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Legion to Congress: Reject amnesty

Featured in Citizenship
Legion to Congress: Reject amnesty
(Photo by Gerald L. Nino)

"A bad sequel" is how American Legion National Commander James E. Koutz described President Obama’s proposal to grant amnesty to people who are in the United States illegally.

"Whether it’s called ‘Pathway to Citizenship’ or some other euphemism, it’s still amnesty," Koutz said. "It didn’t work when President Reagan signed the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986, and it will be even more disastrous if we repeat that mistake again."

Reagan’s attorney general, Ed Meese, has since repudiated the 1986 amnesty. "After a six-month slowdown that followed the passage of the legislation, illegal immigration returned to normal levels and continued unabated," Meese wrote in a 2006 New York Times op-ed. "Ultimately, some 2.7 million people were granted amnesty, and many who were not (granted amnesty) stayed anyway, forming the nucleus of today’s unauthorized population."

The American Legion foresaw of the consequences back in 1986. "Amnesty can serve only to attract future illegal aliens who would also be provided the opportunity for permanent resident status," said Dale L. Renaud, American Legion national commander at the time.

There is an estimated 11 million illegal immigrants in the country, and the Center for Immigration Studies estimated that the total net cost of the 1986 amnesty amounted to more than $78 billion in the 10 years following the amnesty.

"As far as The American Legion is concerned, amnesty is a deal-breaker for us but there are some measures currently being proposed that we like," Koutz said. "These include tightening security at the borders, crackdowns on those who hire illegal workers and stricter visa procedures.

"The American Legion is not opposed to immigration; we are a nation that was built by immigrants. But we also believe in adherence to the law. What kind of message does it send to those who worked hard to become legal immigrants if we offer the same status to those who disrespected the process? ‘American citizen’ is a special title that should not be bestowed upon people who broke the law to get it."

Koutz believes thorough background screenings should be essential before the U.S. government allows any foreign national to enter U.S. territory. "Public safety and national security is job one for our government to address."

Koutz said the Legion looks forward to sharing its views with Congress and the White House.

"The consequences wrought by the Immigration Reform and Control Act bring to mind the words of George Santayana, ‘Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it,’" Koutz said. "Let’s not make the same mistakes again."

To read the Legion's most recent policy on immigration, passed during the 2012 National Convention, click here

 

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USAF Vet 1951-1955

August 30, 2013 - 3:23am

Several writers say they want the Legion to stay out of politics. Get a life, when the leaders of the American Legion go before Congress to testify to get more benefits for veterans, they are POLITICING for our veterans. The Legion has been in POLITICS almost since it's inception. Where have you been to think the Legion has no business in politics. If they, the Legion gets out of politics, that will be the end of Veterans benefits.

USAF Vet 1951-1955

February 27, 2013 - 1:37am

The American Legion has every right to speak out on amnesty for illegal aliens and for those of you who don't pay attention, this is not the first time the legion has opposed amnesty for illegal aliens. The Legion has opposed amnesty for several years at several National Conventions. For those of you who believe that illegal aliens should gain citizenship through military service, read this: In order to join the US Military, you must either be a US citizen, or you must be a legal permanent immigrant, physically living in the United States, with a green card. The US military cannot and will not assist with the immigration process. If you are not a US citizen, you must legally and permanently immigrate to the United States first, via the regular immigration procedures and quotas, establish a residence, and then (if you meet the other qualifying criteria), visit a military recruiter's office and apply for enlistment. As I have often said, there is no right granted to anyone to serve in the United States Military. The respective military departments do have the absolute right to reject you for any reason it deems appropriate. Regardless of how recruiting commercials may "sell" the military, it is not a "jobs program." It's serious business, involving the security of the United States of America, and our country's national interests. Congress and the courts have held that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which ensures all individuals are treated equally before the law with respect to civilian employment, does not apply to the military profession. No less than seven major Supreme Court decisions support this.

MAJ Dave

February 5, 2013 - 1:21pm

XanderLee. I just looked over the requirements to join the American Legion and there is nothing in there that keeps Mexican Americans out. Mexican Amercians who proudly and honorably serve in the United States Military are welcome in the American Legion. What is unwelcome in the American Legion are your hateful comments about people of Mexican descent because it is most unwelcoming to Mexican Americans who proudly serve our Country. If you mistakingly thought that you joined an organization allows discrimination against Mexican Americans, then I suggest that you end your membership and find another organization that shares your hatred. When your statements degenerated away from remarks against illegal aliens (of any origin and nationality) to hateful statements against American Citizens (and I quote: "I think that most of you born here would just as readily fly the Mexican flag as the Stars and Stripes" -end quote), you crossed a line. Mexican American Servicemen and Women are welcome into our American Legion Legion Post; your blanket attitude towards all Mexican Americans, Sir, is not. This is another illustration of the negative consequenses of the American Legion taking a position on this issue.

