Who are you going to believe — me or your lying eyes?

Jason Pye, the Libertarian blogger, has posted this video of today’s state Capitol protest against state legislation to tighten down on illegal immigration:

My AJC colleague Jeremy Redmond says law enforcement put the crowd at 4,000:

Protesters gathered on Washington Street, chanting in Spanish: “Yes, we can!” Several carried posters and banners that declared: “We will not leave” and “No Human Being is Illegal.”

Capitol Police Sgt. Jack West said 4,000 to 5,000 were present at the demonstration, where the Indigo Girls performed. One of the organizers said more than 5,000 attended and that the protesters came from across the state, including Athens, Dalton, Gainesville, Macon and Statesboro.

Numbers are always a point of contention in demonstrations. Here’s the cutting response from Republican sponsors — among them Matt Ramsey of Peachtree City and Rich Golick of Smyrna — of the House immigrant legislation. They were not impressed by the outdoor display:

“Today several hundred supporters of illegal immigration descended on the Georgia State Capitol to rail against legislation aimed at enforcing the rule of law in Georgia.

“In contrast to these angry sign waiving activists, there are millions of Georgia citizens working and raising their families, who no longer are willing to accept the loss of job opportunities to the nearly 500,000 illegal aliens in our state or to subsidize their presence with their hard earned tax dollars.

“We are the voice for these common sense Georgians and this kind of protest only bolsters our resolve to see House Bill 87 signed into law.”

Now, as to the numbers. Today’s marchers — as you can see — pretty much filled Washington Street in front of the Capitol between Mitchell and MLK.

I have stepped off this space before. It measures 515 by 62.5 feet, or 32,188 square feet. A human being, on average, takes up roughly four square feet. (Women take up slightly more, but let us not pick a fight if we don’t have to.)

If today’s crowd was packed sardine tight, participants could have numbered as much as 8,046. But let’s say they were only loosely packed — occupying a space of 6.5 square feet (2.5×2.5 feet). The result is 4,951. The law enforcement estimate would be pretty much dead on.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

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75 comments Add your comment

td

March 24th, 2011
2:48 pm

Looks like to me a lot of kids showed up to watch a free concert.

BTW: Where is ICE at? They could have a huge raid and eliminate part of the problem.

Gregory Mann

March 24th, 2011
2:49 pm

What an intellectually dishonest answer by the legislators. The undocumented workers are here, because American business and industry brings them here. They know that they can count on these undocumented people to not protest about unpaid overtime, about below minimum wages, no health care, no worker’s comp if they get hurt, and no unemployment compensation when they are laid off. Oftern the undocumented workers are paid cash, under the table, so there are no taxes taken out, either. That alone saves the companies their 14.5% payroll tax and the medicare tax, not to mention the money that the state loses by not collecting any income tax.

MidGaRetiree

March 24th, 2011
2:52 pm

Workers who come to this country without “documentation” are illegal. It doesn’t matter what or who brought them here. They are illegal.

Double Zero Eight

March 24th, 2011
3:00 pm

Their demonstration was apparently counter-productive.
They are incorrect in their assertion that “no human
being is illegal”.

JoeMan

March 24th, 2011
3:01 pm

I don’t care if there were one MILLION people at the rally, they would still all be WRONG. Last I checked, this was supposed to be a nation of laws, not of mob rule. My father came to this country LEGALLY almost 40 years ago, and it’s sad to see people who have willingly disobeyed our laws calling themselves immigrants.

GaBlue

March 24th, 2011
3:11 pm

The “culture of life” in Georgia relies on the premise that not all life matters and not all human beings deserve to be treated like human beings. The good news is, we never run out of haters & hypocrites to remind us. Jesus must be SO proud!

Centrist

March 24th, 2011
3:14 pm

So the point of this blog item is a contention over how many illegal aliens showed up to protest?

Didn’t help in Wisconsin where union members from other states were bussed in, and teachers skipped school and brought students who didn’t have a clue as to why they were there. The illegal alien (and their friends) who protested are not getting much sympathy other than from liberal media outlets.

