Jay Evensen: Slavery is alive, well and hidden in Utah

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  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    Feb. 20, 2014 5:58 a.m.

    I have a solution to illegal immigration:

    Attack the source.

    Meaning, if you hire an illegal, you automatically lose your business and will be sent to prison for 10+ years. You'd be surprised how quickly the illegals would go back home and how few would come if we actually punished business owners who for decades have thumbed their noses at our laws.

  • SLars Provo, UT
    Feb. 19, 2014 11:35 p.m.

    Twin Lights, enforcement is the only answer that does continue down the same road. Amnesty by citizenship or residency (and work) will only cause the law breaking to continue. It would be better to deal with it now, than deal with it next time when there is 30 million people here illegally. It will just get worse as people from India and China realize they do not have to follow our laws. Children born here have duel citizenship, they are returned with their parents, and at 18 eligible to return as citizens.

    Deporting 12 million, according to a government study done in 2007 by the Immigrations and Customs Enforcement agency put the cost at 94 billion. This is a one time cost, that does not include self deportation. The Federation for American Immigration Reform puts the cost of illegal immigration at $113 billion per year. When you add in the boost to our economy from putting millions of Americans back to work in non agriculture jobs, we can't afford not to.

    Amnesty removes the threat of enforcement against dishonest business. It's no wonder they are pushing for it to be passed.

  • SLars Provo, UT
    Feb. 19, 2014 10:22 p.m.

    At what age is a person personally accountable for his own actions? Is he ever old enough to stop making excuses and to stop blaming everyone else for the fact that he broke the law when he entered the United States illegally? Is he ever old enough to take responsibility that his family will suffer as long as he remains in the United States illegally? Is he ever going to do the right thing and deport himself and his family and stay out of the United States until he can re-enter properly?

    There is a consequence to every action. Expecting a "blessing" for breaking the law is absurd. Expecting amnesty for illegally entering this country while millions wait to enter legally is aiding and abetting criminal acts.

    If you want to stop this, demand that our laws be enforced by our leaders, no matter what party they belong to.

    Opening our border and leting in billions of people from third world countries is not an option.

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    Feb. 19, 2014 10:11 p.m.


    Yes, there would be little illegal immigration if businesses would not hire them. And preventing these hires in the future needs to be part of the reform (e-verify).

    But the reform does have to be comprehensive and include a path (not necessarily citizenship – but a path) forward for those already here.

    The reality is we have families with kids who were born and raised here. Folks who have been here for more than a decade.

    There are thought to be about 11-12 million folks here. Just shipping them all back is not a viable option. Do we implement e-verify and just have them all unemployed so they will “self-deport”. Sure, that might work for some. For some it will mean turning to charity or turning to crime. Whatever they do, the results will not be pretty.

    We have to get realistic. And enforcement alone is simply not realistic.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    Feb. 19, 2014 9:00 p.m.

    Too bad, "anti-liar" and "prelax", my info comes from folks involved in immigration litigation. I suspect yours comes from talking heads on cable TV. I'll stand by my statement. I'm really comfortable with it. You guys are partisans and will never be objective.

  • U-tar Woodland Hills, UT
    Feb. 19, 2014 8:13 p.m.

    Enforce our existing laws, and build a better wall.

  • David Centerville, UT
    Feb. 19, 2014 5:30 p.m.

    Utah political, business, and religious leaders came together and created a proposal for handling immigration and legalization of immigrants. Why don't Utah's delegation of US House & Senate representatives push that proposal?

    We recognize that we won't have a perfect, non-permeable border. I agree with Esquire (hard to believe I said that)--open the borders, allow the market to command supply & demand. But, in order to open the borders we must get control of our entitlement programs. We can't be giving free state college tuition to non-citizens, we can't treat every non-citizen in our ERs for free, and we can't be giving out food stamps to non-citizens.

    Entitlement reform must be a part of open borders. You have Democrats actually advertising US food stamps in Mexico.

    We must also have a careful screening process to root out criminals and terrorists before an open border policy and structure could be put in place.

    But I agree with Esquire, open borders would be the ideal.

  • prelax Murray, UT
    Feb. 19, 2014 3:42 p.m.

    Esquire, Obama himself said his numbers were fixed to look like they were higher than they actually are. Plenty of people have posted it here before, but here it is for the upteenth time.

