By on November 1, 2007

truk2.jpgThe LA Times reports two California cities are following LA's lead: they're no longer impounding the cars of unlicensed drivers. Scofflaws apprehended in Bell Gardens and Huntington Park can now reclaim their cars immediately– instead of waiting a month and paying hundreds of dollars in fines and fees. Huntington Park City Attorney Francisco Leal said the impound law imposes an "unfair hardship" on the state's illegal immigrants: "There is no way these people can afford that." Immigrant rights advocate Cynthia Anderson-Barker filed a lawsuit against the state and several cities challenging the 30-day impounds. She underlined Leal's point. "The hardship on these families is just phenomenal. When the car is gone and the family loses their transportation, it pushes them further into poverty." State Sen. Gil Cedillo (D-Los Angeles), sponsor of several failed bills to give California's illegal immigrants the right to apply for a driver's license, called for a statewide moratorium on the impounds. Ira Mehlman, spokesman for the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), countered that ending impounds would send a clear signal that California welcomes illegal immigrants. Imagine that.

[Interview with FAIR Media Director Ira Mehlman below]

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48 Comments on “CA Cities Suspend Unlicensed Driver Impounds: Unfair Burden on Illegal Immigrants?...”


  • avatar
    carlisimo

    I have a problem with impounding in general…

  • avatar
    phil

    sure why not, give someone that is breaking our laws a break but someone here legally gets no such benefit. when will this insane behavior stop?

  • avatar

    phil :

    To be fair, the “reformed” law also applies to legal citizens, however inadvertently.

  • avatar
    theSane

    There is no such thing as an undue hardship on someone here illegally.

    I need to give more thought to the impounding of vehicles, though right now I am inclined to support this program as it is represented here.

  • avatar
    yankinwaoz

    The impounding also worked for those who lost their license due to DUI, but insist on driving anyhow.

    Also, in California, you are required to have liability insurance. Whatta wanna bet that an unlicensed driver doesn’t bother with that either. Now you let them back on the road, sans license and insurance.

    Illegal or not. I don’t like the idea of unlicensed and uninsured drivers being let go to drive away.

    How about a better solution? Instead of impounding the car, impound the driver in jail.

  • avatar
    glenn126

    Not only should we impound every car from every illegal alien, but they should be deported (and a bill sent for the costs incurred sent to the nation from which they came) and a barrier put at the border to keep them from coming back illegally. Legally returning within the rules, I don’t have any problem with. My own wife was once a LEGAL alien in the US, and we spent tons of money and time and effort for her to become an American citizen.

    What’s wrong with this nation and it’s leaders that they cannot understand that without border control, you soon no longer have a nation?!

    BTW, the most harsh anti-illegal alien nation in North America?! MEXICO. Don’t try to be an illegal and enter their country, you’ll go to jail. Yet their corrupt leaders call on the US citizens who want better border control as bigots and hateful for DOING WHAT THEY DO THEMSELVES?!

    Why can’t these idiot leaders in Washington and state capitals understand that something like 75% of Americans want border controls?

    Isn’t it getting a little obvious that with 10% of a foreign nation’s citizens here illegally, sending money out of the country and lowering wages paid by their presence, that we need some new blood in our leadership – leaders with spines?

    Before anyone starts trashing my opinions as “bigoted” I’ll come right out and say, I have nothing against any Mexicans, I’ve lived in Colorado and a lot of people there were Mexican descent. I have a real problem with FELONS and law breakers continually being given a break.

  • avatar
    thetopdog

    I have a feeling this discussion is going to get too political for a car site

    The only thing I have to say about the subject is that I can’t stand the thought of somebody hitting my car and not having either insurance or the money to pay me for my damages. I would probably want to kill somebody in that situation

  • avatar
    Raskolnikov

    We should not expect anything less from California.

    Every day I understand more and more why drivers in Oregon proudly display bumper stickers saying “Don’t Californicate Oregon!”

  • avatar

    Why not impound the cars of the people hiring illegal aliens? Or of the people scamming illegals by promising to arrange (relatively) high-paying jobs in exchange for thousands of dollars in upfront fees?

