Gov. Matt Blunt deserves the praise of all Missourians for his long-awaited crackdown on illegal immigration in our state.
First, Blunt ordered Highway Patrol agents to check the immigration status of every person they arrest. The next day, he directed the Missouri Department of Economic Development to increase their oversight of contractors who receive any state tax credit or funding.
These twin approaches may do more to signal a change than to bring about a short-term decrease in illegal immigration in our state. But the signal is clear not only to law enforcement but, more importantly, to those employers who knowingly hire illegal labor. You start throwing a couple of hot shot employers in jail for their illegal practices and, believe me, the problem will solve itself.
Well, no sooner had Blunt's words escaped his mouth when the Hispanic business owners started voicing their complaints. They called Blunt's announcement "racial profiling." And you know what - I couldn't care less. If the Hispanic community provides 95 percent of our illegal population, then call it racial profiling all you want. I'll call it common sense.
If the federal government won't act in a decisive manner on the question of illegal immigration, then the states have no choice but to act themselves. And if these policies bother Hispanic leaders then perhaps they should work harder to assure that their constituents are indeed legal. There is a process whereby newcomers can enter this country legally. Perhaps that suggestion might be offered.
The bottom line is most obvious. States like Missouri must assure that the laws of this land are followed. That takes commitment and resolve on the part of our leaders and every single citizen. What is at stake is our national culture, our economic survival and the future for our children and grandchildren.
And if some group complains, then they are wrong and the overwhelming remainder of the population is right. It's just that simple.