Victims of Illegal Immigration

By Michael W. Cutler, Senior Special Agent, INS (ret.)
Volume 23, Number 2 (Winter 2013)
Issue theme: "Moving forward"

If we are to consider victims of illegal immigration, it is essential to first understand the rationale of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).

The underlying purpose of America’s immigration laws is two-fold: to protect American lives and to protect American jobs. These two goals are straightforward and should evoke no controversy. However, public opinion on the issue of illegal immigration has been skewed by advocates for open borders and massive amnesty programs for uncounted millions of illegal aliens who currently live and work, in violation of our immigration laws, in nearly every town and city across the United States. Some of these advocates are well intentioned but don’t have a true understanding of the issues. Too many others are motivated by greed. In my “Immigration — The Modern Day ‘Gold Rush,’” from the summer 2012 Social Contract, I explored the various individuals and organizations that exploit the immigration issue and aliens — both legal and illegal — to acquire money, political power, or both. These are the profiteers of immigration.

The issue of immigration is an emotional one and one that many Americans relate to because so many Americans do, in fact, have family members who immigrated to the U.S. It is not difficult to twist public opinion on this issue, especially when those who favor having the U.S. secure its borders and enforce its immigration laws are vilified and accused of racism by the open borders advocates, whom I have come to refer to as the “Immigration Anarchists.”

Those who oppose the enforcement of immigration laws prefer to refer to aliens as “immigrants.” This leads to the oft-repeated phrase, “We are a nation of immigrants.” According to their arguments, anyone who would then oppose immigrants is a “nativist” or worse!

What should also be noted is that going back to the Carter administration, the term “Alien” was treated as a despicable insult on par with the so-called N- Word.

In point of fact, the term “Alien” is a legal term that is incorporated in the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) and defines an alien as any person who is not a citizen or national of the U.S.

Title 8 USC § 1101 of the Immigration and Nationality Act provides the legal definitions that are essential for an understanding of the immigration laws. That section of law provides the definition for “Alien,” namely, the term “alien” means any person not a citizen or national of the U.S.

It is utterly unfathomable that anyone could see an insult in that term or that definition. Yet the term alien has all but been stricken from the vernacular when we discuss immigration! This is a page taken out of the Newspeak Handbook — eliminate the word and you eliminate the thought! Central to the concept of immigration law enforcement is the differentiation between what it is to be a citizen versus what it is to be an alien. This differentiation is at the foundation of immigration laws — not only in the U.S. but throughout the world!

In fact, if an American citizen travels to another country, he (she) will be considered an alien and the officials of any other country will not feel any inhibition about using that term!

Trying to eliminate the term “Alien” from public discussion is nothing short of Orwellian!

The open borders advocates understand that the term “Alien” is not a pejorative that insults or denigrates anyone, but rather that it provides clarity to the discussion. The last thing that the immigration anarchists want is clarity! They understand that the law, commonsense, the facts, and morality are obstacles that they cannot overcome in any reasonable discussion to promote their position. Their only hope of winning the debates and arguments is to make false vicious accusations about their opponents and to use emotional arguments that do not stand up to scrutiny.

The open borders advocates are also adamant about the use of the term “illegal,” especially when combined with the term alien — thus creating the description “illegal alien.” They often counter the use of the term “illegal alien” by stating that “No human is illegal.”

The term illegal simply means “contrary to law.” Put those two words together and “Illegal Alien” means a foreign national whose presence in our country represents a violation of the immigration laws contained in the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).

It is also important to know that not all illegal aliens evade the inspections process and run our nation’s borders. It is estimated that there are at least five million illegal aliens in our country who entered the United States via the inspections process at our ports of entry. These aliens then went on to violate the terms of their admission by accepting employment that they were unauthorized to accept, failed to show up or continue employment at temporary jobs for which they were admitted to work at, failed to enroll in school or continue studying at school, were convicted of committing crimes in the U.S., or simply overstayed the amount of time for which they were admitted without securing the appropriate authorization to extend their authorized time in the U.S.

Finally, the law states that any alien who was excludible at entry is deportable from the U.S. any time after entry. Aliens who secure visas by lying on their applications for their visas concerning a material fact, are committing a felony known as “Visa Fraud.”

