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Massachusetts or Arizona?
June 11, 2011 3:18 AM   Subscribe

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick recently decided that the state would not participate in a federal program to deport illegal immigrants accused of crimes. Several Republican state Representatives have been very vocal about opposing Patrick's decision. One is Ryan Fattman (really), who says that all illegal immigrants should be deported. When asked if a woman who was raped and beaten on the street should fear deportation, Fattman replied, "“My thought is that if someone is here illegally, they should be afraid to come forward."

Response from the immigrant community and victim advocacy groups has been swift and strong. Fattman has backpedaled and said that his remarks were "misportrayed."
posted by waitingtoderail (47 comments total) 8 users marked this as a favorite

 
Thank you, Representative Fattman, for giving me the chance to link to your obvious theme song.
posted by Joey Michaels at 3:36 AM on June 11, 2011 [3 favorites]


Which is the greater crime - entering a country in search of a better life or rape? I know which is a better use of police time. Jackass.
posted by arcticseal at 3:40 AM on June 11, 2011 [4 favorites]


Were I called 'Fattman' I would watch my diet like a fuckin' hawk. I would be a skinny, skinny bastard.
posted by Sebmojo at 3:49 AM on June 11, 2011 [8 favorites]


Connect with Ryan Fattman: don't tempt us, pal.
posted by MuffinMan at 4:02 AM on June 11, 2011


I hate Fatt men. Does that make me a fattist? If so, I will wear it like a badge of honor.
posted by hal_c_on at 4:14 AM on June 11, 2011


What is this asshole, like 12?
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 4:14 AM on June 11, 2011 [8 favorites]


Guy looks like he was born with a silver spoon up each nostril.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 4:17 AM on June 11, 2011 [16 favorites]


Someone needs to look into Harvard's Kennedy School. Way too many asshats coming out of there for my liking. His legislative record is one devoid of meaning if you overlook his punish the poor agenda.
posted by jsavimbi at 4:38 AM on June 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


Fattman, along with health care and the economy, is part of the trend in which soon Americans will be looking to find a better life in other countries.
posted by Obscure Reference at 4:39 AM on June 11, 2011 [4 favorites]


Fattman, along with health care and the economy, is part of the trend in which soon Americans will be looking to find a better life in other countries.

WTF do you mean "soon"...its already started.
posted by hal_c_on at 4:40 AM on June 11, 2011 [3 favorites]


And the federal program you speak of is an Obama Administration initiative. Deval Patrick's position on this is irrelevant, except I guess for the role of State Troopers. But many local police departments in Mass are already participating, including Boston.
posted by Seymour Zamboni at 4:41 AM on June 11, 2011


Anybody wanna bet he has an illegal nanny or gardener employed?
posted by DreamerFi at 4:47 AM on June 11, 2011 [5 favorites]


Anyone who's in the US, citizen or not, should be able to report a crime - does Fattman want criminals to run free? Why isn't he tough on crime?
posted by dubold at 4:56 AM on June 11, 2011 [13 favorites]


Anybody wanna bet he has an illegal nanny or gardener employed?

Judging from his picture, he may have an illegal nanny employed FOR him.
posted by Benjy at 5:18 AM on June 11, 2011 [4 favorites]


Anybody wanna bet he has an illegal nanny or gardener employed?
It's almost a certainty that the food at one of his favorite restaurants is prepared by an illegal.
posted by Thorzdad at 5:19 AM on June 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


In a sense, Fattman is right. Having laws on the books that we don't enforce allows people to exist in a sort of legal limbo where their whole life can depend on the whim of a judge or a police officer. We really shouldn't make laws and not enforce them.

Now given that, firstly, most illegal immigrants generally haven't done anything morally objectionable. Secondly, actually enforcing these laws would destroy our economy (not to mention tear families apart). And third, the United States is a nation of immigrants. Clearly the solution is immigration reform: give amnesty to those already here and vastly reduce the amount of time it takes to enter the US legally.

But that wouldn't please bigots like Fattman.
posted by Loudmax at 5:24 AM on June 11, 2011 [8 favorites]


Anybody wanna bet he has an illegal nanny or gardener employed?

