The right thing for the…

The right thing for the right reason?

Few things offend me more than the argument that 9/11 is a reason to crack down on immigration from Latin America. What’s the rationale? Is it that “only Arabs are terrorists” and “all brown people look alike,” so we have to keep out the Latin Americans because we can’t be sure they’re not Arabs? Or, as seems more likely to me, this is just the racist fringe playing on a generalized post-9/11 distrust of foreigners to get the policy they want?

So I am glad to see that Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge says that national security actually requires that we provide some legal status to currently undocumented persons in this country.

Because, if they are documented and legal, they can be watched and tracked easier! Just like citizens who are increasingly monitored by the government. Yes, I’m happy undocumented residents in the US may now have a chance to live normal lives, however I’m not happy about Homeland Security monitoring all of us.

My recent trip back east took me through several airports. The amount of monitoring seems absurd to me, and no, it doesn’t make me feel safer. It makes me feel like I’m in a detention facility and am suspect until proven otherwise. Unfriendly humorless guards doing searches and ID checks. Constant Orwellian announcements about not leaving your baggage or car unattended. The announcements in the LA airport were, hands-down, the unfriendliest – and the most constant. Is it really neccessary to blare every 90 seconds in a harsh voice, that unattended cars will immediately be towed? And, stupidly to me, to only announce this in English, in one of the most multi-lingual cities on the planet? These announcements appear to be more for intimidation than for any actual security purpose.

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