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Apr 28, 2009 5:25 PMPublication: The East Hampton Press

Poor economy exacerbates persistent East End tension over immigration

Editor's Note: Additional reporting for this story was done by Carolyn Kormann.
Apr 28, 2009 5:25 PM

Mario Mendez, 19, arrived on the East End from Guatemala two months ago after weeks of traveling overland and crossing borders while hidden in cramped vans. He joined two brothers here and is staying in Flanders. Every morning he goes to North Sea Road in Southampton to wait, with the hope of getting work. He has not had one job.

Standing on the street last Friday with a loaf of bread in his hand he received from the Sisters of Mercy of Water Mill, he said he was barely getting by. The meal the nuns provide is often the only one he has each day. The meals used to be handed out at a makeshift soup kitchen that Carol and Albert Whitby quietly ran with the Sisters of Mercy at their business, Southampton Tire Center, until the village Building Department ordered it closed on April 1. That decision was later reversed on April 13.

“I thought that it was going to be better here,” Mr. Mendez said. “But it’s looking like no, it’s the same as it was in Guatemala,” where there was no work and scarce money. He said he was far from giving up, considering the treacherous overland journey he had made from Guatemala to Mexico, crossing the border from Mexico to Texas, and then riding from Houston directly to New York.

Mr. Mendez is one of the hundreds of illegal immigrants still entering the country every day, even as a slow trickle of others, usually single men, have started returning to their countries for lack of work in this stagnant economy. On the East End, their presence, combined with a dim financial outlook, has prompted escalating tension between the barely surviving day laborers and anti-illegal immigration protesters.

Blow Ups

On April 20, Springs resident Ricky King, an anti-illegal immigration protester, called 911 after a day laborer pulled a switchblade on him while he was protesting at the East Hampton train station.

According to East Hampton Village Police, Mr. King had first yelled ethnic slurs at the worker, Gabriel Sanchez-Nugra, who was arrested and charged with a misdemeanor count of criminal possession of a weapon.

Mr. King on Friday admitted he was cursing but said he was not aiming ethnic slurs at Mr. Sanchez-Nugra. Mr. King said that he had been trying to explain to Mr. Sanchez-Nugra that his own grandfather is Mexican, but Mr. Sanchez-Nugra could not understand English. Mr. Sanchez-Nugra just heard “Mexican” and was offended, the protester said.

“I could be out working, but I’m not because they’re undercutting me,” Mr. King said, explaining his motivation to protest. “This is a country of laws, not a country of breaking laws. I have a certain degree of sympathy and compassion for these people, but they are illegal. They are coming here because it’s a free ride—free food, free health care. Everything is handed to them! But they have no allegiance to this country.”

Later on the same morning that Mr. Sanchez-Nugra was arrested, a day laborer was also arrested in Southampton Village after a confrontation with a protester.

Tom Wedell, an East Moriches resident who protests illegal immigration near the Southampton 7-Eleven, told Southampton Village Police that the day laborer chest-butted him several times. Police said the 30-year-old laborer, who was highly intoxicated, was charged with harassment in the second degree, a violation.

Mr. Wedell said that on the day of the arrest he had just arrived at the South Fork Realty parking lot and was removing his protest sign from his truck when the laborer started in with him and tried to grab his sign away.

“I told him ‘Leave me alone. I’m allowed to protest,’” Mr. Wedell said.

Mr. Wedell said he’s been arrested four times over the past few years during his protests in Southampton. The charges have always been dropped, he said.

Standing on the corner of Aldrich Lane and North Sea Road on Friday, holding his American flag and “When they jumped the fence they broke the law” sign, Mr. Wedell recalled the first day he protested in Southampton. It was April 25, 2005.

“I was messed with pretty bad when I first started protesting,” he said. He said that a local judge flipped him off and shouted “F-you” before returning later with “half the Village Police.”

As Mr. Wedell spoke, a couple of 7-Eleven patrons shouted derogatory remarks at him. But even more patrons, and passing motorists as well, honked their horns or pumped a fist in the air.

“It’s disgusting,” one woman remarked to Mr. Wedell, gesturing to the migrant workers lining the street and offering to give Mr. Wedell money for his efforts.

Southampton Village Police Chief William Wilson said there have been isolated incidents of fights in the village between protesters and day laborers over the last five years. “I can probably count the incidents on one hand,” he added.

