It’s Not The Immigrants, Mr. President, It’s The System Set Up to Distribute Benefits of Lawbreaking

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By Arizona Physician, Jane M. Orient, M.D.

On July 1, Barack Obama spoke of the immigrants who helped build our country—such as my great-grandparents. They passed through public health screening, obeyed the law, worked hard, and never got welfare benefits. They learned the English language and American history. Some even carried the Constitution of their beloved adopted homeland in their pocket throughout their lives. They asked only for the opportunity to contribute.

Should we, as Obama suggested, break down the bureaucratic barriers that hinder such people? Absolutely. That is not what the controversy is about.

The issue is illegal immigration—lawbreaking. Controversy is inflamed by marches of angry people, aggressively waving a foreign flag, insulting Americans in a foreign language, and demanding to “take back” the property and earnings of Americans.

Illegals circumvent public health screening, bringing once banished foreign organisms with them. The most serious one is probably multi-drug resistant tuberculosis, which one can catch on a bus. Head lice are far more common than previously in schools. Dengue has reached the continental U.S. and the parasite that causes Chagas disease now infests more than 40 percent of the kissing bugs found near Tucson, compared with only 4 percent in 1964.

Then there’s property and environmental destruction in the Arizona desert. Ranchers’ land is trampled, and strewn with tons of garbage and human excrement. 

Worse, there are guns—including military assault rifles. Americans are warned to stay out of the Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge because it is occupied by heavily armed invaders, who smuggle drugs and humans.  Phoenix, Arizona, is perhaps the kidnapping capital of the world, with heavily armed contingents invading homes and carrying off people for ransom.

While proclaiming that we are “a nation of laws,” Obama didn’t mention how the U.S. federal government encourages lawlessness. One way is by forcing the private sector to care for illegals free of charge, through the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA). Physicians on a hospital staff are required to serve these patients immediately—even if they have scheduled surgeries or an office full of waiting patients.

When hospitals in border states complained that this unfunded mandate could cause them to close (as many actually have), the federal government offered some reimbursement for services provided under EMTALA to illegals. Hospitals, however, could not inquire about immigration status—they had to somehow divine it without asking, and file a claim without telling.

Doctors owe a duty of confidentiality to their patients. The Oath of Hippocrates states: “All that may come to my knowledge in the exercise of my profession or outside of my profession or in daily commerce with men, which ought not to be spread abroad, I will keep secret and never reveal.”

Some things, however, ought to be revealed, and by law physicians must report them. These include certain infectious diseases, gunshot wounds, suspected abuse, and evidence of an impending crime.  While the government demands access to more and more sensitive information about citizens from their health records, including illegal drug use, sexual preference, psychiatric history, and gun ownership, one is not allowed to ask basic questions about immigration status. This is a double standard.

Doctors are not law enforcement agents. Their duty is simply to treat patients—even known enemy combatants or criminals. They may not, however, help people evade the law.

Federal law may actually encourage them to do so. According to anonymous reports, “community health centers,” which are generously funded by federal tax dollars, not only provide treatment to illegals but also may help them obtain many other welfare benefits to which they are not entitled. Bending or violating the law might keep enrollments expanding and the federal dollars flowing and the staff paid. Immigration officials look the other way, and anyone who dared to raise questions would likely be branded as a “racist.” (“ObamaCare,” by the way, will expand the reach of such centers from about 5 percent to 10 percent of the population.)

In contrast to Obama’s examples, like Jews fleeing Eastern Europe, this time we’re not facing just a migration, but an influx having many hallmarks of a foreign invasion.

Individual illegal residents may be oppressed refugees or simply, as Obama says, people seeking a better life. Sympathy for individuals—some of whom might even be hostages or human shields— must not, however, blind us to the threat to our country from harboring at least 11 million “entrants” who have defied our laws.

The system is set up to distribute benefits of lawbreaking. Not just to Obama’s “unscrupulous businesses” but also to politicians who expect to get the immigrant vote, and to bureaucrats, medical professionals, and other citizens who draw taxpayers’ money from the welfare state.

