Free Speech in Herndon

The day laborer center controversy in the Town of Herndon has taken an ugly turn according to the Washington Post, with a talk radio show inciting anti-center phone calls to town hall and the town shutting down its phone system.

This comes after the Planning Commission voted 4-3 against the proposal. The Town Council will vote later this month.

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  1. Anonymous Avatar

    Let’s hope that the Herndon Town Council is paying attention. All they need to do is put it in perspective. Do they let people who ride skateboards loiter?

    Furthermore, you can’t have a benefit car wash, bake sale, or run a summer ice cream stand w/o a permit in most communities. Some even require that you to have a permit to have yard sale.

    Suggestion: Call the INS and have them hire two or three of illegal’s (after they document them, of course). Then, they can document the rest so these folks can start paying taxes.

    This is such a no brainer.

  2. Anonymous Avatar

    This thing is really showing how out of touch our local government is. The latest in this morning’s news has the Herndon government saying they’ve been receiving “anti-immigrant hate speech” calls on the comment line and that is why they are considering shutting it down. No quotes on any of this “hate speech” has been provided. Now I don’t doubt that one or two calls probably were inappropriate in their nature, but to characterize comments against the shelter in general as “hate speech”, especially when you’ve advertised for people to provide their comments, to me is over the line.

    I for one have no problem with creating a shelter provided three conditions are met. 1. Make the workers pay a small toll to pay back the government for creating it. 2. Make all people using the facility provide documentation of legal status to work in the US as a condition of entry, and validate it for future use. 3. Enforce the loitering laws on the books from now on.

    This will allow legal workers to make use of the system while it will bring the illegals out and force the local government to do something about them.

  3. Let’s all us pro-business Virginians start with a few facts about our economy and the sources of its relative robust good health (these facts brought to you by JLARC):
    80% of Virginia farmers say that they would have to sell their farms and cease farming if the migrant/seasonal workforce was not available;
    the poultry industry is heavily dependent on foreign-born workers who make up half of the industry’s labor force;
    nineteen percent of workers in hotels and tourism are foreign-born; without foreign workers, many hotels and restaurants could not operate with a “full house;” and
    who do you think is building all those homes that are the real driving force in the economy?

    And, these folks are NOT draining our coffers with demands for public services. Again, according to JLARC, foreign-born persons in Virginia do not use public services at a disproportionate rate; in fact, their use of public services is lower than expected given poverty rates and income levels.

    Wow, and most immigrants already pay taxes…The Center for Urban Economic Development at the University of Illinois Chicago Circle estimated that most undocumented immigrants work more than forty hours a week at low wage jobs that others disdain and that 70% pay taxes. (They even go out of their way to get a federal tax ID number to do this since they can’t get a SSN).

    The Urban Institute also found that undocumented immigrants contributed a national total of $2.7 billion to Social Security and another $168 million to unemployment insurance taxes, both programs they will be unable to access because of their legal status. Other sources estimate that there is almost $500,000,000 in the social security suspense fund that is identifiable as having been contributed by immigrant workers who can’t get benefits.

    A recent analysis of the labor market statistics in the 2000 Census data that was prepared for the National Business Roundtable in Washington, DC, estimated that 44% of male workers entering Virginia’s workforce in the 1990s were immigrants and that the “[t]he national jobs boom of the 1990s clearly would not have been possible in the absence of these new record waves of immigrant workers, especially men. The Great American Job Machine was largely fueled by new immigrant labor, a finding that has received insufficient attention from most economic and labor market analysts.”

    So, unless you’re prepared to address the demand side of this equation, Jerry Kilgore and the rest of the politicians seeking to score political points by beating up on immigrants (now that gay people have been removed from the easy target category) need to be prepared to explain why they want to shut down our economy.

    Even the US Chamber of Commerce recogizes that what needs to happen here is to make honest employers of American businesses that depend on immigrant workers and will continue to do so as the gap between available jobs and available workers grows to 10,000,000 as baby boomers age out of the market.

    Time to get real.

  4. Anonymous Avatar

    CG2 no one is claiming that immigrants are the problem. However, local governments encouranging illegal behavior in the way Herndon is is not a solution. You are right that we need to fix our immigration problems, but if we do not enforce the law, no amount of changes to it will help. I as a pro-business conservative welcome immigrants to our nation, but only if they come here legally. We need to put a stop to this black-market labor economy that hurts the immigrants (they have no insurance or legal protections) and brings with it many ills in our society. Yes, while you quoted all those positive that illegal immigrants allow us there are also negatives (gangs, gang crime, unpaid taxes, and fraud on the part of employers to name just a few). Most illegal immigrants just want a job, but continuing the illegal cycle does not help them or us in the long run. I say fix the problem and enforce the law.

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