For an Audio Version of this article click here:
California Governor Jerry Brown has taken an audacious step towards protecting Californians. Last week, he decided to pardon five illegal immigrants who committed other crimes while residing in the United States. It was a brave move that earned the ire of backward-thinking people who dare to believe that it is more important to protect law-abiding citizens instead of criminals.
President Donald Trump, in a stunning display of ignorance, lashed out at the California Governor for his decision. He tweeted:
“Governor Jerry “Moonbeam” Brown pardoned 5 criminal illegal aliens whose crimes include (1) Kidnapping and Robbery (2) Badly beating wife and threatening a crime with intent to terrorize (3) Dealing drugs. Is this really what the great people of California want?”
The president is missing the point. Of course, we want criminal illegal aliens. Protecting these people is one of the best ways to virtue signal and make your friends and family think you’re a swell guy. That’s what it’s about, isn’t it? But let’s take a look at these worthy recipients of Brown’s pardons.
Jerry Brown Grants Pardons For Five Illegal Immigrants
In all, Governor Brown pardoned 56 people — five of whom are in the country illegally. The Sacramento Bee reported that the five illegals who were pardoned could have been facing deportation. Since Brown granted the pardons, these individuals are in little danger of being removed from the United States anytime soon. Brown justified his decision, saying “Those granted pardons all completed their sentences years ago and the majority were convicted of drug-related or other nonviolent crimes.”
Others lauded Governor Brown’s pardons. Ingrid Eagly, a professor at UCLA School of Law, told The Sacramento Bee that these individuals “deserve a second chance.” But who are these people that Brown pardoned? Here they are:
- Sokha Chhan – Convicted for inflicting corporal injury on a spouse or cohabitant and threatening a crime with the intent to terrorize. He served almost four years.
- Daniel Maher – Convicted of kidnapping, robbery, and using a firearm. He served five years and was released early for good behavior. In 2015, he was detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) but was not deported.
- Phann Pheach – Arrived in the U.S. at the age of 1. He was convicted of possession of a controlled substance for sale and obstructing a police officer in 2005. He was imprisoned for six months. He was detained by ICE and was facing deportation proceedings.
- Francisco Acevedo Alazin – Convicted of vehicle theft in 1997. He spent five months in prison.
- Sergio Mena – Sentenced for possession of a controlled substance for sale in 2003. Served three years probation.
So four of these individuals were convicted of violent crimes or drug offenses, served their time, and Governor Jerry Brown still felt the need to pardon them. Why? Because they might have been facing deportation.
California Knows Who Needs Protection
The governor’s decision to pardon these individuals is indicative of his willingness to use his authority to disrupt the legal process. He felt that it was necessary to issue pardons to individuals who had committed crimes simply to protect their status in the country. However, there was no good reason to make this move. It was done to push the left’s pro-illegal immigrant agenda.
It is true that these individuals have already served their time — that’s why they are free today. However, the Governor should not use his power to prevent immigration enforcement agencies from doing their jobs. It should be up to agencies like ICE to decide whether or not a person should remain in the country.
As stated previously, one of the individuals had been detained by ICE, but the agency decided not to deport them. Some of these individuals were taken to the country when they were minors. Again, it is up to our legal system to adjudicate each individual case and decide who should remain, and who should go.
Brown’s pardons — along with his decision to make California into a sanctuary state — is indicative of his belief that it is more important to protect illegal immigrant criminals than to safeguard law-abiding Californians. His actions are a betrayal — a move that pushes a specific agenda rather than ensuring the safety of the people who live in his state.