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Lincoln Journal-Star: Letters/Opinions/Comments

Opinions and comments posted by readers of the Lincoln Journal-Star regarding issues concerning their readers.




(this is a condensed version of the Journal-Star’s online opinion page, for full text see story)

Wednesday, May 21, 2008 – 12:11:19 am CDT

Applause for Bruning

Isn’t it a shame that when a person such as our state attorney general, Jon Bruning, does the job he is sworn to do as an elected official, that he receives criticism from special interest groups who want to advance their own agendas. Would a police officer deserve criticism for enforcing the laws that protect us or a judge who gets the bad guys off the streets and into jail? Bruning is doing what the law says he must do: enforce and oversee the laws of Nebraska for its residents. Not spending time and money to represent illegal immigrants who have not earned and do not deserve the rights, resources and privileges of the citizens of this country.
I, for one, applaud his stance and offer my full support for the job he is doing. It is time for more Americans to stand up and do what is right and not worry about political correctness and special interest groups.
 Lanny Petit, Inland




















 Lanny wrote on May 21, 2008 12:51 am:

” Ignorance of the law is no excuse. You have no idea what the law is. Bruning does not serve the letter of the law in not upholding the law in terms of enforcing housing discrimination statutes. A landlord cannot choose to turn away anyone because of race, color or national origin, even if its Mexico or Mars or New York. This is based on our constitution. If you do not like it move to a dictatorship where only the priviledged class can rent your house. “

Jeff wrote on May 21, 2008 7:11 am:

” OK Lanny. How do you feel about Bruning wanting to complete eliminate the EEOC, and forfeit millions of Federal dollars that is supposed to assure fairness and civil rights in the workplace and society? Guess you’re OK with that too? And you’re probably alright with him representing Nebraska with the Kurds too. Just another hard day’s work for Nebraskans. Yipee! “

Ummm Larry…. wrote on May 21, 2008 7:53 am:

” Brunings job is to file lawsuits, not decide which laws to follow. You obviously don’t have any idea what the AGs job is. I award you no points for your letter and ask that you go back to school until you can demonstrate at least an elementary grasp of what the AG is supposed to do.
And for the record Larry, Bruning is allowing an illegal activity to take place. Discrimination is illegal, it doesn’t matter if you are here illegally or not. “

Josh wrote on May 21, 2008 8:02 am:

” Maybe if Brunning just did his job instead being a publicity hog, he would be taken more seriously. To me he is just gearing for higher political office. “

Hey Lanny wrote on May 21, 2008 8:12 am:

” I’ve got a bridge I want to sell you, because apparently you’ll believe anything. Exactly what laws did Bruning enforce? Certainly not the anti-discrimination laws that even Lou Dobbs chastized him about (That’s a pretty big hint when you’re being xenophobic – if even Lou Dobbs has a problem with your immigration policies) And certainly not any immigration laws – you do realize that he knew of two illegal immigrants in our state and – this is key – failed to report them. So he basically figured out the way to do absolutely no work, do some political pandering, and have a bunch of people think he’s doing a great job – when he’s doing nothing to help our state’s illegal immigration problem. And you have fallen for it hook line and sinker. “

Pay yourself wrote on May 21, 2008 8:21 am:

” All you supporting rights for illegals can cover the cost with your own tax dollars – not mine! I’m happy to help support those who came to this country legally or are in the process of legal citizenship. Not those who thumb their noses, break the laws and then expect my taxes to pay for their problems here. “

All politics wrote on May 21, 2008 9:53 am:


” Bruning to me is doing nothing more than making a political statement and isn’t as interested in upholding the law. Hate to tell you Bruning, but you’ve gone as high as you can go in Nebraska. Why don’t you focus on a job that you used to do at least somewhat reasonably… Roger and Tom, I couldn’t agree more. This is a former republican who will be voting for Kleeb and Obama in November. “




OIF vet wrote on May 21, 2008 11:00 am:







” If I have a house to rent, and I choose not to rent it to any illegal aliens, be they from Mexico, New Zealand, Canada, Africa, you get the point, it is not racism or discrimination.Employers are not supposed to hire illegals, but those who own property are supposed to rent to them?



