"Profiles in Cowardice"

Hi Gang:
I am, once again, providing you with my most recent commentary for CAPS (Californians for Population Stabilization).  This time my focus was on how profiling is not only conducted by law enforcement officials who may, in fact make appropriate use of profiling to help them do their jobs more effectively but is also used by journalists.
It is particularly vexing when journalists engage in profiling because many journalists are also often extremely critical of profiling when it is done by law enforcement officials.  As I note in my commentary for CAPS, this double standard that some journalists resort to causes great harm to our nation, in part because there are truly few leaders in positions of political leadership!
The Founding Fathers established as a component of the First Amendment, freedom of the press (journalists) because they understood the importance of the dissemination of  information to the citizens of our country as an integral component of the democratic process.  While there are some truly good journalists to be found in our country, there are others who fail to appreciate the importance of providing clear and objective and unbiased information.  Rather than report on the news, all too often these folks create the news by propagating propaganda! 
Benjamin Franklin, in discussing our then fledgeling nation. said that they had given us a republic if we could keep it!
What he was making clear was that this democratic republic required that its citizens take their citizenship seriously and keep the political leaders accountable.
It is time for the citizens of our nation to make certain that our nation’s leaders, on all levels, to come to terms with the fundamental fact that the purpose of our immigration laws is to protect our nation and our citizens from aliens whose presence has the potential to have a serious adverse impact.  Ignoring those laws exposes our nation and our citizens to a variety of serious threats and challenges ranging from national security and criminal justice and public safety to the economy, the environment, healthcare and education!
A country without secure borders can no more stand than can a house without walls!

I

our country is to survive and if our children and their children are to get their share of the “American Dream” the citizens of this nation must take their citizenship seriously!

We the People must be the best citizens we can be, citizens who are worthy of the gallantry demonstrated by our valiant men and women in the military, law enforcement and firefighters, who routinely go in harm’s way in defense of this nation and our citizens.  
My goal in writing this and other commentaries is to point out our nations many failings before more victims pay the ultimate price for the incompetence and ineptitude of our government.
The first step in problem-solving is to first identify the problems and vulnerabilities and then devise strategies to overcome them.
If you find yourself to be in agreement with this commentary, I ask that you forward it to as many of your friends and family members as possible and encourage them to do the same.  We need to create a “Bucket Brigade of Truth!”

The practice of good citizenship does not end in the voting booth, it only begins there.

For far too long our citizens demonstrated apathy which emboldened elected representatives to all but ignore the needs of the average American citizen in a quest for massive campaign funds and the promises of votes to be ostensibly delivered by special interest groups. 

It is therefore understandable that the politicians of both parties, are greatly concerned about the demonstrations currently sweeping our nation just as did the creation of the Tea Party.  Clearly  more and more of our fellow Americans are demonstrating that they are not as dumb as the politicians from both parties had expected us to be!

I am encouraged that more and more of us, We the People, are not willing to simply sit on the sidelines anymore!

Our nation is greatly benefited by the rich diversity of our people which is why I could never imagine living anywhere except New York City, arguably the most diverse city in our nation if not, in fact, the world.  However, my idea of diversity most certainly does not include members of MS-13, the Mexican drug cartels or members of other transnational gangs or members of al-Qaeda!

The original purpose of our nation’s immigration laws need to be be brought “front and center” to make certain that our nation does not permit the entry of aliens into our country whose presence in our country is problematic for the citizens of our nation and that if such aliens do succeed in entering our country that our nation have the resources, integrity and dedication to do everything possible to make it impossible for such aliens to function within our country so that even if they are not apprehended, they will find it pointless to remain in the United States.

As I have noted on a number of occasions, “No one would break into the amusement park if they could not get to go on the rides and no one remains in the amusement park at the end of the day when they turn shut down the rides and turn off the lights!” 

If our government’s failures to secure our nation’s borders and effectively enforce our immigration laws concerns you or especially if it angers you, I ask you to call your Senators and Congressional “Representative. This is not only your right- it is your obligation! 

All I ask is that you make it clear to our politicians that we are not as dumb as they hope we are!

We live in a perilous world and in a perilous era. The survival of our nation and the lives of our citizens hang in the balance.

This is neither a Conservative issue, nor is it a Liberal issue- simply stated, this is most certainly an AMERICAN issue!

You are either part of the solution or you are a part of the problem!

Democracy is not a spectator sport!

Lead, follow or get out of the way!

-michael cutler- 


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Profiles in Cowardice

The
three word title of my commentary is an obvious play on the title of
the defining book authored by the late President John F. Kennedy that
was entitled, “Profiles in Courage.”

The issue of profiling has been a focal point of much of the
criticism that those who oppose the enforcement of our nation’s
immigration laws when they argue against immigration law enforcement,
especially when it is done by the states.

Having served as an immigration officer for some 30 years I decided
to tackle the issue of profiling.  Profiling can be an extremely
effective law enforcement tool if it is done for the right reasons and
if it is handled the appropriate way.  Let me explain what I mean.

If a law enforcement officer decides to focus his or her attention on
individuals of a specific race or ethnicity because of a prejudice,
then that officer is acting in an inappropriate and utterly unacceptable
manner.  However, if the officer is looking for a particular suspect
relating to a crime, then race, ethnicity or other such identifiers must
be taken into account.  If a person is the victim of a crime and
reports that crime to law enforcement and provides a description of the
perpetrator of the crime that include the suspect’s appearance, then
obviously law enforcement officers need to take that description into
account when searching for the perpetrator.