SpaceyG on Twitter

March 24th, 2011
3:19 pm

That’s about 4K or 1M more than showed at the Sunday Sales rally. Yet the social media effort led to the SB10 being re-intro’d.

GaBlue

March 24th, 2011
3:21 pm

Centrist has an excellent point! It doesn’t matter WHO you are. If you are not at the top of one of the corporate mega-conglomerates that own our government, or a sell-out whor-, I mean, er, MINION thereof, your voice and your opinion do not matter diddly piddly doodly squat. “Scream all you want, bidtch! Nobody cares!!!” Bwwahahaha….

Last Man Standing

March 24th, 2011
3:23 pm

Gregory Mann:

” The undocumented workers are here”

Let me be the first to congratulate you on your politically correct terminology. It would be such a shame to call them what they are, which is illegal aliens.

You are correct in many of your statements. They do get health care via hospital emergency rooms. They do not pay the bills and those costs are passed on to the people who do pay their bills. They send their children to schools and the taxpayers foot the bills for that, too. The illegal aliens (pardon me, but I don’t believe in the politically correct crap) feel comfortable enough to protest any attempt to enforce the existing laws against enering this country illegally.

Whatever it takes to secure the borders is what we should do, even if it means placing troops on the borders. The illegal aliens should be rounded up and removed from this country. The employers who have knowingly employed these illegal aliens should be arrested, charged and serve very lengthy prison terms upon conviction.

We have provisions for legal immigration. If they want to become Americans, let them do so legally, learn the national language (English) and become a part of our society.

td

March 24th, 2011
3:26 pm

GaBlue

March 24th, 2011
3:11 pm
The “culture of life” in Georgia relies on the premise that not all life matters and not all human beings deserve to be treated like human beings. The good news is, we never run out of haters & hypocrites to remind us. Jesus must be SO proud!

That is horse crap GaBlue. How is sending illegals back to their country of origin not treating someone as a “human being”? I think it is more a sin to the ones that have done everything the right way to become a legal immigrant and have to wait in line longer because of the actions of people that only care about themselves.

Road Scholar

March 24th, 2011
3:26 pm

Isn’t it time to give businesses another tax break beacause of the strain and agony of dealing with illegals?

GaBlue

March 24th, 2011
3:35 pm

td,

“How” indeed! HOW will you “send them back” while still treating them as human beings? And more specifically to what YOU care about, HOW will we pay for that? There is no cost effective way unless you stuff them in train cars ten layers deep (ala the rather effective relocation techniques used in Europe in the 1930s-40s) and torture them so badly that the idea of watching their children starve in squalor and tropical mud slides becomes more appealing than working long hours for substandard pay, being hated by the natives, and having no rights HERE.

Logistics matter, td. Do you have a plan of action? Who’s going to get dirty implementing it? How much money will we have to pay them? Show your work.

double

March 24th, 2011
3:36 pm

Gablue.Give it a bible spin.The ten commandments are rules,laws.Are you saying they should not be obeyed?Immigrants, but not ILLEGAL.Where can you go without proper legal procedure?The last commandment “love one another as I have loved you”nothing said about disobeying other rules,and laws.As for the Mr. Fort he thinks he can get more votes by sucking up.Ms Nicholls well you decide.

Aquagirl

March 24th, 2011
3:36 pm

Are businesses employing these people “illegal” or just “undocumented?” When can we deport them?

blue dog

March 24th, 2011
3:40 pm

Once again we see the hypocrisy that is the Georgia GOP. Go ahead and pass these unconstitutional laws to appease your equally intolerant constituents, in the name of making more jobs available to “legal” residents. While you protect your campaign contributors who profit from illegal cheap labor by exempting them from liability. What a joke. The “jobs” performed by illegals will not be filled by any other Georgians…they did not want them then and they don’t want them now… that’s why the illegals are here in the first place.If you really want to eliminate the problem, make Georgia businesses, hiring illegals liable, through stiff fines and the problem will be solved. In the meantime, create a “path to citizenship”…the only humane way to deal with this problem.