XanderLee

February 4, 2013 - 9:28pm

The American Legion has every right to state its opinion in this matter. It reflects the opinion in our charter and affects national security. To all of us who worked hard to LEGALLY brcome citizens, this is Not a proper thing to do. And most of those getting this readily admit that even if given citizenship their primary allegience is to Mexico. They accept the new status only for financial (Social Security, Medicare, UC, etc) reasons. They would not display an American flag on their homes even if it were given to them for free. This is all about buying votes, not doing what is in the interest of this nation and it's legal citizens. And every person who's worn the uniform of the United States should be concerned. Your politicians in both major parties need to be shown that the rights and security of LEGAL Americans need to be maintaned and protected. I think that most of you born here would just as readily fly the Mexican flag as the Stars and Stripes. If you don't diligently protect it at home as well as oveseas, you WILL lose it, AND the freedoms it represents.

MAJ Dave

February 4, 2013 - 9:20am

To those who believe that this is an issue that the American Legion should address (simply because you happen to agree with the position), please read. I joined an organization called the AMERICAN Legion. My beloved American Legion Post has a sign that says "All Active Duty and Veterans are Welcome." When I joined, they screened my Military Record for honorable service during wartime. They did NOT/NOT screen me for my political affiliation and leanings. In my Post, our sign holds true, ALL ACTIVE DUTY MILITARY AND VETERANS ARE WELCOME. In my Post, we share a commeradeship because ALL VETERANS, Republican or Democrat, Native Born or Immigrant (or even those Citizens born here whose parents are illegal), ALL OF US stand up for the principals of the American Legion. ALL OF US, Republican or Democrat, believe that Veterans and the Military and our Families deserve the thanks of a grateful Nation, deserve the benefits that we are owed, and deserve to be taken care of when we suffer for the sacrifices that we made for our Country. In this we are all UNITED. Many, unfortunately (including our National Commander), seem to feel that we all joined a very VERY different organization than I did. For those who feel that the American Legion should be taking stances on divisive political issues (I've seen lots of rhetoric on this blog on an the American Legion Facebook site pointing fingers at "Democrats" within the American Legion), I want you to think long and hard about your attitude, and if you still feel the same way about the organization that you joined, then I want you, YOU PERSONALLY, to go to your Post and replace your sign with one that says REPUBLICAN LEGION, and follow it with a sign that says, "Republicans Welcome; We Don't Care Whether or NOT you Served in the Military." Now, on a strictly pragmatic and non-political point about our current "Dear Leader's" chosen Legislative Agenda, I want you to know that Congress looks to us, the AMERICAN Legion, the largest and most inclusive VETERANS Service Organization for advice on Veterans matters. By sending his message to Congress, our "Dear Leader" communicated one thing and one thing only: "If you need money to build a fence/wall/etc. or to round up and deport Illegal Aliens, then FEEL FREE to take that money from Veterans Benefits or from Military Family programs because they are a much lower priority for us and we speak for Veterans." I am NOT / NOT comfortable with that position. Are you? Lastly, I caution anybody on advocating that the American Legion takes a political position on items that are not Veteran-related. I caution you because if you allow this to happen now, on an issue that you agree with, then you allow it to take a position in the future on an item that you may not agree with. ANYTHING can be justified as being related to Veterans; this is why we need to keep the American Legion focused on Veterans Issues. Otherwise a future National Convention and National Commander might take a position that says that "Veterans fought for the Constitution, which the Supreme Court has ruled includes a Woman's Right to Choose, therefore the American Legion is opposed to any and all anti-abortion legislation," or that since "Veterans fought for our Country's core principals, including that All Men are Created Equal, that the American Legion fully supports Gay Marriage." I only point this out for argument sake. Just because our Veterans Organization takes a political position on a divisive political issue that you agree with, doesn't mean that it is right for them to take a political position at all. Do us all a favor and form a PAC called, "Veterans United Against Amnesty." And advocate for the cause that you believe in. It will lend a lot of weight that the National Commander of the American Legion, the Nation's largest and most-inclusive Veterans Service Organization, is a member, as is his right. And stop dividing OUR American Legion when we need to be united for the cause of Veterans and Military Families. By the way, for anyone who wants to point a finger at me as a Democrat and write me off, I am NOT / NOT a Democrat. I am an independent (I feel that Soldiers on Active Duty should be non-partisan) who leans WAY to the Republican side and my wife (who is a proud American Legion and VFW member now that she is out of the Air Force) is a registered Republican. I supported Romney. I even volunteered 15-hours per week one year working for Republicans on Veterans Issues (there, I researched the facts and drafted legislation that would end the unfair and completely UNCONSTITUTIONAL practice of PERMANENTLY denying Veterans and their Family members living with them their Constitutional Right to Bear Arms under the 2nd Amendment without any chance for Judicial Review or Appeal whenever a low-level bureaucrat at the VA determines that they should have a fiduciary (who is usually their family member) to help them look after their VA benefits simply because they don't manage their finances properly. Senator Burr (R-NC) has passed my legislation on a bi-partisan vote in the Committee multiple times, but some damned democrats in the Senate who are big "take our guns" advocates and who, in my humble opinion, blatantly discriminate against veterans because they think that we are all crazy and violent, have repeatedly blocked it from reaching the Senate floor. THIS, by the way, is an issue where I do NOT / NOT see the American Legion weighing in, probably because the National Commander is too busy worrying about immigrants that they don't have time to focus on Veterans).