The police are called to the North Sea Road hot spot every day on a complaint about either the laborers or the protesters, but not any more often of late than usual, Chief Wilson said. “There’s just a lot more attention being focused on that area and the immigration and protesting issue in particular.”

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“We know what the answer is,” Mr. Bishop said, referring to reform legislation filed last year, “but the question is how do we get it passed. It’s a very complex issue. A lot of it has to do with which region of the country you’re from. I happen to represent a region of the country, Suffolk County, that is heavily dependent on an immigrant population to maintain its economy.
I can't wait to hear the response to this statement by Tim Bishop , when all my friends who may be out of work read this ...more
By AndersEn (174), Southampton on Apr 28, 09 9:55 PM
illegal is illegal we are a nation of laws. The persons doing the hiring of anyone illegal should be Jailed. They do not pay taxes they send the money back to where they are from. They have no respect for the Culture of the Country of origin they have invaded. As for the not in my back yard crowd they made their beds now they can lay in them. So much for the want of Cheap Labor enjoy it at thirty feet away enjoy. And if you do not enjoy the guest I may suggest voting the ones in office that allow ...more
By spnk3 (1), eastport on Apr 28, 09 11:54 PM
It is common knowledge that Wedell and King are paid in cash by an out of area hate group-How are they any different from the day laborers at 7-11? What is their purpose?Just to aggravate an already tense situation.When was the last time either one had a real job? Who are these cowardly individuals and why do they hide behind Wedell and King? One day very soon I am afraid someone is going to get hurt badly and I hope that the police can respond in time!
By Michael B (5), Hampton Bays on Apr 29, 09 7:35 AM
1 member liked this comment
Although, I can understand peoples outrage at our lack of immigration enforcement, but people starving in our midst? I will not lose my humanity for anything, but I will be voting Tim Bishop out!
By Daddy-o (6), southampton on Apr 29, 09 7:51 AM
mike hartley and all the other king and wendell wannabes: How do illegals take jobs away from americans? They do jobs that we americans are ashamed of doing. tell me, does your wife clean people's toilets for a living? Do you mow people's lawns? And if you did you would probably be charging ridiculous sums of money to do it. Whereas an illegal person does it for a reasonable price and is proud to do it. You type of people have nothing better to do than complain about things that don't affect ...more
By LIMOM (3), east hampton on Apr 29, 09 8:38 AM
On what basis should the police just stop and ask someone for an ID?

"Move on" to what? Am I not allowed to sand on a street in this country?

Standing on the street makes one a "vagrant"? and if so, when did it become illegal to be one?