I'd be surprised if he has any at this moment. Deliciously surprised, of course. But I'd be more surprised if he hasn't employed any in the past and managed to fire them for being illegal just in time for him to go on this tirade. So when some reporter discovers one, I want them to ask if he reported them to the INS or ICE or whatever they're calling themselves these days. If he did, it makes him a heartless asshole. If he didn't, it makes him a lying hypocrite.
posted by marsha56 at 5:25 AM on June 11, 2011


This is the kind of rhetoric we get when the Moderate Majority can't be bothered to vote. Assholes like this slip between the cracks. Reasonable people from both sides of the aisle find this shit to be reprehensible...try to remember that when election day rolls around.
posted by lobstah at 6:11 AM on June 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


"If they are here illegally, they have committed a crime," he said. However, under federal law, illegal status is usually a civil offense.
posted by giraffe at 6:18 AM on June 11, 2011 [4 favorites]


Don't you see? By crossing the border without permission, undocumented workers nonconsensually violate our boundaries. Then they work jobs without basic employment protections for wages no citizen would accept. They're the true predators here: it's like they're raping our territorial sovereignty and labor markets!
posted by anotherpanacea at 6:40 AM on June 11, 2011 [2 favorites]


Just a reminder of this moment in Massachusetts history (March 2007)
posted by Seymour Zamboni at 6:47 AM on June 11, 2011


You left out the part about them intentionally making this country like our Southern neighbors in an attempt to stake a claim and return it to our MeCha overlords. Or something like that.
posted by Seamus at 6:48 AM on June 11, 2011


Guys like Fatmman drive me fucking batty.

First, they have no sense of history. Where do they think they came from? Everybody's a mutt and an immigrant, ultimately.

Second, they blame everything on immigrants while they turn a blind eye to the companies that encourage the immigrants to come here illegally by employing them. Money talks and bullshit walks, as they say.

(I'm not arguing that the immigrants shouldn't be here, BTW. I'm just pointing out the absolute dishonesty in Fattman's -and the right's, in general- argument.)
posted by Benny Andajetz at 8:02 AM on June 11, 2011 [7 favorites]


It could be argued that having an illegal workforce that doesn't get insurance, doesn't get minimum wage, cant organize, and cannot even go to the authorities without an automatic no-questions-asked deportation is the unspoken reason it appeals to the party of business.
posted by cotterpin at 8:16 AM on June 11, 2011 [13 favorites]


'Cuz the last thing we want to do is punish people for doing something illegally.
posted by CountSpatula at 8:27 AM on June 11, 2011


How is it that people who can't think their way out of a wet paper bag get themselves into positions of making public policy?

This is a rhetorical question.
posted by rtha at 8:31 AM on June 11, 2011


'Cuz the last thing we want to do is punish people for doing something illegally.

As I said before, if that's really your position, then punishing the immigrants is putting the horse before the cart. Punish the companies for illegally hiring them, and you uphold the law and don't put the immigrants in the middle of a cruel and dishonest dilemma.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 8:40 AM on June 11, 2011 [3 favorites]


Ummm, cart before the horse. 'Cause, you know, the other way is correct - which is the opposite of what I was saying ...

carry on
posted by Benny Andajetz at 8:48 AM on June 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


Yet another datapoint supporting my theory that right-wingers are broken humans. Maybe these attitudes worked when we lived in caves. They sure as hell don't work in a globalized world.
posted by five fresh fish at 8:56 AM on June 11, 2011 [2 favorites]


We still have that hueg national debt, right? Why not just, you know, charge undocumented workers for staying in the country? You don't even have to give them citizenship, just a retroactive green card or whatever.
posted by LogicalDash at 9:10 AM on June 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


Assholes like this slip between the cracks.

If what's happening right now is assholes slipping through the cracks, the cracks are big enough to be interstate highways.
posted by blucevalo at 9:41 AM on June 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


It could be argued that having an illegal workforce that doesn't get insurance, doesn't get minimum wage, cant organize, and cannot even go to the authorities without an automatic no-questions-asked deportation is the unspoken reason it appeals to the party of business.

That is exactly why it still exists. Then they turn around and whip up the masses.

What needs to happen is a program where the authorities allow the necessary labor to enter the country legally.

Now, turning to this program, its a program where if you are an undocumented alien and you are arrested by local police for suspicion of crime other than violation of immigration laws, you can be deported, even if the government decides to not prosecute, or you are deemed or found innocent. Frankly, this is the way I always thought it was. But the principle is a far cry from just demanding the papers ony anyone you suspect of being in the country illegally. It basically says that if you get arrested, you will be deported.

Because the linked article is so shitty, I don't know if that's the full extent of the program. If the program would lead to the deportation of anyone coming into contact with police voluntarily, I would oppose that. Crimes against undocumented aliens are crimes against the community, and deterring the reporting of crime to law enforcement makes no sense.

But on a larger scale, Obama has writ a large change in the handling of illegal immigration. He knows that in order to get the bill he wants, he has to get the changes on the ground--that is, he has to make the GOP want it too.

