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While everyone is sympathetic to the situation of Elvira Arellano's son, it is evident that his mother and advocates for illegal immigrants are attempting to exploit this boy's condition for their own political cause.
Whenever parents violate the law -- the immigration law or any other -- they put their innocent children at risk. However, we all understand that children are not human shields, and that parents cannot be exempted from the consequences of their actions because punishing them might have some negative effect on their kids. In every other situation we would hold the parent responsible for any negative ramifications on children, and we must do the same in Ms. Arellano's case.
It is also important to understand exactly who Elvira Arellano is. She is a woman who came to this country illegally. She was apprehended by the authorities and given the benefit of a deportation hearing before she was removed from the country. After being deported from this country, she again entered the country illegally. It was after her return to the U.S. that Ms. Arellano gave birth to a child.
Upon returning to the U.S. illegally, Ms. Arellano obtained fraudulent documents and used those false documents to gain employment at O'Hare Airport -- a security sensitive location in the post-9/11 world. She was apprehended a second time by immigration authorities, given the benefit of a second deportation proceeding and was ordered deported again. Rather than comply with the order, she chose to hide in a church. Although the government had a perfect right to execute the second deportation order against her while she was in the church they chose not to touch her so long as she remained there.
However, Ms. Arellano was not satisfied with the status quo. She was interested in making herself a political martyr, which was evident by the fact that she and her supporters announced to the world that she was coming out. She was not coming out to take her son to the doctor, or anything else to do with the welfare of the boy. Rather, she publicly announced that she was coming out of the church to make a political statement. For all intents and purposes, Ms. Arellano was daring the government to execute the deportation order.
It is clear that Ms. Arellano and her supporters thought they were in a win-win situation. If the government did not act, then they would have created a showdown with the immigration authorities and forced the government to back down. If the government arrested her, they believed that they would create an outpouring of public sympathy and force a change in policy.
The government did arrest and deport her, but the American public is not rallying to her cause. The American public recognizes that Ms. Arellano and her supporters were exploiting the condition of the boy for political purposes. People do not take kindly to having their emotions manipulated for such obvious purposes.
It is not the government's action that has divided the Arellano family, but rather Ms. Arellano who has created the situation. She and her son can be reunited at any time in Mexico. The child, who is recognized as a citizen under the current interpretation of the 14th Amendment is free to return to this country at any time.
Ms. Arellano and her handlers are trying to portray her as a modern day Rosa Parks standing up for her rights. Ms. Arellano is no Rosa Parks. Ms. Arellano's situation has nothing to do with her race, religion or ethnicity. Rather, her situation is a result of her refusal to respect the immigration laws of this country that apply to all foreigners, irrespective of who they are or where they came from.
The American people understand that our immigration laws are there to protect the interests of the nation and, therefore, must be enforced. Their minds are not likely to be changed by transparent efforts to exploit the condition of a sick child for political gain.