Friction (sort of) by H. Millard (c) 2001

I got a call last week from Big Bob who had witnessed some recent police action against a Hispanic guy on the lam from the cops. “It was weird man. It looked like the guy was daring the cops to kill him, and he even came at them with some kind of curved carpet knife,” said Big Bob.

     “So, did the cops kill him?” I asked.

     “Nah. This is California and the guy was an illegal alien. You can’t commit suicide by cop in California if you’re an illegal alien. Hell, you can’t even get arrested in California if you’re an illegal alien. The cops say that they're not the INS, and it's not their job to check I.D. Anyway, the cops drove by in a police car and shot the guy with a non-lethal turkey.”

     “A turkey?”

     “Yeah. They’ve got these guns that shoot turkeys.”

     “You really mean bean bags,” I said.

     “No, I mean turkeys. See, the local cops give out free turkeys to suspected Police donate turkeysillegal aliens during Thanksgiving, so I figure these turkeys were part of the freebies, being as how it's close to Thanksgiving. The cops were just kind of doing what Bush is doing in Afghanistan–they hit the guy with the food to let him know that they really like him and want him to be well fed, but they kind of damaged him at the same time, to let him know that he should stop acting illegally.”

     “Yeah, but how does he do that? He is illegal,” I said.

     “You don’t get it. They don’t mind that he IS illegal. Hey, they're not
the INS. They just don’t want him to ACT in an illegal manner.”

     “Well, the turkeys were dead, right?”

     “Yeah. Except for one. The guy must have been on drugs or something, because he was impervious to the dead turkeys. When the dead turkeys just kept bouncing off the guy and didn’t stop him, the cops turned to something more lethal. They loaded a live round in the gun–a really nasty Tom--and they shot it at him. KERPLOOEY! GOBBLE, GOBBLE, GOBBLE. Anyway, this dirty bird landed on the guy’s head and dug in. The guy ran around in circles with this thing on his head for several minutes while he was waving his arms in the air and screaming in Spanish. He couldn’t get it off. He looked like an Indian Chief doing a war dance. Then he finally fell down in a cloud of feathers and the cops moved in. They captured the Police Turkey and the guy.

      “Man, turkeys aren’t very culturally sensitive. I bet he sues them for not using chickens,” I said.

     “What do you mean?”asked Bob.

     “You ever hear of a turkey taco? Turkeys are American. A turkey was even going to be our national bird before someone decided the Bald Eagle
was more photogenic. Shooting the Mexican guy with an American turkey wasn't PC. Man, I think they were sending some sort of subliminal cultural message and telling him that they welcomed him in the country as the Indians had welcomed the Pilgrims. I guess they figure that it's their job to make him feel comfortable and welcome here now that he's broken our laws and snuck into the country. Anyway, what did they do with the guy after they did the drive by turkeying?”

      “They gave him a ride to a local citizen supported day worker job center. I saw him pick up a gum wrapper in the gutter and use that as his I.D. with the center's employees.”

     “And the job center accepted that as legitimate I.D.?”

     “Sure. They don’t really check I.D. They just pretend they check to avoid any liability. They wink and say the employers are supposed to check the I.D., and that they're not the INS. Then the employers wink and say they're not the INS either and so they don't check ID. The last time I saw the guy, he was riding off in the back of an employers truck.”

     Wouldn’t you know it. A few days later, I ran into Jack the Rug who has a carpet installation business. Some carpet stores have Jack and his crew do the installation for customers. Jack recently moved out of the old neighborhood to a tony part of town that has a wall all around the homes and a guard at the front gate. He was able to move because he makes a lot of money by not paying his illegal alien help very much. Jack said he figures he’s doing the day workers he hires a favor, because they’re all illegal aliens who he picks up at the day worker job center.

