Wikipedia, in the entry for "Sanctuary City," defines the term as follows:
"Sanctuary city is a term given to a city in the United States that follows certain practices that protect illegal immigrants. These practices can be by law (de jure) or they can be by habit (de facto). The term generally applies to cities that do not allow municipal funds or resources to be used to enforce federal immigration laws, usually by not allowing police or municipal employees to inquire about one's immigration status. The designation has no legal meaning."
The term incorporates a variety of actions taken by cities to discourage actions by government officials, such as police, from trying to ascertain one's immigration status, etc.
Salt Lake City Police Chief Chris Burbank has some bizarre comments about the congressman's proposal.
According to KSL, Burbank said the following:
"Burbank said Salt Lake City deports more criminal illegal immigrants than any other agency in Utah, but it’s not the role of police to actively look into the immigration status of law-abiding residents."
“Plus, I think there’s been a tremendous lack of evaluation into whether or not we should conduct this type of effort."
Salt Lake City deports more illegal immigrants than any other agency in Utah?
Isn't that a strange claim for Mr. Burbank to make?
If true, it contradicts Mr. Burbank's assertion that an effort to determine immigration status when police detain or arrest someone in conjunction with a crime is not worthwhile. I assume, by his comment, that he means that Salt Lake City arrests more people who are later discovered to be illegals and then deported. Salt Lake City has no power to deport and, by the chief's own admission, his department cannot be bothered with checking the legal-status of those arrested. This is the most likely interpretation of his comments as far as I can tell.
Is Chief Burbank, therefore, implicitly telling us that Salt Lake City has enough illegal alien criminals to give him the number one position in terms of criminal alien deportations even when he sees no reason to have his department attempt to ascertain the legal status of those he detains or arrests? How else could his claim be accurate?
One key reason, therefore, that should cause the chief to open his eyes is that Salt Lake City obviously has a problem with criminal illegal aliens.
Can he really be protecting Salt Lake City if he is not interested in the legal status of immigrants?
There are two other reasons that the chief should open his eyes and begin to cooperate with the federal government on immigration status checks of those his department arrests.
The first is HB116.
Until a criminal is actually caught, an illegal alien criminal living in Utah would be eligible for "guest worker" status under Utah's new odd immigration law (HB116). This new rather strange law becomes effective six-months after being granted a waiver by the federal government or on July 1, 2013 - whichever is earlier.
Think about it...a criminal illegal alien, without a criminal record, can become a legal worker or resident in Utah after the law takes effect.
Does this reluctance to care about illegal aliens in Salt Lake City on the part of Mr. Burbank make a difference?
Consider the following:
In Provo, Javier Cuadros-Lopez, 21, pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of attempted rape of a child. Mr. Cuadros-Lopez seduced a 12-year old girl and had sex with her on two occasions in his home, which was near the girl's home. According to the Daily Herald (Provo), his attorney believes that he "does not currently have legal status in the U.S. and likely will be deported after serving his prison sentence."
The reaction on repeal116.com to this, by a well-known public commentator on immigration issues, was:
"This man, if not caught, would have qualified for a Guest Worker Permit under HB116!"
Will HB116 bring illegal aliens, or even terrorists, to Utah to provide them legal status and a cover for their criminal activity?
The second key reason why Chief Burbank should open his eyes is that HB116 makes the problem of criminal illegal aliens worse by inviting such individuals to come to Utah and providing them legal cover once the law takes effect. Mr. Burbank's "sanctuary" attitude acts in the same way. It invites criminal illegal aliens and provides them cover.
The third key reason why Chief Burbank should open his eyes is that he and others promoting a "sanctuary" attitude are willing to look the other way about illegal immigrants until they are caught committing a crime.
That is too late.
The crime should never have been committed because the individual should not be here.
The victim is essentially a throwaway in Burbank's world.
He is willing to trade victims on a one-for-one basis with an illegal's incarceration and eventual deportation.
That is an unacceptable trade.
It is a trade that subordinates the well-being of Utah's citizens and legal residents to the politically-correct "sanctuary" approach of Chief Burbank.
The 12-year old girl, raped twice by an illegal alien criminal, is a statistic to the pro-illegal advocates. They quickly downplay the victims of illegal alien crime by pointing out that all groups have criminals.
Yes, it is true. All groups do have criminals.
But is this abstract concept supposed to bring comfort to a raped 12-year old girl?
Or the family of a murder victim?
The point is this: a crime committed by someone who is not supposed to even be in the U.S. is a crime that may have been prevented through a more active involvement in discouraging illegals through doing the very thing that Chief Burbank thinks is a distraction to his department - identifying illegals when they are detained or arrested by the police in conjunction with criminal activity.
By illegally entering the U.S., illegal aliens have bypassed the component of the legal immigration process that checks for criminal backgrounds. Chief Burbank wants to ignore this and pretend that it is irrelevant.
If Chief Burbank can read the article about the raped 12-year girl and brush it off as of no consequence, then he is not worthy of the public's respect.
The KSL article,"Congressman want to penalize Salt Lake for being illegal immigration 'sanctuary'" (5/11/11), is available at:
The Daily Herald story, "Man pleads guilty to having sex with 12-year-old" (5/12/11), is available at: