They Can Stay Your Home

If someone broke into your house, would you call the police?

You bet your sweet arse. If you came home from work one day to find your front door had been jimmied, your darling Precious Moments “Home Is Where The Hugs Are” wreath on the ground, your newspaper trampled, to find a guy in your house going through your jewelry, your paperwork, ganking your electronics or even just drinking your last beer standing over the open fridge, you would be pissed. And dialing 911.

You would, wouldn’t you? You would not say to the guy, “Hey, you had the gumption & ingenuity to break into my house. You are a freakin’ badass, and it’s my great honour now to not only let you finish my last beer, but also to stay in my guest room, use my towels, eat my food, watch TV as long as you like, and all you have to do is some gardening. What say you, Awesome Burglary Guy of Uncanny Cunning and Perspicacity? Oh, that’s too long. I’ll just call you Lucky Larcenist for short. You rule, LL!” Then fist bump him?


Fuck no, you would not.

So, gentle reader full of piss and vinegar, why do you hate Arizona for calling the cops? And that isn’t even really what they’re doing. They’re saying, “Hey, if we find somebody committing a crime, we’re going to check their citizenship status. Two birds, one stone!” See, in my ignorance I thought the United States already did that. Hence I carry my green card everywhere with me as I was advised by Homeland Security. I’m so naive & law abiding! Stupid girl.

Imagine my shock to learn that my lefty friends were gittin’ all up in arms, boycotting Arizona Tea (which is funny because it has utterly no affiliation with AZ whatsoever) because Arizona is now doing something I figured this country already had the right to do. So I looked at the law to see what was so unfair, why the President wishes to monitor it, and see if it’s true that Arizona is full of horrible racist schmucks who ought never to drink commercially brewed iced tea products ever again. So here is the law:

Arizona Immigration Law SB 1070 states:

For any lawful contact made by a law enforcement official or agency of this state or a county, city, town or other political subdivision of this state where reasonable suspicion exists that the person is an alien who is unlawfully present in the United States, a reasonable attempt shall be made, when practicable, to determine the immigration status of the person.

(There is some additional information & analysis here.)

HUH?! This is what you are pissed off about? If an officer approaches a person lawfully, they are to check the immigration status of that person…and…um. My God! From the hullabaloo online I thought maybe the police were going into people’s homes with billyclubs & whacking anyone over the head that might be wearing leiderhosen or a turban or listening to Shakira, or, in my case, still saying things like “Oi! There’s a penguin on the telly!”

I am deeply interested to know what the problem is. Please comment below. Because any analysis I see done by anybody who has a freaking clue in hell how the Constitution works doesn’t seem to be particularly bothered by this law. People in other countries seem flabbergasted that the US doesn’t have land mines & razor wire over every square inch of the border after 9/11. Tried sneaking into North Korea lately? Why is no one coming down on North Koreans for their blatant racism?

And that’s the crazy thing about this argument. So many are crying “racism”, like they do, which is interesting because, as many before me have pointed out, “illegal” is not a race. If you are assigning a specific race to that, that’s your boat to float, sister, not mine. However, since you’ve decided “Mexico” is a race, let’s look at it. Mexico’s immigration laws take into consideration your impact on the cultural character of the nation. So if you want to immigrate to Mexico & start a leftist commune, you better start learning regional dishes & customs & don’t you dare lump all Mexican cuisine & tradition into one category (like so many do). And God forbid you be Cuban. What, you didn’t realize not all Latino peoples are the SAME? Yeah, a lot of them hate being called Latino, too. Most folks prefer you ask.

I’ve also worked quite closely with illegal immigrants (or, as we call them in medicine, undocumented). Those folks make sure their bills are paid on time, as they naively believe that if they don’t, they will be sent back from whence they came–which apparently is not true, maybe not even in Arizona. They are, in my experience, extremely pleasant & hard working, and it’s my sincere wish that they go through the process so they can stay. In medicine of course we are not allowed to disclose their status.

No, I’m not a citizen either, but I am here  in the US as a permanent resident. That’s like living with you instead of marrying you, but if you pop the question I might say yes. I’d still kind of like to date England, though, even though England is sleeping with Europe (or rather, Europe is bending England over nightly). The point is, I’m staying in your house but you are getting all the benefits of a live-in girlfriend with none of the responsibility of marriage. For example, I do your laundry & contribute to the grocery bill, but you get to say who’s in charge. I’m a sub, basically.