This is AMerice, not Nazi Germany.
By Terry (380), Southampton on Apr 29, 09 8:39 AM
Please remember that the people who are making the REAL profit from the cheap labor are the business owners and contractors. When are we going to add them to this conversation? Most are members of the Southampton business alliance and make political contributions to the Republicans. Yet, the “anti-immigrant” groups place blame on the Democrats…like our congressman. It is construction and landscaping day jobs that keep the day laborers at 7-11. Perhaps the guy with the flag should be logging the ...more
By SHNative (554), Southampton on Apr 29, 09 8:48 AM
Michael B., what hate group are you refering to? I am against Illegal Immigration and my group is NOT a hate group. We have been called that and other names. Look at some of the groups and their web sites that support Illegal Aliens. Talk about hate groups. As citizens we have the right to protest and be heard. Illegal Immigration is a very heated subject. When you look at the cost and the crime created by Illegal Aliens, that is more than enough reason to demand it be stopped. The supporters of ...more
By Patriot (3), Cleveland on Apr 29, 09 9:26 AM
I have to admit, with all the drama, I rarely go to that 7-Eleven anymore. Do other people also avoid the place? It does seem emptier when I do manage to get in. But the Mobil across the street has just-as-good coffee, and no drama.
By Mr Suffolk (113), Twin Forks on Apr 29, 09 9:26 AM
I am terribly concerned about the swine flu pandemic. Illiegals are coming over the border daily than packed into vans, whatever, Not good . Who are the ones driving them? Since they come here illegal we have no way of knowing if they are ill. or have had shots for communicable diiseases. This is something that should be of more concern than them standing on the corner. Wake up government officials and those that hire the illegals. C Combes East Quogue
By Carol (109), East Quogue on Apr 29, 09 10:07 AM
LIMOM, I guess until YOU are affected by job loss it will not be your problem. Many friends and family members of mine are now out of work because employers would rather let them go and keep illegals who are cheap labor. Unfortunately I don't have a dozen or so friends to live with me so my husband can't be paid 8.00 an hour. He has been in construction for 30 years, he has a ton of exceptional work but that won't count until someone screws up a job and calls him in to fix it. Its not only cheap ...more
By squeaky (291), hampton bays on Apr 29, 09 10:10 AM
I never see American (U.S.) residents trying as hard to get a job. If you were ever to a third world country maybe you would be a bit more empathetic to these people and what they must endure. I don't blame a single one of them for piling themselves up in a van or on a makeshift boat headed for the "Promise Land".
Benefits they bring:
The little guy just starting out in business with higher start up costs (new equipment & material stock purchases) can actually bid some projects at a lower ...more
By mjb (14), This Island on Apr 29, 09 10:27 AM
Ok so they are taking jobs away from american citizens who want to work. Well it's a free country. Who is stopping all these struggling citizens from standing out on the corner looking for work? I mean if the legal and illegal immigrants are willing to do it, why can't they? Who is stopping these american citizens from working at McDonalds, Burger King, King Kullen, Walbaums, Stop and Shop, Kmart, TJ Maxx. Sometimes you have to do what you have to do, if that means working multiple low paying ...more
By pstevens (406), Wilmington on Apr 29, 09 10:53 AM
Hey Tim, How many illegal immigrant families do you have living next door to you? Do you have any idea what an invasion of illegal aliens does to a neighborhood? How much do you think your house will be worth surrounded by rentals packed with illegals, with toys and litter strewn throughout the neighborhood? Think you can sell your house with Corona beer bottles littering the streets and bits of clothing hanging from trees? How about 6 cars per driveway and loud music blasting from their cars, ...more
By darwin (47), southampton on Apr 29, 09 11:26 AM
Wow, you just don't get it! I guess when you are affected it will be a problem.
By squeaky (291), hampton bays on Apr 29, 09 11:49 AM
Illegal's are here because our economy needs them for jobs legal's will not do. If our government didn't want them here they would not be here. You don't see these people being arrested-they stand out in the open in front of 7-11's and law enforcement does not bother them. Another 30 days and everyone of them will be employed.
By Lefty46 (56), Westhampton on Apr 29, 09 11:51 AM
Squeaky - I would love to hire someone like your husband, who is probably highly skilled & does quality work, but I can't afford him. I am barely making ends meet & don't want to move like all my friends had to do. I don't understand why someone like your husband charges say $20,000 to do a job while another contractor (who probably does use help from 7-11) only charges $5,000. That is a BIG difference. And don't say it's due to "overhead." The last contractor I asked to look at a job arrived ...more
By Ms. Jane Q. Public (147), Southampton on Apr 29, 09 11:56 AM
The more I read the more I realize that comprehensive immigration reform is the only answer.
By number19 (111), Westhampton on Apr 29, 09 12:56 PM
darwin: your description of life with illegal aliens sounds exactly like my street in rural pennsylvania! I can assure you there were no illegals there - just a few Jewish families like mine who got all the same racist insults that you hurl towards "Spanish" and "Mexicans". i guess you must be smarter than everyone else with your ability to "spot" illegals simply by having large families.
By littleplains (305), olde england on Apr 29, 09 12:57 PM
Jane Q, very simple answer to a complex situation. Those same contractors that pick up illegals are picking up people who are not experienced . They are cheap bodies to put on a job site. They may pay them 12.00 per hour but they certainly charging 35.00 per man on the site. So he is doing well. Not so much for one man shows like my huisband. But you won't give him the chance based on the one contractor you dealt with. So I guess you get what you pay for.
By squeaky (291), hampton bays on Apr 29, 09 1:18 PM
SHNative said:

