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Roger Gitlin: We will win the fight against illegal immigration

SCV Voices

Posted: March 6, 2010 11:46 p.m.
Updated: March 7, 2010 4:55 a.m.
"First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you - then you win."

- Mahatma Gandhi, 1947

I was not too happy about last Saturday's Save Our State rally at the Santa Clarita Valley Civic Center opposing illegal immigration.

First, the weather was disappointing, which I think deterred a larger turnout. Maybe the small turnout was a blessing.

I was extremely disappointed there were some inappropriate comments made by a few members of the SOS group that were rude and coarse. Those comments were directed toward 17th District state Sen. George Runner.

Though I was not a sponsor of this event, I felt I needed to stand up and say I deplored the treatment to which Runner, R-Antelope Valley, was subjected.

Runner was justifiably upset at comments made by Quartz Hill pastor Audie Yancy at the event's invocation.

The senator approached a rally organizer to express his opinion on the inappropriate comments that were being delivered by the pastor and was promptly and abrasively dismissed from the event.

The behavior was inexcusable and reprehensible.

What was lost in the drama was the issue itself: The dark side of illegal immigration. Some not just here to work.

When I was allowed to speak I faced the Answer L.A. open-borders advocates, including leader Robert Gittleson, and addressed them.

I said to them, "You folks cannot want illegal alien criminals preying on your communities, driving drunk without licenses, without insurance, trafficking drugs, committing heinous gang-style crimes, murdering and sexually assaulting innocents. You can't want that."

Regrettably, the protesters turned their backs on me. According to Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, 13,000 Americans were killed by illegal immigrant drunk drivers or murdered in 2008. Where is the outrage?

Can we all agree criminals who illegally enter our country should not be allowed to hide behind the cloak of illegal immigration? Sadly, sanctuary city Los Angeles and its ridiculous Special Order 40 protect these very people all of us loathe. Why is that?

I spoke with passion about the tragedy of Jamiel Shaw Jr., 17, of Los Angeles murdered (allegedly) by a domestic illegal immigrant terrorist, three doors from his front door. Tuesday commemorated the two-year anniversary of his slaying.

There are so many, many victims of illegal immigrant violent criminals, I could not begin to note them in the few words afforded me in this commentary.

I urge you to visit the Web site for the Ohio Justice Center Victims of Illegal Aliens Memorial,

Please view this memorial site to view, ponder, reflect and digest the true impact of illegal immigration. It is humbling.

Our government at all levels - local, country, state and federal - have stuck their heads in the sand, ignoring the devastating effect illegal immigration wreaks on our communities.

I will continue to bring attention to the terrible impact of this issue. I will continue to confront our inept City Council members, such as Councilwoman Marsha McLean who claimed, "there is nothing we can do about this, Mr. Gitlin, and it's a federal issue. Contact your congressman." Outrageous! Her sentiments have been echoed by Mayor Laurene Weste.

Councilman Frank Ferry is unable to distinguish between legal immigration and illegal immigration.

To those on the Santa Clarita City Council who profess this, I say, "get off the council, if you feel there is nothing you can do. And if you won't get off, voters will vote you out. I will work tirelessly to effectuate your defeat."

I was particularly impressed with blogger Jeff Wilson, who is still unable to have a conversation with me. Here's Jeff's quote from his own blog:

"I did share one thing with the Minutemen. I am angry. I am very angry that Deputy David March was murdered. I am angry there are illegal immigrants driving without licenses or insurance.

"I am angry that taxpayers foot the bill for an undocumented immigrant's kidney dialysis at my mom's unit while an American gentleman struggles getting his insurance company to pay for his."

"I am angry that (Adriano Arriano) an illegal immigrant, raped several women in Canyon Country, a few years back. I am also angry that American companies get fat off the backs of these people and no one stops them."

Jeff, You sound like me. I absolutely agree with everything you have stated. I am seething with anger, too. Jeff Wilson and, you speak like a Santa Clarita Valley Independent Minutemen. Well, if you are, you should be a damn proud one.

I am not going to respond to those who ignore me, ridicule me or fight me.

We will win, and you politicians who abandon us will be forgotten like dust in the wind.

Roger Gitlin is a teacher and founder of the Santa Clarita Valley Independent Minutemen and can be reached at His column reflects his own views and not necessarily those of The Signal.


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