April 2010 Archives

Boycott Arizona!!!

The Fat Kid is all in a lather today.  Apparently his home state of Arizona has passed a radical anti-immigrant bill, which has led many enlightened and proper-thinking people to compare the Canyon State to Nazi Germany, Apartheid, and Jim Crow.  When I found out that my beloved home is rolling out the fascism and looking to turn into a modern era Third Reich, well my reaction was the same as yours: This simply cannot be allowed to stand.  As a lover of knowledge, I thought I'd research this new law and share its highlights and bring to light all the odious features so that you can arm yourself against all the misinformation that will be thrown your way.


My crack research team here at the Fat Kid Diaries (me, Google, and Wikipedia) got right to work summarizing the law, which provides for the following:

- Makes it a felony to be in the country illegally

- Directs the state to track the nationalities of legal immigrants and mandates that entry be barred to certain people if their presence would upset the demographic balance of the state

- Forbids immigrants from political activities, including public protests

- Makes it a crime punishable by 10 years in prison to re-enter the state illegally once a person has been caught and deported

- Makes it a felony to assist someone in entering the country illegally

- Mandates that immigrants be able to be productive and able to support themselves and their dependents without aid from the state

- Requires that police and other public officials definitively establish that an immigrant is in the country legally before they can offer any assistance, even if the immigrant is the victim of a crime

As you can see, these are draconian to say the least.  If I didn't already live here, I would never set foot in this state.  Just because someone sneaks over the border doesn't mean they should be imprisoned.  What kind of cruel and heartless people enact such laws?

Wait....Hold on a sec....My producers are telling me something....

Wow, am I embarrassed!  It turns out that those aren't in the Arizona law at all, but rather are contained within Mexico's current immigration laws.  That last provision is called "Article 67" and is deemed by Amnesty International to be a large factor in the widespread human rights abuses suffered by Central American illegals at the hands of gangs and complicit police officers.


OK, so I was wrong about what the Arizona law says.  Let me dig a little deeper and see what it is about the law that prompted Colorado Democrat Congressman Jared Polis to declare that Arizona was turning into a "police state" reminiscent of Nazi Germany.  It turns out that he objects to the stipulation that legal immigrants have their immigration papers on them at all times and be required to produce them for authorities on demand.  That really is a Gestapo-like requirement, isn't it?  Visions of jackbooted brownshirts demanding "Papers, please" to legal resident aliens should send chills down everyone's spines, shouldn't it?

Wait...Hold on another second....Getting new information....

Well, color me doubly humiliated for bad reporting.  I have just learned that the requirement that legal aliens have their immigration papers on them at all times and be able to produce them when asked is a federal law that has been in place for quite some time.

Well, then what exactly does the Arizona law require?  It is called Senate Bill 1070, and it does the following:

- It forbids communities from declaring themselves to be "sanctuary cities" and from refusing to cooperate with existing federal immigration law.

- It directs police officers who have already made legal contact with a person (domestic violence complaint, speeding, public drunkenness, tail light out, loitering, etc) to make a "reasonable attempt" to ascertain resident status if there is reasonable suspicion that the person is an illegal alien

- Makes it a misdemeanor (trespassing) to be in the country illegally.

- Specifically prohibits racial profiling and requires that police may only stop and question people about their immigration status if there is a reasonable cause to do so

- Makes it a felony to smuggle across the border a minor if there is no other adult family member also being smuggled

That last provision is an important one and is largely ignored by race baiting activists who want to make political hay out of this issue. Young women and girls are taken from their homes in Mexico and brought to the United States to work as prostitutes. Separated from their families and speaking no English, they are completely at the mercy of their kidnappers.  Phoenix is the kidnapping capital of the United States, and it is almost entirely directly tied to illegal immigration.  Gang violence is increasing in this state, fueled by border crossers looking to expand their share of the drug and prostitution trade.  In the past few weeks, a southern Arizona rancher was shot to death on his own land by illegals, and a sheriff's deputy was seriously wounded in a shootout with drug smugglers.

When humans first started to band together and form communities, it wasn't to make sure that they all had universal health care or free education.  It was to protect themselves.  The first function of government - if it does nothing else - is to protect its citizens from invaders and from criminals.  The federal government for many years under both political parties has willingly shirked its duty in making sure that only law abiding immigrants are allowed into this country.  Cajoled by Republican business interests who care more about cheap labor than they do sound immigration policy and by Democratic political interests who see the millions of undocumented and uninvited visitors from Latin America as a political constituency, the federal government has decided to simply ignore the problem.  Now that it has fallen on the states to deal with the multitude of social ills associated with criminals operating across an open border, Arizona has taken the lead in stemming the flow and it is getting a lot of heat (pardon the pun) for it.

