Arizona Republic
April 13, 2007

Author: KAREN JOHNSONEstimated printed pages: 2

One of the things that has always distinguished the United States from other countries is that we are "a nation of laws." Individual rights are protected by law. Here people and ideas flourish because the law protects us. Or, at least, it used to. Consider the following:

* Federal law requires the reporting of illegal immigrants to immigration authorities, but across the country, city councils and police chiefs prohibit police officers from making these reports, thus turning their cities (Phoenix and Mesa, for example) into sanctuary cities where criminal aliens, gangs and drug traffickers flourish without fear.

* In 2003, a federal law was passed enhancing the privacy of medical information. Since then, more than 19,000 complaints of violations have been filed with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, but not a single fine has been imposed and only two cases have been prosecuted.

* In last November's election, voters approved Proposition 300, which excludes illegal immigrants from state-funded adult education classes. After the election, the district coordinator for the Gilbert Public Schools English Language Learner Programs brazenly announced that she would not comply with the law.

* Proposition 207 also passed in November, protecting the property rights of private landowners and preventing cities from misusing the powers of eminent domain. The cities, however, quickly devised a sneaky way to get around Proposition 207. When landowners apply for permits to develop their property, the cities now require them to sign a waiver of their Proposition
207 rights. The cities have well-paid attorneys (whose salaries are funded with taxpayer money) who know that this devious little maneuver isn't legal
-- governments cannot condition a benefit upon a surrender of rights -- but did that stop the cities? Not hardly.

Arizona is not the only state with government officials who have run amok, ignoring the law, clawing the Constitution to shreds and doing whatever they darned well please. Wisconsin, for example, has very lax standards for issuing driver's licenses, making that state a magnet for illegal aliens.
It's estimated that 350,000 to 400,000 illegals have fraudulently obtained licenses in Wisconsin.

When government bureaucrats and politicians think they are above the law, then you get monstrosities such as Border Patrol guards who are imprisoned for doing their duty and drug runners who get immunity to testify against the innocent guards.

In Maricopa County we have a court system that spits on the citizens of the state and refuses to implement Proposition 100, which requires the court to deny bail to illegal immigrants accused of serious crimes.

Such outrageous arrogance has no place in government. Employees who refuse to obey the law should be fired immediately and their jobs given to people who are willing to do their duty.

As a nation, we need to get back to the rule of law or we could be facing anarchy.

State Sen. Karen S. Johnson, R-Mesa, represents District 18.
Edition: Final Chaser
Section: Mesa Republic West
Page: 34