Sunday, July 18, 2010

Hyrum, Utah In An Uproar Over Prayer Given In Spanish At City's Fourth Of July Celebration; Councilwoman Stephanie Miller Feels The Heat

America's failure to consistently and fairly enforce immigration laws continues to backfire all over the country. In Arizona, national socialists have organized military-style patrols in the deserts and are interdicting illegal immigrants because law enforcement is reluctant to do so. As a matter of fact, one Utah resident, identified in this Phoenix New Times story as "Shawn" of the Utah Patriot Militia, flew down from the Beehive State to join J.T. Ready and his Rangers to patrol for illegals in the Vekol Valley in June.

And in Hyrum, Utah, the fight over illegal immigration transformed a public prayer offered in Spanish during a Fourth of July celebration into a political statement - and a corresponding outburst of popular backlash. The Logan Herald-Journal's main story is HERE, but links to a host of other pertinent Herald-Journal stories are posted below:

-- "Impeach Hyrum City Council", July 15th 2010: World War II veteran thinks the city council should be impeached for "betraying" our country.
-- "Vive le Hyrum!", July 15th 2010: A satirical letter from a citizen demanding that French be given equal time.
-- "4th of July not a Mexican holiday", July 12th 2010: Letter from citizen pointing out that this is an American holiday and that "the overgrowing Spanish population should conform if they choose to be in our America. Red, white blue; not red, white green".
-- "Prayer good in any language", July 15th 2010: The one letter I've seen in support of the city council. The author wonders why a prayer of any type, in any language, could be a bad thing.
-- "Discussion topic: Does prayer belong at Cache Valley public meetings and events?", July 13th 2010: An interactive discussion of the issue.
-- "A few thoughts on that July 4th prayer", July 15th 2010: The Herald-Journal's own editorial response; they saw no problem with Spanish being used in the celebration since an estimated 13.5 percent of Hyrum’s population is of Hispanic descent and nearly 15 percent are reported to speak a language other than English at home. But to circumvent future conflict, they recommend a strictly secular celebration next year.

Summary: On July 5th, 2010, the city of Hyrum held their annual Fourth of July observance (the 4th was on a Sunday). It consisted of the standard parade and complement of speeches normally delivered at such an event. At the end, Maria Montalvo, pastor of the Church of God Ebenezer in Hyrum, was to give the benediction. Because English is not Pastor Montalvo's first language, she asked if she could deliver the prayer in Spanish. Hyrum Councilwoman Stephanie Miller, who was in charge of coordinating the city’s Independence Day activities, agreed, with the premise that a simultaneous English translation be rendered. So it was done.

Shortly thereafter, the political fireworks erupted. Fueling the flame was a report that, during the parade, a group of Hispanic males who intended to ride their horses and do rope tricks during the parade wanted to display a Mexican flag. Though they were directed not to display the foreign symbol, they did so anyway.

Miller now says she was caught off guard by the backlash. Another council member, Councilman Paul James, said he was a little surprised that the prayer was given in Spanish, but decided that it wasn't inappropriate, because he considered the prayer to be patriotic. Councilwoman Miller says the prayer will be conducted differently next year. The 165 comments posted to the KSL Channel 5 story show somewhat of a split reaction.

Analysis: By itself, this would be an inconsequential story. Twenty years ago, there would have been little debate. However, it's the general context that makes it a story; many American patriots look upon this as one more link in a chain of events viewed as "reverse colonialism". This is the product of our failure to deal effectively with the illegal immigration problem. And the problem cannot be laid solely at the doorstep of one party or President; both George W. Bush and Barack Obama have aided and abetted illegal immigration.

This is why deportation through attrition is a must. Congressman Jason Chaffetz is absolutely right when he says the path to citizenship for illegals must lead back OUTSIDE the United States. Amnesty is not appropriate, except for the handful who were brought to this country as children and know nothing about their country of origin. Allowing illegals to pay a fine and back taxes and then to remain in this country would be allowing them to buy amnesty.

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