Most are members of the Southampton business alliance and make political contributions to the Republicans. Yet, the “anti-immigrant” groups place blame on the Democrats…like our congressman. It is construction and landscaping day jobs that keep the day laborers at 7-11. Perhaps the guy with the flag should be logging the names of the businesses who are hiring the day laborers. Let’s cross reference those businesses with their contributions to political candidates and we will ...more
By Terry (380), Southampton on Apr 29, 09 1:37 PM
Carol, Your comment about swine flu is evidence of just how much ignorance is out there. You and others cannot wait to find something else to blame on immigrants. For your information evidence seem to suggest that a group of New York high school students brought swine flu to America from their trip to Guatamela for spring break!
By peoplefirst (787), Southampton on Apr 29, 09 2:16 PM
And the cases in Texas, California and Kansas? People on planes have to wear masks coming from Mexico not going to Mexico. No one blames immigrants.... its the ILLEGAL part thats the problem
By squeaky (291), hampton bays on Apr 29, 09 2:27 PM
Squeaky - I went through 5 contractors like the one I previously mentioned. One told me, "Hey, you own a house in the Hamptons, you can afford it." Another advised he only works for the rich during the summer & charges 3 to 5 times more "because they can afford it & want it done ASAP...and so I can spend my winters in Florida." The $5,000 guy did a nice job. He was there all day working along side his help. Workers were pleasant, cleaned up site, even did couple of extras without charging me. ...more
By Ms. Jane Q. Public (147), Southampton on Apr 29, 09 2:53 PM
I wish I had an answer. Just too many that are hurting right now and its frustrating. Thats all. No doubt people take advantage cause we live here. But there are a lot more people here that need help than these men who are so blatant about breaking laws to get here and then shove that in our face.
By squeaky (291), hampton bays on Apr 29, 09 3:07 PM
Squeaky, Again, ignorance rules the day.

People do no t have' to wear masks traveling from Mexico. You just invented that out of the blue. In fact, America's own CDC said masks really make no difference.

So you want to blame swine flu on "illegals" because they snuck the flu into the country? Come on. You claim to be interested in a constructive dialogue but you really have no clue what that actually means.

If you really think immigrants are responsible for disease, ...more
By peoplefirst (787), Southampton on Apr 29, 09 3:10 PM
You are just a nasty person... you like to call people names and you sir are an ass. And yes ...I had friend come back from Cancun who were given masks. Sorry its a fact. And again we are talking ILLEGAL immigration.
By squeaky (291), hampton bays on Apr 29, 09 3:23 PM
I blame the Whitby's. If these people who are getting their only meal of the day there didn't, they would already be heading back to whichever country they came from, where the bananas and papayas are plentiful, and men on burros, or donkeys for the gringos, hand out free coffee that you can sip casually under palm fronds waving in the tropical breeze.
By C Law (354), Water Mill on Apr 29, 09 3:42 PM
Oy, they don't speak Yiddish!
By darwin (47), southampton on Apr 29, 09 3:47 PM
I have no answers, either. But I reserve what I feel is my right to hire anyone who does good work and charges a fair price. I do NOT believe it's my job to ask anyone if they are in this country legally or not, nor will I assume just because someone is standing on a street corner that they are illegal. I'm also reminded - after reading some comments here - of what a minister once said to me: "Only uneducated children call each other names."
By Ms. Jane Q. Public (147), Southampton on Apr 29, 09 3:52 PM
Squeaky, You accuse me of calling names and then call me an "ass"? LOL! Your friend may have been given a mask but they were not REQUIRED to wear the mask. Additionally, no one was wearing masks when the disease was initially carried over in a plane. And yes, Squeaky, I know you are blaming "illegals" but that does not make your statement any less ridiculous nor does it invalidate my suggestion that you write your local congressman.
By peoplefirst (787), Southampton on Apr 29, 09 3:52 PM
hey squeaky - you are on to something! by your logic I guess black people are responsible for AIDS since it might have originated in Africa. Or maybe it was Asians, because there are monkeys there too?

Please explain how "illegal" immigrants are somehow the ones who carry all the diseases - as opposed to the "legal" immigrants. It's remarkable that flu viruses can tell the difference. You're a genius!
By littleplains (305), olde england on Apr 29, 09 5:09 PM
To Ms. Jane, the bottom line is someone, somewhere is evading paying taxes and is, therefore, breaking the law of the land we love. Maybe you are aiding an abetting. Legal contractors charge alot because they have to have a license, have to have worker's compensation and have to deal with payroll taxes. If someone gets hurt on your property it's good for their company to have workman's compensation. Without it, the worker has no option except to sue the homeowner. American workers get paid ...more
By darwin (47), southampton on Apr 29, 09 5:18 PM
Ms. Jane, If immigrants are taking work from Americans then why is it that each and every year local businesses must beg for enough visas for their seasonal workers, without whom they would go out of business. Ask any contractor if there are enough laborers around to fill their needs. They'll tell you there are not - legal or otherwise and it has nothing to do with pay. The anti-immigrant hawkers complain that Walmart, K-Mart and RiteAide have too many Hispanic workers. Guess what, those companies ...more
By peoplefirst (787), Southampton on Apr 29, 09 5:55 PM
people first. I believe the swine flu first started in Mexico from a young lad. .According to CNN New today the Mexico gov't knew of the case but had to wait over a month for the results. After it was discovered in the U S that is how it was found out. from students ect. on Spring break to Mexico.
I see you said I and other people are ignorant looking to blame the immegrants. I noticed you did not say illegal immegrants. My grandparents were immegrants but they were legal. ...more
By Carol (109), East Quogue on Apr 29, 09 8:40 PM
ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS- Not paying taxes, not fighting the war, living off the system, and complaining the whole way. WOW You are breaking the law. SIMPLY SAID
By dbnyeve (19), wading river on Apr 29, 09 9:34 PM
Carol, All I can do is quote another poster here. As littleplains said,