Those who oppose securing our nation’s borders and enforcing the immigration laws from within the U.S. often say that the terrorists who attacked our nation were not illegal aliens. They all violated various immigration laws concerning the ways in which they procured their visas or obtained immigration benefits that enabled them to embed themselves in the U.S., as they went about their preparations to launch their terrorist attacks.

Meanwhile you should understand that ports of entry include international airports as well as seaports and land-border ports to be found on America’s northern as well as southern borders. Any state that has a seaport or an international airport must be considered a “border state.” Rather than having the “four border states” often cited by politicians and journalists, in reality, the U.S. has 50 border states!

Immigration anarchists, who oppose securing America’s borders and enforcing U.S. immigration laws, have done an effective job of depicting illegal aliens as “undocumented immigrants” and the sole victims of illegal immigration. They have even gone so far as to claim that aliens who pay smugglers thousands of dollars to help them enter the U.S. by evading the inspections program are “Victims of Human Trafficking!” Certainly there are many aliens who are smuggled across our borders against their will or become involved in criminal activities against their expectations. Young women who are forced to work in brothels are a perfect example of such barbaric, degrading, and pernicious practices. But the point is that an alien who pays a smuggler to help him evade the inspections process is actually a co-conspirator!

Certainly illegal aliens are victimized by a long list of exploiters, ranging from the leaders of the governments of their home countries who encourage them to head to the U.S., to the smugglers who enable them to run our nation’s borders and circumvent the inspections process, to employers who intentionally hire vulnerable illegal aliens and coerce them into working for substandard wages under conditions that are so awful that they are often patently illegal, to the slumlords who cram them into filthy, often illegally subdivided apartments that pose a serious risk to their health and safety.

As an INS special agent I encountered many instances where unscrupulous employers treated their illegal alien employees worse than slaves! Effective enforcement of the immigration laws could help to end these illegal, immoral, and barbaric practices, and those who advocate non-enforcement of the immigration laws are often well aware of this but are motivated by a desire for profit or political power that trumps decency or compassion!

Illegal aliens come to the U.S. from nearly every country on this planet, but by far, in large measure because of geography, more illegal aliens come from Mexico than any other country.

The U.S. has become the economic and societal safety valve for Mexico and other migration-exporting countries. Mexico is a wealthy nation. It has vast reserves of petroleum and other natural resources. It also has a population of hard-working citizens. Those two factors should create economic opportunities for the citizens of Mexico. In fact, Carlos Slim, currently believed to be the wealthiest person on the planet, lives in Mexico and is a Mexican citizen.

The problem is that Mexico’s vibrant economy does not “share the wealth” with the majority of its citizens. The great majority of the citizens of Mexico do not enjoy a high standard of living. They know that the best hope that they have to be able to support themselves is to get to the U.S., then take menial jobs that pay low wages. The citizens of Mexico who run our border are primarily young, able-bodied men. These are the same Mexican citizens who, if they could not make their way to the U.S. to help support their families by working under terrible conditions in the United States, would likely demand economic reforms in Mexico.

It is immoral for a country’s leaders to look at their fellow citizens as one of their country’s most important exports — yet this is precisely the situation in Mexico as well as many other countries around the world.

These political leaders see the money sent home by their “exported” citizens, via remittances and other means, as a major factor in the economies of their respective countries.

When aliens seek to run the U.S. southern border they often employ the “services” of alien smugglers. Increasingly, these smugglers are employed by, or work in close cooperation with, the highly violent drug cartels. Often young women are raped and the men are beaten. Often these aliens are forced to act as “mules” carrying narcotics on their persons. Aliens who cannot keep up are often left in the desert to die.

At times young children accompany their parents or others who promise to bring these children to their parents who are already in the U.S. These children are placed in a life-threatening situation, yet it is virtually unheard of that anyone who attempts to smuggle a child into the U.S. is prosecuted for endangering the lives and welfare of these children.

Stop and think about it. If an adult drives a child in his car and fails to secure that child in a proper child safety seat, that motorist will face legal repercussions for that failure. If in addition to failing to secure the child in a safety seat or, if the child is old enough, in a seat belt, a driver who also commits other infractions of vehicle and traffic law may find himself/herself facing criminal charges for endangering the safety and well-being of that child.