The guy who broke into your house is just taking stuff. If you can convince him you won’t call the police, he might do some gardening or watch your kids, in which case the guy who came here legally & did all the work to get here is not getting a chance to do that for you. You are also driving the legal guy’s salary down, as you are paying the burglar a pittance. If you want more people to come, clamour for relaxation of the immigration process, not for the boycotting of an entire state who is just trying to sort of enforce laws already on the books.

But by all means, if you are so terrified of being called a racist that you don’t want to support the enforcement of America’s laws, do not call the police the next time someone breaks into your house. That would, after all, be classist. The poor guy clearly doesn’t have as much as you have, so breaking into your home is only fair. You should let him move in, & also subsidize his entire existence. Kind of like a slave, huh?

If you are not willing to do that, please rethink your histrionic response.

And if you can’t in any way see how your response might be histrionic, and instead are just irritated with me, please enjoy this, from whence the title of this blog comes. I’ll never leave you without a little sugar, baby. You are, after all, letting me pay to live in your house.



11 thoughts on “They Can Stay Your Home

  1. Katrina Homer says:

    if you haven’t already done so, read Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand. Outstanding freaking novel and I’m only half done!

  2. Jesse says:

    Thanks, KJ. You’re awesome. I appreciate you sticking up for us and for common sense.

    How much you wanna bet that the millions of people throwing such a fit failed to research the law itself (or live in Arizona, for that matter)? And how is it that we have access to more information now, but people are becoming more idiotic?

    I couldn’t be more irritated by this. As far as I know, and as you suggested, we (documented residents of Arizona) have to support both ourselves and the undocumented population regarding any tax burden and/or funding for public services. How is justice served in that? Apparently we’re supposed to sell out justice for – compassion, or something resembling it. It can’t all be compassion. I have to believe that not everyone who crossed the border unnoticed was compelled to do so by poverty or need.


  3. Tracy says:

    Kellie just rock. You can live with me anytime. You can be counted on to contribute to the house, the community and to the general well being to this country. just plain make me damn happy. What makes you different that all of these very angry illegals fleeing AZ? You did it LEGALLY! Thank You.

  4. Megan says:

    I think the problem is that not everyone believes “lawful contact” means what you think it means. In fact, Arizona doesn’t actually have a legal definition of “lawful contact” except that it means contact that isn’t illegal. “Lawful contact” certainly doesn’t pertain exclusively to the commission of a crime. If it did, the language of the legislation would stipulate that an officer should confirm the immigration status of someone who was already being arrested, which is actually something most law enforcement agencies do already. If someone is arrested for a crime, they usually check immigration status and notify ICE if the defendant is here illegally, and while it’s not a state crime to be here illegally, it is a federal crime and is punishable my a fine and deportation.

  5. Xenaclone says:

    I’d heard from other sources that the cops were specifically targeting people of colour, hence the freak-out and cries of ‘racism’ and ‘racial profiling!’

    But someone breaking into my house? You betcha I’d call the police! And make my way covertly – if I could – to the nice big, sharp, professional standard cooking knives in the kitchen.

  6. lightstarangel says:

    Was pointed here by ChristyKassity — as I was interested in reading what the other POVs are on this issue. My BIGGEST problem isn’t that cops are asking for ID, greencards, etc when arresting someone. It’s this:

    …reasonable suspicion exists that the person is an alien who is unlawfully present in the United States…

    What constitutes “reasonable suspicion”? HOW does one figure this out (unless part of an investigation of another crime or with prior evidence) without using racial profiling? Maybe I’m just not seeing it but “reasonable suspicion” to me, is giving free-range to use this law in the WRONG ways.

  7. Brenda says:

    In my opinion, it is neither practical nor advisable to “grandfather” those illegal immigrants currently in-country. I’m sorry that they took that risk to come here, but I truly only have sympathy for the children. They are the ones who could benefit most if given legal status in the US but are the least likely to receive it.

    I worked one summer with a group ministering to migrant families. Most if not all were illegal immigrants, as we discovered later. They worked in poor conditions (hot South Carolina summer) and lived in glorified storage sheds. The children who weren’t old enough to get sucked in to picking fruit were allowed to attend school at a program run by the county. The kids got meals, classes in reading and math, and in some cases clothing. A lot of what was given was donated privately.