"Please explain how "illegal" immigrants are somehow the ones who carry all the diseases - as opposed to the "legal" immigrants. It's remarkable that flu viruses can tell the difference."

Even the right wing talking heads on TV, aka Joe Scarborough, say that trying to make a connection between illegal immigrants and swine flu is completely ludicrous.

Faceless, once again you manage to twist the ...more
By peoplefirst (787), Southampton on Apr 30, 09 8:29 AM
Peoplefirst. I never said the illegals are the ones who carried the diseases.

Sorry if you wanted to read it that way.


C. Combes E. Quogue
By Carol (109), East Quogue on Apr 30, 09 9:50 AM
I;m just curious how Immigration, the village and towns of Southampton and East Hampton would respond if it were 100 plus illegal Haitian boat refugees hanging around 7-11 and the train stations looking for work. I think we all know the answer to that. Hypothetical, but curious nonetheless.
By ride the truth wave (125), southampton on Apr 30, 09 10:39 AM
We are only ashamed of doing the jobs of the illegal aliens because they are the ones doing them. Who wants to take a job that is usually reserved for an illegal alien or undocumented worker. Tim Bishop says that eastern Suffolk County relies heavily on these workers. Before the 80's this problem didn't exist at all and the " East End" didn't rely on them at all. We only let ourselves become dependent on cheap labor because of there own greed. Then when there is Mr. Oscar Javier Hernandez, ...more
By aggrivatedhampton (2), Southampton on Apr 30, 09 10:59 AM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By LovedHerTown (132), southampton on Apr 30, 09 1:08 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By littleplains (305), olde england on Apr 30, 09 2:20 PM
littleplains-- was that last comment really needed? You are just as bad as the guy pulling the switchblade on the protester for disagreeing with his point of view.
By AlwaysLocal (292), southampton on Apr 30, 09 3:10 PM
Hey Tim, the South relied heavily on slaves for their cotton plantations. Didn't make it right then, it isn't right now. No illegal workers, period. You are a traitor to your country, Tim Bishop. I hope you never get elected for anything again.
By darwin (47), southampton on Apr 30, 09 4:25 PM
So let me get this straight: it's OK for racist bigots on this site to talk trash about "getting shotguns and taking care of the illegals ourselves"... but it's NOT ok for me to point out that BS?

You're all hypocrites... whining and crying about lost menial jobs that none of you would ever dare do yourselves.

it's all code for racism... 100 years ago it was blacks and irish and italians,,, then the Jews... every one of them the same: "dirty", "shifty", "lots of kids", "threatening", ...more
By littleplains (305), olde england on Apr 30, 09 5:01 PM
The Legal americans did these jobs way before you were here. So why dont you cut the BS. The law is the law. The illegal immigrants are breaking the law. Stop wasting time and get to the point. They are breaking the law Right?
By dbnyeve (19), wading river on Apr 30, 09 9:46 PM
With everything that is being said here, very few of you all have any problem with the AMERICAN citizens who are doing the hiring of these people. Let’s make the contractors and landscapers who are hiring day laborers more accountable.

If no one hires the illegals, they will go home at no cost to the taxpayer.
By SHNative (554), Southampton on Apr 30, 09 10:20 PM
the point is you have no idea who is here legally or who isn't... there are illegal immigrants in every sector of our economy yet you and the other "patriotic Americans" claim you have magical powers to "spot" illegals... just blatant racists
By littleplains (305), olde england on Apr 30, 09 10:21 PM

how is fighting a war beneficial to us?
By dogfacejones (81), Southampton on Apr 30, 09 10:50 PM
Sh Native once again says:

Let’s make the contractors and landscapers who are hiring day laborers more accountable.
Go for it!! Hang out at 7-11, document who picks these workers up and then show how the contractors "donate to the Republicans". Until you do your homework, you are making unsubstantied claims. It's time to step up to the plate.