muddiver

March 24th, 2011
3:42 pm

If some guy making $10 an hour decides to sell a little weed on the side to “give his family a better life” do we ignore that? Do we not incarcerate criminals every day with out regard to the effect it has on their families? Laws are just like the Bill of Rights. If they don’t all have equal importance and application then none of them really mean anything.

sunkawakan

March 24th, 2011
3:43 pm

Why didn’t the legislature provide a fiscal note for the current legislation? There will be costs that must be borne by the taxpayer. In Utah, the cost for enforcement was estimated at $11 million. As Georgia is a more populous state, the cost will be higher.

And if this has the desired effect of chasing illegal immigrants away from Georgia, what’s going to replace the sales tax revenue loss?

DannyX

March 24th, 2011
3:46 pm

Agreed, open your Bibles.

Jesus was a criminal.

sunkawakan

March 24th, 2011
3:46 pm

I also suggest that those interested in history review some of the legislation (local, state and federal) associated with the federal Chinese Exclusion Act. There’s not much new this round.

muddiver

March 24th, 2011
3:50 pm

Have to agree to some extent with blue dog. Something along the lines of $10k per day per violation would go a long way towards “encouraging” employers to do proper, pre-hire due dilligence.

sunkawakan

March 24th, 2011
3:51 pm

@double-

Isn’t the Bible an assemblage of laws written thousands of years ago in another country? And didn’t the GA Assembly try to pass (apparently, unsuccessfully), the “American Laws for Georgia Courts Act” this session? That law would make it illegal to use Biblical “laws” – in fact ALL religious laws.

GaBlue

March 24th, 2011
3:55 pm

Sooooo, everybody agrees then: BIGGER GUBMINT!

After all, we don’t want those stinkin’ UNIONS telling employers whom they will hire and how much they will pay them. That’s the GUBMINT’s job! We’re gonna need more agencies. Ready, middle class? Time to pony up more tax money, ’cause you’re not rich enough to get the exemptions!

jd

March 24th, 2011
3:57 pm

That picture shows more than the last tea party event. And, yes, this is a nation of laws. Federal law trumps state law. That war was fought and lost. get over it.

Roy

March 24th, 2011
3:58 pm

It is very upsetting how law makers in the US have come to racial profile laws as a measure. The problem of illegal “aliens” is only fired up by the very system that this country supports, “bravely” fight for. The problem of illegal immigration is only the result of capitalism oppressing third world countries. Not only with economics but also by creating a notion of what the “perfect” life should be. The outcome of these sort of laws will only be a Anti-American sentiments, and more than possible a genocide. Lets not forget what happens when the Third Reich approved such laws that also blamed the Capitalist failure of Germany on the Jewish people.

sunkawakan

March 24th, 2011
3:59 pm

@jd, indeed.

Common Sense

March 24th, 2011
4:00 pm

Fine the living you know what out of the businesses and companies that hire them and they will not hire them anymore and the problem is fixed. No taxpayer money needs to be spent that way and the undocumented workers are gone. Pass the correct law to correct the problem.

Oh wait, those would be GOP supporting business that would have to pay instead of normal taxpayers paying to deport.

Nevermind

Dotty Jones

March 24th, 2011
4:03 pm

AMEN to Matt Ramsey’s statement. Taxpaying citizen’s are totally fed up with supporting illegals. Come here the legal way—and learn English while you’re at it!!!!!

Roy

March 24th, 2011
4:09 pm

@Dotty Jones,

It is nearly impossible to come from a country that the USA does not have interest in. So most of the people from third world countries are forced to come here, like I said; not because of the wanting to exploit your system, simply to survive in a world that is being destroyed by Capitalism. And by the way, if people that come here don’t know English, is because of the oppression, alienation and disregard from your laws.

