The Massachusetts Immigration Mess: Unintended Consequence or Deliberate Effort?
Corporate historians argue over which was the biggest mistake: Coca-Cola introducing “New Coke” resulting in sales losses of 20%, or Decca Records refusing to sign the Beatles because its executives felt “four-piece groups with guitars were out.” Oops. More recently, Bud Light’s decision to partner with social media influencer Dylan Mulvaney may make it a contender for all-time blunders, given double-digit drops in stock, sales, and profits.
Ok, we know the aphorisms: “Mistakes are the seeds from which trees of knowledge grow.” Fair enough. Those companies (like most of us) analyze outcomes, learn lessons, make adjustments, and move on in the spirit of improvement.
Yet in the public policy arena – and especially anything to do with immigration – leftists running blue states never seem to learn anything. Thus problems compound, and systems teeter on the brink of collapse.
Massachusetts is one such example (and sadly, only one of many). Due to massive numbers of arriving migrants, Governor Maura Healey has now declared a state of emergency in the Bay State. She blames “a confusing tangle of immigration laws, an inability for migrants to obtain work authorization from the federal government, and the lack of affordable housing.”
Leftists also never take responsibility for their own actions.
The reality is that, over many years, Massachusetts has systematically put in place one of the most appealing welcome mats for illegal aliens in the country. Cambridge – home of the Harvard Elite — got the ball rolling 38 years ago when, in 1985, it declared itself a sanctuary jurisdiction.
Just for a sampling:
- In July 2017, Massachusetts’ Supreme Judicial Court issued a ruling in Lunn v. Commonwealth which effectively made it a sanctuary state. Local law enforcement officials no longer have the authority, under state law, to detain a person based solely on a request from federal immigration authorities.
- Boston, the state’s largest city, took it a step further when in 2019 it enacted the so-called Trust Act mandating that city and law enforcement personnel and funds never be used to interrogate, detain or arrest a person solely for non-criminal immigration enforcement purposes. Police are also not allowed to share any personal information with ICE.
- Illegal aliens are eligible for MassHealth benefits.
- And last month, just to put extra glitter on the welcome mat, the “Work and Family Mobility Act” (WFMA) became effective. The new law grants driver’s licenses to all Massachusetts residents regardless of immigration status so that, you know, they can drive to the job they’re not legally allowed to have.
The net — and magnetizing — effect is that 292,000 illegal aliens, and 101,000 of their U.S.-born children, now live in Massachusetts, costing state taxpayers $2.91 billion. While eye-popping, these figures do not account for the recent surge, happening because Massachusetts has earned a five-star rating as a preferred destination with border crossers. Gov. Healey revealed that on top of 5500 migrant families already living in state shelters at a cost of $45 million a month, there are another 100 families a day seeking housing. …and costs are hitting $45 million a month.
And yet, not only does Governor Healey refuse to acknowledge that the state’s bad policies have directly led to bad outcomes, she is defiantly doubling down at the same time she is pleading for federal financial assistance: “I am encouraging communities to keep welcoming those families who wish to resettle in all corners of Massachusetts.”
If the migrant crisis is the unintended consequence of well-meaning, yet poorly thought-out policies over the years, Gov. Healey needs to immediately reverse direction and consider it “lesson-learned.” Far more likely, the chaos has been intentionally manufactured in order to incubate new Democrat voters by way of mass immigration… although Lord knows why that’s necessary given Massachusetts is considered the bluest of states.
…Extra insurance to keep it that way one supposes.
In closing, we offer a quote from long ago and far away that so aptly captures Governor Healey’s willful negligence that, if not for ethical journalistic standards, we’d swipe it and pretend it was an original:
There is simple ignorance, not knowing, and willful ignorance that refuses to know, that covers the light of knowledge with the dark blanket of bias. (Elizabeth Moon, Texas author)