By Terry (380), Southampton on May 1, 09 7:59 AM

Fighting a war is not beneficial to any of us. Its the point that illegal immigrants cannot fight for our country due to the fact that they are illegally here. So they can only benefit from our country not contribute.
By dbnyeve (19), wading river on May 1, 09 8:26 AM
“Terry” you are quick to protest...I believe that a nerve has been struck. The fact is that those who benefit from the day laborers are not being held accountable for their actions or for the profits realized from hiring the day laborers. In the meantime, if one gets hurt ,the contractor drops him off near the hospital for treatment and we pick up the tab.
I have been down there, I have seen the trucks with "support our Troops" stickers hiring workers, I wish that they would support our workers ...more
By SHNative (554), Southampton on May 1, 09 8:52 AM
Michael B: "It is common knowledge that Wedell and King are paid in cash by an out of area hate group."

What are you talking about, you paranoid lunatic? What did THAT come from? That moves to #1 on the list of silliest Comments ever made on this site!
By Frank Wheeler (1826), Northampton on May 1, 09 10:36 AM
Little plains, I am a landscaper for a living, so don't assume that everyone on this blog wouldn't do these types of jobs.

I find it interesting how whenever illegal immigration is discussed, sooner or later someone uses the term "bigot" or "racist". Don't you think that it is at all possible that someone who isn't a racist can be against illegal immigration? Nothing against you, but sooner or later some liberal jackass was bound to tie the two together. This is a new form of Macartheism, ...more
By AlwaysLocal (292), southampton on May 1, 09 2:06 PM
Just for the record, I have no problem with the legal status of any immigrants in this country. I think that they should be given amnesty, however, I feel that anybody working "off the books" should be dealt with heavy handedly. It is just not tolerable to me that I must pay a third of my income to the government, while others who do the same work as me, don't pay a dime. This is particularly disheartening when these same non-tax paying workers take from the system in the form of government programs ...more
By AlwaysLocal (292), southampton on May 1, 09 2:15 PM
Nope Local, if you have a different opinion you must be either ignorant or racist. Your post was very well put. Perfectly stated, who would be against 12 million more people to collect taxes from? Maybe you and I will be able to pay less at tax time.
By squeaky (291), hampton bays on May 1, 09 3:19 PM
The fact that Rep. Bishop believs that Suffolk County "is heavily dependent on an immigrant population to maintain its economy" is troubling. The feudal system has never worked and will result in the demise of this country. Why don't we just legalize slavery again and accept the fact that we are lazy and greedy.
By TheGoodLife (43), Westhampton Beach on May 1, 09 7:33 PM
Sh Native says:

Terry” you are quick to protest...I believe that a nerve has been struck. The fact is that those who benefit from the day laborers are not being held accountable for their actions or for the profits realized from hiring the day laborers.

Didn't strike a nerve at all. Just asking that you provide SOME proof of your allegations. It's that simple.

By Terry (380), Southampton on May 2, 09 7:33 AM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By LIMOM (3), east hampton on May 2, 09 5:40 PM
By LIMOM (3), east hampton on May 2, 09 5:43 PM
Always Local: You have no idea who i am or if i'm liberal or conservative. you really dont. I call people bigots and racists when they say things like "i hate having lots of dirty Spanish people on my block"... and when they claim that illegals brought swine flu here... and when they talk about human beings in the same terms as vermin.

