As if US immigration policy and the debate about it hadn't been bordering on the ridiculous already, now comes this story from Florida:
15 Cubans who reached Old Seven Mile Bridge sent home
MIAMI -- Fifteen Cubans who fled their homeland and landed on an abandoned bridge in the Florida Keys were returned to Cuba Monday after U.S. officials concluded that the
piling did not constitute dry land, authorities said.
Under the U.S. government's ``wet-foot, dry-foot'' policy, Cubans who reach dry land in the United States are usually allowed to remain in the country, while those caught at sea are sent back
The historic Old Seven Mile Bridge, which runs side by side with a newer bridge, is missing several chunks, and the Cubans had the misfortune of reaching pilings from a section that no longer touches land.
The federal government said that means the group never actually reached U.S. territory and could be sent home.
``The `bridge' is kind of a misnomer,'' said Coast Guard Lt. Commander Chris O'Neil, spokesman for the department's Southeast region. He said officials in Washington determined the Cubans should be considered ``feet wet,'' because they were not able to walk to land from where they landed.
Is it just me, or has the immigration debate begun to look like some childish game played by schoolyard bullies. In Congress the Republicans have pushed for the building a giant wall across the southern border, and not just any wall, but a super-duper special wall that immigrants couldn't climb over. They support armed citizens playing "cowboys and Indians" chasing immigrants through the desert in SUVs , wearing night-vision goggles. Now in Florida the coast guard plays a game of tag with immigrants, who race as fast as they can to touch "home base" before being tagged out and sent home. Perhaps the DHS should come up with a better game, maybe a variation on Duck, Duck, Goose, or better yet dodgeball.
Since the Republicans have decided to act like spoiled, childish bullies, I figured we should look at the issue in a way they might understand. In the words of…….Dr. Seuss:
(more below the fold)
Your foot, My foot…Wet foot, Dry foot
There were two Reps, Rep Two, Rep One.
Both Reps did not like anyone.
They did not like ones not from here,
For they were Strange and caused them fear.
"There must be something we can do"
Rep One said to his friend Rep Two.
Rep One who came from lands of cheese,
Had rarely seen ones Strange like these.
They uttered words, odd from their mouth,
He thought they must be from the south.
Rep Two who hailed from warmer climes,
Said he had heard it many times.
He said there could be no mistake,
"They must be here for jobs to take."
"I do not want them small or tall,
I do not want them in my mall"
Rep One did not want them at all.
So his idea---- He'd build a wall.
Rep Two thought this was very good.
"Let's build a wall, we should, we could."
We'll build it wide, we'll build it strong,
I know it can't take very long.
And in good time, we'll build it tall,
So if they climb, they're bound to fall."
To keep out those who were so Strange,
The laws, they needed to be changed.
Rep One, Rep Two went to the Hill,
With all their friends to craft a bill.
After some time, the work was done,
They showed the bill to everyone.
And all the other Reps agreed,
The wall is something that they need.
With monies taxed on monies made,
The cost to build the wall was paid.
And all the Reps began to cheer,
“We'll keep the Strangers out of here.”
“The ones so strange, those not like us,
We'll keep them out, we must, we must.”
There was another Rep, named Three,
He came from lands called Diz in Nee.
A land where everyone was free,
Though many were called refugee.
One day some Strangers got a boat,
And on the ocean they did float.
Hoping to come upon some land,
That they could touch with just one hand.
But a hand could be a foot,
If on dry land that foot was put.
A law was written long before,
For those escaping from a war,
That if their foot was on dry land,
From this place they can't be band.
And though they spoke with words quite strange,
These Strangers though, could now remain.
Rep Three had always liked that law,
He used it many times before.
The Strangers would get off their boat,
And for Rep Three they'd give their vote.
The boat did float, days three, days four,
Until a bridge the Strangers saw.
"Get to that bridge, get to it fast,
Get to that bridge, touch land at last."
The Strangers rowed, fast as they could,
For it was known, was understood
To touch a bridge that touched the land,
Was equal to feet placed on sand.
If on the sand, you placed your feet,
Your journey then would be complete.
No one could ever kick you out,
Though some might scream, or pout, or shout.
There would be nothing they could do,
Those like Rep One, those like Rep Two.
But something strange happened that day,
The Strangers came but could not stay.
It seems the bridge the Strangers touched,
Did not connect to very much.
For it was old, parts fallen down,
No longer did it touch the ground.
So by the law from long ago,
This meant the Strangers had to go.
Rep Three cried out, this is not fair.
To kick them out, you would not dare.
They touched the home, they touched the base,
To change the base that's a disgrace.
That is no way to play the game,
Tag played that way would be a shame.
Rep Three cried out, "Rep One, Rep Two,
There must be something you can do."
"We're sorry friend" said Two and One,
"Two thousand six has just begun."
"And on one thing we all agree,
We must have a new enemy.
For if we don’t, we'll lose our seats,
The party doomed to sure defeat."
So Three and Two and One did sit
To ponder their constituents
But this was nothing they could fix
Before the fall, two thousand six