In the past 6 months the hotline to the national immigration and customs has seen a huge spike. It is in no doubt due to U.S. citizens getting fed up with footing the bill for and dealing with, the crime, sprawl and population growth associated with illegal aliens who are flooding across our border.
Assistant Secretary Michael J. Garcia lauded the record growth of the hot line operated by his agency. "Alert citizens, using the . . . tip line, are making significant contributions to homeland security," Garcia said in a statement last week.
But the growing popularity of the government hot line, 866-347-2423, has immigrants and their advocates worried about racial stereotyping and targeting of immigrant communities. It comes in the wake of a controversial gathering of civilians who call themselves "Minutemen," intent on patrolling the US-Mexico border in Arizona to hunt down illegal immigrants. President Bush has called them vigilantes.
"It promotes hysteria," said Bill Ong Hing, professor of law and Asian-American studies at the University of California at Los Angeles, of the hot line. "It's not a healthy society when you encourage this kind of vigilante mentality."
How is reporting a crime a "vigilante mentality"? The definition of vigilante
One who takes or advocates the taking of law enforcement into one's own hands.
By reporting a crime you are not taking the law into your own hands. You are reporting the crime to the proper authorities who then implement the law.
I'm getting fed up with this continued use of the word vigilante every time someone is discussing enforcing immigration law. The only word used more frequently is racist. So now if you want to have any form of immigration reform that has to do with reducing illegal aliens you are a racist vigilante who will take the law into your own hands even if you are simply bringing forth a bill, signing a petition or protesting.
Obviously with the soaring calls to the hotline others in America aren't buying this rhetoric and realize that this is a serious issue that needs to be addressed. Either that or there's just a lot of vigilante racists in this country who are roaming around 24/7 just looking for illegal aliens so they can jump on them and implement their own form of heinous justice.
Did I mention the number is866-347-2423
In fiscal year 2004, from October 2003 through September 2004, there were 27,671 calls to the hot line. In the past six months, the new fiscal year, there were 41,500 calls.
The hot line will receive tips about alien smuggling, drug smuggling, identity theft, a corporation hiring undocumented immigrants, and immigrants who have been deported and have returned to the United States, said spokesman Michael W. Gilhooly.
Callers to the hot line do not have to give their names, but their report is recorded. The agent taking the call collects as much detail as possible, and the report is checked against immigration and crime data banks, according to Scott Blackman, unit chief of the Vermont center.
Agents then forward the information to local Immigration and Customs Enforcement offices. In some cases where urgent action is required, ICE will contact local law enforcement agencies.
Mark Krikorian, executive director of the Center for Immigration Studies, a Washington group that lobbies for immigration controls and enforcement, said the government ''has done a terrible job" of allowing the public to report undocumented immigrants. The surge in calls to the hot line suggests that there is public demand, he said.