|I voted for Proposition 187
And I would vote for it again
August 20, 2003
As a candidate in the Recall Election (www.GuzzardiForGovernor.com),
let me make one thing perfectly clear: in 1994, I voted for Proposition
187. And I would vote for it again today.
No issue in California’s political history has been as poorly reported
on or as shallowly analyzed as Proposition 187. Nearly 60% of California
voters supported the initiative.
For the last decade, the mainstream media has insisted, “the anti-immigrant
proposition was killed in the courts.”
Here’s the truth:
What Proposition 187 would have done is deny social services—except for
emergency medical care-- to illegal aliens. An illegal alien is not an
“immigrant.” This is an extremely important distinction that the open borders
lobby refuses to make because it does not suit its purposes.
Proposition 187 is not “anti-immigrant.” An immigrant is a person who applies
in his native country to come to the U.S. Once his paperwork is processed
and approved, a visa is issued. Then, that person legally comes into U.S.
through a port of entry.
One of my rivals in the Recall election, Lt. Governor Cruz Bustamante,
told Los Angeles Times Sacramento-based columnist George Skelton, “Proposition
187 was like illegitimatizing the Latino experience.” What in
the world does that mean? What’s illegitimate is forcing taxpayers
to fork out billions of dollars to provide services to people illegally
in the U.S.
Without a shadow of a doubt, the failure to implement Proposition 187
has played a major role in dragging California into the budget crisis.
The cost of educating illegal alien school children alone is $3 billion
annually. Over a decade, that’s $30 billion!
Non-emergency medical care for illegal aliens has brought hospitals
and clinics to the brink of bankruptcy. One nurse in a major metropolitan
hospital confided in me that uninsured illegal aliens receive the “platinum”
treatment. Hospital administrators told her that under no circumstances
is she to talk to the press about what goes on behind closed doors regarding
illegal alien health care.
For a comprehensive overview of what really happened to Proposition 187,
read this analysis
by FAIR Executive Director Dan Stein. Take special note of Stein’s
comment that, “In no democracy in the world are the results of an election
overturned without the voters having their day in court -- that is, until
Proposition 187 was not “killed in the courts.” After U.S.
District Court judge Mariana Pfaelzer ruled Proposition 187 unconstitutional,
the next step in the legal process is an appeal to a higher court. Instead,
Governor Davis in concert with the Mexican American Legal Defense Fund
and other similar-minded groups entered into a bogus “mediation” to prevent
Proposition 187 from going to the U.S. Supreme Court.
In the ten years that have passed since Proposition 187 was scuttled,
none of the ethnic identity activists have missed a chance at slurring
anyone who voted for the initiative. Among the predictable charges are
“racist,” “xenophobe,” “nativist” and “ignorant.”
But here’s still more truth:
But what about the statistics the Los Angeles Times collected in an exit
poll on November 9,1994? According to the Times’ findings, 57% of Asians
and 56% of Blacks voted “Yes” on Proposition 187. And, rarely revealed,
30% of Mexican-Americans also voted “Yes” on Proposition 187.
The unfounded charges of racism are, of course, directed at any white Californian
who might have expressed reservations about providing unlimited social
services to illegal aliens. In a democracy, citizens are allowed to voice
disapproval without becoming the target of ugly efforts to have their voices
silenced. That has not been the case for Proposition 187 supporters.
According to Bustamante and his allies, then, whether you are Mexican,
Asian, Black or White, if you voted “Yes” on Proposition 187, you are a
The final reality:
That fact cannot be disputed. And the people of California know it.
If Proposition 187 had been enacted, one of the major causes of the budget
crisis—expensive social services to illegal aliens---would have been removed.
is a Senior Writing Fellow for
for Population Stabilization
Guzzardi's Op-eds about California social issues have
appeared in newspapers throughout California and elsewhere for 15 years.
He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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