VETERANSELECTRIC

February 4, 2013 - 9:12am

ONE THING I HAVE TO WRITE DOWN ON THIS ISSUE (NO AMNESTY) FOR THE PEOPLE WHO VE CROSSED THE BORER ILLEGALY, GO BACK TO THE END OF THE LINE BEFORE YOU BECOME A FELON, AND WILL NEVER BECOME A LEGAL CITIZEN , OF THESE BELOVED UNITED STATES OF AMERICA . BY AVOIDING THE THE APPLICABLE PROCESS FOR CITIZENSHIP . THOSE WHO HAVE THE ( I DONT NEED ON STINKING PAPERS ATTITUDE) SHOULD NEVER BE ALLOWED IN THE STATES EVER, 50% OF ILLEGALS HAVE THIS ATTITUDE AND THOSE ARE THE ONES WE DONT WANT HERE PERIOD!

VETERANSELECTRIC

February 4, 2013 - 9:07am

ONE THING I HAVE TO WRITE DOWN ON THIS ISSUE (NO AMNESTY) FOR THE PEOPLE WHO VE CROSSED THE BORER ILLEGALY, GO BACK TO THE END OF THE LINE BEFORE YOU BECOME A FELON, AND WILL NEVER BECOME A LEGAL CITIZEN , OF THESE BELOVED UNITED STATES OF AMERICA . BY AVOIDING THE THE APPLICABLE PROCESS FOR CITIZENSHIP . THOSE WHO HAVE THE ( I DONT NEED ON STINKING PAPERS ATTITUDE) SHOULD NEVER BE ALLOWED IN THE STATES EVER, 50% OF ILLEGALS HAVE THIS ATTITUDE AND THOSE ARE THE ONE WE DONT WANT HERE PERIOD!

johnny04wayne

February 3, 2013 - 2:32pm

My classmate's step-mother makes $83/hour on the laptop. She has been fired from work for 5 months but last month her income was $16420 just working on the laptop for a few hours. Go to this web site and read more Fab19. com

mdvgarcia

February 3, 2013 - 10:02am

I am disappointed in the American Legion National Commanders’ response to the U.S. Senates’ Band of 8 proposed immigration bill. National Commander James Koutz framed the issue in this news release in the same manner that causes me not to watch television news organization CNBC (Soledad Obrien, Matt Lauer) for their bias without cause and effect research of the facts. As an organization driven by core principles of Americanism, the American Legion’s stance should simply be we support the laws currently written in matters of immigration as stated in the American Legion’s policy on immigration. If the American Legion intends not to propose a bill that addresses the immigration problem than the American Legion needs to stay out of media politics on this issue or, simply reemphasize the American Legion’s stance on immigration by quoting the American Legion’s policy on immigration. Within the immigration reform policy proposed by the Senate is an underlying agenda of dividing a political party by another political party that clearly has a strong hold on managing the media’s political message. The American Legion’s stance on political affiliation is we are not politically affiliated. The National Commander is correct on the Immigration Reform Act of 1986 failure to sustain immigration control. Charismatic statements like “it didn’t work than and won’t work now” and “continue to enhance more security on the borders” exuberates a one sided political view without suggesting dynamic solutions to current immigration laws written in the American Legion’s policy on immigration that clearly are not protecting U.S. Citizen. I support the National Commander’s candidness but, short news releases like this one places the American Legion in a path of a plow in a hidden agenda to divide one political party. Unless the American Legion intends on offering a unified proposal to correct failed immigration policies, we need to stick to the American Legions’ stance on current immigration policies and no political affiliation. The body of our American Veteran’s Organizations cannot afford political divide.

oldbikers

February 2, 2013 - 9:31pm

I don't understand most of you people no wonder this country is in bad shape most of you spent a long time in service for America and now you talk about letting millions of illegal aliens come into this country and take jobs and federal hand outs that could go to our veterans. Shame on you! And thank you Commander

