The ACLU says the California Court of Appeals decision today to uphold the Los Angeles Police Department's use of Special Order 40--a decades old policy prohibiting officers from using immigration status to initiate investigations--"strikes a balance between immigrants' rights to equal protection and officers' duty to protect communities."
That makes former bubble-gum singer-turned-evangelical Christian commentator and former owner of Orange County's KDOC-TV Channel 56 Pat Boone fume.
"This 'special order' turned L.A. and many other American cities into 'sanctuary cities,' magnets for illegal aliens and cascading drug activity and lethal gang activity that inevitably resulted," Boone babbles on the wingnutacular World Net Daily site.
Boone, whose greatest feat during his stint as a local television executive was shepherding the rise of the late, great, even loony-toonier Wally George (who once told me at the Orange International Street Fair, "I ought to punch you in the nose"--something I'll forever cherish), actually goes fairly light on the LAPD. But the white washer of Little Richard's "Tutti Frutti" calls the ACLU "America's Taliban."
"Do you not see the stark comparison between the Taliban and the ACLU?" Boone writes. "Each seeks to disrupt the traditions and guidelines that identify and protect society - and to impose its own perverted will and ideology on a bewildered people.
"And the ACLU has gone the Taliban one better! They're getting the courts (other lawyers, not legislators) to award them millions and millions of taxpayer dollars to pay for their intimidation, litigation and corruption! You and I are funding their all-out assault on everything that's precious to us."
Winding down like a scratchy 45 pressed during the crooner's heyday, Boone concludes by striking a near-concilatory tone.
"I expect that there have been, and currently are, altruistic and well-meaning young attorneys who think they're defending liberties and helping the helpless," drips his pen. "But I hope they'll read this and honestly reassess the ACLU record."
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
Belinda Escobosa Helzer, a staff attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California, which fought the lifting of the policy on behalf of community groups representing domestic violence victims and day laborers, does not sound like she has reassessed the ACLU record, at least not as it relates to this case.
"Immigrants in Los Angeles no longer have to worry that they will be forced to choose between
personal safety and their future," she says in an ACLU/SC media statement. "The court understands, as does the LAPD, that stripping away Special Order 40 would have not only violated the law but been a grave mistake in a city with such deep immigrant roots.
"With Special Order 40 securely intact, beat cops can continue to build strong trust with community members, residents can report crimes without fear of being deported, and Los Angeles-with all its diversity--will be a safer place," she continues. "I hope this will be the
final chapter in what has frankly been a misguided challenge to a sound policy."
Not exactly music to Pat Boone's ears.