Tyler Durden

March 24th, 2011
4:11 pm

Capitalism is based on supply and demand. As long as businesses hire these folks (for far less than they’d pay ‘legal citizens’), there’s a demand for undocumented workers. So… common sense would say: Get serious about fining/prosecuting/incarcerating business owners who hire these workers, then the demand will dry up.

Oh, wait…. that wouldn’t be as Pro-Business as the GOP would like, so they never take this approach. And it would also really address the problem and take away a huge wedge issue for the GOP to use on election day.

Luckily, we have the Democrats in charge of GA politics for the last decade. Oh wait, that’s not true either. Then who do we blame??!!

Must be them dang illegals using mind control on our God-fearing, Bible-thumping GOP leaders, making them do things they don’t wanna do…

Yeah, that’s the ticket:-)

blue dog

March 24th, 2011
4:12 pm

sunkawakan

You make a good point re lost revenue. Not only will revenue decrease if these 500,000 illegals move but our economy will stagnate further. Studies have found that when we lose population, as demonstrated in Detroit, for example, the economy shrinks…and conversely, when our population increases, it stimulates that local economy. Ironically then, our lawmakers,in their rush to appease the voters are unwittingly passing laws which will be detrimental to Georgia’s already struggling economy. The “experts” agree…we need an “increase” in immigration to help us “grow” out of this recession…not the opposite. It is hard to believe our “leaders”, here in Ga, place politics over improving Ga’s economy….or, maybe they are just ignorant.

double

March 24th, 2011
4:15 pm

Georgians may be proud to accept any jobs available.If you think the recession is over good,and I hope you are right.We are now seeing results of all the money spent.A bought recovery.This will not last.A measure of wheat for a penny,three measures of barley for a penny:and see thou hurt not the oil and the wine.A penny being a days wages.

T-Bone

March 24th, 2011
4:17 pm

About the number of protesters, let me just say before this turns into a immigrant-bashing forum… oh, never mind. I’m too late as usual.

td

March 24th, 2011
4:17 pm

Roy

March 24th, 2011
4:09 pm

“survive in a world that is being destroyed by Capitalism”

If this is such a bad system then explain to me a better one?

Roy

March 24th, 2011
4:22 pm

A better one would be one that will not transform us into machines, one that would have real human values, such as creativity and intelligence. One that would not be control by politics, or money. One that would actually allow us to learn. Not one that has everything pre-listed, like who we need to be in order to be consider “human”.

reyes

March 24th, 2011
4:31 pm

Dotty, be prepared, we will prevail and all you white supremacists will be begging us to forgive you just like after slavery you are going down

double

March 24th, 2011
4:34 pm

I doubt lost revenue will equal added expense.

td

March 24th, 2011
4:34 pm

Roy

March 24th, 2011
4:22 pm
A better one would be one that will not transform us into machines, one that would have real human values, such as creativity and intelligence. One that would not be control by politics, or money. One that would actually allow us to learn. Not one that has everything pre-listed, like who we need to be in order to be consider “human”.

There is no such system available today on this planet, nor in the past and certainly not in the future. Heaven may be close but you would not be able to think or do whatever you wanted to do.

GardenoftheGods

March 24th, 2011
4:38 pm

Any of you have illegals living in your neighborhood? They do in mine…they have no respect for our HOA rules, pack 3br houses with 6 or 7 families, trash their yard, park their cars (cause they all have them) on their lawn & then on mine, kids have no respect for property rights, on & on…they have destroyed my neighborhood. Yeah, it pisses me off. And one other point to think about–in THIS economy, every time these businesses that lure the illegals here are raided…you’ve got lines a mile long of American Citizens who would kill for those jobs–so don’t give me that crap about “jobs Americans won’t do”. Times are different now–Citizens need jobs; their needs should be put first.

Ashley

March 24th, 2011
4:39 pm

Its the little things that tick you off….case in point signs in Spanish , what about asian, and middle eastern don’t they merit signs in their own language, but I forgot most speak english. Also apartments that use to be beautiful to look at ,are now eyesores , 4 to 5 families living in one apartment , graffitti sprawl every where. Unruly kids . Fire trucks forever racing up and down Buford Hwy and Lenox Rd. The sad thing about the whole situation the apartment managements that allow this to happen. Slumlords all over the place. I had to jump through hoops for my buckhead apt, but I see managers bending over backwards for them. They’ve turn my apartment complex into a slum. They don’t respect the properties or there surroundings. I’ve lived in Atlanta for over 30 years…seen Grady and the school systems gone down the tubes. Areas like Buford Hwy, Lenox Rd, parts of Briarcliff are tragic. This is what my hard earn dollars have gotten me. Is it really fair to the other immigrants that did it the right way, I think not. Lets bend over backwards for everybody , not just illegals.

Roy

March 24th, 2011
4:43 pm

@ td,

It is very a tragedy that you believe such cannot be accomplished. Capitalist media, and way of life has broken into each and everyone of us, making the idea of power in our heads a new little fascist leader. We all want to be led, the desire of having no control over who we are. That is why things cannot change. We are condition to no longer ask the question of who we are, incited we ask, McDonalds or Burger King? Nike or Adidas?

It is not heaven, nor hell. It is a Human World. Not a world of war, famine, and capitalism.

PatDowns

March 24th, 2011
4:44 pm

@ROY – You must have been one of those always being suffed into a locker during high school years.

findog

March 24th, 2011
4:45 pm

LMS,
I would agree to place troops on the border if: 1- we changed the law as to where and when the military can be deployed; 2 – we increased taxes to cover the cost; 3 – we jailed individuals, supervisors, plant managers, and Corporate CEO’s who are found to have employed a “Illegal Alien,” more than on two separate occasions. One year, in a minimum medium security facility, for each “Illegal Alien,” proven to have been hired, or have worked under, said “Illegal Employer.”
The great thing would be that there would be a lot of openings for not only the high school dropouts but also in all the management positions that would be available when these cases worked their way through the courts.

blue dog

March 24th, 2011
4:46 pm

I would not want to be in law enforcement when these new immigration laws are passed. You can push people only so much. As the Bob Dillon song suggest…”when yah ain’t got nothing’, yah got nothing’ to lose”…
These are human beings…and the solution to the problem needs to reflect that reality. The outcome of next election and each one that follows will be increasingly decided by the Hispanic vote. The GOP is digging their own political grave…if not in 2012, then surely in the near future. There pandering to their hard right fringe voters will finally do them in…and I, for one say…good riddance.

Roy

March 24th, 2011
4:47 pm

haha yeah I’m glad that even through words I can fit any stereo type you’d want me to. Actually i was never abused by such. In fact they wanted me to join. But i was too busy trying to help my debate team and led my fencing team to championships =)

gsueagle

March 24th, 2011
4:53 pm

i’m tired of illegals thinking they have rights like citizens. make a tough law and send them back where they came from.

Einsteindawg

March 24th, 2011
5:07 pm

What a joke! Between illegals and prisoners, our state will soon be on welfare. When will our elected representatives practice common sense…how ’bout worrying about our future generations rather than the next election. Anyone on here notice how all the states around us are attracting new industries?

Breaking News: Illegal aliens immune to high pollen counts

March 24th, 2011
5:09 pm

The Indigo Girls came out for a 1 song bon voyage before they are returned to their native country.

Prayers for a safe journey home were offered by our local clergy.

GaBlue

March 24th, 2011
5:10 pm

gsueagle,

As I asked td (and he did not answer), HOW? What are the logistics for moving several million people embedded here “back where they came from” without going all cattle-car Nazi on them, splitting up families, and building concentration camps for which the world will vilify us for generations, and without raising taxes to pay for it? Do you even have a ballpark guess on what that might cost?

Einsteindawg

March 24th, 2011
5:10 pm

One other thing about our “entitlement culture”…did anyone notice all the riots and looting going on in Japan after their tragedy? Just like Katrina…wrong!