BB

February 2, 2013 - 4:16pm

Fellow Legion Members and Veterans, we need to be careful with this topic. We all have our opinions about immigration. It could easily divide us if we enter the political fray on this topic. Fact is, the Legion is a critical voice for issues impacting Vets, Active Duty, and families. We need to use our collective voices with the Legion to make sure those concerns are well provided for. Voice your opinions on immigration through your other constituency groups and state legislatures. The Legion entering the mix on this issue will only serve to dilute our impact in speaking up on Veterans issues. The reason I renewed my membership in the Legion was to battle the draconian cuts that are facing the DoD, Veterans, and families, not to debate immigration. I urge the National Commander to save his bullets for the right fight. This is not it.

langej

February 2, 2013 - 10:33am

This is not really the business of the American Legion, which should not mix in political issues unrelated to service personnel and veterans. Nevertheless, I'll ad my two-cents worth: For those crime-free aliens who register, admit they have broken our laws, pay their fines and pay their back taxes(including payroll taxes from their employers), there should be a legal path to work permits, residence and eventual citizenship, provided they remain a contributor to our country by staying employed and crime free during the process. All others should be deported.

thetoolguy1

February 1, 2013 - 11:39pm

I agree with MAJ Dave, this is a political issue and The Legion should stay out of it.

Swanny2you

February 1, 2013 - 6:29pm

This is a political issue, and the American Legion should keep out of it. This is the same sort of issue that caused me to drop AARP membership.

America First

February 1, 2013 - 4:30pm

The Legion is 100% correct "Thank You" for remembering the importance of our nations Sovereignty, the reason we fought and protected our country, why thousands of soldiers died.

MAJ Dave

February 1, 2013 - 1:51pm

I miss National Commander Wong. He had a very clearly-stated and well-articulated Legislative Agenda that focused on the Military and Veterans Issues. He spoke for all of us, and he commanded the respect of both parties in Congress, thus furthering our cause. The Current National Commander, Jimmie Foster, has taken all of this great work and thrown it in the dirt. Foster's legislative agenda has nothing to do with Veterans. His priority seems to be on immigration and so-called amnesty, rather than on Veterans and our Families. He speaks out of turn, he divides the membership, he fails to represent us, and he has tossed aside our Veterans and their issues in order to focus on his own personal far-right-wing agenda. He has also alienated more than half of those Congressmen and Senators whose support we need for Veterans Causes by instead focusing on divisive and complex immigration issues; they will now not listen to a word he says, but rather write him (and therefore us!) off as a quack. Perhaps National Commander Wong would be willing to come back and serve the remainder of National Commander Foster's term and focusing on getting us back on a good solid legislative agenda and on furthering the cause of Veterans?

aggie

May 30, 2013 - 8:29pm

HEY DAVE....FAR RIGHT""? are You kidding Me....Or Are You An Educated Dunce? FAR RIGHT..........You Must Be a Bolshevik Educated College Kid'? Your FAR LEFT..What Do You Say To That'? He represents Me.(Current commander,jimmie Foster) You represent...THE SDS,WEATHER UNDERGROUND, THE CHICAGO SEVEN,OBAMA,Or, Who Else That's An 'Educated Bolshevik'....? Charles Schumer,Feinstein,Levin,Lautenberg,Boxer,Bloomfield,Bloomberg'? Please......!! Great Men Have Courage And Are Not Afraid To Tell The Truth About Their Country......Your Solution....Roll Over An Accept Law Breakers In Our Country.. I Won't. Education In America Is A Joke With The Current And recently Graduated College kids. No common Sense! I'M sure You Voted For No Body Obama And his NEW Socialist Agenda. West point Graduate. Is This what We Get For Our Tax Money? GOD HELP THE REPUBLIC! Toot Your Horn To Hillary Or David Axelrod Or Charly Schumer.

aggie

May 30, 2013 - 8:33pm

Yes..I Do was Duped By Your Insertion Of The wrong Commander.. My Apologies Here Are Noted To the Current Commander And Your Description Of Him As The Leader Of OUR American Legion. The Truth Of The Condition Of America Is Noted By This Man. God Save The Republic!

MAJ Dave

February 1, 2013 - 3:21pm

I was mistaken and I whole-heartedly apologize to National Commander Jimmi Foster (who served from 2010-2011). It is National Commander James Kootz who needs to be booted out of office.

MAJ Dave

February 1, 2013 - 2:43pm

My many apologies to National Commander Jimmy Foster. Apparently, it's National Commander James E. Koutz that needs to be booted out of office (not sure where I got "Foster" from).

USMCTacarroll

February 1, 2013 - 11:54am

My family came into this nation legally and strived to become American Citinens through assimilation. They only spoke their native language in their own home, and even that was limited. Why did they need to work so hard to become citizens? I served to protect the ideals that my Grandparents worked to achieve. We are the only Country on Earth that just allows people to be granted Citizenship simply because they are here. If any Americans try to go to another Country to work or live, they can be denied citizenship and even be fined and jailed for not following proper procedures. We have laws on the books that are not enforced and are claimed to be Draconian. We do not need new laws -we simply need to enforce the laws we currently have in place; no matter how Draconian. Maybe Draconian is what we need right now? Question: If those in this Country illegally believe that America is so great, then why don't they follow our laws; why do they strive to send all of their money back home; and why is the President of Mexico encouraging their citizens to break the laws of another Country?

aggie

May 30, 2013 - 8:17pm

Air Force Viet Nam Era Vet Salutes Your Wise Understanding Of Americas Plight. My Father served In Americas Army in WW-1. He Came To America Legally. If You Come Here Illegally you Don't Get Rewarded. Its That Simple.