those people are racist and they are all over these boards. just read the posts.
By littleplains (305), olde england on May 2, 09 5:47 PM
LIMOM,take your own advice and get spell check. But yet again when you have nothing to say you attack with names. Thats ok , I don't think you know how to add anything to the conversation.
Littleplains, you also don't know anyone here. You are basing your claims of racism on words. Not the feeling behind them. I genuinely am just talking. Someone else brought up the Swine flu and I simply added what was on the news. My friend did come back from Mexico and WAS asked to wear a mask. It wasnt ...more
By squeaky (291), hampton bays on May 2, 09 7:43 PM
So what is the problem with my spelling? (Not that a typo has any significance to the questions posed to SH Native.)
By Terry (380), Southampton on May 2, 09 7:58 PM
Terry…even though “truth” is an absolute defense against libel I will not name specific companies and individuals because of the difficult nature of proving that companies are partaking in questionable hiring. The fact is that no records exist to prove the hiring. It is the perfect situation for contractors and landscapers….neither the day laborers nor the owners will ever admit to this, nor do they have any paperwork to provide proof.
So you ask for me to provide the smoking gun, proof positive, ...more
By SHNative (554), Southampton on May 3, 09 9:11 PM
12 million foreign nationals have invaded our country. They do not pledge allegence to our flag. The work off the books. We are not allowed to resent them for this. They are trying to change our culture to suit them. Our politicians want to give them amnesty and a path to citizenship (the right to VOTE!). They think they are entitled to push ahead of people who have applied for visas legally. Some people think it's being "humane" to feed these "day workers" and take care of them when their ...more
By darwin (47), southampton on May 4, 09 12:52 PM
That being the case, SHNative, it takes your credibility away. You are making what are now unfounded claims. They remain that way till YOU prove otherwise.
By Terry (380), Southampton on May 4, 09 1:26 PM
Lillteplains, I wasn't trying to offend you by suggesting that you were liberal, but I was pointing out the liberal way of thinking that you demonstrated. Now, I agree, people say some pretty stupid things on this blog, things which can be considered downright ignorant. But the fact that a couple of inarticulate dummies are the loudest opposition to your views does not essentially make everyone on that side of the arguement a racist. You seem to want to discredit their entire opinion because ...more
By AlwaysLocal (292), southampton on May 4, 09 2:07 PM
Terry, what SH native says IS happening. We all know it. I personally know of several landscapers one of which is a realtive , who picks up these guys.I have no respect for him because he does. I don't need proof its just something we all know is true. What are we gonna do about it? Money talks in this town, been that way for years and will contiue to be.
By squeaky (291), hampton bays on May 4, 09 2:14 PM
AlwaysLocal you are incorrect, on many points actually, but your claim that people file taxes are 'here legally or they are committing identity fraud' is really off the mark.

If you do not qualify for a Social Security number the IRS will grant you an ITIN (Individual Taxpayer Identification Number) and that is what you use to file your taxes. It is not valid for identification purposes and you don't have to prove citizenship to get it.

By RealLocal (76), Bridgehampton on May 4, 09 2:20 PM
SHNative claimed that those foks using the "day laborers/illegals/" or what you want to call them are contributors to the town GOP. I only ask that she provide some proof. Thats all.
By Terry (380), Southampton on May 4, 09 2:23 PM
Thats easy enough, I know several big companies use them, now they don't stop at 7 11. They have regular illegals they use. AND I see pictures of the bosses at GOP fundraisers. I know many personally since my husband has worked for many as a subcontractor. AS I said before , the illegals are the last to be laid off when work gets thin. Cheap labor ...
By squeaky (291), hampton bays on May 4, 09 2:32 PM
RealLocal, if you receive an ITIN number than you are not paid "off the books", correct? I was unaware of this. That's kind of funny, I work in an that is "heavily reliant" on illegals and I've never heard of this before. I wonder how many of them actually possess an ITIN.
By AlwaysLocal (292), southampton on May 4, 09 2:49 PM
Why don't you people do something about this?
By dogfacejones (81), Southampton on May 4, 09 4:22 PM
What can anyone do? Bishop is already granting immunity based on his belief we can't do without them. Money controls politics and money controls the Hamptons.
By squeaky (291), hampton bays on May 4, 09 4:35 PM
You didn't know about the ITIN cards until today, but now of course you are suggesting that the people standing on the side of the road don't have them?

Just like in your previous post where you suggested people here without legal status don't file taxes or are claiming identity fraud. The latter being close to the most ridiculous thing I've seen in these posts so far.
By RealLocal (76), Bridgehampton on May 4, 09 5:12 PM
Darwin, Guess what, "they" are not listening to you. We had an election. Elections have consequences. The biggest consequence is that neo-con bigots like yourself have been even more marginalized then you were before. You represent a dying breed of small-minded zealots whose time has come to an end. The country has changed. The face of the population has changed. Time for you to evolve or succumb to extinction.
By peoplefirst (787), Southampton on May 4, 09 5:52 PM
Illegal is Illegal! Why aren't the police enforcing the laws of this land? If you bleeding heart liberals want to take care of the illegals, I suggest you invite them over to your house.
By Walt (292), Southampton on May 4, 09 7:39 PM
Aaah The Quandary of the left wing talking points....Stick up for the poor Illegals or stick up for the unions ??? Very Amusing Is it not. Almost as hypocritical as Anti War / Pro Abortion.
By joe hampton (3461), south hampton on May 5, 09 12:26 AM
Walt writes…"If you bleeding heart liberals want to take care of the illegals, I suggest you invite them over to your house."
Walt...it is not the "bleeding heart liberals" who are keeping the illegals gainfully employed.
Again, why are you not including the contractors and landscapers in this conversation? It seems to me that the business owners who are making the REAL profits are getting a free pass in all of this!

