cases they can choose to defer for later review, I think that choosing to turn the other cheek in matters where it doesn’t harm us is alright, maybe even better than alright, humane. But if we do choose to do that, then we must treat them like we treat each other. We can’t become savages and make demands that are unreasonable, that’s why I don’t believe in sanctuary cities or 100% enforcement of some laws. I believe in a moderation. Those two scenarios don’t quite fit the bill. As an Airman in the Air Force, while working as a Security Police officer, I have given another airman a ride home when he was borderline on the Field Sobriety Test. I knew that they wouldn’t be able to reenlist and that maybe they were drunk but decided that because that being a few hundred yards from home, just the warning would be enough. I would just drive them there and then give them their keys. We’re not robots you know, we can empathize.

While I don’t like extremism of any kind, I believe that sanctuary cities are an extreme reaction to an extreme action. We have to be careful and should start a dialog before extreme becomes the norm, like school shootings. Another thing is, have any of the advocates for immigration tried to consult with AG concerning the separation of families and if they have, did they ask nicely. The AG is not breaking the law, he’s doing it by the book so taking a hard opposite stance is not going to work. You have to ask if he is amnenable to letting the mother’s stay with the children. Since his actions are not wrong you have to present your counterpoint in a way that makes sense and you have to be respectful. In the end, it’s his decision.

 

 

DACA. Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals or Delayed Approach Causing Animosity?

DACA dreamer

I think this conversation needs to be settled. This is why politics has so many people turned off and against each other. In one corner you have politicians that want to exploit an issue that puts people’s life at risk and in the other you have people, to no fault of their own, in a perilous position of being deported to a country that they don’t know, haven’t seen, maybe ever, and wouldn’t have the first clue what to do if they have to leave. It almost seems like a reality show. Survivor. I’m confident that the right thing will happen. After all the stance taking and chest puffing, I am confident, admittedly not as much as I used to be, that the right thing will be done and these individuals that are upstanding young soon to be citizens will get their day and be allowed a path to citizenship. These are hard times for them and I have seen this first hand, heard stories straight out of their mouths and witnessed some atrocities. I’m going to try and walk you through some events these people faced.

Prior to my job as an unrenowned blog splatterer, I used to work for the federal government. One of my jobs was as a Border Patrol Agent. The Border Patrol’s (BP), now known as U.S. Customs and Border Protection, duties were simply to affect arrests on anyone trying to circumvent customs and/or gaining entry into the United States illegally. Border Patrol agentI worked the southern border where California meets with Tijuana, Mexico and I did my job well, I like to think. I caught people from all nationalities like Mexican, Brazilian, Chinese, Cuban, El Salvador, Guatemala, Venezuela, and a host of other countries. I didn’t particularly love my job but I didn’t hate it either. Regardless of all the hoopla, the position is necessary and the people that work for the BP are dedicated good people that put their lives on the line for the security of our country. They work some of the most perilous terrains and remote areas and try to deter the influx of illegal drugs as well as illegal entry. In my four years their I have run into some very good people, not my fellow ex- Agents but people crossing into the U.S..

