The Republic is running a series of stories about an illegal immigrant family that is leaving Arizona to avoid the implications of SB 1070. The family is on its way to Pennsylvania and the Republic sent Reporter Daniel Gonzalas and Photographer Pat Shannahan along to document the journey.
I can't imagine that the Republic is intentionally trying to make the family look bad, but they certainly don't come off well in the profile. They are traveling with false IDs; the family is on AHCCCS so the cost of the birth and medical care of their three kids was at taxpayer expense. Of course, the cost of educating the kids falls on taxpayers as well. (The Republic likes to quote this cost as about $4,000 a year, but that's much to low. The cost of teaching children who come from homes in which English isn't spoken is upwards of $10,000--per year, per kid.) So the state has north of $150,000 invested in this family. The father makes $10 an hour as a landscaper. That means that he receives more in state services each year than his entire salary.
But let's leave that debate aside for a second. Here's the part of the article that really ticks me off--and which puts the Sanchez family in a really bad light. Check out this picture from Pat Shannahan together with the accompanying caption:
Undocumented immigrants Christian Sanchez, 2, sleeps in between his dad Luis Sanchez and Marlen Ramirez while driving through Illinois.
Dude, what part of "Car Seat" don't you understand? They are cheap and they save children's lives. I realize that you don't have to pay for your kids' medical care, but put them in a car seat anyway. It's the LAW. And even if you like to pick and choose the laws you follow while you are here illegally and traveling with your fake documents, SOME of the laws are actually there for your benefit and the car seat law is a good place to start.