  • avatar

    thetopdog: I have a feeling this discussion is going to get too political for a car site Quick note: when we began blogging, we ran headfirst into the issue of whether or not to avoid stories with an obvious political spin, that could cause rancorous debate. After much soul-searching and consultation with our readers, we decided to continue highlighting any story with an automotive angle, no matter what (e.g. a recent post on Israel's plan to cut off fuel supplies to the Gaza strip.) We also made a mental note to try to avoid flamebait within the post. Personally, I'm delighted to see wide-ranging discussions based on automotive issues. Mind you: the same posting policy applies: no flaming the site, its authors or fellow commentators. If we respect each other, we're good to go.

  • avatar
    Virtual Insanity

    Shouldn’t we be making it harder for them? Not easier?

  • avatar
    dwford

    So the illegal who got caught driving without a license can waltz down to the impound yard, collect his/her car and drive away, still with no license?!

  • avatar
    Ryan Knuckles

    What is the deal with the coasts? NY is talking about giving illegal immigrants a driver’s license and California towns are making it easier for unlicensed driver’s to get back on the road? When did driving get promoted from a priviledge to a basic human right?

  • avatar
    jkross22

    First, we’re not talking about illegal immigrants. Immigrants leave their home and make a new home elsewhere. Many illegals go back and forth, and send money back “home”. We are talking about illegal aliens.

    Giving illegal aliens driver licenses and free passes on auto impoundment exacerbates the issue of uninsured drivers (and sky high insurance rates). Want to fix the big picture problem and not be labeled a racist?

    At the same time we actually enforce our border and employment laws, create a new type of visa similar to the H1B and TN visa currently used. This would be an agricultural worker visa – make the number big enough to satisfy the agricultural industry demand for needed workers.

    That’s it – I think all of us (except for the nut jobs) welcome legal immigrants as nearly all of us are descendants of immigrants.

    Other benefits to this – puts the coyotes out of business, creates another tax base for needed services, dramatically reduce people dying in the desert Southwest trying to get away from Mexico, etc.

    Gil Cedillo and his ilk are frauds – they say they are trying to help, but are actually hurting everyone else through their misguided “helping” of illegals. If Cedillo was really interested in helping resolve this issue, he would recognize he’s helping create demand for more illegals by giving them yet another free lunch en Los Estados Unidos.

  • avatar
    maxo

    This seems like a bad idea, but it would go away if we could simply give them licenses. Getting a driver’s license doesn’t make them a citizen, contrary to everyone’s greatest fears. This issue is too politically charged to elicit rational thinking from the government or the commentators.

  • avatar

    maxo:

    “…it would go away if we could simply give them licenses.”

    Whoa! GIVE them a license? What about requiring illegal aliens to EARN the right to drive through a written and driving test.

    Of course, then you’re getting into the issue of whether or not drivers applying for a license should be required to be able to read English. (In my home state, you can take the test in any number of languages, including Farsi.)

  • avatar
    Virtual Insanity

    RF

    Whoa! GIVE them a license? What about requiring illegal aliens to EARN the right to drive through a written and driving test.

    Better yet, we could require them to earn the right to drive by becoming legal citizens…but that would be infringing on their rights.

    thetopdog
    The only thing I have to say about the subject is that I can’t stand the thought of somebody hitting my car and not having either insurance or the money to pay me for my damages.

    Been there, done that, it blows.

  • avatar
    franz

    This doesn’t need to be such a hot-button issue when viewed somewhat narrowly. If the owner of a vehicle allows the car to be driven without valid registration (which requires valid insurance), then that vehicle should be removed from the roads until the problem is fixed. It simply is not fair that those who maintain insurance should be subjected to the risks of uninsured motorists.

    This problem arises in almost any socioeconomically deprived (i.e., poor) community, and is unfortunate but not immoral or unfair. The ability to get into one’s car and drive somewhere is a form of luxury that most people worldwide (and many here in the U.S.) do not have at their disposal. Such problems can be addressed though greater access to public transportation, all without distinguishing between those who reside here legally and those who do not.

  • avatar
    Cavendel

    I guess when I vacation from Canada down to Califoria, I’ll leave my driver’s license at home. If they stop me, I’ll just claim illegal immigrant status.