Several years ago a couple of foreign tourists who were visiting New York City were arrested by the police because one summer afternoon, while they dined in a restaurant, they allowed their sleeping child to remain in his stroller next to the window of the restaurant where they could keep an eye on him. It was a delightful summer day and the weather was ideal. However, they were initially charged with endangering their child’s safety by their actions. Ultimately they were able to convince the appropriate authorities that in their home country it was a normal practice to do this, and they were eventually permitted to go on their way with their child, but not before the couple was arrested.

However, if an illegal alien drags his child through the desert where the temperature can soar to well over one hundred degrees, water is scarce, and poisonous snakes and insects abound, nothing is ever done to punish those parents for endangering their children’s welfare!

Young illegal alien men who come to the U.S. often come by themselves. They leave their wives and girlfriends back home. This gives rise to the popularity of brothels which spring up in virtually every immigrant community, irrespective of the ethnicity or nationality of the predominant citizenship of the aliens who reside in those communities.

This, naturally, leads to trafficking in prostitutes in the broad spectrum of immigrant communities. Some of the young women who work in those brothels come here illegally, knowing full well that they will be working in houses of prostitution, but many others are coerced or duped into working as prostitutes. There is certainly no shortage of victims to be found where these degrading and dehumanizing practices are concerned. As an INS Special Agent I often participated in raids on houses of prostitution, and often found that the “clientele” were illegal aliens, as were many of the young women who worked there.

Now that we have taken a brief look at the ways in which illegal aliens are victimized by illegal immigration, we will turn our attention to the ways in which U.S. citizens and lawful immigrants are victimized by our nation’s failures to secure its borders, effectively enforce U.S. immigration laws, and also make certain that the process by which visas are issued to aliens and the way in which applications for various immigration benefits have meaningful integrity.

There are two fundamental ways that American citizens and lawful immigrants are victimized. First of all, their lives are endangered. Second, their ability to secure work is diminished, and many Americans and lawful immigrants who have jobs are finding that their wages are suppressed by the massive influx of foreign workers. This is not only happening at the bottom of the economic ladder, but also in high-tech industries such as computer programming, where aliens and corporations that seek to hire them, game the visa process.

Illegal immigration and national security

Let us begin by considering the issue of the nexus between illegal immigration and national security, criminal justice, and community safety.

When states or cities declare themselves to be “Sanctuaries” for illegal aliens, the federal government takes no action. These sanctuaries are acting in violation of federal immigration law, yet those violations go unpunished.

Title 8, United States Code, Section 1324 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), deems it a felony to aid, abet, encourage, or induce aliens to enter our country illegally or remain in our country illegally.

It certainly follows that when political leaders state that illegal aliens have nothing to fear from law enforcement officials within their jurisdiction, this encourages aliens to evade the inspections process or otherwise enter the United States to make their way to those jurisdictions where violations of the immigration law will be ignored by law enforcement authorities. Furthermore, when an illegal alien is encountered by local law enforcement, this violation of law will not be brought to the attention of federal immigration law enforcement authorities. This could certainly be considered an act of harboring or shielding.

You would be hard-pressed to find any other federal laws that local or state law enforcement authorities refuse to report to the appropriate federal authorities. It is naive or dishonest when politicians claim that America would be better off if our nation allowed aliens into our country who simply wanted to work so that law enforcement authorities could focus on the terrorists and gang members.

I have arrested individuals who were wanted for serious crimes, who were engaged in activities supportive of terrorism. One case involved a convicted murderer who had been deported and then unlawfully re-entered the U.S. He was convicted for unlawful re-entry, and while serving his sentence, he escaped from a federal prison and I stumbled upon him working in a glass factory in Brooklyn! All too often criminals and terrorists hide in plain sight by taking mundane jobs. The day before a terrorist commits an act of terror, he is likely to be hiding in plain sight by working at his job, which provided him with camouflage and mobility.

When a chief of police makes the claim that if the police officers under his/her command worked with ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) to enforce the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) that community policing would suffer, that police chief needs to have rhinoplasty! (His nose is growing!)