I will not defend Bruning, that isn’t the point of the comment. “






OIF vet wrote on May 21, 2008 11:23 am:

” You’re right – you can not rent to someone because they are illegal. What you can’t do – and what Bruning refuses act upon – is requiring anyone of a particular nationality to show their drivers license, while not requiring other races and nationalities to do so. That’s the very definition of discrimination. “

JT wrote on May 21, 2008 12:34 pm:

” Lanny, Bruning is disobeying federal laws, that’s why we’re losing federal dollars. Hence, he is not doing his job. “

To mitchy_v wrote on May 21, 2008 5:54 pm:

” Imagine if your civil rights were massacred like officials are fond of doing in NE! It’s a long time to wait until November. Maybe some of us have already filed complaints with the Feds like Bruning suggests? Never hurts to remind citizens of the U.S. to vote though. “



Bruning’s stance is on track

Sunday, May 18, 2008 – 12:08:40 am CDT Jon Bruning has made it clear that his office (and that means you, citizens) will not provide illegal immigrants with free legal support, and he is right on track. Illegal entry into our country is both a national security and a national financial issue. It has run hospitals out of business, increased crime levels, sapped resources from law enforcement agencies and courts, increased prison costs and reduced pay levels for citizens, to mention a few of the adverse effects.We  have recently been informed of how “cooperation between local, state and federal law enforcement agencies (including the courts) and enforcement of existing laws” have notably reduced crime in the Laredo and Del Rio sectors along the border between Texas and Mexico.

Sunday, May 18, 2008 – 12:08:40 am CDT Jon Bruning has made it clear that his office (and that means you, citizens) will not provide illegal immigrants with free legal support, and he is right on track. Illegal entry into our country is both a national security and a national financial issue. It has run hospitals out of business, increased crime levels, sapped resources from law enforcement agencies and courts, increased prison costs and reduced pay levels for citizens, to mention a few of the adverse effects.We  have recently been informed of how “cooperation between local, state and federal law enforcement agencies (including the courts) and enforcement of existing laws” have notably reduced crime in the Laredo and Del Rio sectors along the border between Texas and Mexico.

This is being accomplished by enforcing existing laws and cooperation. These exemplary citizens have decided to take action in a cooperative effort between all levels of government, rather than drag their feet and call for more money and an additional layer of laws and regulations. The president of the United States should clearly support them.

Illegal immigration cannot be controlled by providing free benefits and/or jobs to illegal immigrants. It can, however, be controlled and reversed by enforcement of existing laws and identification and assessment of heavy fines on employers of illegal immigrants.
If Attorney General Jon Bruning’s policy prevents the Nebraska Equal Opportunity Commission from getting some federal government dollars — so be it! Through this action, we have prevented another small, but significant, increase in the federal debt.
Milo Cress, Eagle





wrong again wrote on May 18, 2008 2:29 pm:

” I must respectfully disagree with Milo Cress; Bruning’s stance couldn’t
be more off the beam. To stoop to suspend his argument off the red herring
knee-jerk issue of illegal immigration, when the case in question represents only one out of dozens he failed to prosecute, does not speak highly of his integrity, professionalism or respect for the equal rights of all citizens under the law. He’s totally supportive of protecting the rights of bullies, racists and the unfeeling apparently, but no one else.”

Milo wrote on May 18, 2008 8:30 pm:

” They say ignorance of the law is no excuse. Ignorance of the law is exactly what is going on in terms of thinking the AG has the right to NOT uphold it because he just does not want to. What if a policeman decided to not arrest for the murder of a illegal? Would that be ok too? Ignorance causes stereotypes as well and thinking that hospitals close and crime and incarceration are caused by undocumented immigrants who work harder than anybody out there, wanting a better life for their family shows pure lack of real information. I suggest that you should reveal where you get your information. A recent report by the controller in Texas shows Mexican immigrants brought in 17 Billion (Billion) more than they cost the local Texas economy economy. Do you think Nebraska is all that different? Look it up. “


Letters, 5/13: Deportation math

Lincoln Journal Star – Tuesday, May 13, 2008 – 12:38:38 am CDT

There are several deceptive or oversimplified ideas going around on the problem of illegal immigrants:

* That there are 12 million (some say 20 million) of them. Where did that number come from?

* That illegal immigrants take jobs away from Americans. People who have jobs are not only producers (through their jobs) but also consumers (of food, housing, transportation, entertainment, etc.), which makes jobs for others. On the average, a person consumes as much as he produces.* That we should deport all of the illegal immigrants. This neglects some simple arithmetic. For if we were to ship out 12 million people on buses, each of which holds 50 illegal immigrants plus driver and guards, it would require 240,000 trips!