    How do you register a car without a driver’s license.

  • avatar
    daro31

    I think I will come to the USA, I am caught in the automotive manufacturing downturn in Southwestern Ontario. More and more big 3 suppliers laying off and shutting down, so the hopes of finding a job like I had for the last 20 years are slim. I am college educated with a solid work history but if I were to cross the border at Detroit and tell them I am staying in the country and looking for a job because there is nothing here in Ontario, I would be sent packing back just as quick. So I think I will get myself a leaky old row boat, wash up on the shore in Cleveland call myself an ilegal immigrant, be given a place to stay, some assistance and even a drivers license. Maybe they will let me send my boat back so the rest of my family can get there. “What a country you have there”.

  • avatar
    EEGeek

    Why not deport the car of the IA? It’s not racist to deport a car, is it?

    Putting it in an impound lot would create too much “hardship”, so just drop it off in a wide open field outside, say, Tijuana. And be sure to leave the keys in the car so the owner doesn’t have the “hardship” of remembering to bring them in order to retrieve his property.

    And don’t forget to place a sign on the outskirts of the lot – “not responsible for losses or damage to vehicles in this lot”. In English and Spanish, of course. Just like at the grocery store.

  • avatar
    Ryan Knuckles

    daro31:
    Please don’t characterize our entire nation based on the actions of California, or New York for that matter. The state and local governments in California and New York have a hard-on for being the first to do something, especially if it is a ultra-liberal, nonsensical, terrible idea.

  • avatar
    melllvar

    @thetopdog

    I’ve been there. Got hit in an apartment complex a few years back by an uninsured/unlicensed driver. He also had no documentation to show the car was even his. The Highway Patrol showed up (after much indignation that I called them in the first place) and basically told me I was screwed and nothing was going to happen.

    They cited the guy and he wouldn’t be able to get a license until he made reparations. Of course he can just keep driving sans license.

    Made me wonder why I have a license and pay for car insurance. Apparently you can just buy a junker and drive it illegaly (and damage property) with no consequences.

  • avatar
    Ryan Knuckles

    @thetopdog
    Reverse that situation. I tail-ended a lady when I was 16 that was driving sans license or insurance in an uninsured (not hers) vehicle. I had to lock the door to keep her from coming in after me.

  • avatar
    NeonCat93

    Since citizenship status is a national level issue, why shouldn’t California or any other state allow residents to apply for driver’s licenses? And how can anyone register a car without a valid driver’s license and proof of insurance? I wouldn’t have a problem with laws against DUI being amended to include either impounding of a vehicle or requiring the sale or transfer to someone else – with penalties for you and your associate if they “lend” your car back to you and you get caught driving drunk.

    There is obviously a need for cheap labor in this country. The interference in the labor market the minimum wage, for one thing, represents creates a black market for labor. If you want to deal with this by creating work visa programs, fine. But to say that these illegals are keeping Americans from jobs picking crops, butchering chickens and being custodians is ridiculous. It is a lot more realistic to say that they contribute huge amounts to the economy, not just in labor but as consumers as well. They still need a place to stay, food to eat and something to do when they aren’t doing the shit work that American citizens don’t want to do. If you don’t like your tax dollars going to support these people, then you need to tell your Congressional representatives to change the programs or, better still, eliminate them as pork.

  • avatar
    shortthrowsixspeed

    Neon:

    I agree that most illegal immigrants are doing jobs that most americans would not want to do. However, to argue that they are thereby contributing to the economy assumes that they do those jobs legally. Many illegal immigrants work jobs that are paid in cash, live in homes that have no lease, and drive cars that are not registered or insured. They therefore pay no taxes on any of these things and contribute nothing to the economy. In fact much gets sent back to their home country and never sees the light of day in America again. The issue is not that they should not be here, but that they should be here legally. They should be required to play by the rules like everyone else.