NavVet7989

February 1, 2013 - 11:05am

It is an issue, a monetary one that we CAN'T AFFORD. If we are going to provide for tens of millions of illegals in this country then be prepared for cuts to the VA. Then the griping and complaining will begin.

aggie

May 30, 2013 - 8:14pm

John..Put Your Head In The Sand Or Is It There Now? Illegal Aliens Are A Threat To My Language,Culture,Customs. Unless "YOU" Live On a Farm In nowhere America! I Sure As Hell Don't'~!

m. arnold

February 1, 2013 - 9:31am

I agree with Maj. Dave. This is apolitical issue, not a vet. issue. I would like to point out to those of you who do not want immigration reform that YOU are, or are descended from, immigrants. Many of the people who are without documentation were brought here, without their knowledge and consent. Some do not even know that they are not citizens until they try to get a drivers license, register to vote, or enlist. You want to send them back to a country they do not know? How about at least letting these kids serve for citizenship? R. A. Heinlein once proposed the idea that a veteran is more worthy of citizenship because he/she has proven her/his loyalty by going in harms way to protect his/her country. If they qualify in all other respects, let these kids have the chance to prove their loyalty.

RLParry

January 31, 2013 - 10:11pm

It seems that National should listen to the members.They,as do I,do not want the Legion involved with this issue.

MAJ Dave

January 31, 2013 - 10:04pm

The American Legion National Commander has clearly overstepped his boundaries and needs to take immediate action in order to make amends. The American Legion should represent the interests of Veterans, Active Duty, and Reserve members and their families. He has no right to assert that he represents the membership on deeply-divided political issues, nor on any issue that does not involve Military and Veterans issues. The only way for him to re-gain the faith of the membership would be for him to immediately retract his statement to Congress, explaining that the American Legion represents the interests of the Military, Veterans, and their families and that the position that he expressed was his own private opinion only, and that it did not represent the position of the American Legion as an organization nor its membership as a whole, and that he never pulsed the membership of the organization that he represents for their opinion before asserting that it was OUR collective position. Then, he should vehemently apologize to all of us for making such a statement to Congress on our behalf, especially without consulting us, and for abusing the power that we entrusted in him by using his position to make a political statement at our expense. His actions dilutes those important issues where we DO entrust him to represent us, and those where we all do stand united, such as issues relating to our Military and Veterans and their families. It also divides our membership on highly-charged political issues, when we need to be united for the cause of our Military, Veterans, and our families. Should he take these actions, retracting his statement to Congress and apologizing to all of us, then we should consider allowing him to continue to serve us in the Post in which he was entrusted. If not, then we have no other option than to call for him to step down. Let me make it clear that I am not taking a position on Immigration Reform; my point is that our membership is clearly divided on this issue and the American Legion (which is us) should not be taking a position on Immigration Reform either (nor on fiscal policy, Gay Marriage, the Death Penalty, Affirmative Action, etc. etc.). Therefore, the National Commander had no right to claim to represent us to Congress on this.

aggie

May 30, 2013 - 8:11pm

That's Your opinion And Your Opinion Alone. I Support The Position Of The American Legion. And that Is My Opinion. America Is Going Down The Tubes And You So Called Vets Attack An American Who Loves His Country And Its Laws!! The Legion''! What Kind Of American are You'? GOD.....! When "PRAVDA" Stated In Their Paper (The OFFICIAL COMMUNIST PAPER OF THE OLD USSR) That American Voters Were Illiterate In Voting In Another Four Years Of A Marxist President.. You Never Saw This On NBC,ABC,CBS,MSNBC,FOX'? With Some Of The Comments Here By 'SO-CALLED Vets'..I'm Not Surprised. The American Legion Position Is Correct. We Defend Our Homeland From All Aggressors, Whether By Gun Or Interloping Illegal Aliens In Our Land.

jakob

February 2, 2013 - 2:26pm

thanks maj dave. let us address the thing that the legion is suspose to stand for. politics will take care of itself. take care of the military and the vertains, and espicially the fight with the va for better care. jakob

K_M_D

February 2, 2013 - 1:01pm

Agree 100%

navy-army vet

February 2, 2013 - 9:37am

I agree, the national commander did not think this through or he is using the legion for his own grand stand!!!!

gbssvcs

January 31, 2013 - 9:00pm

As a 30 year Legion member, I find that the leadership of this organization again falls flat on it's face. This time, like so many times before, the epitome of social injustice! How did an article like this even make it past the editing desk?

