American Elephants

Alexandria Ocasia-Cortez’s Big Mistake by The Elephant's Child

The big news of the day seems to have been  Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s  embarrassing mistake, which she seems not to grasp – was a mistake. Democrats, who want open borders, are anxious to capitalize on any evidence that the federal government might be misbehaving at the southern border.  Perhaps you noticed that when the Border Patrol rescued sick children who died in the hospital from dehydration, Democrats tried to blame the deaths on the Border Patrol rather than the parent who failed to keep them hydrated. Democrats came up with photos of children in cages from the Obama administration, and tried to pass them off as current prisoners of the Border Patrol. They haven’t missed a chance to attack the Border Patrol, the very force designed to protect Americans from criminal illegal aliens and drugs coming across the border.

The congresswoman, during an Instagram Live broadcast on Monday, accused the U.S. of operating “concentration camps” on the southern border. “That is exactly what they are. They are concentration camps,” Ocasio-Cortez said during the video.

Ocasio-Cortez doubled down on her comments on Wednesday, refusing to apologize and invoking the Japanese internment camps of World War II, even including the ringing Jewish phrase “Never again,” which has a deep meaning  for Jews. Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez has received all sorts of attention from the media. She is very young for a member of congress with unusual, rather striking looks,  and because of what she says she has become click-bait for the media. Unfortunately, what she has to say is clearly the result of the contemporary American collegiate system. (They don’t seem to be doing history these days). Democrats are interested because she is one of theirs, and properly anti-Trump. Republicans, on the other hand, are appalled by her ignorance, and wonder what dumb remark she will come up with next. The media assume that people are really interested, and so seek her out for her latest comments. Unfortunately, it’s not exactly a sign of popularity.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the Holocaust, you might read Primo Levi’s Survival in Auschwitz, and add to that The Black Book of Communism. There is an appalling ignorance of history today, and many attempts to rewrite that history which is not suitably ‘nice.’ Unfortunately you cannot make what happened go away by tearing down offending statues, relegating the paintings to an attic, or renaming the buildings.  History is how we progress. We learn from our mistakes, but we cannot learn when we don’t know anything at all, and destroyed the evidence. Historians have a hard enough time getting it right, because so many notes and papers and pictures have been discarded.

The “Mother of All Caravans” is Forming In Honduras by The Elephant's Child

President Trump is threatening to close the Southern Border entirely, as the “Mother of all Caravans” forms in Honduras. This one is expected to be made up of more than 20,000 people Olga Sánchez Cordero, Mexico’s Federal Interior Secretary said earlier this week.

Sánchez told reporters on Wednesday that “migration and specifically the formation of the huge caravan was a central issue in talks she held yesterday with United States Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen in Miami, Florida.”

According to Sánchez, Nielsen told her that the United States has “returned at least 76,000 migrants to their countries of origin in February and expects to deport more than 90,000 this month and a total of 900,000 by the end of the year.”

President Trump said:

“We have right now two big caravans coming up from Guatemala — massive caravans — walking right through Mexico. Mexico’s tough. They can stop them but they chose not to. Now they’re going to stop them — and if they don’t stop them, we’re closing the border,” he said.

“We will close it for a long time. I am not playing games.”

Sanchez said that criminal groups are transporting migrants from the Southern Mexico border town of Tapachula to the U.S. border in trucks, charging thousands of dollars per person for the service.

The Left likes to promote the idea of “kids in cages,”and “ripped from their mother’s arms” to garner sympathy for illegal aliens, They also want to suggest that any objection to illegal immigrants is “racism” and some kind of objection to “brown people”which is absurd, but apparently effective. Most people welcome legal immigrants who, wanting deeply to become Americans, have a lot to offer the country.

Our immigration laws badly need reform, but the Democrats have no interest in fixing the weak laws that are causing so much trouble.

Supreme Court Upholds Central Provision of Arizona Law by The Elephant's Child

The Supreme Court decided the Arizona Immigration law, S.B. 1070. Justice Kennedy wrote the majority opinion. Cornell Law professor William Jacobson explained:

The court struck the provisions dealing with state criminal penalties and other provisions which imposed procedural requirements on illegals in the state. Among the provisions the court struck is the one requiring that a person be detained if the police officer believes the person is removable.

The Court upheld the central provision requiring a check of immigration status for persons otherwise detained. This was a significant slapdown for the administration. Arizona celebrated this as the key part of Arizona’s law.

The Obama administration said that it is suspending existing agreements with Arizona police over enforcement of federal immigration laws, and said it has issued a directive telling federal authorities to decline man of the calls reporting illegal immigrants that the Homeland Security Department may get from Arizona police.

