Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Okay...I Don’t Get This

Category: What The Fuck! This morning, The New York Times reported “Fearing that millions of illegal immigrants may not be counted in the 2010 census, Latino leaders are mobilizing a nationwide drive to urge Hispanics to participate in the survey, including an intense push this week in evangelical Christian churches.” Oh yeah, I get that ALL ethnic groups need to be counted in the US Census. What I don’t get is the “Illegal immigrants” part. It’s the illegal immigrants who are mounting protests. “Many illegal immigrants are likely to be reluctant to fill out a government form that asks for their names, birthdates and telephone numbers,” the NYT said. No kidding! The NYT article goes on to say, “Latino groups contend that there was an undercount of nearly one million Latinos in the 2000 census, affecting the drawing of Congressional districts and the distribution of federal money. Hispanic organizations are far better organized for next year’s census, but they say that if illegal immigrants — an estimated eight million of whom are Latino — are not included, the undercount could be much greater.” So, people who are in the US illegally are pissed off that they are not able to affect the distribution of federal money. And they say that our Constitution says “all residents” are to be counted in the US census. Well, not exactly. In 1790 the Constitution said “an enumeration” was to be made every ten years. Later on, this enumeration was elaborated as “of the population”.’s a little vague. But I just don’t see how it makes sense that a group in our population who could be tossed in jail and/or tossed out of the US if they filled out a form and gave their names, birthdates and telephone numbers and actually participated in the taking of the census, I don’t understand how this group is righteously indignant and complaining that they aren’t being treated fairly because they aren’t part of the census taking. Plus, this group is saying they should be able to affect how our Congressional districts are formed and they should be able to have a say-so in how federal money is handed out. Except that, were they actually to do what is required of all persons who are legally in this country when the Census is taken, they could be jailed or tossed out. I missing something, or is this insane?

1 comment:

Barry Schwartz said...

Undocumented residents pay taxes and their violation is, I believe, a misdemeanor. One could argue that they can’t vote, but in general neither could slaves or women, and neither children nor prisoners can vote in general, either, but are counted. So the system seems to be set up so that people of a particular privilege, to vote, select representatives to represent anybody and everybody who lives with a state (except, in the old days, Indians on reservations or whatever).

Here is the current law: