Asked again at a recent White House press conference whether President Bush would consider a pardon for two Border Patrol agents facing long prison sentences for shooting in the rump a drug dealer they were pursuing, Tony Snow said: "Border agents must obey law, too."
Apparently Snow and the president are appalled about the fact that the agents retrieved spent shells at the scene — a violation of procedure in what was perceived as a cover-up of the incident.
Snow’s reaction in speaking for the president raises some questions in my mind.
Hasn’t the problem with the border and immigration policy in this country been a result of non-enforcement of existing laws, largely by the executive branch of government?
Is the president obeying the laws of the land when he chooses not to enforce them?
How have 20 million aliens entered our country illegally if the president and his predecessor were enforcing border and immigration laws?
Our very national security is threatened by the abject refusal of the White House over a span of six years to obey the law, to enforce the law and to carry out the president’s constitutional duty to protect the citizens of the United States.
It seems odd — bizarre, really — that the White House would focus on a mere technicality in the case of the Border Patrol agents bravely and heroically doing their jobs, while conveniently overlooking the president’s criminal neglect of the duly enacted laws of the land.
The president has been reminding the American people of late that we are at war. Yet, with our own national security concerns at home, Bush hasn’t at all acted like a wartime president.
Indeed, we are at war with people on foreign soil who want to destroy America. And we are at war with people invading this country — some of whom certainly want to destroy this country.
I am sickened by the case against the two Border Patrol agents — Ignacio Ramos and Jose Alonso Compean. On Feb. 17, Ramos, 37, an eight-year veteran of the U.S. Naval Reserve and a former nominee for Border Patrol Agent of the Year, responded to a request for backup from Compean, 28, who had seen a suspicious van near the border town of Fabens, Texas.
Both pursued a suspect, a drug smuggler by the name of Osbaldo Aldrete-Davila, who fled across the border to Mexico, but not before the agents saw what they believed to be a gun in his hands and heard shots fired. Both fired in return in an effort to stop his escape.
Instead of being given medals for heroism, the two agents were hit with charges of violating the illegal alien’s civil rights. The illegal alien, with 800 pounds of marijuana in his van, was given full immunity from prosecution to testify against the agents. You the taxpayer even paid his medical expenses for getting shot in the buttocks.
It turns out Border Patrol agents are forbidden from pursuing fleeing suspects.
How about that? How much sense does that make?
Oh, and by the way, the illegal alien drug dealer promptly returned to his drug-running business after the incident and the granting of immunity — this time bringing in an even bigger load of marijuana, for which he was also given immunity for his testimony in the case against the law enforcement agents.
Well, I guess it makes lots of sense if our goal is not really to stop, or even slow down, illegal infiltration of this country.
Won’t you sleep better at night knowing that Border Patrol agents are forbidden from pursuing fleeing suspects?
Won’t al-Qaida and MS-13 be glad to hear about this policy — if they haven’t already?
Why wouldn’t drug smugglers and coyotes continue to take chances with the knowledge that they can simply outrun those charged with protecting our border?
Both Compean and Ramos were found guilty and both face more than10 years in prison.
Are you outraged?
As Ramos explains: "How are we supposed to follow the Border Patrol strategy of apprehending terrorists or drug smugglers if we are not supposed to pursue fleeing people? Everybody who’s breaking the law flees from us. What are we supposed to do? Do they want us to catch them or not?"
I guess not.
Which act of alleged lawbreaking concerns you more — the one by the Border Patrol agents or the one that continues by the president of the United States as he turns his back on the biggest security threat to this nation at the border?