And the way hie is going about this is revolutionary, enforces the laws by showing dignity to people just here for a job, and strikes at the heart of the hypocracy of the GOP's position. He's going after the demand side.

The centerpiece of the strategy is doing away with the Bush-style raids where hundreds would be rounded up at a plant and the employer would not even be investigated. Instead of any army, ICE now sends in a single agent. That agent asks to see the forms filled out by every employee with the proof of ID saying they can work legally. The ICE agent then finds all of the undocumented aliens in a single swoop, and the business owner is told that he will have to let all of them go or face prosecution for employing undocumented workers. The employees are let go and not rounded up and not deported. The business owner signs an agreement saying he won't employ workers not legally able to work in the country again, agreeing that when they do come back, if they find more violations, they will be criminally prosecuted. And prosecutions are occurring. criminal prosecutions of business owners. Nobody gets hauled off.

It is the way this should have always been done years ago. Hopefully it will force the business community to turn around and press the GOP for immigration reform, which it cynically uses to race-bait democrats. But finally, the real cause of the problem, employers who break the law for profit, is being addressed.
posted by Ironmouth at 9:51 AM on June 11, 2011 [7 favorites]


I was just reading this L.A. Times article about Alabama's tough new illegal immigrant laws which the paper is calling the nation's strictist. One really jumped out at me:
It deems invalid any contract to which an illegal immigrant is a party if the legal party in the contract has "direct or constructive knowledge" that the other person was in the country illegally.
I'm not sure what the reasoning is behind that particular law but it strikes me it could be used in a very unscrupulous way to cheat illegal immigrants.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 10:36 AM on June 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


Racist legislator in also misogynist SHOCKAH!
posted by klangklangston at 10:38 AM on June 11, 2011


I'd just like to thank Metafilter for making this a discussion of racism and the legal limbo that is undocumented immigration. Because that is what this is actually about.
posted by kafziel at 10:39 AM on June 11, 2011


"Because the linked article is so shitty, I don't know if that's the full extent of the program. If the program would lead to the deportation of anyone coming into contact with police voluntarily, I would oppose that. Crimes against undocumented aliens are crimes against the community, and deterring the reporting of crime to law enforcement makes no sense."

LA just voted (symbolically) to not be a part of the program, because it's anyone who is taken into police custody, even if they are not charged with a crime, a category that can include domestic violence victims (as often both parties are taken into custody prior to charges being filed).
posted by klangklangston at 10:41 AM on June 11, 2011


Were I called 'Fattman' I would watch my diet like a fuckin' hawk. I would be a skinny, skinny bastard.
New diet plan: Legally change your name.
posted by Flunkie at 11:05 AM on June 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


Do you have a link for further reading on all that Ironmouth? Hadn't heard Obama had started doing that, it's a pretty sensible way to handle it.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 11:44 AM on June 11, 2011


And prosecutions are occurring. criminal prosecutions of business owners. Nobody gets hauled off.

I just spent about 10 minutes Googling for these prosecutions. I googled for various permutations of "(tyson OR cargill OR "swift processing") immigration prosecution" within the past year. Nothing, except for a mention about a $5.2 million fine for an inspection bribe Tyson recently paid out. About an estimated one half of one percent of sales in that division alone.

So I decided to lower my criteria, searching instead for immigration prosecutions in the last month.

I eventually found this NYTimes article about an Obama crackdown on employing illegal workers. Turns out, Chuy’s Mesquite Broiler chain, which are "popular for their laid-back Margaritaville mood and their broiled mahi tacos." are facing criminal charges.

I'm sure the Republicans are having a top-level emergency summit as we talk to discuss strategies to help their friends at Chuy's Mesquite Broiler chain.

It's almost on the level of an Onion article.

But this all ignores the fact that Republicans will continue their attack the workers, because that's what gets the votes. It doesn't matter what brilliant immigration plan Obama comes up with.
posted by formless at 11:57 AM on June 11, 2011 [2 favorites]


Do you have a link for further reading on all that Ironmouth? Hadn't heard Obama had started doing that, it's a pretty sensible way to handle it.

There was an article in the NYT in february. I think.
posted by Ironmouth at 12:04 PM on June 11, 2011


Nah nah nah nah Fattman!
posted by cjorgensen at 12:06 PM on June 11, 2011


Fuckin' misogynist racist asshole bigot prick slimeball. HTF do these people get elected? It's like they ooze out from under a rock and immediately get put into office.

...a silver spoon up each nostril.
Too bad both of them aren't serving spoon size up a single orifice.