A story I would like to share happened on the Tijuana Canal where the U.S. border meets the Mexican border. On this particular night I was working Whiskey 3 (W3), a hard X. This means that I was positioned at this location and was not to move, to act as a deterrence from people crossing. I hear a banging on the gate that leads into the canal and people yelling in Spanish. I go over to the gate and their were several people talking to me in Spanish saying that they were being robbed. I told them to back up and head over to the south side and I’ll go check it out. As I opened the gate and stepped into the canal, I asked W4 to keep an eye out on me as I entered the canal, you never know. As I stepped closer to the border, a yellow line that runs north to south, to peak around the fence, I kept telling this group of 5 to keep backing up to the south side, pointing my flashlight at their faces and hands to make sure they weren’t armed. They had a terrified look on their faces, they didn’t want to go. They wanted to stay on the north side. As I approached I kept telling them to back up, “Muevance para atras”, (use google translate), Still terrified, they were begging me to help. I get to where the yellow line separates the two countries and look around the corner and see a big man grabbing another man by the shirt, as he laid on the ground pointing a gun, an old .38 revolver, at him. The man on the ground InkedInkedTJ Canal W 3_LIhad one hand on the ground and the other shielding his face. The big man yelling at him to give him all his money. The actions I took right after that lasted about ten seconds. I pull my Beretta from my holster, tell the people to cross over to the north side and stay out of the way, and to get against the fence, radioed W4 and told him to make sure they didn’t make a break to the north side and radioed dispatch to inform of the situation. They said they would contact the PD on the south side, I told them don’t bother, he’s a Federale, Mexican police officer. I shine my light on him and yelled “Que Haces”. My weapon is now behind my right quad and my flashlight is trained on the Federales face. He looks at me and uses  couple of choice words. My dispatch informs that I am not, for any reason, to cross the border, that I must remain on the north side. I don’t respond, just kept my focus on the Federale and his gun. If he had pointed that weapon at me, I would have been able to defend myself, I was hoping that it wouldn’t come to that. By the Federales slurred speech and wobbling stance, I was guessing he had a little too many Tequilas. The confrontation, that seemed like a lifetime, lasted all of 30 seconds. He kept telling me that it wasn’t any of my business, mixed with some language that his mother would wash his mouth out with soap with. I yelled something, don’t even remember what language it was, could have been Spanish, could have been English, could have been Swahili by the confused look on his face. He finally looks down at the man on the ground, back at me, then pushes the man down with some force and turns, holsters his weapon and leaves. I relayed to my dispatch that incident ws over and that the assailant had left. I was at the right place at the right time, could have easily been the wrong place at the wrong time if Senor Tequila felt like becoming the Mexican Wyatt Earp. The now illegal entrants, 20 feet into the north side, thanked me. I stayed there talking to them for a while. They told me that they had been there for about two weeks and that they have been robbed prior, it wasn’t the first time. They told me about their families in their country and how they left their loved ones because there was no work where they lived. A mixed gang of men and 1 woman. They were risking their lives because they needed to feed their children. I asked him how much did the guy take and he just got the one persons cash. The other ones left as soon as he made his presence known with the .38. I gave them my left over food, half a club sandwich from Denny’s and  fries and told them if he returns to come back to the gate and that I would bring them north until he left. You want to hear another. This one will make you scratch your head.

I was on the swing shift, working overtime on Rover patrol, when scope, an agent working heat sensing cameras, calls out a group of 4 crossing. I get to the location where they were spotted and quickly see them low crawling. When they spot me they get up and run. They run through a group of bushes. Two feet on the other side of these pushes was a Cholla Cactus, I’m guessing. It was the type of cactus that grows in small pieces and when you run into them, parts of them come off. The reason I know that, is because I ran right deadsmack into them. I can’t express how much that hurt and how dumb I felt. It hurt because I was running at full speed, try it, run full speed into a cactus. I felt dumb because, while I looked like a linebacker arresting this cactus for illegal growing, the small group of 4 managed to bank right and avoid the cactus. At this point I yelled out, like a man that ran into a cactus full speed. The group stopped, looked back and came to help me. They told me to stand still. They grabbed my pants and pulled it off my leg, removing the cactus from my leg. They were clear. They had open space and a direct route down the mountain into Imperial Beach. They didn’t do it. They helped me instead. They pulled that cactus off of me like people that had done this on prior occasions. What did I do to thank them. I deported them. Actually, I thanked them for their kindness, shook their hand and them told them that I couldn’t let them go. to their credit, they completely understood. I didn’t take them in and fingerprint them, take their picture and get their details for the system, no, but I told them that right now, straight down the path they were taking, there were already two other agents waiting for them. Redundancy. They looked down and just smiled. I pulled my Bronco up to the fence and told them, hop back over and that where they tried to cross was full of security cameras and sensors. That I wished I could help but……I said, I can’t tell you that about 500 feet west there was a sensor that wasn’t working correctly and that crossing at night was giving us problems. I can’t tell you that. I can’t tell you that it will be fixed by tomorrow morning, nope, I would get in trouble. They climbed on the hood of my truck and hopped over. That was the last time I ever seen them. Don’t know if they are part of DACA, I hope so.

