Los Angeles Should Stop Hugging Illegal Aliens

by GREGORY D. LEE March 1, 2012
In what has to be the most ridiculous recommendation by any law enforcement official, Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck and his counterpart, Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca, have announced they support issuing driver licenses to illegal aliens. Chief Beck said, “The reality is that all the things that we’ve done – ‘we’ being the state of California – over the last 14, 16 years have not reduced the problem one iota.”
Sheriff Baca qualified his recommendation by saying that licenses should be issued “as long as they have been in the United States for a number of years without committing other crimes.”
The problem would be resolved if the State of California would mandate local police officers and sheriff’s deputies to turn over illegal aliens to Immigration and Customs Enforcement for deportation. Instead, California’s governor signs into law a state version of the “Dream Act” allowing illegal aliens to receive public and private college grants. San Francisco, Santa Ana, Santa Cruz, Los Angeles and other cities declare themselves “sanctuary cities.” Is there any wonder why California is a magnet for illegal aliens?
The Los Angeles Times reported Chief Beck said that he expected the number of hit-and-run accidents would decrease if illegal immigrants were licensed, because they would not have to fear being caught without a license at accidents. Maybe if LAPD officers told illegal aliens they had no fear of deportation they wouldn’t run after being involved in accidents.
Sheriff Baca suggested that driver licenses for illegal aliens be renewed annually and have the letter “I” imprinted on them “so police could determine immediately if they were dealing with someone in the country illegally.” That has as much change of passing the state legislature as tattooing the letter “I” on an illegal alien’s forehead.  
Chief Beck is also on record of directing his officers not to impound vehicles of illegal aliens that they encounter because he thinks it is unfair for illegal immigrants who cannot receive California driver licenses. The 30-day holds (on vehicles), he said, “are too severe a punishment for never-licensed drivers and place a serious strain on their ability to get to and from jobs.” His proposal started an uproar from taxpaying licensed and insured drivers in the city who are tired of paying state mandated “uninsured motorist” insurance, which is a euphemism for illegal alien insurance.
Rather than doing what obviously works every time it’s tried, deportation, Los Angeles city and county law enforcement and public officials chose to tolerate illegal aliens, allow them to victimize legal residents with hit-and-run accidents, and take jobs away from them. Isn’t it illegal for anyone to employ an illegal alien? Then why is Chief Beck concerned about an illegal’s ability to get to and from his job? What part of “illegal” don’t the Los Angeles police chief and sheriff understand?
As much as California may not like it, illegal aliens are arrestable by virtue of their mere presence. If Chief Beck and Sheriff Baca want illegal aliens to be licensed, let them get an international driver’s license and buy automobile insurance. Even if licensed, most illegal aliens wouldn’t buy high-cost automobile insurance because if they are involved in an accident, they merely return to their home country.
A driver license implies legitimacy from the state. Most of the 9-11 terrorists had legitimate driver licenses and never feared questioning by immigration authorities. California assumes all illegal aliens are from Mexico when in reality many are visa overstays from around the world, including Pakistan, Thailand, Iran and the Middle East.
It’s time for California to stop hugging illegal aliens and start enforcing federal immigration law. If California sheriffs bussed all the illegal aliens county law enforcement agencies encountered on a weekly basis to Tijuana, the crime rate would further go down and the quality of life for legal residents would increase substantially.  
Family Security Matters Contributing Editor Gregory D. Lee is a retired Supervisory Special Agent for the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the author of three criminal justice textbooks. While on DEA diplomatic assignment in Pakistan, he was involved in the investigation of several notable terrorism events and arrests. He recently retired after more than 39 years of active and reserve service from the U.S. Army Reserve as a Chief Warrant Officer Five Special Agent for the Criminal Investigation Division Command, better known as CID. In 2011 he completed a combat tour of duty in Afghanistan while on special assignment to the Special Operations Command Europe. Visit his website at http://www.gregorydlee.com/ and contact him at info@gregorydlee.com.

Family Security Matters Contributing Editor Gregory D. Lee is a retired Supervisory Special Agent for the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the author of three criminal justice textbooks. While on DEA diplomatic assignment in Pakistan, he was involved in the investigation of several notable terrorism events and arrests. He recently retired after more than 39 years of active and reserve service from the U.S. Army Reserve as a Chief Warrant Officer Five Special Agent for the Criminal Investigation Division Command, better known as CID. In 2011 he completed a combat tour of duty in Afghanistan while on special assignment to the Special Operations Command Europe. Visit his website athttp://www.gregorydlee.com/ and contact him at info@gregorydlee.com.


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