My daughter works immigration law--no end in sight with that! Won't get rich, but will stay busy, and her clients love her. Oh, the stories she can tell.... Rape, abuse, misuse, wage cheating, constant insults--we sure know how to treat the folks we require and then despise for doing our dirty work. Or even the white collar jobs--her SO is Ethiopian and does some heavy-duty cancer research--is cutting edge with some interesting breakthroughs in targeting cancer-causing cells. Very intelligent man who just spent 12 years working to obtain his naturalization. (Finally--whoo hoo!) I want to slap idiots that talk to him like he's mentally defective because he has an accent and happens to be toasted a bit darker than they prefer. He might just save your life someday, dorkus.

Benny and Ironmouth have it. The problem isn't with illegals, it's with corporate America and the profit attitude. We wouldn't have illegals, or an unemployment problem, if companies would pay a living wage to Americans--and if Americans were willing to do dirty, boring, often unsafe jobs. But this way it's win-win and profit to the hilt. No benefits, no retirement, low wages, maximum hours. I know of a couple that regularly work overtime here and didn't know what overtime wages were until they were told by other workers that they were getting screwed.

How to change it? Get rid of ignorant buggers like Fatthead, then go after corporations, with the realization that you and I are going to have to step up and take the hit in the wallet. As is only fair. It's not just the corporations that benefit. They just benefit egregiously.
posted by BlueHorse at 12:06 PM on June 11, 2011 [2 favorites]


So, here's an angle I think is under-discussed:

Fattman replied, "“My thought is that if someone is here illegally, they should be afraid to come forward."

I wonder how much of this comes not from xenophobia per se, but from a certain view I've seen elsewhere in varying degrees: the idea that it's not enough that lawbreakers receive some specific statutory/judicial punishment as a consequence of whatever law they've violated -- they also must somehow forfeit the protection of the law in general.

Under this viewpoint, it's not just illegal immigrants who should suffer. *Every* lawbreaker becomes an Other who doesn't deserve the treatment that Law Abiding Citizens and Good People get. They give up *all* their rights when they choose not to live by the law. Steal a car? Well, it doesn't matter if you're assaulted... by another citizen, by a police officer, by a prison guard. You're a criminal. Crimes against you don't matter. Any way in which you suffer is part of some due punishment.

I can't read Fatthead's mind, so I don't really know this is what drives him, but... I don't think you have to be a racist or xenophobic or a bad person to want some kind of enforcement for immigration laws. But I do think something is off with the moral compass of people who see a situation with two illegal activities -- in this case immigration and rape -- and are ready to vigorously pursue justice in the former at the cost of the later, and I think this worldview explains the issue as well or better than racism or xenophobia.
posted by weston at 1:11 PM on June 11, 2011 [5 favorites]


Under this viewpoint, it's not just illegal immigrants who should suffer. *Every* lawbreaker becomes an Other who doesn't deserve the treatment that Law Abiding Citizens and Good People get. They give up *all* their rights when they choose not to live by the law. Steal a car? Well, it doesn't matter if you're assaulted... by another citizen, by a police officer, by a prison guard. You're a criminal. Crimes against you don't matter. Any way in which you suffer is part of some due punishment.

Prison rape is hilarious. [person in the news] is going to jail? I hope someone stabs him there. Why are my tax dollars going to fund prison education? Prisoners get access to the internet? Appalling!
posted by kafziel at 1:23 PM on June 11, 2011 [1 favorite]


they also must somehow forfeit the protection of the law in general

This is the notion of "outlaw", yes? In societies that (overtly) have that punishment, it's considered a severe one, on a par with the death penalty.
posted by hattifattener at 7:10 PM on June 11, 2011


Apparently the Fattman lacks the courage of his convictions, or at least that's what I infer from the fact that the YouTube video featured prominently on the main page of his website spits an error message informing all that he deleted it. Seriously, kid? You're young enough to know how the Internet works.
posted by dantsea at 9:57 AM on June 12, 2011


Right now, my older daughter's fiance is sitting in an ICE detention center, and we are all busting our asses trying to get him out and his case transferred back to Atlanta (home, where he was nabbed), where he has a chance of being allowed to stay in the country (versus appearing before one of the two judges in the district where he is being detained, both of whom have consistent records of deportation). He came here legally as a minor, graduated high school here, is fluent in English, is engaged to an American citizen, and is employed in one of those jobs American citizens rarely apply for (he's a sausage packer ffs!). His employer is facing no sanctions at this point, and he is far from the first employee they've had picked up by immigration (under any name). I don't understand what it is that people think we stand to gain by punishing, reporting, or just othering undocumented workers like this young man, and I don't know how they think we're going to replace these workers.
posted by notashroom at 10:42 AM on June 12, 2011 [2 favorites]


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