»  Taki's Magazine

April 7th, 2011

  The Princess of Miami

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Get yer hankies out. Here is the tale of little Emily Ruiz, four years old, the victim, according to her attorney, of "a tragic injustice."

Little Emily is the daughter of Leonel and Brenda Ruiz, illegal immigrants from Guatemala who live in Brentwood, Long Island. She has a brother, Christopher, one year younger. Both children were born in the U.S.A. They are therefore, under the prevailing interpretation of the 14th Amendment, U.S. citizens, even though their parents have no business being here.

Emily's parents sent her back to Guatemala for the winter because they feared the cold New York weather might aggravate her asthma. Then, three weeks ago, she came back, in care of her Guatemalan grandfather.

Unfortunately the grandfather had immigration violations on his record, so U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) refused him entry at Dulles airport outside Washington, D.C.

What to do with Emily? Sure, as a U.S. citizen she had right of entry. However, there were no adults at Dulles who could take responsibility for her. No airline will take a four-year-old unaccompanied, so there was no question of just forwarding her to New York. CBP called the father in Long Island. They offered to put the child in custody of Virginia Child Protection Services until one of the parents showed up.

Mr Ruiz claims he didn't understand the situation as his English is poor. This is odd: according to the New York Times, Mr Ruiz has been here since 1996. Fifteen years, and he can't take a phone call? In fact it's double odd, as every CBP unit has Spanish speakers on staff. Somebody's telling us little pork pies.

In any case, either Mr Ruiz, or the grandfather, or both in agreement, decided that little Emily should return to Guatemala with Grandpa. Why Mr Ruiz did not want to go to Dulles to take custody of his daughter, or send his wife to do so, is not known. I'm going to go out on a limb and guess he feared la migra would collar him and deport him — which, since he was in the country illegally, they would have had every right to do — would, in fact, have had the duty to do.

Whatever the reason, little Emily was soon back in Guatemala. The Ruizes got lawyered up; or, in the words of the Times:

The Ruizes find themselves on the front lines of a heated immigration debate: how to treat families in which the parents are here illegally, while their children, born in the United States, are citizens.

Seems like a no-brainer to me. Deport the parents. Let them make what arrangements they lawfully can for the child — park her with relatives legally present in the U.S., if they have any such; or, failing that, take her with them. What's to get heated about?

Such an attitude of course flies in the face our fierce determination to give away our beautiful, bountiful country to anyone who demands a piece. "Here, I've left the cash register open. Help yourself! — I promise not to look."

So what actually happened was that all the innumerable organizations who shill for foreign scofflaws, in unison with the immigration lawyers bar, raised a mighty howl of protest. "A U.S. citizen has been DEPORTED!" they shrieked, which was of course not the case.

The big lefty news organizations geared up, the Justice Department could be heard clearing its throat in the background, and the CBP grunts knew what they had to do if they were ever to have any hope of advancement in their jobs: drop trou and bend over their desks as the immigration lawyers and lefty reporters swarmed in, whooping and brandishing their subpoenas.

Thus last week's happy conclusion, this time at Miami airport. Burbled CNN:

Four-year-old Emily Ruiz flew first class from Guatemala to the United States Wednesday for a tearful reunion with her mom, dad and younger brother.

Immigration officers treated her like royalty, said her lawyer, David Sperling. After her plane landed in Florida, one officer called her the "princess of Miami," he said.

Excuse me while I go make a call on the monster white telephone …

That's better. I suppose it is pointless to ask why, once the CBP officers had Mr and Mrs Ruiz in grabbing range, they didn't cuff them for deportation, as their duties require? Yes, pointless.

Meanwhile, what's this? A new report from the Center for Immigration Studies. Well, they do good research. What do they have to tell us?

Report title: "Welfare Use by Immigrant Households with Children: A Look at Cash, Medicaid, Housing, and Food Programs." Interesting. Whoa, what's this?

Welfare Use by Country of Birth. Table 4 and Figure 5 (p. 14) report welfare use for households with children based on the country of birth of the household head. Table 4 also includes data for regions of the world. Both Table 4 and Figure 5 show very large differences in use rates. Immigrant households with children with the highest use rates are those from the Dominican Republic (82 percent), Mexico and Guatemala (75 percent), and Ecuador (70 percent). Those with the lowest use rates are from the United Kingdom (7 percent), India (19 percent), Canada (23 percent), and Korea (25 percent). These figures remind us that although the overall use rates for immigrant households with children are quite high, this is not the case for all immigrant-sending countries and regions.

Come one, come all! Never mind about paperwork: just get here somehow, pop out a couple of kids — citizens!! — and you're on the welfare gravy train. All courtesy of Joe Sucker Taxpayer. Hey, you're welcome!