Lincoln * Institute

Ralph R. Reiland

Ralph R. Reiland

The B. Kenneth Simon Professor of Free Enterprise at Robert Morris University


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Mi Casa es en Pakistan

by Ralph R. Reiland

Answering a student's question at a recent town hall meeting at Indian Hills

Community College in Iowa, here's how President Obama characterized the Arizona law that's designed to crack down on illegal immigration: "You can imagine, if you are an Hispanic American in Arizona, your great grandparents may have been there before Arizona was even a state, but now suddenly if you don't have your papers and you took your kid out to get ice cream, you're going to be harassed — that's something that could potentially happen."

That's a picture of America that Obama likes to paint. You're a nice

family-of-color just going for a happy-go-lucky ride with the little tyke to get

some ice cream and all of a sudden you're at a Gestapo check point and some racist cop with mirrored sunglasses is commanding, SS-style, "Your papers, please."

Similarly when it came to the Cambridge incident with Harvard's Henry Louis Gates,Obama's instant analysis was that it was an encounter between a nice

professor-of-color who just forgot his key and attempted, along with his driver, to force open his front door with some banging and pushing and some

not-up-to-Harvard's-standards white cops who "acted stupidly."

Along with other pertinent details, left out of Obama's picture of events was the fact that the cops were called to the address by a neighborhood woman who said,accurately, that she saw "two black males with backpacks" trying to break in the front door of the home.

With the issue of border security and the new Arizona law regarding illegals, Obama again appears to want to play the race card for political gain rather than present the problem in an honest, constructive and accurate manner.

Simply stated, the Arizona problem isn't about bad cops, racism and ice cream.

Instead, we're now at a crisis stage in terms of national security because the inept federal bureaucracy and ineffectual D.C. politicians have totally botched the crucial job of securing our borders.

A special series on U.S. border security by investigative correspondent Justin

Farmer at WSB-TV in Atlanta recently reported that most of the illegals caught

crossing into the U.S. are from Mexico or South America "but thousands are

classified as OTMs, 'other than Mexican,' including hundreds from nations that

sponsor terror."

WSB-TV reported that a congressional report that it surreptitiously obtained shows that illegals from "Afghanistan, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, Sudan, and Yemen" are in custody at the federal detention center near Phoenix.

The problem is that for every 10 that were caught there might well have been 10 or 20 times that many who succeeded in making it through undetected.

"This congressional report on border threats confirms members of Hezbollah have

crossed the southwest border," reported Farmer. "It also contains photos of military jackets found on the border. The Arab insignia reads 'Martyr: Way to Eternal Life.'

The other depicts a plane crashing into the Twin Towers." That's usually not the

preferred attire of Mexican lettuce pickers.

The WSB-TV report also shows the route taken by Middle Easterners to the U.S.

border. "They travel from Europe to South America to the tri-border region where

they learn to speak Spanish," reported Framer, "then travel to Mexico to blend in with the other illegals heading to this country."

Blending in doesn't seem too difficult, given the size of the crowds attempting to jump the fences. "Records show that agents caught a quarter million people last year trying to enter the U.S. in the Tucson sector alone," reported WSB-TV.

Said Georgia Congressman Paul C. Broun, M.D., member of the House Committee on

Homeland Security, regarding this illegal influx of Middle Easterners: "Frankly, I don't think most of these people are coming to cut our grass."


Ralph R. Reiland is an associate professor of economics at Robert Morris University

in Pittsburgh.

Ralph R. Reiland


Phone: 412-527-2199