    side note for those who’ve been hit by an “undocumented American” (puulease!):

    i was driving down De Soto in the San Fernando Valley (LA, Cali) and some guys in a red Camaro rear ends me. Not a lot of damage, just a bent bumper. I stop and get out, but he wants to just drive off. I had to literally get in front of his car and make him pull over and get out. Then I ask for his license. “Uhhhh, no. I don’t have it. License? No. I don’t know.” Seriously. Ok then, I ask for insurance. “Uhhh, insurance? I don’t know. I don’t know insurance.” Holy F-ing crap. Really? So he tells me to get an estimate and call him: “I’ll pay you.” (I get name, number, and plates). Two weeks later he’s refusing to pay me and pretends like he doesn’t understand a thing I’m saying. I have a buddy of mine (legal immigrant) call him for me. He won’t talk to him either. So I’m kicking myself for not calling the cops when he told me he didn’t have a license or insurance. Now I know, it wouldn’t have mattered anyway. the police would have just advised me to “bend over and take it up the tailpipe.”

    thanks. I needed to get that off my chest. BTW, if anyone knows Moises Valdez, kick his ass for me.

  • avatar
    carlisimo

    One of the major arguments in favor of allowing illegal immigrants to get licenses is that we’re going to be sharing the road with them whether they have them or not. If they do have licenses and insurance… the consequences of an accident are less messy. And a lot of them would go and get their licenses, because it’s a competitive advantage when looking for jobs.

    It’s a good thing for the rest of us, really, and has no effect on their cat and mouse game against the INS.

  • avatar
    glenn126

    So, NeonCat93, if these illegals are “doing the work no Americans will do” (and therefore, by inference, not taking jobs from American citizens and legal aliens with green cards) then why do you suppose my 22 year old brother had to go a year to find a job when he has a US high school diploma AND a certificate from a local college re: cuisine? He was laid off from a job at a resort and they never called him back – there were too many illegal aliens willing to do the job for cheaper.

    He ended up in a McDonalds, which is at least a job.

    Not to mention the fact that illegals don’t even have to be Mexican. Last year, there were some 6 or 8 Chinese restaurants closed in Michigan (one of which was in my home town, Traverse City) because they had Chinese SLAVES working in them – who were also illegal aliens. These people were sleeping in the kitchen, or in garages.

    I also don’t understand some of the comments on here by people who are up close and personal with the illegals and yet don’t seem to have the unPC ability to say “what’s wrong with THEM actually obeying the laws of our land?”

    I guess once 90% of the Mexican population are up here, and we all have to learn spanish to get on in life, things might start to happen then?

    Sorry daro31, you can’t come be an illegal alien in the USA (tongue in cheek/sarcasm to follow) because you actually might want a living wage.

    My sister-in-law in Scotland MARRIED TO AN AMERICAN wanted to come over and work for 3 months because their daughter had been badly injured in a car accident. The US Government, in it’s “infinite wisdom” and “compassion” (NOT) decined her any possibility of doing this.

    We (my wife and I) ended up supporting her for the 3 months she was here (and we ended up supporting her daughter for another 6 months after that). Thanks for nuthin, uncle sam.

  • avatar
    jkross22

    Hey shortthrowsixspeed,

    Call ICE at 866-347-2423. If you’ve got his plates and his name, at least make them aware of an illegal alien committing vehicular crimes.

    The police leadership in LA is pitiful. They turn their backs on this issue leaving the citizens/taxpayers bent over a bicycle rack.

    I would suspect that it is only a matter of time before someone is murdered by an illegal and the family sues either/or the Feds or State agencies for not enforcing the law.

  • avatar
    leftca

    Ya, let's just give the illegals thier cars back, why not. I was in an accident with an illegal immigrant, no license, insurance or registration, they were at fault, and what happens, the Fresno CHP let's them walk away. Bogus address, no responsibility, no care. Meanwhile, MY insurance company gets to foot the bill, and all of us TRUE AMERICANS get stuck with the bill. So, why not give them thier cars back, give them our social security, let them take our jobs, use our healthcare and education. HELL, LET'S JUST MOVE OUT OF AMERICA, AND GIVE IT TO THE DAMNED MEXICANS. LIKE THAT'S GONNA HAPPEN

  • avatar
    glenn126

    jkross22, are you being facetious? “I would suspect that it is only a matter of time before someone is murdered by an illegal and the family sues either/or the Feds or State agencies for not enforcing the law.”

    Something like 30% of our national prison population are illegals. As for suing the Government, you have to have the permission of the government to sue the government.