As an INS Special Agent assigned to the Unified Intelligence Division (UID) of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) in New York City, I worked closely with other federal agencies and law enforcement agencies of foreign governments, including Israel, Canada, Great Britain, and Japan. No one claimed that by having police departments working in close cooperation with immigration law enforcement harm would be done to community policing.

These fatuous assertions make it clear that these politicians are willing to sacrifice the safety and the lives of the citizens of our country for political purposes!

The tragic loss of a police officer

It has been said that a million deaths is a statistic but that one death is a tragedy. Let me tell you about one death: As an INS Special Agent, I saw many instances where these failures wreaked havoc in communities and in the lives of people, but one gut-wrenching case in particular stands out. A member of the New York City Police Department, a 24-year-old police officer by the name of Robert Machate, lost his life to an alien who was illegally present in the United States. Robert Machate, at the time of his death, was assigned to the Brooklyn South Task Force.

In 1986, I was assigned to provide assistance to Detention and Deportation Officers of the INS to transport aliens who had been ordered deported to the airport to effect their deportation from the United States. During the course of one of those assignments, I personally escorted an alien by the name of Renaldo Rayside to the airport after an immigration judge entered an order of removal to deport Rayside to his native country of Panama, due to his conviction on several drug charges. Years earlier, Rayside was admitted into the United States as a lawful immigrant. But he blew his opportunities by committing narcotics-related crimes.

Within two years, Rayside returned illegally to the U.S., having never applied for nor received the necessary authorization to return to the United States following his deportation. Once he returned to the U.S., Rayside was arrested by members of the New York City Police Department and, in addition to other charges, was charged at least twice with resisting arrest. New York City had policies in place that prevented city law enforcement officers from contacting INS, even when they had reasonable suspicion that a person in their custody was unlawfully present in the U.S.

New York City’s sanctuary policies precluded its officers from contacting INS to inquire about Rayside’s immigration status. Had the INS been contacted, INS would have most likely detained Mr. Rayside, based upon his criminal conduct and his presence in the U.S. despite having been previously removed. Rayside would have been either imprisoned and prosecuted for reentering the U.S., or, at the very least, would have been deported.

On March 3, 1989, as a result of New York City’s sanctuary policies, Rayside was still present and at-large in the U.S. (albeit unlawfully) when he was stopped for questioning by Officer Robert E. Machate and his partner. On this day, Rayside wrestled Officer Machate’s gun from him and, in the gunfight that ensued, a bullet struck Officer Machate in the back.

I was called upon to provide testimony at the murder trial because of my knowledge of the factors concerning the defendant’s background and the fact that I had executed his Warrant of Deportation.

Because it was impossible to prove if the bullet that had struck Officer Machate came from the gun that Rayside had taken from Officer Machate, Rayside was acquitted of the top charge of murder of a police officer but was found guilty of other crimes.

There are two postscripts to this tragedy.

Approximately two years ago, when I was shopping in a local supermarket, I noticed that a very pretty young lady who was working as a check-out clerk in the store was wearing an NYPD “courtesy badge” on a chain around her neck. These are much smaller than a regulation badge, and often are given to family members of police officers. I asked her who in her family was a police officer. She told me that her dad was a police officer. When I asked where he was assigned, she told me that he was dead. She then told me her father had been killed while on official duty in 1989. I was stunned!

As it turned out, that young lady was Officer Machate’s daughter, who was born after her dad lost his life to New York City’s “sanctuary policy.”

Suddenly the emotions I had felt on the witness stand at the murder trial came flooding back to me, as I met this young woman whose life was irrevocably altered by the senseless death of her father!

The other postscript relates to my declaration that I provided to the law firm retained by Governor Brewer. I made reference to the death of Officer Machate in my declaration and flew to Arizona to attend a rally and participate in panel discussions in Phoenix. Arrangements had been made for me to stay at the home of friends in Arizona, and I was stunned to turn on my computer to check my e-mail and found out that I had been forwarded an e-mail from a gentleman by the name of Thomas Machate. Thomas, as it turned out, was Machate’s younger brother! He thanked me for my efforts in conjunction with my testimony at the murder trial. We ultimately had a lengthy phone conversation when I returned back to New York. He told me that he had followed in his brother’s footsteps and had become a member of the NYPD. He has since retired from the NYPD and is now working as a police officer in a local police department in Florida.

