Tricky situation has but one cold fact

It is against the law to be in this country illegally.

Wow, one neat little sentence made my whole argument for me this week. I guess I can go home now. You all have been great. Enjoy your Easter and don’t forget to tip your bartender.

Well, on second thought, I guess I could go a little deeper into this line of thought.

For the record, I don’t really have a problem with the members of the Hispanic community that are here illegally. I don’t think their strain on public services is as great as many of the doomsayers claim, and I really don’t feel like they’re stealing jobs or driving down wages to the extent some people apparently do right now, judging by what I read and hear. I don’t fear a cultural take-over of the American way of life, and I truly don’t believe in my heart of hearts that English will be replaced as the official language of the United States.

But they are here illegally.

A major part of me feels for the illegal immigrants. After all, this nation was basically created by the concept of an open-arms policy to those searching for a better standard of life. We billed ourselves as “The melting pot,” and proudly presented the Statue of Liberty to immigrants making their journey to the new world. We are a collection of outcasts, misfits and never-wanteds, and pulled together our resources to make this the greatest nation the world has ever seen. But, it would seem, we’ve put out the “No Trespassing” sign to our neighbors to the south.Therefore, in regards to obtaining citizenship and the accompanying rights that go along with it, their timing stinks — and it’s a shame.

And they’re here illegally.

That’s what it keeps coming back to in my opinion. Look, I lived in California for several years — a state with a high percentage of both legal and illegal immigrants. I never really had a problem with them, and I didn’t see any interference whatsoever in the goofy lifestyle that California represents. In fact, there was an enhanced quality of life in my opinion, as the exposure to the cultural traditions of the Hispanic immigrants was an eye-opening experience I really enjoyed.

But many of them are here illegally.

And that’s the stumbling block for me. Are we to reward illegal behavior by softening our immigration stances or just looking the other way? Right or wrong, moral or immoral, the law states that if people are in this country without the proper paperwork, they are here illegally.

The amnesty proposals? I’m sorry, but that doesn’t seem quite right to me, either. Again, it’s a reward for breaking the law. I have no problem with our nation’s lawmakers deciding to just open the borders and allow citizenship to whoever wants it from another country — as long as nothing in the individual’s past would suggest illegal activities. You know, the whole, “Give us your hungry, your tired ... etc.” spiel. But to just reward people who are currently breaking the law seems, well, wrong.

If drugs were made legal tomorrow, should we just open the prisons and free everyone who was convicted of selling drugs? If possessing or providing child pornography was all of a sudden deemed protected by an individual’s right to freedom of speech, should we release those short-eyed, sicko freaks out of the prisons they should be forced to dwell in until a vengeful God exacts his revenge? Of course, I also feel that pedophiles should be forced to get the nature of their crimes tattooed on their foreheads and be placed in cells with inmates who are parents to small children, with the precise intent that ...

But I digress.

Of course, I’m not placing an individual’s desire to enjoy the riches and freedoms of the United States with some other crimes, but the fact remains that the illegal immigrants are indeed breaking the law. Earlier this week it was widely reported that the feds were softening on their stance that being here illegally would be seen as a felony — an obvious reaction to the muscle-flexing done by a growing Hispanic voting population. And, to be honest with you, I don’t really have a problem with that.

However ...

If the gates to the American kingdom do open up, and the books of citizenship expand to allow in more Hispanic immigrants, I’d like to toss out a few random thoughts:

• Life is tough — wear a helmet. Fight through the injustices bound to come your way, and make life easier for future generations in your families.

• Learn the language. The Europeans had to, as did every other group that came here. It’s not about stifling a culture, it’s about basic communication. Want to get ahead? Start by learning the language.

• Respect the laws of the land. On second thought, it doesn’t matter. Apparently you get rewarded for breaking them.