     “These guys don’t need much money,” Jack once told me. "There's a whole symbiotic crooked money machine that's grown up based on illegal aliens. It's now become THE establishment. It's a well oiled machine with a bunch of cogs that all work together to keep things running smoothly, and this thing just hums along. Listen to me. Don't be a sap. Let me tell you how this system works so you can make some money from it.

     One cog is the day worker job center that attracts illegal aliens to the old neighborhood. Another cog is the employers who hire the illegal alien day day laborers at Salvation Army handoutworkers under the table. Then there's the charities cog set up to give illegals free food, free medical and dental care even free clothes, to supplement their incomes so they can sell their labor on the cheap to the employers. This is mostly paid for by taxpayers who are, in effect, subsidizing my workers so I don't have to pay them so much, but the taxpayers aren't usually aware of it. The charities benefit by having ever more needy clients, so they can ask for more money from the state. With more money, the charity big wigs get higher salaries. Another cog is slumlords who let illegal aliens live twelve to a room in
converted garages and tiny apartments in the old neighborhood near the job center. Another cog is the politicians who give tax money to the charities and who look the other way when the slumlords pack illegal aliens into tiny living quarters. The politicans benefit by getting support from the other cogs in the machine when it's time for election.”

     "Yeah, but what about citizens?" I asked. "Doesn't this lead to a corrupt Third World culture? It sounds like everyone is looking the other way about violations of law, and everyone is getting some kind of payoff at the expense of citizens."

     "Don't worry about it," said Bob, "we're all making out like bandits. It's true the schools are now in the toilet because the illegals have filled them with their kids and all the white kids are now in private schools, and it's true the crime rate has risen and we now have Hispanic gangs all over the place and graffiti and abandoned shopping carts, but it's not my job to do anything about it. That's the responsibility of the INS. Besides, I moved further away from the problems."

      "Geez, Jack," I said, "what about your former neighbors who are stuck behind and who can't move? Many of them still believe that America is a nation of laws and they're still working within the rules of America as it used to be. They believe the laws should be upheld and that they should do the responsible and right thing."

      "That ain't my problem, muchacho. If they're too dumb to figure it out and work the system, the hell with 'em. Hell, it isn't just California. Most politicians, including President Bush, are part of the scam with all their talk about legalizing illegal aliens. Their payoff is Hispanic votes."

     "Well, wouldn't it just be better to enforce our immigration laws, and then people like you and me wouldn't have to keep moving further away from the encroaching Third World?" I asked.

      "Look, I didn't make this system. I'm just using it like everyone else who isn't day laboreresa sap. If the INS wants to grab these people, then let 'em. But, until they do, I'm going to keep hiring these day workers. Hell, not only can I get them for a song, but they don't complain to the authorities, because they're afraid of being deported."

      "Hell, Jack," I said, "it sounds like Third World corruption has become the new way of life in the U.S. and that those who are getting screwed are the good, decent, salt of the Earth citizens who still believe in traditional American values." Jack just looked at me as though I was an idiot, and then he said he had to get over to the day worker Job Center to hire some more workers.

      Anyway, a couple of days later, Jack called me to tell me he hired a new guy from the day worker job center. “ He’s got a strange name for a Mexican,” said Jack: “‘Juicy Fruit.’ I guess he’s okay, though, and it's not my responsibility to Juicy Fruit's IDGringo pollo lococheck I.D., hell, I'm not the INS. That's their job. You should see the weird scars Juicy has on his head and face. I asked him what made them, and all he said was ‘Gringo pollo loco,’ as he
acted out frantically pulling something off his head. What do you make of that?”

     “We're living in weird times,” I said, and hung up the telephone.

#  #  #


The Outsider "THE OUTSIDER"
H. Millard's novel of alienation in post-American America
is available.
Get it by telephone: 1-877-823-9235, at or from Barnes & Noble. If THE OUTSIDER doesn’t appear when the link page opens, just type in the author’s name or ISBN and it should take you to the book. The book is also available in brick and mortar stores, either on the shelves or by asking for it.
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