    "The statistics are actually a little deceptive," Obama said last month (sept 2011) during a discussion with Hispanic journalists. There has been "a much greater emphasis on criminals than non-criminals." And "with stronger border enforcement, we've been apprehending folks at the borders and sending them back. That is counted as a deportation even though they may have only been held for a day or 48 hours." (from a speech in Denver)

    E-verify, interior enforcement (deport when discovered), and checking for visa overstays goes a long way to enforce our border. Just using the border itself is not very honest. Once people cross it, they know there is very little chance they are deported. That needs to change, and is reason enough not to pass any amnesty until past laws are enforced.

  • anti-liar Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 19, 2014 3:36 p.m.


    The Obama administration's documented, systematic inflation of deportation numbers -- in a calculated effort to deceive Americans as to Obama's loyalty to his oath of office and in order to discourage Americans as regards the value of immigration law enforcement, is particularly cunning and underhanded. Turn-aways at the border are being counted as deportations, when previous administrations did not count these as deportations.

    The reality is that under Obama, deportations FROM THE NATION'S INTERIOR have gone WAY, WAY down.

    But already it is ridiculous to assert that immigration law enforcement is higher than ever, considering the unprecedented, virtual immunity to immigration law which has been specifically and singlehandedly decreed by Obama and is enjoyed today by virtually all illegal aliens in this country. It is a lie to imply that immigration law enforcement is impossible or futile.

    "You will never, ever, ever have leak proof borders."

    You are right about that. Hence the importance of earnest enforcement of immigration and other laws, in the nation's interior, in tandem with border enforcement.

    And Open Borders would be great for businessmen's and stockholders' bottom lines, but it would be devastating for the rest of the nation.

  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Feb. 19, 2014 3:34 p.m.

    "All slave holders rely on the same thing — convincing their subjects that escape is either hopeless or would bring about worse consequences". Is this not the same situation with employees?

    "Fear of deportation is as powerful as the fear of a whip in the antebellum South". Could we just as well substitute the word unemployment for deportation?

    Isn't voluntary slavery the same as involuntary slavery, really?

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    Feb. 19, 2014 2:03 p.m.

    What some of you fail to acknowledge is that immigration enforcement is higher now in the past five years than ever before. Border security is tougher now than ever before. You will never, ever, ever have leak proof borders. Your focus is on those trying to come to the U.S., but what about the market conditions, including the demand for cheap labor by employers. Here is an idea for you. Set up an open borders system, register all folks coming in, and let the free market govern, with criminals being punished and deported. All the moralistic rationalization in the world won't make the immigration issue go away, and neither will tougher enforcement.

  • anti-liar Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 19, 2014 1:47 p.m.

    Slavery isn't the only way these children are victimized. Their parents and others also are TEACHING THEM, by precept and by example, that dishonesty, illegality, and disrespect for one's neighbor is the correct pathway to U.S. residency and an American education.

    Once again, there is no true compassion in looking the other way at or rewarding illegality. As someone aptly pointed out, true compassion is sending one's neighbor on the path of righteousness. The most gracious thing this nation could do for these individuals is to DEPORT THEM to their lawful countries of residence, WITH the parent(s) who brought them here.

    This would teach them that the lesson taught them by their parents and/or by false teachers in this country with ulterior motivations, was an immoral one.

    Thus reunited with extended family (and, in many cases, immediate family), these may instead grow up in truth and in righteousness and make a positive contribution to their communities, in their home countries.

    Again, if people honestly believe we basically should toss the 12th Article of Faith, then why don't they just come out and say it? Why cloak the ideology in a EUPHEMISM, "immigration reform?"

  • prelax Murray, UT
    Feb. 19, 2014 1:34 p.m.

    How does giving amnesty stop this from happening again with the next wave of people coming here illegally?

    Calling out it's fellow Salt Lake City Chamber of Commerce members to stop supporting illegal immigration would do more good to stop this, than twisting a sad story into a pro-amnesty piece.

  • anti-liar Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 19, 2014 1:33 p.m.

    Nice spin, Ken Wallentine, Jay Evensen, and Deseret News. A most disgusting rationalization for non-enforcement of immigration law. After all, legalization is nothing less than official refusal to enforce immigration law.