    As leftca says, LIKE THAT’S GONNA HAPPEN

    Makes me feel more like a serf instead of a citizen, all of this – and ticks me off royally!

    Guess what? We don’t HAVE to vote these same bingo the evil clowns in who have allowed this kind of thing at the next election. One year away, folks.

    Thing is, in order to get an anti-PC / anti-Illegal Alien candidate into office, you generally can’t vote for the dummypublicans or republicrats. You’ve got to vote Constitution Party, the 3rd largest US party. Think about it.

  • avatar
    skaz

    glenn126:

    I don’t post here, but I’ve read TTAC for a long, long time. I think this is actually my first post even though I’ve had this account for some time.

    I believe that there’s a much bigger issue here than illegal immigration that so many Americans can’t wrap their head around – these people are people, too. No, I hate that they get special privileges but I honestly don’t believe that 90% of the people in America on social programs deserve them either.

    If everyone maintained a level personal responsibility then this wouldn’t be the mess that it is. There’s so much hatred directed at illegal immigrants because of the social programs that they get to participate in and the hand-holding that takes place to guide them along into lives here without citizenship.

    I like immigration, I don’t even mind the illegal stuff; take away the benefits, the social programs — but allow them to come here, work, and live. They should simply be barred from ANY welfare programs unless they pay in.

    And the Constitution party? They base their ideas off of the Bible and try to impose those ideas on the U.S. Constitution and I’m just seriously not down with that. And last I checked the Libertarians were the 3rd largest party in America.

  • avatar
    NeonCat93

    @ glen126
    I’m sorry your brother didn’t find a good job. I would note that lots of people, including myself, have had problems finding work and manage not to blame illegals for it. One either finds another line of work or moves someplace that one can find the work one wants to do. I’ve seen ads in northern cities blaming the South for their poor labor market, since we generally work for less and don’t have union laws. As for the slaves, this is another symptom of a labor black market. If it is easy for people to come in legally, they don’t have to put their lives in the hands of smugglers.

    Frankly, Social Security would be in even worse shape if we didn’t have illegals putting money into it – because a lot of them never draw their benefits.

    Every generation or two the nativists throw up their hands and decry that America is doomed by all the Irish/Italians/Jews/Chinese coming here. And you know what happens? Their kids start speaking English, their grandkids don’t even bother speaking the old language and they think of themselves as Americans – and they are.

  • avatar
    NeonCat93

    @ skaz
    Respek knuckles. Welcome to TTAC.

  • avatar
    skaz

    NeonCat93: I grew up in a border town in Arizona. What I always noticed was that most of the time first generation illegal immigrants do their best to be invisible, their children pound the “proud Mexican” drums and finally the third generation Americanizes and picks their ideology from there.

    I’ve seen several third-generation Mexican-Americans with illegal grandparents that join the border patrol to keep out the Mexicans they dislike. Everyone assimilates eventually and I think a lot of people don’t appreciate that fact because of the loud, “brown pride” generation.

  • avatar
    skaz

    And thanks for the welcome.

  • avatar
    shortthrowsixspeed

    Skaz:

    your argument has a number of flaws:

    the personal responsibility argument is nice, but the fact is that people (unfortunately) are selfish. They do not exhibit social responsibility because it’s good to do. They do it because if they don’t they will be punished, or because by doing it they get a benefit. This is why we don’t expect people to pay taxes out of personal responsibility (they’re punished if they don’t) and we don’t expect people to give to charity out of mere good will (they get a tax benefit). so if we want illegal immigrants to be socially responsible we need to give a deterant for being irresponsible or an incentive for being responsible.

    But I guess we could just remove all the social programs that help the illegal immigrants that are here. Well, on second thought, as you said they’re people too. Allowing immigrants to flood the states and live here illegally and then denying them basic needs like healthcare and education is simply cruel. Immigration must be regulated so that when people come here they can become contributor’s to society and derive the benefits of it as well.

  • avatar
    KBW

    If there is a demand for cheap labor in this country, there will always be a supply of illegal immigrants. Attempting to restrict the supply in this case will fail as badly as the war on drugs. When you can increase your income 10fold just by crossing a border, its hard to resist. You simply can’t keep people out when there is such a massive incentive to come here. The only way to cut the flow of illegal immigrants is to institute a guest worker program and severely punish those who hire illegals.

