Last week we discussed the immigration issue, or at least part of it. Immigration though is often thought of as a problem for states like Texas, Arizona, New Mexico and California. That’s a very short-sighted view of the issue. Immigration is a national issue, something that can certainly affect people in Michigan. No further proof is needed when the federal government is looking at housing immigrants at Michigan facilities.
Wolverine Human Services, a private company in Southeast Michigan with campuses which handle at-risk youth and adults, is the potential landing spot for the immigrants in question. The company itself would be compensated by the federal government rather than the state. The question is though, would taking on these immigrants harm their overall mission which is to provide help to the people of Michigan?
On one hand, you kind of have to trust the company that providing services to these immigrants will not interfere with their overall mission. They are likely the best at evaluating what they can and cannot handle.
On the other, they are a private entity and they might be valuing profit over their initial mission. That is to say, perhaps the money paid by the federal government is greater than what they get from the state so they are housing immigrants to generate cash flow. It would be hard to blame them for such an action as they are after-all a private company. However, it would be a true shame if Michigan residents were denied help because of the actions of immigrants.
Speaking of Michigan residents needing help…
When will the Detroit horror stories end? Now, some residents of the Motor City are having their water shut off due to lack of payment. It has even go so far as to become an issue with the United Nations. The UN says that the city is violating the humanitarian rights of the residents in denying them (plumbed) water. The problem is the people didn’t pay their bill(s) and the city is in bankruptcy. It is another in a long line of things that Detroit can’t figure out how to handle because they are so underwater.
The UN seems to be saying that having access to water is a right. If that is the case, why should anyone pay their water bill? Thousands in Detroit cannot afford to pay what is owed to the city. Yet some have managed to scrimp and save to pay for their usage. What should happen to those who can barely afford to make ends meet yet still manage to pay for their water? The linked article indicates that their might be some shenanigans in regards to how water usage is calculated and therefore how much people really owe the city. Municipal shenanigans are certainly not new in Motown though.
This is a big deal on several fronts.
- One – The calculation of water usage seems to be off in comparison to other cities. While the article doesn’t details specifics, it does give several instances that seem out of the norm. This line is especially damning “… the federal Environmental Protection Agency recommends that families spend no more than 2.5% of their pretax income on water and sewer service, some Detroit residents were paying more than 20%.” Detroit residents were paying as much in water as what they should be paying in overall rent/mortgages. That’s insane!
- Two – While people say that cutting off the water to these residents won’t help the city in recouping any more, it will help lessen future expenditures as they won’t be providing something that costs them money without payment.
- Three – Detroit still has money, or at least is willing to give things away for basically free. You just have to be a billionaire to reap the benefits. Why give away water when you can give away entire city blocks and demolish existing structures for free?
- Four – Will the situation in Detroit set a precedent for any other large cities? If the UN, or some other large entity gets involved what is to stop the same thing from happening elsewhere?
This should be a national embarrassment. We claim to be the greatest nation on earth and yet we have huge sections of a once thriving city that can’t even get water? We have philanthropists who seem to be so concerned about the world outside our borders that they completely forget about those they share their birthright of freedom with.