He told me how the murder of his “big brother,” Robert Machate, forever changed his life and the lives of his parents, who are now deceased. This is the sort of real world price all too many people are paying across this nation because of these failures to enforce the immigration laws.

Implications of two terrorist attacks

Consider the implications of two terrorist attacks in 1993. The attack at the CIA Headquarters in Langley, Virginia, in January 1993 was by a Pakistani national named Mir Kansi, who stood outside CIA Headquarters with an AK-47 and opened fire on approaching vehicles driven by CIA officials reporting for work on that cold January morning. When the smoke dissipated, two CIA officers lay dead and three other were seriously wounded. Kansi fled the U.S. and was ultimately brought back to stand trial. He was found guilty and executed for his crimes. Prior to the attack, Kansi had also been granted political asylum. A subsequent review of his immigration file and political asylum application disclosed that he lied on his application, thereby committing fraud. Yet that fraud went unnoticed. Because of it, he was able to hide in plain sight while he went about his plans to attack the Central Intelligence Agency’s Headquarters.

He was found guilty and executed for his crimes. Had the fraud contained in his application for political asylum been detected and had he been deported from the U.S., those who were killed and wounded would not have been harmed.

Just one month later, on February 26, 1993, a bomb-laden truck was parked in the garage under the World Trade Center complex and detonated. The blast nearly brought one of the 110-story towers down sideways. As a result of the explosion, 6 innocent people were killed, hundreds, or more, were injured, and an estimated one half billion dollars in damages were inflicted on that iconic complex of buildings located just blocks from Wall Street. That attack was also carried out by alien terrorists, who managed to not only game the visa process in order to enter the U.S., but the immigration benefits program that enabled them to remain in the United States and embed themselves as they went about their preparations to carry out that attack.

DHS director refuses to secure the border

Many politicians and high-ranking members of the administration such as Janet Napolitano, the Director of the DHS (Department of Homeland Security), have minimized the significance of our immigration laws.

On a number of occasions, Napolitano has stated that running the U.S.-Mexican border is not a crime. An alien who has never been previously deported from the U.S. and runs our borders is not committing a felony, but an alien who has been previously deported from the U.S. because of a prior felony conviction, in fact, is committing a serious crime by unlawfully re-entering the U.S. without authority. Under the relevant provisions of the Immigration and Nationality Act, such a previously deported criminal alien faces a maximum of 20 years in prison for that crime. Back in the early 1980s I approached then New York State’s Senior Senator, Alphonse D’Amato, about amending the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) to create that law. Even Ms. Napolitano would have to admit that a crime that carries with it a maximum of twenty years in prison is not only a felony but a particularly serious felony!

When an individual is found running our borders, there is no immediate way of determining whether or not that individual is committing a serious felony — only by arresting and fingerprinting that individual can an appropriate determination be made.

Furthermore, the inspections process is not a mere formality, but is a vital process that is supposed to prevent the entry of aliens into the United States whose presence would be problematic.

The Immigration and Nationality Act lists various categories of aliens who are statutorily ineligible to enter the U.S.

Among the categories of aliens who are supposed to be kept out of the U.S. are aliens with dangerous communicable diseases, those who suffer serious mental illness and are prone to violence, aliens who are convicted felons, aliens who are fugitives from justice in other countries, aliens who are human traffickers and drug smugglers, aliens who are war criminals and aliens who have committed human rights violations, and aliens who are engaged in terrorism and espionage. Finally, aliens who have been previously deported and fail to secure the appropriate re-entry authorization are barred from re-entering the U.S.

It must therefore be presumed that aliens who circumvent the inspections process are members of one or more classes of excludible aliens. We are talking about potential transnational criminals, war criminals, human rights violators, fugitives from justice in foreign countries, and terrorists.

Furthermore, records of entry are not created when aliens entering the U.S. evade the inspection process, thereby creating additional national security vulnerabilities.

What is extremely disturbing is that the Director of Homeland Security has been unwilling to admit just how much of a threat is created when our borders are not secured, and when those aliens who evade the inspections process are provided with opportunities to create false identities for themselves to evade law enforcement authorities.