If the United States cannot or does not enforce its laws, Lady Liberty’s lamp will no longer beckon to the people throughout the world who are “yearning to breathe free.”


Jane M. Orient, M.D., Executive Director of Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, has been in solo practice of general internal medicine since 1981 and is a clinical lecturer in medicine at the University of Arizona College of Medicine. She received her undergraduate degrees in chemistry and mathematics from the University of Arizona, and her M.D. from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. She is the author of Sapira’s Art and Science of Bedside Diagnosis; the fourth edition has just been published by Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins. She also authored YOUR Doctor Is Not In: Healthy Skepticism about National Health Care, published by Crown. She is the executive director of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, a voice for patients’ and physicians’ independence since 1943. Complete curriculum vitae posted at www.drjaneorient.com.

15 Comments

  1. Thank you for writing this article. I agree with you 100% and I plan to forward this to everyone I know. I really don’t understand how the President can get away with so much. Where is congress in all of these decision? Are they blind, deaf and dumb???

    The American people must stand up for our rights and our country.

    God Bless you for doing so by showing us your opinion.

  2. Thank you for telling the truth as it is!. Many won’t like it. Since when did this country become the refugee camp for the world? Are these law makers working for the voters or looking after their own interests of getting reelected? It is time we educate our fellow citizens and turn the tide. Or else, we are going to be doomed. Can someone publish the statistics on the number of medical facilities that were closed along the border? Can someone publish the number of frivolous law suits filed on the physicians along the border? Walmart charges me the same price for the merchandise, as it does Mr. Buffett. However, when I go to hospital for services, I am charged outrageous fees, where as the illegals are required to be served for free. Is this because I wake up at 5:00 and work till 20:00 hours, obey the laws and pay taxes?

  3. I totally agree with you on this! Our country is quickly going to hell–literally! Our elected officials are destroying this country from within–and Obama, Biden, and Pelosi are leading the way down this path of no return. ‘Obamacare’ shoved down our throats even as the majority cry out in protest, Obama’s ideas of ‘spreading the wealth’, absolutely NO COMMON SENSE as for as the handling of terrorists, NO SENSE in the handling of illegal immigrants, bail-outs right and left and guess what?–NOTHING has changed in those big corporations! Obama, Biden, Pelosi, and all those who are FOR providing health care, housing, food, automobiles, cell phones, opportunities for illegal immigrants, etc. are perfectly welcome to do–but use your OWN money and resources to do so—and leave my hard earned money ALONE. AND leave my health care/insurance alone also! I WORk for my home, my food, my clothing, my automobile, all my insurance coverage—and I pay my taxes. So illegal immigrants and some other idiotic people feel that to be required to carry their green cards/visas are being racially discriminated against and treated morally inappropriately? Well, I guess the next time I am stopped by a police officer at a road block, or, asked by a clerk when writing a check for my driver’s license, I will cry out in indignation, citing racial discrimination to the pigs who dare to make such a request! Let’s see how far that gets me! No doubt, to the neighborhood police station and jail cell as far as the police officer is concerned, and hopefully, my attempted purchases from the store clerk will not be needed to sustain life as we all know those items will be put promptly back on the shelf for someone else to purchase. God help us all! Everyone in this country SHOULD have heard the sermon preached on Sunday, July 4, 2010, by Dr. Charles Stanley as every word he spoke is the honest truth. This country better get back to God or we are certainly doomed. I urge all to go to intouch.org and read what Dr. Stanley says/writes, and then to please pray for our Nation and those in leadership roles. God is our ONLY answer. God Bless you, Dr. Orient, for speaking out and speaking the truth!

  4. Maybe after the November elections when hopefuly there will be a significant change in congress, the impeachment process will be in order.

  5. Thank you, Dr. Orient. You are a wise woman and your speaking skills (without a teleprompter) put the president to shame!