Edgar Pearlstein, Lincoln

To anonymous wrote on May 13, 2008 7:53 am:

” Your argument does not hold water. Because they do not pay taxes, except for FICA. They do this by filling out a W2 and claiming 20 dependents and then do not file taxes at the end of the year. Furthermore, because there are so many of them, they have had the effect of lowering the wages for the rest of us. So, they “buy” a Soc. Sec. number. Please see the story in today’s LJS about the police breaking up a forgery ring. Also please see the story about the raid in Iowa where three people at the same meat packing plant were using the same SS number. If you are, or were someone who had your identity stollen and you could not get credit, rent, buy a house, etc, you would feel a lot differently. “

Anonymous wrote on May 13, 2008 8:47 am:

” Actually, the argument does hold water, and I think your response negates itself. The ones who are CAUGHT claim 20 dependents. The ones who are NOT caught do not claim 20 dependents. What I am saying is that anything can work for a short time, but those claiming 20 dependants, or who use the same social #, get caught very quickly. The majority that are not caught don’t use 20 dependents. Sure they are going to claim more than they have, at least I would. They don’t get many benefits from taxation. What generally happens when one files his or her taxes in April? They get a refund. When you do not file taxes, you don’t get a refund. Granted, those without documents don’t pay in at the end of the year either, but they’ve been doing so all year too!

Lastly, to have your identity truly abused, said peron would have to get obscene amounts of credit on the false social security number. Please tell me the name of a bank that will give a car loan or a credit card to someone that has a name that does NOT match the name on record for that social security number. It will NEVER happen. By definition the identity is stolen, but, by definition, it cannot be abused. What happens is that the IRS sends a letter to the illegal saying their social security # does not match their name and they need to fix that at their place of employment.

The hardest part of all of this, is that you cannot trust the bias of what’s reported about illegal aliens. Those are the exceptions, NOT the rule. If it’s reported, then by definition, it caught the attention of the authorities, and was more than likely stopped. “

stignob wrote on May 13, 2008 9:53 am:

” Anybody for illegal immigration is against America plain and simple. It undermines us as citizens and a country, why even have borders? Do you think Mexico is as welcoming? The FACTS are out there on what kind of costs they are burdening on us, but people don’t want too know the truth, so they lash out RACISM! We are destroying ourselves from within…

RE Edgar wrote on May 13, 2008 10:07 am:

” The government gives this number of 12 million. Probably get that from people applying for ssi or other welfare. As far as shipping them back and buses needed. It would more than pay for itself to spend say 200 dollars a ticket for 240,000 than to give these people benefits that 50 million american taxpayers have earned. Spend the 20 million or so to send them back then let the border patrol do their job to keep them out. No more locking up guards who are doing their jobs. Try crossing a border in Europe, middle east, or far east, getting caught, and see what happens to you. Even try sneaking into mexico getting caught and enjoy the mexican jails. “

Grundle wrote on May 13, 2008 10:17 am:

” Once again, someone trots out the old argument that, because it’s so much work to document and deport illegal immigrants, then we shouldn’t even bother…we should just continue doing what we’ve been doing and turn a blind eye. Does it really matter where the 12-20 million number came from? Do you, Mr. Pearlstein, have more reliable numbers that indicate a lower total? If so, where do they come from? Here’s where the 12 million number comes from, ” The Pew Hispanic Center used Census Bureau data to estimate that the United States had 11.1 million illegal immigrants in March 2005. The center used monthly population estimates to project a current total of 11.5 million to 12 million. The report estimates that 850,000 illegal immigrants have arrived in United States each year since 2000.” Using the 850,000/year…the current estimate should be right around 13.7 million…and still growing. “

Sean wrote on May 13, 2008 10:57 am:

” Well Eddy…here’s some simple math. There are 12 (or 20) million illegal immigrants. That means there are 12 (or 20) million criminals running loose. So your solution is to throw up your hands and allow them to run free? Excellent idea! Open up the jails too while your at it! No point in locking someone up for breaking the law when youv’e already got a few million on running loose. “

OK Stignob wrote on May 13, 2008 12:01 pm:

” Where are the facts you claim that show how much illegal immigrants cost us? I have searched the web and cannot find any verifiable information backing your claim. By verifiable, I mean more than one source that shows similar data. “

Dano wrote on May 13, 2008 12:54 pm:

” Litter solution = chain gangs. Make jail time = hard time or work for a change.Orange jackets and white and black striped jumpsuits for eveyone. Get them to work instead of worrying about who siad what about them , or where the missing adult material is. Won’t have time for petty crimes behind bars, if they are all tired form a hard days work. At least they would be paying back the community instead of just sitting there. “