I have grave concerns about the nexus between any amnesty program and national security. Those concerns also apply to one of the latest amnesty programs implemented by President Obama’s use of “Prosecutorial Discretion” to provide hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens with employment authorization under a massive program he referred to as “deferred action.” This covers illegal aliens who would have benefited from the DREAM Act, if the proposed legislation had passed. Both the DREAM Act and Comprehensive Immigration Reform failed to pass the legislative process.

In his speech from the White House Rose Garden on June 15, 2012, President Obama claimed that Congress had failed to act, when he announced his use of executive orders to provide what he estimated would be 800,000 illegal aliens with employment authorization. The Pew Hispanic Center, on that very same day, claimed that an estimated 1.4 million aliens would benefit from this program, and the Migration Policy Institute subsequently claimed that as many as 1.8 million illegal aliens would benefit from this program. Most recently, major news organizations including CBS News and Fox News have stated that it is estimated that two million illegal aliens will participate in this ill-conceived program. In just over six weeks, the estimates of the number of aliens who will benefit by this program more than doubled before the first application was even filed!

It is likely that the ultimate number of aliens who will obtain employment authorization will exceed all of these estimates.

For decades USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services) has been unable to effectively cope with its massive workload without having so many more applications dumped onto the desks of the already overworked and beleaguered adjudications officers. Each year they have to process between six- and seven-million applications for a wide variety of immigration benefits, including the conferring of resident alien status and U.S. citizenship upon aliens.

There will be no way for face-to-face interviews to be conducted in conjunction with these applications for Mr. Obama’s de facto amnesty. Also, because of the sheer workload, the pressure will be imposed on the adjudications officers to approve as many of these applications as possible. An application can be approved in a matter of minutes. However, a denial can take hours or longer. It certainly seems that the goal of the administration is to provide employment authorization to as many illegal aliens as possible. While the managers at USCIS would be reluctant to order the adjudications officers under their command to approve as many applications as possible, for fear that frustrated employees might complain about such orders to the media or members of Congress, all that management would have to do is mandate that each adjudications officer approve a minimum number of applications. If that number is high enough, the only way that the quotas could be met would be for the employees of USCIS to approve the great majority of applications that they adjudicate.

Clearly national security and community safety are jeopardized when millions of foreign nationals (aliens) are able to enter the United States and seek to acquire a wide array of immigration benefits, including the issuance of an Alien Registration Receipt Card (green card) and U.S. citizenship.

What is seldom noted is that, prior to the Second World War, the enforcement and administration of the immigration laws was the responsibility of the Department of Labor. Back then it was understood that if large numbers of foreign workers were admitted into the U.S., Americans would likely lose their jobs to those foreign workers or, at the very least, find that their wages stagnated. After all, labor is a commodity. When establishing the value of a commodity the classic rules of economic come into play. This is a matter of supply and demand. If you dump a commodity on the market, the value of that commodity will plummet. By protecting American workers from unfair foreign competition, the U.S. built the largest and most upwardly mobile middle class. This gave rise to the “American Dream.”

This was the engine that powered the envy and role model for the rest of the world!

The opponents of immigration law enforcement claim that the “undocumented immigrants” (their term, not mine) take jobs Americans won’t do. The reality is that illegal aliens are easily exploited and coerced into working for substandard wages under substandard conditions. We have all seen apparent illegal alien day laborers congregating in the parking lots of various stores that sell home improvement supplies and on street corners in various communities around the U.S.

The day laborers often compete with construction workers, and, although there is no comparison between the quality of the work a tradesman does and the quality of the work a day laborer does, the consumer is often the victim of the substandard work while the contractor who hires the day laborers simply pockets more of the money paid to him by the hapless homeowner. An additional problem with day laborers is that they are often unable to provide reliable proof of identity. A day laborer may have a serious criminal history here or elsewhere. The person who provides day laborers with access to their homes is in a precarious position. Day laborers have attacked, robbed, and even killed homeowners they were working for.

During the 2012 Presidential campaign there was no discussion about the need to not only create jobs, but liberate jobs by enforcing immigration laws that are already on the books and have been for decades!

It takes time and money to build a factory or other facility that ultimately provides new jobs. However, if the administration was to enforce the immigration laws to remove illegal aliens from the workplace, American workers and those aliens who have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence could be streaming through the front door of those very same factories that very same day!