Edward Marruffo

January 31, 2013 - 6:56pm

Isn't it odd that there is more emphasis on immigration even when there more urgent injustices occurring to our active duty service personnel. Wouldn't it be nice if no active duty person could not have to worry about there constitutionally guaranteed right to vote and have it counted. But then again maybe I need to check to if there is a constitutionally guaranteed right to vote. Maybe this should be a more important discussion that the American Legion hierarchy should be concentrating on.

m. arnold

February 1, 2013 - 9:43am

First the only places in the Constitution where the right to vote is mentioned are in the 14th Amenment (Men can vote by right of being born in the USA), 15th (Non-white men can vote), 19th (women can vote), 23rd (citizens of D.C. can vote), 24th (tax delinquents can vote), and 26th (sets voting age at 18). PGFwr

John Teschky

January 31, 2013 - 5:38pm

I recently renewed my membership after letting it lapse because of similar stances by the Legion.  I rejoined when it appeared to me that the Legion had toned-down such rhetoric and was sticking to Veterans issues. Evidently, I was wrong. The Legion does much good for Veterans, and I want to support that, and that only, through my Legion membership.

JoeyG3

January 31, 2013 - 3:43pm

Lima Charlie, Major Dave. The Legion Should STRONGLY be concerned with Veteran's affiars and support. These statements do not represent my views at all, nor was I ever asked to express how I felt on immigration. I agree with the folks who have stated, "STAY OUT OF POLITICS"

Arlyn Plowman

January 31, 2013 - 3:25pm

The Legion should stick to Veteran's affairs and support. Stay out of politics. The Legion does not represent me in these matters

SchneierM

January 31, 2013 - 1:59pm

The Legion should stick to Veteran's affairs and support. Stay out of politics. The Legion does not represent me in these matters.

aggie

May 30, 2013 - 7:52pm

I don't Agree With You. America Is An American Country. We Are All Part Of It No Matter What Our Job,Organization, Ethnic,Color Of Our Skin,Political Beliefs Or Religion. It Is in our Vital Interests To ALL Americans That Our Country Is Overrun By Interlopers And Illegal Aliens with 'NO TIES' To America!! Wake Up'''!

K_M_D

February 2, 2013 - 12:59pm

I completely agree ... stay out of politics that do not relate to veterans issues. Being a member of this organization does not mean you can represent me in this manner -- primarily because you did not ask my opinion and also because your opinion is contrary to the opinion of the majority of this country.

aggie

May 30, 2013 - 7:57pm

KMD Majority Of The Country? You Think Americans Want Amnesty For Law Breakers I Sure As Hell Don't Agree With Your position. You Must Be A Dumbocrat? Or Union Member Or Bolshevik? Or Teacher Or Minority.

jimsharp

January 31, 2013 - 1:25pm

I share MAJ Dave's concerns. In addition, I don't agree that the Obama proposals result in "amnesty". What is clear is that it is past time for immigration reform and I would strongly recommend that, if the American Legion is going to take a position in this regard, it strongly promote the need to get this done.

schehld

January 31, 2013 - 1:23pm

I am more interested in what the American Legion is ever going to do about the illegal patrons that use the legion post lounge as an open to the public "watering hole". This continued abuse at numerous Post homes should result in the loss of tax exempt status. Why is it that I spent 4 years in the USAF and have paid my dues for over thirty years so I can legally join the legion and then sit next to a guest who is spending his own money in clear violation of the IRS tax exempt laws. Do I go to the IRS or the Department of Maryland first?

aggie

May 30, 2013 - 7:46pm

I've seen This In Florida A lot. I'M Talking With A Supposed Vet. He Is Not. In Florida The Post I Visited Was Loaded With More Canadians Then American Vets. And, They Don't tip As We'll as Americans. I've Been told By The waitress And Bar Tenders. Seems they Like Cheap booze. So they Splurge In Out Posts And Country.

johnvaudo

January 31, 2013 - 1:52pm

I would start with your local district commander and then move on to the department Internal Affairs committee. each Post is it's own independent Organization but it is supposed to follow the "guidelines" set up by National and Department.

henrybasset

January 31, 2013 - 1:21pm

Interestingly enough, I don't recall being asked about this issue. As a Legionare, I would hope the opinions put forth on such an issue would have reflected member's opinions. In this case, Amnesty has nothing to do with Veterans rights, and frankly, I'm disappointed. I'd hate to see the Legion turn into a general service PAC. J

m. arnold

February 1, 2013 - 9:49am

Too late! It is just as much a PAC as the NRA, AARP, and anti drug lobbies. One wonders if, like the NRA (funded by arms manufacturers), AARP (funded by United Health) and anti drug legalization lobbies (Cartels), it is funded by special interest corporations.

aggie

May 30, 2013 - 7:41pm

M.ARNOLD..Do You Read The NY TIMES? Watch MSNBC,ABC,CBS,NBC? Are You a Socialist? A Minority? You Sure Print Like One. NRA Is Great! It's The Black Minorities In America Who Do All The Killing With Guns. Ask Mr.Obama Of Chicago. Yet,He Would Eliminate Guns From The White Law Abiding To Soothe The Killings By Blacks In Americas City's (Not The Gun Manufacturers)

gtrucks

February 1, 2013 - 3:52am

The American Legion has this one right and very pleased that they did not wait for your approval to inform Congress!

m. arnold

February 1, 2013 - 9:51am

Gt ruck, where did YOUR. people come from?