    Adopt the lawlessness of one country, so that this country too becomes a nation of lawlessness. If one truly believes that is morally right, then why the need for the euphemism, "immigration reform?" Why not proudly call it what it really is, "subversion of the rule of law through retroactive legalization of residency status of persons in the country illegally?"

    "...Rax used the nation's lack of immigration reform as an accomplice."

    I see. So the problem isn't the criminality of this individual, nor the illegal presence of tens of millions, nor the virtual lack of enforcement of immigration law -- which, make no mistake about it, is why they are here in such vast numbers in the first place. Rather, lack of "immigration reform" is the cause of this slavery problem. Yes, I'm sure that's right

    @Invisible Hand: If there were earnest enforcement, they wouldn't be here in the first place. They are here precisely because there is no enforcement to speak of.

  • RichardB Murray, UT
    Feb. 19, 2014 1:12 p.m.

    Twin lights, we have a way to bring them into the light, it's called following the law.

    “Comprehensive” immigration reform is part of the bad faith that has surrounded immigration issues for decades. What “comprehensive” reform means is that border control and amnesty should be voted on together in Congress. Why? Because that would be politically convenient for members of Congress, who like to be on both sides of issues, so as to minimize the backlash from the voting public.

    Let's not forget that without business that illegally hire people, there is no problem. Allowing Utah businesses to get away with this, and giving them amnesty for the harm they have done, is wrong. You want to stop this activity, stop the business owners that encourage people to come here illegally, then reward them with jobs.

  • RichardB Murray, UT
    Feb. 19, 2014 12:34 p.m.

    It's our lack of interior enforcement that allows people to return several times and stay in the shadows, instead of being deported like the law specifies.

    In the 1986 and 1996 "reforms" the border/e-verify/interior enforcement/more judges/and a visa entry-exit system were all passed as law, but none were enforced. Comprehensive reform is a failed policy, as it only gives amnesty with a promise of enforcement that never happens.

    Amnesty will only create more dishonesty, more people coming here illegally, ignoring our immigration laws. The past seven amnesties prove this out. (1 under Reagan, six under Clinton). Amnesties created this problem, it never solved it in the past. Judicial system deterrents are the best way to stop crime, we must have consequences for illegal activity.

    People and business breaking the law will always be in the shadow, it's the nature for people committing crimes. They can take themselves out by following the law.

    Rax is what happens when we stop enforcing laws.

  • 1covey Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 19, 2014 11:45 a.m.

    The procurers of these "services" are equally reprehensible. They enable this slavery and when caught, should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

  • JoeCapitalist2 Orem, UT
    Feb. 19, 2014 8:44 a.m.

    Another article supporting some kind of amnesty to illegal aliens. The answer to this and other terrible conditions is not some kind of amnesty, but rather to enforce our immigration laws at the border.

    I really feel bad for kids or adults who are exploited. No one deserves to be mistreated. But let's not forget how these conditions came about. A whole bunch of people every day sneak across our borders and ignore our laws. Now we are not only supposed to be sorry for their plight, but we are supposed to change our laws to accommodate them.

    It is like a prostitite who lives a horrible life to support a nasty drug habit. The answer is not to make drugs free so she can get high all day without needing to sell herself to get money for them.

  • Christopher B Ogden, UT
    Feb. 19, 2014 8:45 a.m.

    We don't reward bank robbers by letting them keep the money they steal. Illegal immigrants should similarly not be rewarded for their crimes. Obey the law and then come to our country.

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    Feb. 19, 2014 8:14 a.m.

    Richard B and Invisible Hand,

    I think you both have a point. We need a strong border (which includes checking employment once in the US). But for those here we have to have a program to bring them into the light and law.

    Both make sense.

  • Invisible Hand Provo, UT
    Feb. 19, 2014 7:59 a.m.

    @RichardB: Rax used the threat of immigration enforcement to his advantage. If there was no enforcement there would be no threat. I don't understand your comment at all. Jay is right about this, although if that were the only argument for reform it wouldn't carry much weight. A far better argument is the need to bring 11 million people out of the shadows into the legitimate economy. These people aren't going away, so let's get a path to legitimacy for them and end this unhealthy situation.

  • RichardB Murray, UT
    Feb. 19, 2014 12:40 a.m.

    Rax used the nation’s lack of immigration enforcement. Immigration reform is amnesty and less enforcement. It's the cause of this situation.