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A Day About “Illegal” Immigrants

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Immigrant solidarity day, 2009

Open borders advocates have made today something they are calling #daywithoutimmigrants.  That’s a lie.  America loves her lawful “immigrants.”  This is a day about illegal immigrants.

The vast majority of people in this country are descendants of legal immigrants to the new world. Those Americans have plenty of days that respect them.  They include “Labor day,” “Memorial Day,” and the 4th of July.  Americans don’t need a day of strike and protest for legal immigrants.  They are welcome here.

This day is about something else entirely.

Today’s political movement is about people who came here illegally over the last 30-50 years.  This is a day about illegal immigration … plain and simple.  For most Americans, we don’t want to be told that there is no distinction between legal and illegal immigrants.

Both of my grandmothers were immigrants, and both come here legally through the process in place at that time. They were real immigrants.  Neither broke the law.  Neither swam across a river, jumped a fence, or was smuggled into this country.  They were poor, one of Irish descent and one of Italian descent.  They wanted to be Americans, and they followed our laws to come here, contribute, and work to be an American.

My father’s mother had eleven children, and she raised thirteen in total.  Her husband was a blacksmith, quite literally put out of work by Henry Ford.  Several of her boys, including my father fought in World War II.  My mother’s mother arrived at Elis Island with her siblings, her father, and a disabled mother.  She cared for the family while her father worked, and she later grew up, married my grandfather, and ran a very successful business designing women’s undergarments.

It is family lore that she and my grandfather designed and invented what later became known as the cross-your-heart bra.  Grandma raised five kids, all of whom ran businesses. One of her children rose to the rank of Colonel in Army intelligence.  He was one of New Jersey’s most prominent lawyers in his time.

My family’s story of immigration is as American a story as one might read or tell.  It is, however, a story of “legal” immigration.  Please, don’t lump our family in with those who break our laws, flaunt our rules, and disrespect our country. There is no greater insult to real immigrants than to bunch them in with people who are line-cutters and toll-jumpers to the American dream. Those who break out laws leave behind immigrants who play by the rules. Why we reward this behavior, I have never known.

I have been engaged in the battle against illegal immigration since 1990.  In fact, few in this country were in the fight when it came to me.  I saw the invasion in my small hometown.  I raised the warning signs.  I wrote the letters.  I spoke about the issue.  I fought at every level to both respect and encourage legal immigration, and fight illegal immigration.  At one point, I wrote so often to local New Jersey newspapers about the issue that everyone knew the letters would start with one simple, strong, true statement:

“The illegal invasion of Freehold Borough by foreign nationals continues.”That was twenty-five years ago.

Freehold Borough, the home of Bruce Springsteen, has been fundamentally transformed by a foreign invasion.  We can say whatever we want about how many of these immigrants are hard-working, decent people now raising families.  For many, not all, that is true.

However, they have quite literally stolen a town, hijacked jobs and opportunities, and been rewarded with US citizenship for their offspring. It makes no sense that such a system exists or was allowed to take place.

Freehold is nearly 2500 miles from our Southern border.  It was the perfect place for many illegal aliens.  It had a bus station with transport to New York, and as a small urban town surrounded by wealthy suburbs, it provided lower-cost housing and immediate job opportunities for illegal aliens from contractors, landscapers, and restaurants.

It started as a trickle, and it became a flood.  The free flow of illegal labor has never ceased. Freehold is just one such town among 10’s of thousands. In Freehold, the town attempted to at first to combat the illegal influx. Then, it worked hand-in-hand with Federal authorities to help illegal immigrants set up a “muster-zone” for day laborers.

Ultimately, when it tried to stop the flood of illegal immigrants, it was sued.  Freehold was left with few choices but to comply as federal officials knowingly permitted it to be over-run, and federal law prevented any local action from stopping the invasion.

Day Laborers in Freehold head to “Muster Zone”
Photo/News Transcript

When your federal government tells you for the last 12 years that we have “roughly” 11 million illegal aliens in this country, it lies.  It lies with a wanton disregard.  In fact, some experts suggest illegal immigration is up to 40 million now.  Many others are comfortable with a number of 15-25 million.  As most say, there is no way to get an accurate count.

Since the last five Presidents permitted illegal immigration, America has been transformed.  The fact that whole states like California have been nearly taken over, or that innumerable cities declare themselves “sanctuary” cities reflects the reality that illegal aliens, their advocates, supporters, and extended US families, are a political force that has set up camp insider our country.