What is ironic in the whole 1070 kerfuffle is that Prop 100 is on the ballot for consideration.  It would implement a "temporary" one cent sales tax increase to fund education.  There is a strong push on television and radio to pass this tax, with politicians and teachers telling us that it's the "right thing to do."  Ignored in the debate is the financial burden that undocumented aliens have on our social services systems.  A large portion of these workers are employed on a cash basis, meaning they pay no state or federal income taxes, while at the same time they send their kids to school and avail themselves of services and infrastructure provided by the state.  It would make sense for the people agitating for higher taxes to hold those illegals who dodge their own tax responsibilities to demand they they pay their fair share.  Sadly but predictably, they are silent on this point.

If you poll Americans, including Arizonans, you would find that a sizable majority is in favor of robust and plentiful legal immigration.  This country was founded by immigrants and has flourished because of them.  But we as a nation have a right to decide which immigrants should be allowed entry and which ones we'd be better off without.

The pro-open borders loudmouths who compare Arizona's decision to address the very real problem of illegal immigration to an establishment of a Nazi state act like petulant, spoiled children.  They slander the people who support secure national borders while at the same time trivializing the horrors suffered by the victims of the Holocaust.  If people like Al Sharpton were capable of feeling an ounce of shame, they would blush.  Unfortunately, they are not, so the misinformation and distortion of the facts will go on.

We Need To Talk....

It's hard for me to believe, but two of my precious babies have morphed into teenagers.  Now that they are old enough to date, I felt it was my duty as their father to help them vis-a-vis trying to figure out members of the opposite sex.  Specifically, I thought they would need help interpreting what the other sex is telling them.  Having been the object of much scorn from many girls/women in years past, I have heard it all, even though it took me years to decode it all.  So, rather than allowing my offspring to experience all this for themselves, I have compiled a glossary of common phrases that they might hear and what their true meanings are.

We need to talk means:  I am dumping you

It's not you, it's me: It's you

I am soooooo over my ex: I am soooooo still in love with my ex

I don't know where to begin: I have been cheating on you

We should start seeing other people: I have already started seeing other people

I am not quite sure what my feelings are right now : I have been cheating on you with this really hot guy/girl

I think I just need my space for awhile: I mean, really, really hot

Thank you for being so patient with me while I sort my feelings out: Thanks for buying me dinners and keeping me company while I wait for this guy/girl I am crushing on to become available

I love you, but I'm just not in love with you: I am too lazy to even try to make up something original

I just want to be friends: I want to be the kind of friends who never see each other, call each other, send each other birthday presents, or even acknowledge each other is alive.  I want to be that kind of friend

You will always be dear to me: Are you still here? Why? Take off already!

You are too good for me and I am just standing in your way: I think you are so stupid that you will believe anything I say, no matter how idiotic
Many people enjoy road trips with the family, with parents and children being offered hours and hours of uninterrupted Together Time, during which they have have deep conversations, free from distraction.  These lucky people look forward to hearing wisdom flowing from the mouths of babes.

I am not one of them.

I used to be.  We take a trip to Disneyland every year, and the best part of the experience was the interaction the lovely Mrs. Fat Kid and I would have with our offspring.  When they were little, we were treated to their theories of what clouds were made of (milk) and why Goofy could talk and Pluto couldn't, even though they were both dogs (Goofy can stand upright and wears clothes).

Sadly, all that changed years ago while we were passing through Cabazon, California, one of many desert cities on the road to Disneyland.  At the time, the only notable thing about the Cabazon was a pair of dinosaurs gracing the roadside landscape.  One was a Sharp Tooth and the other a Long Neck, with the Long Neck (conveniently) doubling as a souvenir shop.


At the time, my oldest was really, really into dinosaurs, so I thought I would engage her in conversation and show her how smart her Daddy was.

"Look, sweetie! A long neck!"

"Daaaaaad...that's not what it's called."

"Ok.  Look, sweetie!  A brontosaurus!"

"Daaaaaad...that's not what it's called, either.  There's no such thing as a brontosaurus."

"Ummm, yeah there is.  Fred Flintstone worked on one, and they ate bronto burgers all the time."

