When it comes to immigration, our officials choose to “know nothing!”
By Mark Cromer
For all the head-shaking disbelief that has erupted over revelations that San Francisco District Attorney Kamala Harris allowed illegal immigrant felons to skip prison and deportation by working in a tax-funded “jobs program,” the only truly shocking development is that anyone is surprised at all.
When it comes to immigration—particularly of the illegal variety—America is now living in the Age of Schultz: an era of intentional malfeasance that’s epitomized by our elected officials professing at each new outrage “I know nothing! Nothing!”
With all apologies to John Banner, the veteran actor who portrayed the bumbling Sgt. Hans Schultz on the classic television show Hogan’s Heroes, Harris may as well start wearing a Wehrmacht helmet and a long coat so she can look the part as well (noshing on bratwurst five times daily might also help establish a more Schultz-like girth).
Harris, who is running for the top law enforcement job in California, found herself pleading ignorance after it was reported that illegal immigrant Alexander Izaguirre was in a jobs program run by Harris when savagely attacked a woman during a street robbery spree in San Francisco last summer.
Just months prior to the robbery and brutal attack—which left his victim with a shattered skull and compelled her to flee the state—Izaguirre had been arrested in San Francisco for peddling cocaine on the street. Before that dope bust he had been arrested for a previous robbery. He pled guilty to the felony narcotics charge and was transferred into a program euphemistically entitled ‘Back On Track,’ which provides “job training” for first-time felons in the hope of diverting them from re-offending.
Free from prison and in Harris’s program, Izaguirre struck yet again.
But as Harris now tells it, she simply didn’t know that illegal immigrant felons were being funneled into the program until Izaguirre’s attack on the woman last summer. Once she found out about it, Harris said, she decided not to find out just how many more illegal immigrant felons were in the program.
Instead, she chose to issue instructions that going forward illegal immigrants were no longer qualified for the ‘Back On Track’ program. “I believe we fixed it,” Harris blithely explained.
The dynamics of this incident reveal, yet again, the absolute culpability of our government officials in aiding and abetting illegal immigration and, therefore, their guilt as accessories to the crimes illegal immigrants commit.
The bitter truth is that just weeks before Harris’s program partner Izaguirre mauled a woman on the street, police say Edwin Ramos, an illegal immigrant gang member who had been arrested repeatedly and yet shielded from deportation by a San Francisco city program, opened fire with a machine gun and slaughtered a family in their car.
Mayor Gavin Newsom, now a candidate for governor, offered the same glib excuse that Harris is now: he didn’t know.
Of course the truth is that Harris, Newsom and numerous other officials up and down California and across the country—including the White House—choose not to know, just like Schultz on Hogan’s Heroes. In fact, they are so firmly committed to not knowing that they oppose virtually any sensible effort to determine if a person is in the country legally.
They will declare their support for targeting employers who hire illegal immigrants, and then work to ensure that E-verify and other measures are never applied to employers and jobsites. They claim illegal immigrants pose no significant burden to taxpayers, but challenge and obstruct any effort for a comprehensive accounting of the financial cost of this illicit population.
Again and again, they just don’t want to know.
Thus this willful ignorance is replicated and encouraged throughout much of California’s local, state and county bureaucracies; with employees either forbidden to inquire about a person’s immigration status or prevented from reporting it—or both.
From hospital emergency rooms to job programs to public school classrooms and even still in many jails; illegal immigrants remain shielded from any real threat of detection and deportation by a government that’s actively in collusion with the business interests that are addicted to cheap labor and ethnocentric interest groups that are hungry for pure demographic power.
Even President Obama, as he wages an all-out fight for healthcare reform, seems gleefully unaware as to just how many illegal immigrants are among the 40-plus million uninsured people in the country. And it’s a safe bet he will not be asked.
And so it goes in this Age of Schultz.
The one thing that Schultz the bumbling oaf of a guard had over Harris, Newsom and their ilk, however, is that Schultz was likable because it was, after all, just television. On the streets of San Francisco, the blood and the betrayal is all too real.
Mark Cromer is a senior writing fellow at Californians for Population Stabilization.