So Arizona police can immediately begin calling to check immigration status — but federal officials are likely to reject most of those calls. Federal officials said they’ll still perform the checks as required by law but will respond only when someone has a felony conviction on his or her record. Otherwise ICE will just tell local police to release the person.

Arizona, along with New Mexico and Texas, has real problems with illegal immigration on the border, and with the drug wars going on just across the border. A significant border fence was promised but it is far from complete. Democrats’ election strategy always includes a special appeal to minorities, including illegal immigrants. Minorities often favor Democrats, believing all the electioneering about doing nice things for minority communities, which usually end when the election is over.

Democrats are apt to favor open borders. Republicans, portrayed by the Left as anti-immigrant, anti-Hispanic in every campaign, are neither. They want laws that limit immigration, and they want the laws to be enforced. Congress largely wants to avoid the question until their side has a controlling majority. Immigration is an enormously complicated problem.

Do we honor Emma Lazarus poem engraved on the Statue of Liberty —”Give me your tired, your poor,” “huddled masses,” “wretched refuse,” and concentrate on the poor of other countries looking for a new start? Or do we look for the brilliant, the well-to-do, the well-educated, who can immediately put their considerable gifts to work? Many have called out our practice of granting advanced degrees (in technology, physics, mechanical engineering, all those  disciplines in which we claim shortages) to foreign exchange students and then send them home. Mitt Romney has suggested stapling a green card to every PhD diploma. Not a bad idea.

On the other hand, are Tucson hospitals who advertise for wealthy Mexican expectant mothers to come for a vacation, and give birth to an American citizen. Birth tourism is popular in some Asian countries as well, where wealthy mothers want to give a child the option of American citizenship, just in case. And what do we do about an immigrant’s relatives? And how far do we go beyond the nuclear family?

Do we make immigration from Europe more difficult because so many Americans are of European heritage, or easier? Do we favor certain countries, and if so why? You can see why Congress, knowing absolutely that this has to be dealt with, doesn’t want to touch it. Whatever they decide to do will be met with considerable anger and hatred and make their reelection chances even worse. Don’t expect any great rush to reform immigration.

It’s International Laugh at San Francisco Day! by The Elephant's Child

San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom announced today an absolute moratorium on official city travel to Arizona. The ban on travel takes effect immediately, well, except for law enforcement officials investigating a crime, officials said. And they’re not quite sure what to do about planned trips.  But they really want to emphasize how indignant they are.

The move comes in the wake of Arizona’s new immigration law. Surely a wave of crime on the border, a recent murder of a long time Arizona rancher on his own land, drug wars, smuggling, and constant incursions of illegals is just no reason to ask people, stopped for some other reason, to show some identification. The fact that the federal government has invested most of their border control effort on California’s short border with Mexico, and when the border patrol attempts to do their job in Arizona, the Interior Department is standing in their way, has nothing to do with anything.

There are also online boycott campaigns calling for everything from a boycott of the Arizona Diamondbacks baseball team to a boycott of the Grand Canyon.  (The average tourist visit to the Grand Canyon only lasts for 20 minutes).  There was talk of banning Arizona Iced Tea, but it seems that is bottled and manufactured in New York.

Supervisor David Campos and the City Attorney Dennis Herrera have called for a boycott of Arizona businesses.  If the Board of Supervisors’ resolution passes, Herrera will try to identify any contracts with Arizona companies that could legally be terminated.

Well, asking someone for identification is certainly an immensely discriminatory step.  I haven’t done any traveling lately, so I only have to show my driver’s license when I write a check or use a credit card.  I’ve been very careful not to exceed the speed limit as well.

To emphasize the urgent nature of the potential boycott, the mayor today convened a taskforce that includes representatives from the City Attorney’s Office, Controller, City Purchasing Office and his Chief of Staff  to look at a “smart and effective” targeted boycott, Newsom’s spokesman said.  Well, big boycotts do distract attention from a $483 million budget hole.

Arizona’s law, carefully constructed by constitutional scholars to conform to federal immigration law, is a direct result of long federal inaction, and federal failure to enforce current immigration law.  Seventy percent of Arizona voters support the tough new law, and a majority of citizens of Latino heritage do as well.

Victor Davis Hanson, who lives in an area heavily impacted by illegal immigration and legal immigration, and who has Mexican-American family members, deconstructs the outrage in a post at National Review that is very worth your time (it’s short) to help understand the problems and the politics.

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