I started blogging in 2007 because of the Hagerstown Herald-Mail (it is a long story!). For over twenty five years I’ve watched the paper report the news selectively and editorialize from a Leftist perspective. (They also promoted Del. Neil Parrott’s opponent in the election last fall. I am sure they are overjoyed to get letters like the one from Dr. Lourie!).
So, I haven’t written a letter to the editor in a year. Frankly, I don’t need them now that we all have an opportunity, via the new media, to get our opinions published elsewhere.
But, I couldn’t let it go when the Herald Mail published one more holier-than-thou-elitist-sounding letter critical of Del. Neil Parrott and the Petition drive for a referendum on in-state tuition for illegal aliens. The title of the letter I found so offensive was: Parrott distorts the truth for political gain.
I should have known better then to think I might be published fairly. No, my letter, which was not long as it was, was edited. Visit the Herald Mail here and see what they published and then see below my entire letter to the editor.
As you can see below, my letter isn’t that long. In red is what the Herald Mail edited out (there may be a few more words deleted, added, or changed but I lost patience with finding the edits).
On Sunday, June 5th, the Herald Mail published a letter from Ira S. Lourie critical of Del. Neil Parrott’s efforts to get a referendum on the ballot in 2012 on whether illegal aliens should receive in-state tuition rates for Maryland colleges.
Dr. [there is only one Ira S. Lourie in Hagerstown, a psychiatrist, so if there is another one, I apologize to the doc] suggests Del. Parrott is not being truthful, but I suggest Ira Lourie needs to examine the facts more carefully himself.
Lourie wants readers to believe that those illegal aliens who will receive taxpayer-supported tuition rates are themselves paying taxes. If the parents, or the working student, are here illegally, first, how are they working, and secondly are they giving their employers a fictitious social security number for employers to report to the IRS?
Del. Parrott’s critic has not read the bill carefully. Last week an employee of Identity Inc (a Gaithersburg taxpayer funded non-profit group that works with Hispanic youths and lobbied for the law) confronted signature collectors in Boonsboro with literature on her group’s letterhead. Perhaps Lourie doesn’t know this, but the bill says the parent or student must file a tax return, but as Identity Inc. informs its clients and would-be college students: “Taxes can be filed for previous years, even if no income was earned.” [Why did the H-M leave out the Inc. for Identity Inc.?]
Readers may not know that via the Earned Income Tax Credit,* those who don’t make enough to PAY taxes may file a return anyway and get a REFUND even if they didn’t make enough money to owe state or federal taxes. Many such filers are here illegally.
Incidentally, it will be interesting to see how Hagerstown Community College manages this tax return requirement because they will have to require students to henceforth divulge their immigration status (or how will they know from which students to get a tax return?).
Dr. Lourie also wishes readers to believe that the illegal kids have been here all their lives. However, for every illegal immigrant who grew up in the US, there will be a “Dustin.” Dustin (not his real name) was one of Governor Martin O’Malley’s props on May 10th when he signed the bill into law. Dustin admits he came across the border without his parents only three years ago, worked in a Mexican restaurant (illegally) and attended a Maryland high school. He is looking for Maryland taxpayers to now subsidize his college education.
With this referendum initiative, I believe Del. Parrott has tapped into a huge undercurrent of anger in Maryland about our wide open borders and our inability to cut our budgets both at the federal and state level and that is why this petition campaign is resonating. The petition drive is one small way for citizens to be heard! If the drive is successful, voters of Maryland will decide the issue in 2012 and that is how it should be.
The Herald Mail distorts the truth for political gain—not Neil Parrott!
* Readers if you aren’t familiar with how the Earned Income Tax Credit is distributing your wealth to illegal aliens and others then please visit economist Dr Edwin Rubenstein’s analysis here (I had the pleasure of meeting Dr. Rubenstein in 2009). His work is entitled: The Earned Income Tax Credit and Illegal Immigration – A Study in Fraud, Abuse, and Liberal Activism – Introduction
Addendum: If you didn’t see it yesterday, check out the tactics being used by Progressives in Maryland to intimidate Petitioners, here.