    Some of the claims being made in this thread are simply outrageous.
    Something like 30% of our national prison population are illegals.

    The prison population is ~10% Hispanic. Even if we use the preposterous assumption that every one of them is an illegal, that’s still well under 30%.
    http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/pub/pdf/cpius965.pdf

  • avatar
    skaz

    shortthrowsixspeed: I know my arguments aren’t perfect, I work with what we have. It’s not responsible for the US to crack down on the immigrants themselves – they’re just doing what’s best for themselves.

    And I don’t have health care of any sort, so, no, I don’t think they should get it for free, either. I’m not tied to any social programs, I have no education to speak of (just some college and a HS diploma) and with the way things are going I’ll never participate in social security other than paying for it. I think a lot of the younger generations are going to begin to realize that and personal responsibility will become a popular stance. It’s kind of arrogant of you to blow of “people” as being “selfish” and therefore claiming my argument moot, isn’t it?

  • avatar
    rpn453

    I see so many articles, like this one, that make me thankful most of my driving is in Saskatchewan. I’ll gladly put up with a little cold weather to avoid the gong show!

  • avatar
    Idaho_Spud

    And if I am a destitute US citizen caught under the exact same conditions, is the 30 day impound and fee rescinded or not?

  • avatar
    Areitu

    My mom’s been hit by illegal immigrants before. They tried to drive away and she had to chase them down on foot to the next traffic light.

    I’ve been hit by an unlicensed uninsured and unlegal driver before. He was very drunk, didn’t stop and managed to get away. Totaled the car, too.

    My friend was t-boned by an uninsured, unlicensed (possibly illegal) driver and well, you can guess what his insurance company said to him.

    My family immigrated to the US in 1989. My aprents spent the time, money and effort in becoming legal citizens. Visa, green card, taxpaying, the works. My parents finally became US citizens in 2001. It would have taken longer if we hadn’t petitioned our local house rep (Mary Bono) to expedite our paperwork through the INS.

    I don’t want to claim to favor any particular solutions (amnesty, work visa, etc), but allowing illegal immigrants to hold drivers licenses (I bet they can take the exam in a language other than English too), hold bank accounts without SSNs, retrieve impounded cars with little penalty, etc. are policies that are beyond insulting for people who took the legal path to living and working in this country.

    If I meet met a hardworking illegal immigrant whose car had been impounded under current laws, I’d feel bad for them too. But then again, that would be like feeling bad for a kleptomaniac who’s in and out of the system for stealing stuff.

  • avatar
    glenn126

    skaz “And the Constitution party? They base their ideas off of the Bible and try to impose those ideas on the U.S. Constitution and I’m just seriously not down with that. And last I checked the Libertarians were the 3rd largest party in America.”

    I bet you don’t complain every morning when you get up and have the freedom to engage in whatever you wish to do, within civilized limits. That’s the result of Biblical constraints, some of which are still in place in our US civilization, put there by our wise founding fathers – some of whom were not Christian at all. They just knew wisdom.

    The Libertarian party (for which I used to vote, no longer – I grew up) is no longer 3rd largest because a lot of sensible people realize there has to be some kind of line drawn in the sand – I would describe the Libertarian party (after it was hijacked by the pro-legal-drug crowd) as the “anything goes” near anarchy party.

    Goodness knows, we don’t need more anarchy – we need less.

    Areitu, it’s nice to see you comment and thank you and your parents for being law-abiding CITIZENS and prior to that law abiding LEGAL aliens. I agree with you fully in your statements, and as mentioned, my great-grandparents, grandfather and wife all followed the same LEGAL paths to the US.

  • avatar
    postjosh

    Ryan Knuckles :

    What is the deal with the coasts? NY is talking about giving illegal immigrants a driver’s license and California towns are making it easier for unlicensed driver’s to get back on the road? When did driving get promoted from a priviledge to a basic human right?

    the deal with the coasts is that this is a public safety issue. these people are going to drive no matter what the rules are so it’s better to have than licensed and insured than not.

