Friday, February 23, 2018

The Stimulus Bill Ignored an Educational Problem

Sunday, March 1, 2009, 0:01
This news item was posted in Education category.
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The $787 billion Economic Stimulus Bill now signed into law has $106 billion earmarked for education. The spending bill pays for special education, building repair, new schools, bilingual education, and many other things as it places the government increasingly in charge of education.  The spending bill will definitely bring change to the quagmire of public education. 


There is the problem of educating illegal immigrants. This problem is a major contributor to the economic breakdown in the states.  California is a ready example.  The largest amount of the stimulus package is earmarked for the state with the highest number of illegal immigrants. Illegal aliens cost California taxpayers nearly $9 billion annually.  


California has gone broke!  One expert wrote: “We have a budget deficit of $41 billion by the best estimate — no one knows exactly how much.  In all the talk about balancing [the California state budget] from Arnold Schwarzenegger, so why has there not been one discussion about services to non-citizens?  That would save $10 to $15 billion.”  About one-third of the California deficit is in the area of education.


Illegal immigration raises state expenses for education, health care, and imprisonment for illegal criminals among other things.  A study by the Federation for American Immigration Reform shows that children of illegal immigrants raise education costs about $7.7 billion nationally each year.  These results parallel a study done by the Center for Immigration Reform.  The problem of illegal immigrants is filled with contradictions, as congress seeks to talk out of both sides of its mouth.  There is the call, “Why punish the children?”   Yet, there is the fact that rewarding with amnesty the 13 million people who have broken the law is going to be even more devastating to our struggling social institutions like the public schools.


The primary thrust of illegal immigration is from Central America.  Less than one-third of the 35 million Hispanics in the United States are there illegally, but they have the lowest record of completing college degrees of any group – between nine and eleven percent for the last three decades.  The achievement level in the public schools for the Central American illegal population is by far the lowest.


In contrast, African Americans have been making slow but steady progress over the past three decades, from eleven percent graduating college in 1975 to eighteen percent in 2006.  But it is a fact that in seeking to remedy the non-achievers, advanced achievers have been neglected in American education!


America is a nation of immigrants — primarily legal immigrants. I applaud controlled legal immigration of all ethnic backgrounds. By ignoring the laws established to control immigration, we have brought upon ourselves many major problems. In 1987, I wrote against the Sanctuary Movement of the Presbyterian Church (PCUSA), in which I served as a pastor for 20 years.  The Sanctuary Movement dates back to 1983 when the PCUSA General Assembly declared support by every means possible to congregations and individuals to provide advocacy to those seeking asylum from Central America.  I believed that disobeying the immigration laws could become a crack that would ultimately break the dike and bring on a destructive flood.


The 1984 PCUSA General Assembly commended those churches that “at risk to themselves have declared their congregations as a place of sanctuary to Salvadoran and Guatemalan refugees.”  The PCUSA chose to oppose as illegal and immoral the policy of the federal government to deny safe haven for all Central American refugees in the United States.  The PCUSA advisory committee on church and society published a study book entitled, Presbyterians and Peacemaking: Are we now called to Resistance?  The book advocated civil disobedience to bring illegal immigrants from Central America, and the Sanctuary Movement became a central tool to open the borders!  The Sanctuary Movement was endorsed by other denominations as well.


Our laws were established for the overall long-term welfare of our land.  I Peter 2:13,14 states: “Be subject to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake; whether to the king as supreme, or unto governors as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evil doers, and the praise of them that do well.”  


Logic studies the methods and principles used in distinguishing correct from incorrect reasoning.  One fundamental law for arguments to be correct is the principle of contradiction, “No statement can be both true and false.”   Parallel to this, there is no way that we can increase the influx of illegal aliens and not have to pay increased expenses to educate them. The influx of illegal aliens needs to be stopped, and the illegal aliens need to be sent back to their home country.


There is an “E-Verify Bill” that effectively stops the hiring of illegal immigrants with better than 98% accuracy, and is fast and inexpensive.  The House of Representatives, at first, made it part of their passage of the Stimulus Bill, and it would have addressed the problem, but it has been now removed. The Stimulus Bill has been approved by both houses and signed by the President. Here is a contradiction!


The question was asked:  “Why has there not been a single discussion about services to non-citizens?”  This relates to the principle of contradiction. The Stimulus Bill Ignored an Educational Problem. Funding education for illegal immigrants will not resolve the problem.   If the premise of addressing the expenses of the problem of illegal immigrants in public education is not applied to the Stimulus funds, there is an inherent major logical fallacy!


by Joe Renfro, Ed.D., Radio Evangelist, Retired Teacher and Pastor, Box 751, Lavonia, Georgia 30553, 706-356-4173,

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