Let me state the obvious for the 9,999th time: America is still not serious about enforcing its immigration laws. The latest addition to my homeland insecurity files comes from New Ipswich, New Hampshire.
Last week, the local police there stopped a speeding van. The driver was on the road with a suspended license. Upon inspecting the vehicle, the cops found 10 people stuffed inside. They sheepishly presented authorities with dubious identification cards. The cops asked the passengers where they were from and where they were headed. "Massachusetts" and "New Hampshire," the answers came back in perfect English.
One of the cops wasn't about to play games. "Are you here illegally?" the officer asked. (I can hear the American Civil Liberties Union members running to file their lawsuits right now). Upon being asked their immigration status, the passengers suddenly lost their command of the English language. "No comprende," they sputtered.
After a Spanish-speaking translator was brought in from a nearby town, the New Ipswich cops learned that the 10 individuals in question had paid a smuggler up to $10,000 each to get into the United States. They apparently originated in Ecuador, traveled to Mexico, crossed the border into California with the high-priced help of coyotes, and then trekked across the country into New Hampshire without a hitch. The vigilant cops of the New Ipswich Police Department, who are constantly urged by the bureaucrats in Washington to be on heightened alert, immediately contacted federal immigration authorities.
The response they received from the U.S. Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement was: So what?
According to New Ipswich police chief Garrett Chamberlain, the feds told his department that they didn't have the resources to take the admitted illegal aliens into custody. Besides, since they were "only" garden-variety illegal aliens and not "previously deported" aliens or violent criminals, there was no reason to hold them. "You gotta be kidding me!" Chamberlain told me in an interview this week. "These people admitted they paid smugglers, admitted they were here illegally, and nobody wants to take them in?" Chamberlain noted that the 10 individuals supplied false birth date information ("one guy said he was 31 and was born in 1963") and gave obviously false names. "We called immigration five times before releasing, and they had no interest in them whatsoever."