MAJ Dave

January 31, 2013 - 1:17pm

I don't think that the Amnesty issue is one that the American Legion should be tackling. I look to the American Legion as my advocacy group primarily on Veterans Issues. I wish that the National Commander had addressed the issue of using military service as a pathway to Citizenship. This is one item that I hope he fully supports and has been successful in the past. I hope that taking a hard stance against "Amnesty" doesn't provide a chilling effect on future potential Legionaires who are now faithfully serving in our military in the hopes of earning the rights and privelages of U.S. Citizenship.

aggie

May 30, 2013 - 7:30pm

Where Is Your Common Sense? America Has Over 18 Million Illegal Aliens On The Doll.$$ Either Their Kids In Americas Schools,Breakfast Or Lunch, Etc. Don't Confuse Serving In The Military With Breaking Our Laws. Immigration Laws Are To Protect Us From Welfare Abusers,Gang Bangers,Drug Smugglers, Welfare Cheats,Section Eight Housing,Anchor Babys,Translation Services,Prison Costs,Spanish Speaking Colonizers,ATZLAN,(MALDEF-LA RAZA).....All Of These,WE Pay For As American Citizens And Taxpayers'''! Please.....Are You a Socialist? I'M not. I pay For What 'I' Can Afford. That Should Be Easy For a College Man To Understand'? Do You? I'M An American. Who SPEAKS ENGLISH AND CALLS HIMSELF AN AMERICAN. I'm Not a hyphenated American! (Afrikan American,Hispanic American,Latina,Mexican American,American Native, American Etc Etc Etc'! Please...........!! America Went Thru This Amnesty Issue In 2007-2008. NO MORE AMNESTY!!

USAF Vet 1951-1955

February 27, 2013 - 4:50am

You legion members who are disappointed with the National Commander opposing amnesty for illegal aliens need to WAKE UP AND SMELL THE ROSES. By opposing amnesty for illegal aliens, the American Legion is supporting jobs for America's Veterans which is one of their obligations. Stop crying about this policy and stop supporting amnesty for illegal aliens. This screwed up government of ours have given amnesty on 7 different occasions and always promised total enforcement. If amnesty passes congress again, this will be the 8th amnesty since 1986. Enough is enough, put an end to amnesty. All the promises were broken, that is why this nation is overrun with not 11 million illegal aliens, but according to the people who follow illegal immigration, there is closer to 30 million illegal's in the U.S. This veteran did not serve in the military so our nation could be invaded by a bunch of border jumpers who when they get her demand FREE medical care, FREE maternity care all at U.S. tax payer expense. Not to mention they march on U.S. soil waving their rag flag demanding amnesty. NO AMNESTY FOR ILLEGAL ALIENS.

aggie

May 30, 2013 - 7:34pm

Another Smart 'Common Sense' AIR FORCE Vet'! I Salute You Sir'! Thank GOG..Their Are Some Who Can See Thru The Fog Of Lies By Our FAR LEFT TV MEDIA,ABC,NBC,CBS,FOX,CAN,MSNBC.

USAF Vet 1951-1955

February 27, 2013 - 1:27am

Maj. Dave, The American Legion has every right to weigh in on illegal immigration. As for illegal aliens getting U.S. citizenship by joining our military, read the following. In order to join the US Military, you must either be a US citizen, or you must be a legal permanent immigrant, physically living in the United States, with a green card. The US military cannot and will not assist with the immigration process. If you are not a US citizen, you must legally and permanently immigrate to the United States first, via the regular immigration procedures and quotas, establish a residence, and then (if you meet the other qualifying criteria), visit a military recruiter's office and apply for enlistment. Since the Legion does not allow links to be added to these emails, do a search "What are the requirements for joining the U.S. Military and read it for yourself. Here are the requirements to be qualified to join the U.S. Military.

Ana Zuniga-Maus

February 4, 2013 - 1:43pm

I am proud of the Legion for taking a stand for America and the Americans. I am a Hispanic, married to a Vet and very proud of his Service to our country and I don't see any problem with the Legion taking a stand for America and for defending our laws and way of life. More people and institutions should do the same and sent a strong message to this administration, that selling our country for VOTES, is not acceptable.

