Friday, May 25 , 2018, 2:27 am | Mostly Cloudy 57º


Paul Burri: Illegal Migration of Californians

Oregon and Missouri think it's unfair for undocumented residents to take advantage of their services

I keep hearing that when they retire, a lot of Californians move out of state to places such as Oregon or Missouri. They list the tract house they bought for $59,000 in the 1970s, sell it for $800,000 or so, and use the money to buy a bigger, much newer place for, say, $180,000. Then they start their new life in a “foreign” state, taking advantage of all of its benefits.

Paul Burri
Paul Burri

States such as Oregon and Missouri think that’s not fair and they suggest that California pass an illegal migration law against it. They suggest we call it the Illegal Migration Act. It would prevent Californians from illegally migrating to Oregon and Missouri.

Why do they think it’s not fair? Well, take Oregon for example. Those Californians would be moving in and almost immediately they would start using some of the facilities and services that have been paid for by the taxes that Oregonians had been paying for years. The new “illegals” would be using Oregon libraries, emergency care facilities, schools, roads, and fire and police services, just to name a few.

Sure, the migrants would be spending some of their money for groceries and other purchases, but little of that money would be going to pay for all the public services they were using. They claim that those illegals would be taking unfair advantage of Oregon.

Worse yet, some of those “illegals” would probably be sending some of their retirement income back to California to their children and grandchildren for birthday and Christmas presents and God only knows what else. So a lot of their income would not go back into the Oregon economy, but to California.

Oregon and Missouri have an additional complaint about any illegal migration from California. They say that those illegal migrants would only have to be registered in Oregon if they wanted to get an Oregon driver’s license.

Oregon then would consider those Californians who slipped across (so to speak) the unguarded border between California and Oregon as “undocumented aliens.” And, those undocumented aliens could conceivably take jobs away from longtime, documented Oregonians.

Please do not misunderstand; I believe that the great majority of the migrants from California would probably be honest, decent citizens who obeyed the law, paid their new Oregon taxes and contributed to the Oregon economy in many other ways. Still, they’d be breaking the California law that prohibited their illegal migration. After all, the law is the law, is it not?

Their migration would be illegal and subject to some degree of prosecution, right? After all, why pass a law and then not enforce it? What if we didn’t enforce traffic laws? Where would we be? People would be ignoring stop lights, running away from accidents, speeding and parking illegally all over the place. How about the law against murder? If no one enforced that law, wouldn’t a lot more people be getting murdered?

As someone once said, “What part of illegal don’t you understand?”

I sure hope they figure it out soon, because it’s got me all confused.

— Paul Burri is an entrepreneur, inventor, columnist, engineer and iconoclast. He is not in the advertising business, but he is a small-business counselor with the Santa Barbara chapter of Counselors to America’s Small Business-SCORE. The opinions and comments in this column are his alone and do not represent the opinions or policies of any outside organization. He can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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