As I warned more than twenty years ago, we will hit a tipping point that will make it nearly impossible to address the issue. We are well past that point.

People who speak out against illegal immigration now are considered racist xenophobes. Mayors and college professors flaunt the law, and people here illegally march, openly, in protest in our streets.  They wave foreign flags, and on the worst of days, they carry anti-American racist signs.  Sometimes, for good measure, they burn our flag.

This is inside of our country. It’s all quite shocking, and I have been telling people that at some time, there will be a revolt.  This issue is in large part a significant factor in Mr. Trump’s improbable win.

I still stand today as an unapologetic advocate for legal immigration.  I still believe we are a better country through legal immigration.  I still believe, and our law still stands for the proposition that immigration to the United States is for the benefit of the existing citizens, and not solely for the benefit of prospective immigrants.

I still believe that if your first act is disrespecting our laws, you are a bad candidate for a country built on the rule of law and a civil society.

The media will pound us today with gut-wrenching, human interest stories about kids, brought here and now stuck in legal limbo. They will conflate the difference between legal and illegal aliens.  They will eschew the term illegal, and at best say, undocumented.

They will act as a propaganda arm for this open-borders lobby and its phony day on immigration. Even while writing this piece, one media member jumped on me for tweeting out about a store that closed for the day to honor “Immigrants.”  I jokingly tweeted that it ought to be reported to ICE.

Of course, while it was a tongue and cheek tweet, the inference was that I was a bad person and in violation of my trust as a law dean for attacking a store for its political stance.  Guess what, a political stance that apologizes for law-breaking deserves attack.

And, any business with lawful employees, immigrant or otherwise, ought not to be worried about ICE.  Of course, I left the law dean business because free speech on hot-button issues is not permitted in most institutions.  In this case, the poor reporter who tried to nail me associated me with the wrong law school, and didn’t know I was no longer an administrator at any school. I guess that just makes me another “crazy,” reckless, American being mean to immigrants.  That view is the height of naked ignorance on this issue.

For me, I will add everything I have to this blog that I have written over the years on illegal immigration.  Some pieces will be out of time and out of context.  However, they will stand as an enduring record that this American, a descendant of lawful immigrants, stood for his country and the rule of law.  Those pieces will make plain that the fight we have today happened because politicians of both parties sold out Americans to permit an invasion of illegal immigrants, each for their own political purposes.

For me … today is a day of illegal immigration.  I will not give up the fight against it.

Richard Kelsey

Author: Richard Kelsey

Richard Kelsey is the Editor-in-Chief of Committed Conservative.

He is an Attorney, a former Assistant Law School Dean, Law Professor, and Virginia state court law clerk. Dean Kelsey was also the CEO of a technology company specializing in combating cyber-fraud. He is a regular commentator on legal and political issues in print, radio and on TV.

Rich graduated from George Mason law school, clerked for the Arlington Circuit Court, and later joined an AM LAW top 10 law firm practicing commercial litigation. He left the firm to be counsel and CEO to a consulting firm, rising to CEO of Turiss, LLC, a technology firm specializing in computer forensics, digital investigations, and fighting cyber-fraud through civil intel services and new technologies. Upon the sale of the company, Kelsey returned to Mason Law, where in the years before his return, he both taught at the school and served as President of the Law Alumni Association. Kelsey was the Assistant Dean for Management and Planning.

At Mason, Dean Kelsey taught legal writing and analysis and an advanced litigation seminar. In 2014 he was elected by the graduating class as the faculty speaker at their graduation. While serving the former George Mason Law, Kelsey conceived of, planned, and brought to fruition Mason’s Center for the Protection of Intellectual Property, known as CPIP.

Rich has appeared on radio, TV, and in print hundreds of times as both a legal expert and political and legal commentator. He provided the legal analysis for all stages of the Bob McDonnell trial and appeal for numerous outlets including NPR and WMAL. He writes on occasion for the American Spectator and CNSNews.com. He returned to private practice in September of 2016, and he is working on a book/expose on legal education.

In his free time, Rich is part of the baseball mafia of Northern Virginia, serving on numerous boards and as a little league and travel baseball coach.

Rich has many opinions, and they are his own. His Twitter handle is @richkelsey.

2 COMMENTS

  1. Rich, very well done as always. Invaded is the proper term for what happened in our hometown. Both of my grandfathers were WWII veterans. GB Sr. said, just before he died in 2010, “this country has been invaded by Mexico and they never even fired a shot. We allowed them to take over our streets and the politicians didn’t have the stomach to fight back”.

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