By Leo Coughlin
One might think that in this wonderful country of ours, which resembles a Swiss cheese as far as illegal aliens gaining entry is concerned, that local law enforcement would be the first line of defense in this kind of law breaking.
If nothing else, one might assume that Homeland Security, upon which much attention has been focused and which has soaked up billions of dollars (totally ineffectively, from most accounts), would use local law enforcement as a trip wire for violations of American Law.
One would think that the police forces in every city, town, village and hamlet would constitute the first line of defense - first responders, to use the au courant phrase - against our country being penetrated by illegals.
Obviously, the policy of the U.S. government is to ignore its own immigration laws. And local law enforcement just can't be bothered, apparently.
Heck, there are jurisdictions in this country where the illegals are granted "sanctuary." Just recently New Haven cops were told not to inquire about an immigrant's status. Lord knows, the cops are an inquisitive bunch and want to ask a lot of questions (some of which should just be gently blown off as it is none of their business) so you would think they would be interested in law enforcement.
Obviously, the intent of a great number of the slobs feeding at the public trough and who inhabit the U.S. Congress is to figure out ways to break the immigration laws.
It's a jurisdictional thing, the argument may be. Feds have their bailiwick, local guys have their bailiwick.
In all cases, a bank robber caught in a city or town in this country is held for the FBI. Bank robbery is a federal crime.
And that is the case with other instances where federal law is broken.
It can be argued that federal authorities have some say-so in local police matters. Federal grants have come into Largo. And perhaps there is a distribution of Homeland Security funds. As you know, there is an old anthem that says, "He who pays the piper calls the tune."
It appears that the policy down the line is to leave any possible illegal aliens alone.
Chief Lester Aradi, Largo police chief, says, "We don't routinely ask everyone we come in contact with their citizenship status, without some reasonable suspicion." I can understand, but police ask every other question imaginable. Their appetites for information from an individual are voracious.
If an individual has no identification papers, such as a driver's license, questions are asked, Aradi said.
Now get this -
"If a suspected illegal alien (read lawbreaker) comes to our attention we have no authority to hold that person, and practice has taught us that the Feds won't (can't, due to limited personnel) respond," Aradi said.
But he did point out that if the person arrested has allegedly committed a crime and has been charged, his department flags them for Federal scutiny.
Aradi said that 30 or so years ago, local police jurisdictions "actually held people as suspected illegals and summoned Federal authorities, who actually came out and took custody of the individual."
Now, Aradi said, "courts have said that we can't do that anymore and present day the sheer numbers (of illegals) have overwhelmed the system on the Federal level making an actual response impossible."
I guess I read that to mean if it's too big a problem to heck with it. So we walk away from law breaking in this country because it is too tedious to enforce the law, or someone doesn't want it enforced and what happens we end up being swallowed by the law breakers.
But we continue to pay for their aid and sustenance. That apparently is our role as good citizens. If we disobey the law on providing the do-re-mi to keep the illegals in high clover, we go to jail.
Ain't that neat?
So, you got it folks - the southern border is wide open and our country can be infiltrated at any time, at any point through any local law enforcement agency.
And you pay for any needs and desires they may have.
It's the law.