This portrayal of illegal people, (not aliens, martians are aliens, they are people), as some kind of monsters that are here to harm us are completely false, for the most part. Don’tDACA rules mix them up as all being drug runners or mules. They’re not, while admittedly some are, but very few. Most are looking to support their families, exactly what all of us would do if we were in their position. I’m not lobbying for open borders, I don’t think it’s wise to have open borders but I am urging common sense. The DACA program is meant for people that have been here for a while and we didn’t even know they were among us. We didn’t know because they have caused no trouble, have not been arrested, work (they can’t be on any social program) and are productive. These people basically assimilated in the best possible way. The criteria they face forces them to do that.

My blame for the stall of this program is going to be tough to hear. I could be mixed up but it seems that the Democratic criticisms on President Trump has left him unwilling to approach the subject at this time. I’m going to try and be as diplomatic as possible about this situation and refuse to take sides. On one hand you have the President who knows that this is a tool to mend bridges with the left but isn’t quite “feeling the love” so he is deciding to hold off and the other you have the Democratic Caucus who feels that this shouldn’t be a political issue but a humanitarian one and should be passed immediately, without “giving the love”. In the middle you have innocent people, innocent in that they were forced to migrate as children, that are hoping the differences can be resolved. For the President, having people, that already here and assimilated, working and paying taxes is the easiest solution to counting them as basically visas delivered through the lottery. He can count them to the quota that the government gives out each year and, bonus, they are proven good people that are already paying taxes. From a business point of view, and the President is a businessman, not so much a politician but that’s the platform he ran on, that is a huge win. For the left, if they can find a way to reconcile their differences somehow, they get their legislative win and more importantly they helped those people that they were trying to help. It really is a DACA Trumpwin-win situation if both sides can find something positive to say about each other. Everyone in government feels like this the right thing to do. Please don’t let petty differences get in the way of what can be a monumental moment of solidarity. We are the world’s leaders in front of the cameras, meaning everyone watches our every step. Let us show them what we are capable of.

You want to hear something ironic, I ended leaving the BP into another position within the government, met a wonderful woman who happened to be illegal, married her, had a child and had to leave my job because I lied about where I met her. True story. The whole thing, not just the ending.

This story, while written with good intentions, is poorly written and reads a little rough. Doesn’t really captivate the reader the way I wanted to, I got bored trying to edit it. To my credit though, I did manage to introduce the word hoopla into the story. There’s that, I guess.

 

Illegal Immigration and Business

Illegal immigration has been a problem for this country since some pesky Europeans decided in 1492 that they were fed up with life and were going to sail off the end of the world. Galileo told them that they were wrong, I think his exacBorn-in-East-LAt words were “you’re wrong”, don’t quote me, I wasn’t there, for that you are going to have to ask Bernie Sanders, you get it, because he’s old, but still my first choice for Commander and Chief, even with his mid-afternoon naps. Galileo specifically said that the world was round but Columbus was so depressed due to Marco Polo’s discovery of noodles in China that he  headed west. Now, if you are saying to yourself that all these people were in different time periods, I say I’m a blog not CNN or FOX News, which means I probably have more accurate news. Now let’s fast forward to the present day.

Illegal Immigration in the present day is completely different from the swashbuckling days of yesteryear, wow, that sentence is too funny. Illegals no longer possess the names Smith, Achterberg, Sanchez (Spain), Bartlett or Hancock. they now are made mostly of Gutierrez, Sanchez (Mexico), Bedoya, and Flores. Most of our illegal immigrants come from Central and South America. According to the Department of Homeland Security, the estimates are 11.4 million unauthorized immigrants living in the United States, down from 11.5 million in 2011. Other sources put the number higher and lower, i.e. the GOP debate says up to 30 million and the DNC debate says what illegal immigrants. The top countries of origin are Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and the Phillipines. You know what these countries have in common with us, they are all

