Ticking off the yahoos is column sport
I knew that when I wrote a relatively unhumorous diatribe (can diatribes ever be humorous?) on the illegal immigration problem I'd hear from wacky fringe elements who refuse to let any rational argument get in the way of their bunker-view of the world. That's half the fun of column writing: ticking off a completely new variety of yahoo every day.
What's even more scary is the people who are suddenly on my side, people who would have had me drawn and quartered (or at least halved) for something I wrote just six months ago.
The small point I was trying to make regarding illegal immigrants is that 99.9 percent of them are honest, hard-working folks who are simply attracted to our country because of our open borders and (from their point of view) high-paying jobs. To simply say they came here illegally and so we cannot negotiate any kind of plea bargain that would allow them to accept responsibility for breaking our laws -- and let them to stay and work -- is ridiculous.
I pointed out that we routinely make deals with a variety of scumbags, thugs and killers, including the likes of "Sammy the Bull" Gravano, an underworld hitman who admitting to "whacking" 19 people. We made a deal with this whacking wacko that let him walk the streets. So how is it that we can plea bargain with Sammy the Whacker and not Juan the Apple Picker?
The idea is to, first, seal our borders, and then let illegal aliens plead "no contest" to misdemeanor charges of whatever misdemeanor violation they committed by coming here to work. Then give them some kind of a work permit and life goes on. I lived on Guam where thousands of South Koreans, Chinese and Filipinos were imported under guest-worker programs.
For this blasphemy of common sense I received this love note from Joanne:
"I read today's column, as I do every day. Nothing personal, but you are a babooz. Stick to humor. Stay away from anything important. Hope you recover from your temporary attempt to destroy our country."
Ouch. Now I understand the tears of a clown. Nevertheless, I replied:
"Joanne, Any country that allows 12 million foreigners to enter illegally, actually encourages them to enter illegally by leaving the borders open and giving them jobs, doesn't need my help at ruination. The idea that we let them in, but blame them for it, is insane."
See how much fun you can have ticking off the yahoos?
, the National Society of Newspaper Columnists' 2004 First Place Award winner for humor writing, appears Sundays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org