  • avatar
    postjosh

    glenn126 :

    Areitu, …I agree with you fully in your statements, and as mentioned, my great-grandparents, grandfather and wife all followed the same LEGAL paths to the US.

    fyi, before the 1920′s there was no such thing as an illegal immigrant. if you passed the physical at ellis island, you were in.

  • avatar
    Ryan Knuckles

    So, by giving them their car back, that is solving the public safety issue? If those IA’s that were caught driving faced deportion, the roads would be much safer.

  • avatar
    shortthrowsixspeed

    skaz:

    i don’t think it’s arrogant to think people are selfish. my comments were directed at human nature generally. people think about themselves first. it’s just a fact. call it a survival instinct, or a human frailty, or whatever. even though people know that they should be “good”, they are invariably “bad”. This is true especially when it’s possible for people to justify their transgressions as “no big deal”. there’s actually a documented phenomenon of people not calling police or helping victims in circumstances when they know others are in positions to do so. they just say, “i don’t have to do it, someone else will.” that’s not social responsibilty, it’s selfishness.

    but getting back to cars. GIVING people licenses does not help anything. making people earn it is great. however, i’m not sure how i feel about giving the tests in languages other than English. shouldn’t drivers be able to read basic English sentences. I’m sure the tests could be simplified so that the questions required very minimal faculty with the language. all the traffic signs are in english. law enforcement is going to speak english. maybe i’m wrong. i’d like to hear other perspectives on that . . .

  • avatar
    osamegi

    I resent the stereotypes that the majority of Americans have on Mexicans. It seems as though everyone wants to characterize Mexicans as illegals and illegals as Mexicans.

    There are millions of legal Mexicans in the U.S. and there are millions of illegals that are NOT Mexicans.

    It seems as though the media and society has blindsighted Americans into believing that Mexican immigrants are here to take advantage of government services and of a tax free life, when in fact, that is not the reality. There are immigrants that do pay taxes, abide by the law and most definitely–do not seek government assistance.

    I think that it is the people that evade child support or seek umemployement checks that take advantage of the system. They seek cash paying jobs so that they will A-Evade taxes and B-Keep money that belongs to tax payers.

    And this so called money that never sees the light of day in the US is ridiculous. Mexicans send money back home to support their family–sure. But who is to say that they are not American citizens? Everyone gives money to their families, whether their family is in the US or not. When the media reports these amounts, they don’t know who is sending the money or for what. Sending money is a right–and illegals shouldn’t be held culpable for societal beliefs.

    Why do you think that more and more companies are targeting the Hispanic population? Because of their spending power. They have an obvious proven track record of the vast amounts that they spend on goods and services in the US. Not only are they helping the economy by yes–performing jobs that no one wants to do–but by spending their hard-earned cash on American products.

    It is true that many illegal immigrants get paid under the table, but that is because employers are taking advantage of the necessities of these people. I am more than sure that it is not a lifestyle choice for them to live in the shadows of others, to not have a voice and to be treated inhumanely.

    Driving isn’t a luxury–it’s a necessity. Waiting for a bus that never seems to come on a freezing night can almost constitute as cruelty.

    Illegal immigration is going to be a never ending cycle. It just so happens that at the present moment, it is Mexicans that are simply the target. In the future, it may be another ethnic group…the point is that it is unfair to categorize people because of what we think they are. And if they are illegal, I am more than certain that if they had the choice, or the opportunity, they would legalize their status immediately. But it’s not an easy path.

    Many immigrants are alreaady educated, and even then are forced to immigrate. A good percentage speak English and are hard working people.

    And these so called “illegals” are also likely to be in the process of legalization. But legalization takes years, almost a lifetime with current laws. So what are they supposed to do? Just because Mexico isn’t a communist country, or undergoing war doesn’t make them any less deserving of a speedy legalization process.

    People are starving, their families are starving…. and if a better life is just across the border, I’m sure any father or mother would risk themselves to survive. I’m sure they are not going to sit around and wait for their government to help them or expect a change in economic conditions overnight.

    The problem is that society likes to categorize people and wants them to fit into stereotype.
    To them, illegal immigrants=Mexican


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