Letters From the Issue of Thursday, September 13, 2007


An exception for Virginia?: What happened to Virginia Gutierrez is an outrage that's just beginning ("No, Virginia," Stephen Lemons, The Bird, August 30). My prediction is that we're going to see more and more of this as the illegal immigration debate continues in this country.

That is, more honors students who've lived here most of their lives and who would contribute much to our society (Virginia wants to become a pediatrician) kicked out of the United States because they're the sons and daughters of illegal aliens and weren't born here.

But my point is that debate had nothing to do with the rabble of peckerwoods who descended on the recent rally supporting Virginia Gutierrez (see "Anti-Heroes" and the Feathered Bastard blog). The counter-demonstrators did nothing for the issue of border enforcement. They made people like me — who favor strong border policy — wonder if we're in the wrong.

That I don't want to be associated with the redneck swill who shouted down those speaking in favor of this North High School honors student is an understatement! And I think if many good people who share my opinions on illegal immigration saw the disgusting display from these pitiful fools, they'd be having second thoughts about the whole issue, too.

They'd be wondering especially why some sort of exception couldn't be made for a girl like Virginia, who is the personification of what's good about America: somebody of humble origins succeeding through hard work and smarts. We can't let stand decisions to rid our country of the best and brightest because they lack the proper paperwork. We must find a way to accommodate such individuals.

What we need regarding illegal immigration is rational debate, not stinking-drunk rednecks threatening peaceful demonstrators. Thank God the police were at this demonstration because it would've turned really ugly. These white bigots had hatred in their eyes and had to be warned on several occasions to back off.

If these Rusty Childress/Russell Pearce-inspired cretins ("Rusty's World," The Bird, July 12) really want to help the cause they apparently feel so strongly about, they would stay home.
Mary Timmons, Phoenix


Indeed, the picture says it all: I read the "Grand Wizard Arpaio" article ("The Bird," August 23), saw the picture distributed by Elias Bermudez, and couldn't agree more that the picture says it all.

Sheriff Joe Arpaio may say he has heartfelt feelings for Latinos, but it's obvious that words don't speak as loudly as actions, and his actions are speaking real clearly.

I acknowledge that not all Mexicans are here on good terms. But what about those who are? What about those who come here looking for nothing else but to provide for their families? Or those who are here to get their kids that better education or better lifestyle?

Not many people are willing to admit it, but Latinos are the very base of this functioning society. Mr. Bermudez should've never apologized. Hell, my opinion is that Sheriff Joe is as shady as they get and as power-abusing as they get. And you can't get any more childish than making a threat on TV. I mean, come on, I thought he was supposed to be the bigger and better man. With him being in the public eye so much, you'd think he would set a better example.

But yet again, his actions and words speak pretty clearly.
Robert Miller, Phoenix

Racist no matter how you slice it, Tom: With reference to your article "Grand Wizard Arpaio," I must object to the characterization of the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office hot line for reporting illegal aliens as racist. That's a gross over-simplification. It can only be construed as racially prejudiced in the sense that the majority of offenders happen to be from countries south of our border. Now, before you also accuse me of being a Klansman, I will simply state that Hispanic blood flows in my veins.

Also, don't accuse me of being unsympathetic to the plight of millions of people around the globe who wish to improve their lot by immigrating to the United States. America is truly the land of milk and honey for them. However, instead of wasting billions of dollars in Iraq, it might have been far wiser to spend the money on investing in infrastructure in Mexico and Central America. That, after all, might've reduced the economic necessity of these folks to consider tiptoeing across the border by providing them employment at home.

For too many years, law-enforcement agencies across the United States have refused to hold illegals in custody for handover to federal immigration authorities because it wasn't their problem. However, since the 9/11 attacks, the United States allegedly has been engaged in fighting a war on terror.

The refusal of the government to secure its borders is absurd. I've lived in the Middle East and can vouch that with some intensive Spanish lessons, many folks from that part of the world could pass for south-of-the-border Hispanics.

Now, isn't it comforting to think that another bunch of fanatics wishing to martyr themselves may today be crossing into the United States from somewhere between Matamoros and Tijuana?

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The Illegal Virginia is gone and there will be no exceptions...

Since the story is off the front page the story has faded andbecome irrelevant.

Illegals need to go back to Mexico and protest the social andpolitical conditions there. No U.S. law will ever change it...

Illegals are bad for the country...

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