Nov 12, 201502:56 PMBlaska's Bring It!
with David Blaska
‘There’s something especial about this nation’ and the Republican presidential field
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The presidential debates are great entertainment. Harder than it looks (try it yourself, sometime). Important, yes, but not the whole show. I’ve got to think Bob Taft and Adlai Stevenson would have mopped the floor with Dwight Eisenhower had they debated. Neither would have made half the president Ike proved to be.
Whatever Trump’s point about Eisenhower and immigration, it was inarticulately expressed. (This man is going to debate Hillary?) It is true that one of Ike’s first actions in 1953 was to stem the flow of 3 million illegal immigrants a year through a Mexican border the Christian Science Monitor calls “as porous as a spaghetti sieve.”
President Eisenhower cut off this illegal traffic. He did it quickly and decisively with only 1,075 United States Border Patrol agents [compared to 21,000 today]. The operation is still highly praised among veterans of the Border Patrol.
Some 750 agents swept northward through agricultural areas with a goal of 1,000 apprehensions a day. By the end of July, over 50,000 aliens were caught in the two states. Another 488,000, fearing arrest, had fled the country.
… Unlike today, Mexicans caught in the roundup were not simply released at the border, where they could easily reenter the U.S. To discourage their return, [the INS] arranged for buses and trains to take many aliens deep within Mexico before being set free.
Problem is, that couldn’t happen today, 62 years later. Numbers and sensitivities are greater. (Ike’s sweeps were called “Operation Wetback.”)
Rounding up 11 million persons spread throughout the U.S. — many of them established for decades — would be a nightmare scenario. Sirens wailing in the night in every city, big and small. The screech of tires in front of a home near you. Orders barked from bullhorns. Service weapons drawn. Men, women, and children marching — arms raised — to be transported to deportation centers like something out of the diary of Anne Frank. All captured by TV and social media cameras in the glare of floodlights.
What’s more, Hispanics are now a potent voting bloc. Indeed, three of the Republicans speak Spanish.