Profiling can also be used when law enforcement officers perceive
that an individual appears to be “out of place.”  When I have discussed
profiling while participating in public speaking appearances, I often
provide the example of the shopper in a supermarket who opens the ice
cream freezer in the store searching for a pint of ice cream and to his
surprise, finds a can of soup on the shelf next to the ice cream-
certainly that can of soup is out of place!

If a police officer encounters and individual who is acting
suspiciously or seems out of place, because of other factors, that law
enforcement officer should stop that person and talk to him (her) to
make certain as to what that person may be up to.  Profiling needs to be
about more than appearance but about the totality of circumstances. 
When a police officer, stops a motorist for violating vehicle and
traffic law, he can issue a summons or take the driver into custody. 
The primary issue is if the motorist is likely to show up in traffic
court if he’s issued a summons.  Simply stated, that officer is
conducting a bail hearing on that street corner or on the side of the
road.  If a motorist cannot provide proper identity documents the
diligent officer now has a dilemma.  He has no way of knowing if the
person is who he claims to be or may be lying because he is the subject
of a warrant.  It may mean that the motorist is not the owner of the
car.  Other issues now need to be taken into account including the
potential for danger to the officer and danger to the community.  If the
motorist cannot prove his true identity the likelihood that he will
show up when required by the summons is minimal at best.  Furthermore,
having an individual driving a vehicle without a license places other
motorists and pedestrians at risk.

Yet there is a group of people, not involved in law enforcement, who
are often quick to profile and they are, in my humble opinion, almost
always wrong for doing it- yet these folks are often quick to criticize
any law enforcement officer who use profiling.  These people are
journalists.

If you wonder how this is possible, consider how often the
journalists, especially those who cover politics talk about “Black
voters,” “Hispanic voters,” “Jewish Voters” or perhaps “Christian
Voters!”

Think how insane this is!  How can anyone possibly look at someone’s
color or religious ornament hanging from their neck and postulate who
that person is likely to vote for?  It is infuriating to think that
because I wear a Star of David, because I am a Jew, that anyone could
claim to predict who I would vote for or what positions I am likely to
take on various issues!  In my judgment, this flawed concept is the
result of the emphasis placed on our nation now being populated by
hyphenated Americans!  We are no longer simply described as being
Americans but instead as being “Black-Americans,” “Jewish-Americans” or
“Hispanic-Americans!”  This is divisive and wrong-headed!  Suddenly the
emphasis is on dividing Americans into subcategories of Americans.  It
is almost like using that awful phrase, “Those people!”  Suddenly the language of bigotry has been given legitimacy and few have the courage to challenge it!

Stop and think how much damage this sort of bigotry does to our
country in so many ways!  While few of us will ever seek a political
position, being elected to a political position is the equivalent of the
process by which workers are interviewed and hired by their employers. 
If you want a particular job you certainly will do what you can to make
a favorable impression on your prospective employer.  If you have a job
you like, you will likely be willing to work long hours and do what you
have to do in order to keep your job- especially in this economically
distressed era!

As might be expected, candidates for public office try to appeal to
as many of the likely voters as possible.  They fear that if they anger
potential voters that they may not win the election.  Often candidates
are intimidated by a fear of losing a particular demographic or ethnic
vote and hence the election, they buy into the idea that all voters of a
particular ethnicity, race, religion or other such factor will vote the
same way.  For example, once a member of Congress becomes convinced
that all Latino voters want the DREAM Act passed, or that all Latino
voters want illegal aliens to be provided with a “Pathway to United
States citizenship” the only question that those politicians will have
is to determine how large the Latino voting block is within the district
they seek to represent in Congress.  Rather than being motivated by
ideology these politicians become motivated by what they perceive is
political expediency and pragmatism.

While individuals tend to vote as individuals and immigration law
enforcement is not about race but about law, the statements that are all
too often made by journalists and political pundits that contradict
these fundamental truths influence many politicians.  Consequently,
politicians may be coerced into voting for bills they themselves may not
like but have come to believe that their success in winning the
election will depend on them voting for such a bill.  Imagine a
weak-kneed member of Congress voting for the DREAM Act or the mayor of a
city issuing policy directives for his city’s police department that
turn his city into a “Sanctuary City” for illegal aliens.  Rather than
vote their conscience, these politicians will make decisions that they
believe are essential if they are to be reelected!

It is the equivalent of an employee telling his boss that he likes
his boss’s necktie when in his heart of hearts he thinks that the
pattern on that tie looks like dog vomit!

There is, however, a world of difference between an employee
flattering his boss and a politician pandering to voters of a particular
ethnicity, believing he can’t win the election otherwise!

Several weeks ago I had the distinct privilege of sharing the podium
with Congressman Lou Barletta when we addressed an immigration forum at
Wilkes University in Wilkes-Barre, PA.  One of the folks in the audience
asked me about profiling and I explained my perspectives to him and the
rest of the audience the way I have here.  I explained how journalists
need to stop profiling!

After the event concluded I was approached by a number of the folks
who had attended the event including three members of the Hispanic
community.  I was extremely gratified when they all told me that they
had not thought about the issue of profiling and journalism and was
thrilled when the three members of the Hispanic community told me that
they could not have agreed with me more- and that they opposed the DREAM
Act and the providing of pathways to United States Citizenship for
illegal aliens!

When politicians want to praise one another, they commend their colleagues for their “leadership!”

It is time for our political leaders to act and vote like true
leaders by voting their conscience and not their fears!  Rather than
chase the political poles like a dog chasing its tail, leaders should be
able to decide on an appropriate course of action and by demonstrating
leadership, bring their constituents along with them!

America and Americans would all be better for it!

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