If no one hires the illegals, they will go home at no cost to ...more
By SHNative (554), Southampton on May 5, 09 9:15 AM
Well, it comes down to this. Illegal is Illegal end of story. I am a contractor and I refuse to hire illegal aliens. I built my new "mansion" without the help of illegals and whenever possible I screened the fewcontractors that I hired to make sure they didn't have illegal aliens working for them. Funny story though, as a contractor whom will not hire illegals I am constantly being underbid, makes me think twice sometimes, but my backbone is not a wet whinning noodle like most. I work extremely ...more
By davidcHB (11), southampton on May 5, 09 9:23 AM
davidc HB Out of all the comments on 27 East I feel you really have written a very exceptional one. Carol East Quogue
By Carol (109), East Quogue on May 5, 09 10:24 AM
you're right faceless, you're not racist. some of your best friends are spanish!
By littleplains (305), olde england on May 5, 09 10:36 AM
Agreed Carol, but his opinion makes him a racist too. Discriminating against the poor illegals by not hiring them! Gawd!
By squeaky (291), hampton bays on May 5, 09 10:53 AM
RealLocal, I was pointing to the fact that I work in an industry that utilizes day laborers more than any other. I have been in trucks with foremen as we pick up these workers. I have been there at the end of the day when the boss pays them. This scenario I have seen play out hundreds of times with dozens of different workers, for many different companies. Yet, I have never (until I read your post) heard of an ITIN card. Isn't that strange? Don't tell me that you honestly believe all of those ...more
By AlwaysLocal (292), southampton on May 5, 09 1:44 PM
I wish there would be some way to fix this situation. But the problem starts with the Federal government. They must somehow have the will to close the border first. Then they need the desire and the means to deport. Just to say it can’t be done is a cop-out. The IRS needs to be involved with heavy fines for evasion of payroll taxes. E-verify must stay in effect. The state and local governments need to do their parts, as well. To look the other way when they see laws being broken is horrible. ...more
By darwin (47), southampton on May 5, 09 2:22 PM
I've read, with interest every one of your comments. Instead of wasting your energies on this back-and-forth bickering e-style, why not lobby your local state representatives. I am from SH originally, born and raised and have resided in FL for the last 25 years. FL stopped most of this easily. First, when anyone, and I mean anyone including myself applies for a drivers license you must show proof of citizenship. Birth certificate, passport, naturalization papers etc...Second, when most companies ...more
By lgfla (8), Southampton on May 5, 09 3:15 PM
Walt says:

Why aren't the police enforcing the laws of this land? it is not the "law of the land" it is federal law, local, even state police do not enforce federal laws.

By Terry (380), Southampton on May 5, 09 3:24 PM
Faceless, take a breath. Relax. Evolve.
By peoplefirst (787), Southampton on May 5, 09 4:46 PM
hey faceless... you seem to have a problem with capitalism. no one told them to come here and sleep in the woods. If we hired workers at prevailing wage to rake leaves this country would go broke.And I challenge you to run an add In the paper for one of these thankless jobs and see how many Americans show up for anything less. Tell me what is wrong with giving out work visas to anyone who wants one.Let them pay taxes and get drivers licenses.No green cards or citizenship! They would have to return ...more
By joe hampton (3461), south hampton on May 6, 09 9:00 PM
Wow, there's a a lot of moronic debate here.

FIRST, it's impossible to defend illegal immigration. Impossible. And it's impossible to defend hiring illegals.

THAT SAID... by posing in front of the 7-11 with hand-made signs and waving flags (how creative) those who are "against" the local day-laborers have their eyes on the wrong prize...

YOUR government willingly lured these folks into the country in order to procure cheap labor, with a wink and a nudge - "don't worry, ...more
By Undertow (64), Southampton on May 12, 09 8:44 AM