CAUSA Oregon would like you to think that illegals should be given licenses because Latinos are a growing economic power and that somehow, granting a license will make the roads safer. Let me dismantle their flawed reasoning.
Illegals do not have a legal right to have a residence in the State of Oregon. The state of Oregon is a part of the United States, and federal law determines who has the right to enter or reside within the United States. Not granting someone this legal right does not deny them the right to humane treatment under the laws of the United States. This is the fundamental flaw in the CAUSA argument – but more later. Lets first look at the economic argument, then then the safety argument first.Illegals do participate in the economics of the State of Oregon, and a subset of illegals – illegal resident people of Latin ethnicity, are no different. If they leave, their economic influence will go with them. The same applies to illegal or legal residents of any ethnicity. The commonality here is the illegal status of their residence, not a specific ethnicity. Utilizing the same logic as CAUSA, should legal rights be granted based on the economic benefits of the residence of a specific group within the State of Oregon? Should it be metered based on economic benefits of the group?
If illegals pass an Oregon driver test, then by virtue they are demonstrating they have the same required minimums of skill and knowledge of the law as any legal resident with a driver’s license. Demonstrating that skill does not grant the State of Oregon or legal residents assurance that the illegal does not have a criminal record. Being undocumented literally means there is no documentation to indicate they are not criminals of some other sort. Legal immigration includes a thorough background check that weeds out many criminals. The system isn’t perfect, but it does weed out some criminals.
Lets look at the road safety issue. You can’t argue that safer roads aren’t desirable, but you can argue how you get safer roads. One way to ensure safer roads is to impound any vehicle being driven by someone who doesn’t have a driver’s license or insurance, and to escalate punishment of drivers who continue to drive after their licenses are revoked or suspended. Apply these same conditions to all who drive illegally, legal residents or not, and Oregon roads will be significantly safer.
Now lets go back to the fundamental flaw. The first underlying assumption of the CAUSA argument is that it is inhumane not to allow illegal residents to remain in our community. CAUSA appeals to your emotions because its possible you know an individual who is in the country illegally – someone’s child, someone’s parent, someone’s sweet grandma. You cannot imagine them being arrested, jailed temporarily and then transported out of the country to some unknown location in their own country. Trying to dupe the US government can also include a 10 year ban on immigrating later. Being undocumented, you can’t tell the criminals from the nice people you like.
The second underlying flaw is that, since CAUSA is zeroing in on a specific ethic group (which is not people of Latino ethnicity; it is people of Latino ethnicity who have broken federal immigration laws), opposing their arguments naturally means you are a racist – that is a logical fallacy known as is an Ad hominem attack. Once you are labeled a racist, who will bother to listen to your arguments?
What do legal resident Oregonians gain by not granting driver’s licenses to illegals and strictly enforcing existing traffic laws? Safer streets.