images (1)
Trump’s New Wall

democracies. They have Presidents and Legislations similar to ours. The follow our model of government to some point. Most are considered Flawed Democracies, meaning that their civil rights records are not up to par or, like Venezuela used to do, they would forget to add the opponents name on the ballot, oops, mi culpa. Venezuela aside, most countries try to hold fair elections. So what’s my point? I am wondering why our screwed up neighbors to the south send us so many of their wonderful people to visit us. Most illegal immigrants that I spoke with say the same thing, jobs, money, needing to eat, to visit Niagara Falls, the last one was pretty uncommon. They don’t have businesses in Central America. But how can that be? All my sneakers are made there, except for my New Balances which are mostly made in the U.S.A. So I look at my tags on my sneakers, this time with my glasses on and I see A-N-I-H-C. That spells Anihc? Haha, I have the tag upside down, C-H-I-N-A, That spells China, really it does. I was wondering why companies that were mostly innovated in the U.S.A. have their factories in an Authoritarian Regime? Aren’t we trying to stop the growth of such states and  flourish the growth of Democracies similar to ours, some of who are located on our southern border?

As a whole the European Union, made up of democratic governments, has the best GDP, Gross Domestic Product of any country conglomerate in the world. Singularly, as a single country and not a bunch of countries getting together to fudge the numbers while they play poker,  the U.S.A. is number one. Number two, and growing fast, is communist China, thanks to businesses that prefer making money over… I guess over not making that much money? Ok, reportedly the cost of doing business in China is a quarter of the cost of doing business in the U.S.A. That does not bode well for us in trying to retain businesses here. We all heard the argument of corporate greed and what not, right. I see the same old pictures of the same people picketing the big businesses on Wall Street and the only thing that changes is that the picketers get older while the guy walking to his office gets out out of a newer Mercedes. They get older, the Mercedes get younger. But this isn’t about some crazy picketer who is picketing the Cigarette companies in front of the Bank companies. No, this is a story of why aren’t we redirecting these companies to Central America, our neighbors that keep forgetting to put their opponents on the ballot (Just Venezuela)?

Our problem from the south is that people are coming to our country to images (2)find jobs and make ends meat. Also the drug corridor and to boot the increasing influence of China, which is not located on our southern border. If we were to follow a model similar to that of the European Union, I mean we don’t have to become a Union, we can just live together until we feel like making that leap, we can fix those problems, I think. If our politicians were to start making deals with big business and the leaders of the Central American countries and try and move the manufacturing jobs to the southern countries, we could solve all of our problems in one clean swoop, ehh sweep, or is it swoop, in one try. Start giving countries tax breaks for doing manufacturing in a democratic regime and start a security anti-authoritarian hacking our government computer tax, we’ll just call it a SAAHOGC Tax, named after the first Chinese hacker, not really. If you give our friends from the Southern Border reason to stay in their beautiful countries then, I’m sure, they would love us for it and actually only come here to visit and spend their hard earned money, like we will train them to do. Once you build jobs, security will follow, meaning that running drugs will be frowned on by big business and therefore, the countries will actually do something about it because the bribes from the drug lords won’t match the money they make from manufacturing jobs.

1930s-illegal-immigration-article_5441
Where’s my two dollars?

And they will have to choose one or the other. Now, we aren’t doing this to be nice, no, it’s strictly self-interest. One analogy would be if I had a nice lawn and my neighbors lawns were full of crabgrass, weeds, (not the kind you smoke), dried out and infected with rodents, then I have the prettiest yard in a crappy neighborhood. Or if my lawn was nice and so were my neighbors, the you have a happy neighborhood. Let the next town over worry about their messy lawns, in this case, let Asia do their own thing and let us fix our neighborhood first. I know that sounds mean and uncaring, but I care, about taking care of us so we then can take care of others, if they need the help. I once dated a flight attendant and I asked her why wouldn’t I put the mask on my kid first and she said because you are the adult and if you pass out your kid isn’t going to be able to help you or anyone. So, we have our oxygen masks on, now let us help the person next to us, then we can help everyone else. We can help make them be profitable and fix these problems and have them help with our GDP by tourism and profit sharing, I mean who doesn’t want to visit Route 66, or you can just build the wall and hope those weeds don’t spread in our yard. I don’t know, maybe we can do both. But undoubtedly, it is up to the politicians to make this happen.