To the Editor,

It is finally time the U.S. deals expediently and intelligently with illegal immigration and the many issues surrounding it. Some of the issues have become physically chaotic and financially detrimental to our way of life. The main issue with illegal immigrants is that “illegal” means illegal. It is against the law that immigrants arrive, work and live in the U.S. without first observing the laws governing immigration. Those who do not follow the laws and rules, who live and work here, are doing so illegally and it is the responsibility of our Federal Government and the various state governments to work together in resolving the various problems. American employers must stop hiring illegals because it is against the law to do so.

It is estimated that the illegal immigrant population in the U.S. totals approximately 40 million even though the government stats cite 20 million. Many illegals are hired illegally by U.S. companies and individual citizens. It is done to hire employees more cheaply or because the jobs available are not the type desired by Americans. In addition, illegals do not receive typical job and health benefits. Illegal immigrants arrive here from many different countries, including India, China, Japan, Canada, Saudi Arabia, Mexico, Cuba, South and Central America, Africa, Vietnam and from many other areas of the world.

Since Mexico borders the U.S. for many miles, and because the Mexican government does not treat citizens humanely and does not provide them with jobs, most of the illegals come into the U.S. from this country. We have permitted illegals in our nation for many decades and have diverted our attention from this issue. Now, we are paying a big price.

There is a political and financial upheaval in Mexico with continuing violence near the border. The illegal drug trafficking and gang-related activity has reached an all time high. The violence has rocked many towns on both sides of the border. Some border towns, e.g., Nuevo Laredo and Juarez, have observed blatant fighting and murders between rivals gangs or cartels, which also have killed Mexican officials as well as American citizens. The once boom town of Juarez is rapidly becoming a ghost town due to the ongoing gang violence. It is estimated that 116,000 homes have been evacuated as homeowners have fled further south or into the U.S. to avoid the bloodshed. The estimate leads to the realization that almost 460,000 residents have fled the town.

Recently, a long-time American rancher was murdered by a Mexican [drug cartel] gang member. Many believe that Cochise County rancher Rob Krentz was shot and killed on his ranch some time Saturday, presumably by a drug smuggler. The death, which is being investigated as a homicide, occurred in the San Bernardino Valley, part of the Malpais region. The Krenz family has operated the ranch for 100 years. After this incident and years of violence and burglaries perpetrated by Mexican intruders, U.S. residents living near the Mexican border are banding together to maintain a collective presence that will turn away further intrusive behavior and activity by illegals entering the U.S. They are gathering collectively because the U.S. Government and various state governments are NOT resolving the illegal immigration issue and also are permitting the illegal drug trafficking because many “entities” are benefitting from these acts.

So far, superficial “Band-Aids” are being placed on the deep wounds of illegal immigration and drug trafficking. President Obama wants to provide amnesty to all illegal immigrants now living and working in the U.S. unconditionally. While the Mexican government wants the U.S. to care for the illegal population, Mexico has strict laws prohibiting illegal immigrants to reside and work in its country. The Mexican government enjoys the economic enhancement it receives from illegal immigrants working and living in the U.S. who send large sums of their earning back home to their families who in turn used the money to purchase goods and services in Mexico. The money sent home is Mexico’s No. 2 source of foreign income after oil exports — totaled $21.2 billion in 2009, compared with $25.1 billion in 2008. Possibly the most money sent to a foreign home outside the U.S. is from illegals originally from India.…

There are some states that provide illegals with identification cards and special driver’s licenses even though they do not have a social security number.  New Mexico, Hawaii, Washington state and Maryland do not check the immigration status of drivers when they apply for a license. An additional problem from this situation is that additional illegal practices and scams have occurred.  These states have enabled criminals and illegals to develop identities and have increased fraudulent activities.  Maryland has been trying to approve a 2-license system of which one is to provide illegals with a permit to drive rather than using the license as a document for legal identification purposes.

It is time U.S. employers stop paying low wages to illegals by enforcing the immigration laws currently on the books, which includes jail time and fines to those who employ them.   Congress must stop doing what it does best, pushing away difficult problems to future generations. While the Mexican government sends its envoys to the U.S. to demand better treatment of illegal Mexicans living and working in the U.S., our nation does not object to the Mexican government’s treatment of Mexico’s population. If the Mexican government would treat its citizens humanely with respect and to provide them with jobs, these people would not be endangering their lives by high-tailing it to the U.S.  We need to make some demands on Mexican leaders and not let them tell us that we need to employ their refugees who came here illegally.

The same situation occurs with other countries and the immigrants who arrive here illegally.  Illegal immigration is a difficult problem that is made worse every day that we do not deal with it. We can no longer ignore the problems inherent in permitting illegal immigrants to live and work here in the U.S. since the issues will continue to worsen politically, socially and economically.

Peter Stern,

Driftwood, Texas