Why not wrote on May 13, 2008 3:08 pm:

” What is wrong with discriminating against criminals? I wouldn’t want to rent out an apartment to criminals either. Next the NEOC will want to prosecute bank tellers for dicriminating against bank-robbers. “

TERESA wrote on May 13, 2008 3:26 pm:

” Another meat packing plant raided, thank goodness for that. It’s about time they start raiding places like this. What happens is that business/companies bring the illegal aliens over to work for them, and then when their permit has expired no one does anything about it. This is where people like INS or whoever need to step up and take charge. “

hmmmmmmmmmm wrote on May 13, 2008 3:29 pm:

” Again, we need to stop these people from crossing over the borders. There would be no arresting people, this is a HUGE problem and it needs stopped immediately. “

Douglas Novak Crete wrote on May 13, 2008 3:35 pm:

” Anyu one who publicly endorses criminal activity without signing their authentic name is a a coward. Illegal immigration is illegal. I personally have no use for any criminal no matter what their honorable intentions for their hard working family. If being here actually represents your disrespect for the law, you can NEVER be a real American. This was a country of law. It is no more. Now tell me how that helped America prosper? Community has been replaced by pseudo-community. My neighbor tells me his name is X and he tells my friend (who employs him) his name is Y. I see him in the bank lobby and hear him tell the teller his name Z. Under which name does he pay taxes and under which name does he collect welfare benefits? Which name is shielding him from law enforcement personel? All three prevent him from being my friend, neighbor, or fellow citizen. He is here illegally and I disrespect him for it. Does he work hard? Yes. Big deal! My grandfather had a big mule that worked hard for poverty wages and the mule didn’t lie, cheat, or steal. Illegal immigration is theft no matter the color of your skin, the country of your origin, or how hard you work for your family. “

Curious wrote on May 13, 2008 4:07 pm:

” There are lots of ranting comments about illegal immigrants on this comment section but absolutely no practical suggestions. The population from the states of Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, Colorado, Kansas, and Missouri total about 20 million. I happen to know that the INS office in Lincoln pays poorly and is always in need of employees. So where will we find people who are willing to work for low pay to gather all the citizens of Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, Colorado, Kansas and Missouri as some of you have suggested? Let’s see some good, practical solutions. I don’t have any. “

Edgar Pearlstein wrote on May 13, 2008 4:30 pm:

” Thank you, Grundle, for leading me to a reference to an answer to the question I asked. It appears that the number of “unauthorized migrants” is determined by the Pew Hispanic Center from data on the total number of persons born in other countries and subtracting the number of those known to be here legally, making various corrections and adjustments. “

citizen wrote on May 13, 2008 4:41 pm:

” The entire focus on illegal immigratino is directed to our Southern border. Please, people, remember that there are a number of people whose relatives came to this country legally circa 1900, and also believe in LEGAL immigration. Remember that the next time that you see someone that “looks” Mexican. Chances are that person speaks English as their first language and may not even speak Spanish. “

practical solution wrote on May 13, 2008 5:30 pm:

” Maybe we should “liberate” the Mexican people. Relocate all the meatpacking, canning and the rest of the paltry remaining American manufacturing jobs to Mexico. I’m sure the Mexicans would be so grateful that they would work for free to “rebuild” their country. “

stignob wrote on May 13, 2008 6:17 pm:

” No problem; Here’s a few. The list goes on and on…And the numbers don’t add up for what they benefit to our society because all of their labor is unskilled and/or cheap.

Not Anonymous wrote on May 13, 2008 7:27 pm:

” I don’t know where you get your “facts” Anonymous, but I work with someone who works a second job, in Lincoln, at a business, but is paid “under the table” so no income is reported and no taxes are collected. Based on this information, and the type of job it is, there is ample opportunity for people–not just illegal immigrants–to gain employment and provide for their family. I would dearly love to keep 100% of what I earn instead of the roughly 55% after taxes and pre-tax retirement deferment. I could make my mortgage go away twice as quick, or buy a new car every other year if I didn’t have to pay taxes. “

Terry wrote on May 13, 2008 7:32 pm:

” The illegal immigrant is a problem in this country. Why is it that there is always someone trying to make it look like it is no big deal? What part of ILLEGAL is NOT understood here. What should be happening here is to deport parents and there kids. And there is always someone out there that says they are only trying to make a better life for them self. Well that is all a bank robber is trying to do is make a better life for them self at someone else expense “





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