Ana Zuniga-Maus

February 4, 2013 - 1:39pm

I am proud of the Legion for taking a stand for America and the Americans. I am a Hispanic, married to a Vet and very proud of his Service to our country and I don't see any problem with the Legion taking a stand for America and for defending our laws and way of life. More people and institutions should do the same and sent a strong message to this administration, that selling our country for VOTES, is not acceptable.

Stan Cohen

February 2, 2013 - 10:20pm

For all those who disagree that immigration is not our issue and we are only about vet advocacy you could not be more wrong. Please be aware that ALL of us took an oath to protect and defend the constitution from all those who would assault it both foreign AND domestic. This oath did not end when we left the service. Non-enforcement of immigration law is an attack on our nation's sovereignty and can only serve to weaken us AS a nation economically as well as politically. Every other nation on Earth enforces their immigration laws. Amnesty is a slap in the face and an insult to those who worked hard to get here and toiled to earn their citizenship. Finally, WHY would a hard stance on amnesty affect future Legionaire membership enrollment from those legally here and earning a fast track to citizenship through their patriotic military service? If these individuals are indeed loyal Americans they too will support and defend our constitution and legal immigration as well as realize the benefits of Legion membership. To say otherwise is akin to political vote getting - much like a politician with certain demographics. We should expect nothing less from our esteemed membership than the full support of our nation's laws and constitution.

aggie

May 30, 2013 - 7:06pm

You Are Correct Sir'!

dillonrr

February 2, 2013 - 7:24pm

I totally agree with allowing illegal aliens the rights and privelages to U.S. Citizenship by serving in our Armed Forces. WHAT I DO NOT AGREE WITH IS ALLOWING ALL ILLEGAL ALIENS AMNESTY. We've created paths for illegal aliens to become citizens twice in the past and I don't think we need to create another one. GET IN LINE! If you're here illegally, go home and apply to enter the U.S. legally like our forefathers did. No one deserves special treatment! Abide by the law!

BB

February 2, 2013 - 4:04pm

Spot on, MAJ Dave.

langej

February 2, 2013 - 10:24am

Agree.

jaydub

February 1, 2013 - 9:57pm

I will add my name to the list of people who want the Legion to stick to the things we list in the Preamble.

From the Bronx

February 1, 2013 - 6:00pm

In total agreement with Maj Dave. Not an issue American Legion should take on. Serving in the military should always be a path to citizen ship.

aggie

May 30, 2013 - 7:04pm

Are You an American? Or A Latin,Hispanic,Black,Minority? Its A Vital Issue To Americas Future. I'M sick Of The People Who Call Themselves Afrikan American,Hispanic American,Latina American Etc Etc. I'M An American. Oh.......And I'M White! Ok''?

L_Arizona

February 1, 2013 - 3:31pm

Completely agree. The American Legion is way outside of the Veteran's advocacy mission here. I am due for renewal soon, and this stance makes me pause.

aggie

May 30, 2013 - 7:01pm

Maybe Your Blood Line Is From Mexico? Or a Latin Country? Just Asking.

EZZY49R

February 1, 2013 - 3:00pm

I agree, as a Marine from the Nam era I aquired my citizenship while in the service of my country. I believe anyone serving and risking their life in the name of freedom should be granted citizenship. My parents, who rest in peace, worked hard to legally bring us to this great country. It's simply not fair to all those who respect and follow our laws. For this reason I don't agree with the amnesty program. But I also don't agree with he Legion Taking up this cause. As a Legionare I'd like to see the Legion stick to veteran related issues which are important to all of us.

aggie

May 30, 2013 - 6:59pm

The Legion Is Correct To Bring This Out For An Airing. (Illegal Aliens In America) I'm An Air Force Vet Of The Viet Nam Era. I'M Proud Of The American Legion Giving A Forum For Citizen Americans To Voice there Disgust With Amnesty. My father Came To America LEGALLY As Did My Grandmother And Grandfather. You Come To America Legally Or We Don't want You At All!

joet1892

February 2, 2013 - 2:19pm

I've been a Legion Member for 59 years. this the worst crap I have ever heard a National Commander endorse. He does not speak for this Veteran.

aggie

May 30, 2013 - 7:12pm

BULL"! I Like It Very Much... (Talking About All The illegal Aliens On The Doll In America) It's About Time! (24 Year Member.) Would Have Been Longer.(Member Of Legion) But,The Legion Post I Joined Called Me A Baby Killer And A Drug Addict. So Much For Respect,For The Viet-Nam Era Vet.

schehld

January 31, 2013 - 1:29pm

I agree sir this is not an issue for the legion and has nothing to do with the purpose they were formed. I served with a person from Switzerland and have a friend from Germany who served in the Army. The legion does not speak for me on almost any matter involving politics. If I want to belong to a wing nut organization I can join Glen Becks PAC and watch Fox news.

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