  6. The system set up to distribute the benefits of lawbreaking is itself lawless. There is nothing in our Constitution that authorizes government to select certain people, whether citizens or not, to be the object of forced transfers of citizens’ labor and the fruits of their labor. A citizen is not required by the supreme law of the land to accept having labor or goods or wealth confiscated and bestowed by a corrupt government on anyone else. This is all done at the point of a gun, express or implied.

  7. May I redistribute this article to my physician colleagues at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center?

  8. Don’t we have one Congressman or Senator that has the intestinal fortitude to stand up and ask for the impeachment of the President of the United States. I can’t even stand to say the name of that COMMUNIST from Kenya. We need to get rid of anyone that would not have the guts to do this. He is not a citizen of this country and he is ruining this country more everyday that he stays in office. If the Congressmen and Senators can not see this, they all need to be replaced and sent home, rather jut let them stay in Washington, because most states wouldn’t want them back anyway.

  9. I definately agree that the illegal so called President, from Kenya, has
    got to go. Why can’t our congressmen see what he is doing to USA. He is going against our Constitution, what our USA was founded upon. Ourfounders were God fearing people and so founded our Nation. This
    so called Presiddent need to find God in his heart and change his way.
    God said “If my people who are called y my name will seek my face, pray and turn from their wicked ways, THEN will I hear from Heaven, will
    forgive their sins and HEAL their Land.” God bless America and deal with
    our Leaders in a special way. He is not a citizen of the USA. Did you hear
    that–HE’S NOT A CITIZEN and our constitution plainly states the person
    to be President must be a born citizen of the U.S.A. GOD BLESS US ALL.

  10. Well said Doctor. I am having a hard time understanding why there are so many people who still support Obama’s outrageous behavior. Are they really blind or are they just willing to be bought out as his willing subjects who work and work and turn over that which they worked so hard for so he can squander it? He keeps compounding his terrible acts. Today it was appointing a doctor who not only believes in Socialized Medicine but professes how he wants to take away from the middle class to pay for it and they are the very ones who are paying his support. Are these people in Washington NUTS??? We know the answer don’t we. This will be passed around to all I know. Lord help us all in the rough ride ahead. Pray that folks wake up in time for the November vote.

  11. I have asked all the congressmen from Oklahoma why they cannot impeach im. If they are afraid of him or what. To this date I have not recieved one word of reply from Boren, Inhofe, or Coburn. I emailed Rusty Farley who is running for a state office and asked him the same question. Are our people in Washington afraid of him and if so WHY????
    Judy Earnheart

  12. Letter to the Editor

    Perhaps getting Washington D.C. back on track would be as easy as 1 through 10!

    1. Get rid of all the lobbyists

    2. Establish the line item veto

    3. Set term limits for all Congressmen and Senators

    4. Balance the budget (just like we have to in our households and businesses)

    5. Put the Congressmen and Senators on Social Security (it’s good enough for “We, the people”)

    6. Get rid of the “Seniority” in congress; what do they think they have, a “Union”?

    7. They should have the same insurance program that the people have and pay for it just like “we the people”

    8. The Congressmen and Senators should not receive retirement unless they’ve served for at least 10 years. Most “we the people” don’t draw retirement in 10 years, especially the same amount as we were making when we retired.

    9. No Government transportation should be provided for anyone in the Congress or Senate

    10. A limit should be placed on the length of time and the amount of money they can spend to campaign for their next term in office.

    Perhaps with these ten steps, confidence in the government would be increased. It couldn’t hurt to try!

    Morris Hodgson

    Mena AR

    [email protected]

    (479) 437-3349

  13. The good doctor’s, as well a many other comments, are right on. Our country is in great danger of becoming a socialistic, if not a marxist, government. What has happened to the Christian concepts, and the work ethics that this country was formed under? What happened to the “American Dream” that could be recognized only by one’s work and intuition, not by a government that shares the wealth and punishes those that do work hard and accumulate some wealth. Yes, it is time for all true Americans to wake up and take a stand!