"Daaaaaad...there's no such thing as a brontosaurus.  What they had called a brontosaurus was really an apatosaurus.  They thought it was a new species of dinosaur, but they later figured out they were wrong."

"Well, ummm, OK.  Look, sweetie!  An apatosaurus!"

"Daaaaaad.  That's not an apatosaurus,  That's either a brachiosaurus or a diplodocus.  You can tell by the slope of the forehead."

"Look, sweetie!  Taco Bell!"

Needless to say, that dinosaur beat down left me a little rattled.  I had recovered and put the whole ugly affair out of my mind, that is until we actually arrived at Disneyland.  While riding the Disneyland Railroad from Tomorrowland to Main Street, USA, we were sent back in time (via the wonders of animatronics) to the Age of the Dinosaur.  The kids watched with rapt wonder as we passed through the dark tunnel, riding among pterodactyls, triceratops, brachiosauruses/apatosauruses/diplodocuses.  When we got to the final scene, my oldest sat straight up and pointed, shouting "Daddy! That T. Rex is trying to eat that stegosaurus!"


Being the good, nurturing fatherly type, I comforted my princess, telling her "It's OK, honey.  It looks like that stegosaurus is holding its own in this fight, so I think the T. Rex will get tired and move on.

While I was patting myself on the back for being such an awesome father, she got even more animated, standing up and still pointing to the carnage.  "No!  You don't understand!  Stegosaurus became extinct, like, 80 million years before T. Rex appeared!  A T. Rex would never be able to eat a stegosaurus!  We need to talk to Mr. Disney so he can change the ride!  Do you think he's here at Disneyland right now?"

It was at that moment that I started to realize that I was out of my league when it came to dinosaur knowledge.  Future trips would reveal that I am also woefully ignorant about hermit crabs, the technicals of music, animals, minerals, and urban legends.  Previous blog posts have also hinted that I am behind the curve on current theories on how to survive the zombie apocalypse and how the word "no" is verboten.

What's a father to do?  Trip after trip, being exposed as a know-nothing by a bunch of upstarts?  I did the smart thing.  I bought a DVD player for the car.

This Blog Post Will Self-Destruct In Fifteen Seconds

The other day I was in my car when I heard something that caught me completely by surprise - a commercial encouraging people to apply to work at the CIA.  Yes, that CIA. Apparently, there just aren't enough people working at Langley and they need more.  While I was shocked that they would be advertising and that they would be running ads on a pop radio station geared to young people, what surprised me the most was just how cool I thought it would be to work for the CIA.


Think about it.  You could apply to do any menial job there - mail room floor sweeper, doggy pooper scooper, part time lunch lady - and claim that your job is "highly classified."  When someone asks you what you do for a living, you could even use the line "I could tell you, but then I'd have to kill you."  Seriously, who hasn't been dying to try that one out?  Unless you're an NFL player or a rock star, nobody gives a crap when you tell them what you do for a living.  If you tell them that you worked for the CIA, however, they might sit up and take notice.

But it doesn't end there.  The built-in veil of secrecy could come in handy when you get yourself into a jam.  Out all night with the boys on a drunken and wild cow tipping road trip?  No you weren't.  You were "on assignment.  You know, for The Company."  And of course you couldn't call because you were under deep cover.  Invited to a multi-level marketing presentation at your cousin Vinnie's house?  Can't make it because you'll be "doing a job" out of the country.  Thanksgiving at Aunt Matilda's?  Not for you.  You'll be "out in the field."

But what if people don't believe you?  What if they suspect that you're just making it all up to cover your tracks?  Simple.  Just show them your pay stub.  Like this one:

CIA check.jpg

With all those selling points, it's hard to imagine anyone not wanting to work for the CIA.  Of course, there's the having to sit on the park bench telling people "The raven wears green underpants," looking for your contact.  And when puzzled passer-by after puzzled passer-by says "huh?" you'd have to say "Never mind.  I'm an idiot." over and over again.  But if you're like me, you probably say that a lot so it's no big deal.  And there's the chance that some foreign intelligence agency might want to kill or kidnap you.  Then again, if it's someplace cool like Tahiti or Australia, you might not mind being kidnapped.

I am seriously considering sending in my application.  When they hire me, I'll ask to be put on special assignment spying on Hostess or maybe Papa John's, maybe as a deep-cover operative, working inside the company and sampling all the products.  I think I am going to start preparing my cover right now.

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