    Some of the youngest children were being mistreated at home. We were told, “There’s nothing you can do; the families will just move to a new town and refuse to send the kids back to school.” Language was a huge barrier. I was the “expert” with two semesters of college Spanish. One man was ill, enough that he was ostracized by those in his “home” of contagion. We took him to a clinic, where TB was diagnosed. When we went back to inform the others and provide testing for them, the place was empty; the potential of being deported was more important than their “friend”, his health and maybe even their own health. Eventually the young man with TB recovered, but he was then returned to his homeland.

    The kids most likely never caught up to their peers in this land, but they also missed out on the chance for education in their own language in their homeland. How can they ever hope to make a self-sufficient, productive, LEGAL living?

    The “thieves” I met that summer didn’t steal anything from me physically. However, emotionally I struggled for months after leaving the placement and returning to university. I got off easy, really. Joey and his little sister…and the others…well, I’ll never know. The children’s futures were stolen: not because the adults picked fruit for a living, but because the children were ill-prepared to do anything but follow in their parents’ footsteps. Who is at fault? Certainly not those who write the laws and enforce them.

    If you want to live in “the land of the free and the home of the brave”, please knock on the door and wait politely to be invited inside. We’ll try to fit as many folks in as we can.

  8. Christi says:

    Thank you, Kellie, for allowing me to just share a link instead of having the same argument with people. Most of the people I have had to argue with are people who are not only NOT from Arizona, but not even from the southern part of the country that is affected by illegal immigrants.

    Now, I am not all for racial profiling. I don’t think a policeman should have the right to pull over a black man just because hes black, or anything like that, and I know people are getting SO uppity about how the police in Arizona are going to be abusing their “lawful contact” or turning it into “racial profiling.” the most flexible people who are anti toward the new law think that the police should only be able to check immigration status upon arrest for something unrelated to immigration. Okay, I can ~kind of~ see where that argument goes. However, using your same analogy, if the guy who broke into your house wasn’t raiding through your knicker drawer or stealing anything at all, lets say he was just in your house walking down your hallway, or taking a snooze in your guest room, would you still call the cops on him even though he wasn’t stealing anything? Fuck yeah you would because his VERY BEING THERE is illegal. Even just walking down the hallway not stealing anything is an illegal act because he gained access to that hallway illegally. So wouldn’t it be fair to say that an illegal immigrant walking down the streets though not appearing to be breaking any laws would be breaking a law just by being in this country illegally? Wouldn’t that then give the officer a right to check papers? If the person IS there legally and has the paperwork then what is the harm done? The person might be offended for 5 minutes, but its the same as you going into a bar and being carded.

    I get that this is going to be debated into the ground, but I really wish people would stop comparing it to Hitler. For fuck’s sake, Arizona is not putting people in concentration camps. They aren’t trying to cleanse the state of Mexicans all together just the ones who are here ILLEGALLY.

    I wish every country was as lax as we are with their immigration laws. If I could I would go live on Richard Branson’s island and live off his money.

  9. Megan says:

    Christi —

    I think the problem with your analogy is that you would know if someone in your house didn’t belong. You know all the people who live there, who have a legally protected right to be there. With illegal immigration, that’s not the case. You don’t know just by looking at someone whether or not they are here legally or not. The only way to find out is to ask, right? But who do you ask? Do you ask every single person you pass on the street? If we’re honest, probably not. The police are not going to stop everyone that passes them; if they did, they would do nothing but that all day everyday. Instead, the police will have to pick and choose, and who do you think they’ll choose?

    I think that it’s the answer to that last question that concerns people.

  10. mysticonion says:

    LOL Dating England but England is sleeping with Europe.. haha..

    But seriously I love what you said about illegal not being a race. Good points there.. hope people read this and “get it”

  11. chrisisright says:

    I just discovered you have a Blog! Stupid me. I’ve added it to my Blogroll and will visit frequently. I’ve done a couple of posts on this issue. The most relevant one is regarding the US Supreme Court’s decision on the case of Muehler vs. Mena, which states enforcement officials can ask for immigration papers whether there is a “reasonable suspicion” or not. (I won’t drop a link: any reader interested can click through to my blog).

    Like the law in Arizona or not, AZ actually has friendlier immigration laws than the federal government.

    Look forward to chatting with you more on Twitter, and here.

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