Opinion: Dealing with reality – licenses for unauthorized immigrants

Terry Cowgill
Terry Cowgill

Terry Cowgill lives in Lakeville, blogs at ctdevilsadvocate.com and is news editor of The Berkshire Record in Great Barrington, Mass. Follow him on Twitter @terrycowgill.

Judging by the fevered invective that passes for discourse on this controversial topic, you’d think allowing unlawful immigrants to have driver licenses would open the door to all manner of mischief and chicanery — to say nothing of the fact that “Giving licenses to illegals is wrong! Deport all illegal aliens!” as one commenter on this website declared last month.

In one sense, it is wrong. Entering any nation without signing the guest book is wrong. And when I first heard the idea proposed in other states, it struck me as crazy. After all, why reward someone who has jumped the fence or sneaked past airport security with the legitimacy conferred by a state-issued drivers license? But the more I thought about it, the more sense it made.

Once the unlawful deed is done, especially when it happens on a massive scale, authorities must deal with it on a practical level. Consuming booze, or as former Sen. John Tower called it, “beverage alcohol,” was wrong from 1920 to 1933. But we dealt with the reality of a law being routinely ignored — not by arresting millions of people, but by changing the law to acknowledge that it wasn’t working.

See the complete story at CT News Junkie.



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