Down a slippery slope into dangerous territory

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By Inger Eberhart

Inger's political columns and essays have appeared in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Marietta Daily Journal, The Social Contract Journal and other publications. Inger has appeared on My Fox Atlanta, 11 Alive, WSB-TV and has addressed state legislative committees, municipalities and Tea Party groups to educate Americans on the adverse effects of sustained mass immigration. Find her on Twitter @Hunter7Taylor.

The writer's views are her own.

November 2, 2011

There is yet another report that a US Border Patrol agent has been sentenced to prison for "mistreating" an illegal alien (U.S. border agent jailed for improper arrest of suspected drug smuggler, http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/oct/25/border-agent-jaile-arrest-teen-drug-smuggler/).  The most recent incident involves a 15-year old illegal alien drug smuggling suspect.  Agent Jesus E. Diaz, Jr. was charged with deprivation of the teen's "constitutional right to be free from the use of unreasonable force."  If this series of events sounds eerily similar to a previous case, you are correct.

In 2006, Border Patrol agents Ignacia Ramos & Jose Compean were sentenced to 11 and 12 years, respectively, in prison for shooting an illegal alien drug smuggler in the buttocks as he escaped.  President George W. Bush commuted their sentences just as he left office in 2009.

Just a year earlier, in 2005, Edwards County Deputy Sheriff Gilmer Hernandez was charged with violating the civil rights of a Mexican criminal alien when "he shot out the tires of a van filled with illegals as it tried to run him over.  One of the illegal [aliens] in the van was hit with bullet fragments."

In the most recent cases, each suspect was a drug smuggler, each an illegal alien, both granted immunity to testify against the agents and both cases went through the US Attorney's Office for the Western District of Texas.  What does this say of the constitutional rights of legal American citizens versus those of illegal aliens?

In an article entitled, "Borderline Constitutionalism: Reconstructing and Deconstructing Judicial Justifications for Constitutional Distortion in the Border Region, by Philip Mayor in the Summer 2011 issue of the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review, Mr. Mayor posits that "constitutional liberties work differently near the border."  Clearly.

The illegal alien captured at the border is granted constitutional protections in spite of having violated our immigration laws while the Border Patrol agents are jailed as they enforce the law.  This, along with the  underenforcement of border activities by those US Attorneys closest to the problem, continue to surrender our national sovereignty one case at a time.

References:

46 Harv. C.R.-C.L. L. Rev. 657 (2011)

Borderline Constitutionalism: Reconstructing and Deconstructing Judicial Justifications for Constitutional Distortion in the Border Region; Mayor, Philip

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