Larry Elder

How do they fare? According to the Houston Chronicle, many are illiterate, struggling to get a decent education for their children from government schools. One Costa Chica missionary says, "The kids here are considered by their teachers to be largely unteachable." When stopped by the police, Mexican blacks are often instructed to sing the Mexican national anthem to prove their citizenship!

If so many Mexicans consider Americans racist, why do polls show that nearly half of Mexico's inhabitants say that their lives would improve if they could work here illegally?

Intolerant?

America legally accepts about one million immigrants per year, with perhaps as many as 12 million people living here illegally, about half of whom come from Mexico. Many estimate that 500,000 or more people enter the country illegally every year. California Lieutenant Governor Cruz Bustamante is Hispanic. So is the man who holds the powerful position of speaker of the California Assembly. Los Angeles, America's second-largest city, has a Hispanic mayor, and of the 54 members of California's congressional delegation, nine are Hispanic. The former governor of California once proposed granting driver's licenses to illegals. And in California, under some circumstances, an illegal alien can apply for the cheaper in-state college tuition. Many predict the Hispanic governor of New Mexico, Bill Richardson, former Clinton Cabinet member, will run for president.

Not very hard-working?

According to the International Labor Organization, Americans work more than almost anybody in the developed world, including Japan. The average American worked 1,824 hours in 2004, compared with the Spanish at 1,799 and the French at 1,441 hours. The Dutch put in even less -- working 25 percent fewer hours than Americans.

President Bush, against the wishes of many in his own party as well of half of all Americans, makes the reasonable case for a guest worker program that would allow or provide some sort of legal status for those living here illegally. Latino "activists" do that cause harm by staging protests and waving the Mexican flag and demanding their "rights." For example, Juan Jose Gutierrez of Latino Movement USA says, "We think that the right thing to do is to grant full rights, full equality, under the laws in the Constitution of the United States, to all immigrants, period."

Americans raise legitimate concerns about the competition illegals pose to unskilled labor, and that illegals cut in front of people already waiting in line to get in the country legally. Americans resent expenditures for illegals on education and health care, and problems posed by some who commit additional crime in America. Illegals' attitude of entitlement helps to explain the growing anger Americans feel toward illegal aliens. Students leaving high schools, waving Mexican flags and chanting "Si se puede" do President Bush -- and their "cause" -- no favor.

[Editor's Note: See also "Mexico's Glass House," just released by the Center for Security Policy (requires Adobe Acrobat Reader).]


Larry Elder

Larry Elder is a best-selling author and radio talk-show host. To find out more about Larry Elder, or become an "Elderado," visit www.LarryElder.com.

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