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Xenophobia is Poor Public Policy

My friend Ryan Young has this very nice letter published in today’s edition of the Washington Post:

The Jan. 31 front-page article "Va. House Approves Bill on Illegal Immigration; Aim Is to Block Access to State, Local Funds" provided a real-world example of why government should not be in the business of funding charities: The money comes with strings attached.

In this case, charities that accept funds from the state would no longer be allowed to give aid to illegal immigrants.

Put another way, these charities would essentially be required by law to be xenophobic. They would also lose their right to decide for themselves whom they help. Certain state legislators would rather make that decision for them.

The only way for charities to avoid being bullied like this is to refuse state aid.

If this legislation makes it to the desk of Gov. Timothy M. Kaine (D), I hope he has the good sense to veto it.