Thursday, May 06, 2010

What part of non sequitur do you not understand?

In reference to immigration, I keep seeing and hearing the phrase "what part of illegal do you (insert derogatory epithet here) not understand?" given as the beginning and ending of any debate.

I guess this is supposed to mean that fact that something is illegal means we should have zero tolerance for it?


Speeding is illegal but.....
Driving while texting is illegal but....
Not reporting all tips or gifts on your income tax is illegal but.....
Making sales in cash and not reporting the income is illegal but....
Smoking marijuana is illegal but......

We could literally list scores of things that are clearly illegal but cause most people little or no consternation. There are also tons of things that are illegal but carry inconsequential penalties.

Hey, that is immigration reform I could really get behind.

Fine all illegals $5.

There, two problems solved.


John Thacker said...

Also "not reporting exactly how much you spent on Internet purchases on your state income tax (for use tax) is illegal but..."

John Thacker said...

Making sales in cash and not reporting the income is illegal but....

but the Health Care Bill is making small businesses file a ton more 1099s in an effort to get people to report it.

David said...

Wasn't that Nevada's response to the federal 55 mph speed limit?

Anonymous said...

End the redistribution of wealth. Then let all the immigrants that want to come here.

Yes, the two are related.


Anonymous said...

Anonymous 939, you'd be surprised. I'd guess that most of the folks here illegally want to work and make a better life for themselves.

Angus said...

I must confess that the often repeated notion that immigrants are coming here suck up welfare benefits is risible to me.

They are, in general, a hard-working lot.

I am not sure that is what bri at 9:39 meant though.

Norman said...

I actually made almost the exact same point to my father-in-law during a discussion once. I don't think you can call yourself the "law-and-order" side of the debate unless you apply the principle evenly across all laws. I haven't met someone in the camp yet who is willing to do that.

rusty said...

I did not know that the traffic and tax laws were unenforced in Oklahoma. Cool!

Still I wonder, where does your list of laws that are not be enforced end? public indecency? DUI? larceny? assault? arson? I'd like to know before I actually move there.

John Thacker said...

rusty, I assume that you voluntarily report everything that you buy over the Internet without paying sales tax, in order to pay sales and use tax to your home state? And you never drive even 1 mph over the speed limit?

HBanan said...

I see this debate as meaningless.

If you break the law, you are risking getting caught and facing the consequences.

I speed often and freely. If I get pulled over, I will try and weasel out of a fine by acting innocent & ashamed. If I get fined, I will pay it.

None of this changes my stance against illegal immigration; it explains it.

When people get tired of speeders, they get the city to post more cops in speed traps or set up fancy speed light cameras.

People who break the law are not fiends incarnate, and if they get caught it makes sense for *them* to complain because everyone who gets caught breaking any law usually tries to avoid the consequences. When voters in a state start getting fed up with the amount of illegal immigration, they will either ask for more law enforcement or stricter penalties, or both. You are acting like people treat speeding & immigration so very differently; they don't.

What I don't understand is all the incredible sympathy, protests, and monetary demands for the people who break the law & get caught.

I also think it is absurd to either scorn or to idolize immigrants. The character of American citizens spans the range from bone lazy to hard-working, from greedy to generous, and from stupid to ingenious. There are no doubt many hardworking immigrants and many others who wanted a get-rich-quick scheme in the gold-lined streets of America and resent reality. That story is one that has been going on since people first started coming to this country.

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