Friday, April 30, 2010

The Arizona Law Doesn’t Go Far Enough

Arizona is on the right track. But what good is passing a law that makes it legal for law enforcement to stop anyone who appears to be Mexican when those people can blend right in with people of Mexican heritage who are here legally? It’s one thing to untie the hands of law enforcement to give them the power to stop anyone they might suspect of being illegal, but even if they catch one, it will just result in deportation. And, as we know, these are wily, resourceful people who have the proven ability to slip back across the border and, once again, blend right in. All this law will accomplish is continuing this cat-and-mouse game, or juego de gato y raton. We need a way to identify illegals permanently, so that even if they sneak back across the border, it will be impossible for them to hide in plain sight. That is why I am proposing what I consider to be an effective solution: paint them.

Of course, the first question that comes to any rational person’s mind is: Sure. But what color? Mexican people are identifiable by their brownish skin tone, which makes them indistinguishable not only from legal residents of Mexican heritage, but from most white people coming out of tanning parlors. Perhaps we could use the colors of the Mexican flag: red, green, and white. Though, obviously, white is out ‘cause that’s what we are. That leaves green and red.

But that still leaves problems. Even painted a distinctive red, Mexicans might be able to blend in with Native Americans at their many casinos. And the green might be problematic, because it would have to be a green that would make them stand out in a crowd of Irish-Americans on St. Patty’s Day or face-painted Packer fans on any given football Sunday. Given the free-wheeling, helter skelter atmosphere of most tailgate parties, a green Mexican might be able to disappear in the Packer crowd by cleverly tossing aside his trademark big dingle ball hat in favor of the popular yellow cheese tri-corner hat. So red by itself won’t work. Nor green alone. That leaves one obvious solution: stripes. Painting Mexican illegal aliens with green and red stripes would instantly identify them in any American crowd, whether at a Packer game, St. Patty’s Day parade, or Indian casino. 

Yet, while this tactic will ID any illegal in the daytime, what about at night? A clever alien might steal into the country in the dark of night, stay indoors during the day, and then take one of our more desirable night jobs as, say, an office building janitor, and then scurry home before sunrise. How do we deal with that? This brings in the second line of defense: tattoos. Of course, they would have to be somewhat ethnic specific, as tattoos among Americans have become increasingly popular. No Chinese characters, naked women, tramp stamps, or Born To Raise Hell graphics. A natural choice might be the Mexican flag emblem but that raises another problem. Their flag has a picture of an eagle. Sure, it’s not a bald eagle, like ours. Theirs is an eagle eating a snake; yet, if not seen up close, the eagle tattoo might make them seem just like ordinary, patriotic, albeit striped Americans. The tattoo would have to be something noticeable. Something that could be seen by law enforcement, even at a distance, or while passing by in a patrol car. The solution: a large “M” on the forehead. In glow-in-the-dark paint.

Combining these two devices -- red and green stripes, along with the large day-glo “M” on the forehead -- illegals would now be permanently identifiable, day or night, and only the most brazen among them would try to sneak back into the country, as they would be spotted a mile away, either by law enforcement, or by a concerned, armed citizenry now on the lookout for red and green-striped people with a glowing “M” on the forehead. Even a clever attempt to hide the tattoo, say, by wearing the traditional large, dingle ball hat to cover it would be futile, as it wouldn’t exactly be tough to spot a red and green-striped person wearing a large, dingle ball hat. 

Now, I imagine, to some bleeding heart liberals, the painting and forced tattoing of illegal immigrants will come off as extreme, even barbaric, inviting lawsuits, as well as protests by individuals concerned about individual rights and basic human decency. But, it’s just a suggestion. A stopgap measure. Eventually Congress will have to take up the issue and arrive at an effective, yet compassionate immigration policy, not just for those who are entering the country illegally, but for those who are here already. After all, this is the United States of America. Not some kind of crazy free-for-all. 

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