The immigration laws certainly do provide for foreign workers who possess extraordinary skills, education or talent to enter the U.S. as immigrants or non-immigrants to do work that they are uniquely qualified to do. Talented and unique workers should be granted work visas. However, all too often the only thing exceptional about foreign workers is their willingness to work for exceptionally low wages! This violates the letter and the spirit of our immigration laws and is destroying America’s middle class. The concept of the “American Dream” is, in fact, inextricably linked to our middle class. This was the engine that drove America’s greatness throughout the last century. Americans knew that the acquisition of an education or a trade or important skill, anyone willing to work hard, persevere, and had a bit of luck could write the next “American Success Story.”

Those opportunities are evaporating as more corporations outsource jobs and import cheap labor, driving Americans out of the work force or, at the very least, driving down wages of hard-working Americans who find that they are made to run up an economic “down escalator” that is picking up speed!

The Merriam-Webster On-Line Dictionary, in part, defines the term “victim” thus:

“... one that is acted on and usually adversely affected by a force or agent <the schools are victims of the social system>: as a (1) : one that is injured, destroyed, or sacrificed under any of various conditions <a victim of cancer> <a victim of the auto crash> <a murder victim> (2) : one that is subjected to oppression, hardship, or mistreatment <a frequent victim of political attacks> b : one that is tricked or duped <a con man’s victim>”

It would certainly be fair and accurate to define these American citizen, and lawful immigrant workers, who have fallen below the poverty line, when they lose their jobs to foreign workers, as being the victims of illegal immigration! It would be equally reasonable to say the same for anyone who falls victim to acts of violence committed by foreign nationals who evade the inspections process or otherwise violate our immigration laws and are here illegally when they commit the crime that results in the death or injury of an innocent victim.

Every one of the victims of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, perished because of failures of the immigration system to provide the protection to national security and the lives of American citizens as called for in the Immigration and Nationality Act.

As was ruefully noted by a friend whose son was killed during the 9/11 terrorist attacks, his son’s death and the death, of the roughly 3,000 other victims were, for our leaders who refused to secure our borders and effectively enforce our immigration laws, “the cost of doing business.” That is a price we can ill afford to pay!

One final thought

It is important to understand that the fundamental principle behind the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), enacted in 1952, was to protect our nation and our citizens from the entry and presence of aliens in our country who pose a threat to the safety and well-being of our citizens and the security of our nation. The INA has been amended over the years, but, the objective of those laws contained within the INA has been to protect our nation and our citizens.

If our borders were truly secure, transnational gang members would not be able to enter the U.S. and set up shop in communities from coast to coast and border to border. If the borders were truly secure, these narco-traffickers would not be able to smuggle the narcotics into our country that they peddle on street corners across our nation into our nation!

While the current administration has worked the hardest at blocking the enforcement of our immigration laws, it is certainly not the first administration to fail to enforce the immigration laws. Administrations and politicians from both major parties bear the responsibility for these failures that go back nearly a half century.

Today there are governors and mayors across our nation who refuse to work cooperatively with ICE to identify and seek the removal of aliens who have committed crimes, claiming that it would be unfair to separate these illegal aliens from their family members while utterly ignoring how many law-abiding citizens, lawful immigrants, and foreign nationals who have been lawfully admitted into the U.S. are killed by criminal aliens. At what point will the loss of these lives be a matter of concern for these politicians? The point must be made that, if there is concern for separating people from their families, those who are killed are permanently and irrevocably separated fromtheirfamilies!

The leadership demonstrated by Reps. King and Jones, prioritizing the safety, security, and well-being of the citizens of our nation, should serve as a model for all members of our nation’s Congress and all political leaders across our country. The concerns that they have addressed should most certainly be foremost in the heart and mind of the President and serve as the guiding principle for the next administration!

About the author

Michael W. Cutler is a retired Senior Special Agent with the INS (Immigration and Naturalization Service). He appears regularly on numerous radio and television programs, including Fox News, CNN, and MSNBC. He hosts his own Internet radio program,”Bordering on Insanity.” Mr. Cutler has testified as an expert witness at more than a dozen Congressional hearings. Visit his website at: