This week I received the following email from a well-meaning friend:
SOCIAL SECURITY CHANGES(follows: 994 names, with city and state of residence)
It does not matter if you personally like or dislike Obama. You need to sign this petition and flood his e-mail box with e-mails that tell him that, even if the House passes this bill, he needs to veto it. It is already impossible to live on Social Security alone. If the government gives benefits to 'illegal' aliens who have never contributed, where does that leave those of us who have paid into Social Security all our working lives?
As stated below, the Senate voted this week to allow 'illegal' aliens access to Social Security benefits.
Attached is an opportunity to sign a petition that requires citizenship for eligibility to that social service.
Instructions are below. If you don't forward the petition and just stop it, we will lose all these names.
If you do not want to sign it, please just forward it to everyone you know.
To add your name, click on 'forward'. Address it to all of your email correspondents, add your name to the list and send it on.
When the petition hits 1,000, send it to email@example.com
PETITION for President Obama:
Dear Mr. President:
We, the undersigned, protest the bill that the Senate voted on recently which would allow illegal aliens to access our Social Security. We demand that you and all Congressional representatives require citizenship as a pre-requisite for social services in the
. United States
We further demand that there not be any amnesty give n to illegal aliens, NO free services, no funding, no payments to and for illegal immigrants
With a little help from GOOGLE, I determined to my own satisfaction that this was not a true interpretation of any current bill. I send the following to all of the original recipients of MY email, and I encourage you to pay attention to the cautionary statement:
I think this is not a current bill.
There was some discussion about a similar bill in 2006:
(Note that this source is dubious, as 'factcheck.org' is a notiously Liberal website.)
The nearest thing to a current bill with reference to Social Security requires a valid SSN.
I see no other current bills which refer to a clause which will allow benefits to illegal aliens ... assuming that these individuals do not have a valid Social Security Number (A Tax Identification Number, which most illegal aliens use to report taxable income, is not sufficient.)
There remains a problem if illegal aliens are able to acquire a valid SSN in their own names. I would rather see a move to tighten up the regulations regarding the assignment of new SSN to "Undocumented Immigrants" (eg: "Illegal Aliens").
Please remain dubious about any internet/email 'warning' which does not cite a bill number. Usually these are generated by people who fall within three groups:
1.) they don't understand the bill that they read
2.) they don't realize that the bill is 'old news'
3.) they are deliberately 'scamming' the public just to cause trouble.
I assume that the originators of this email alert fill into the third category. If they are upset about a bill which is three years old, they would still identify the bill. These folks didn't perform that basic requirement, so I can only believe that this represents a deliberate attempt to embarrass recipients/responders, a thousand people at a time.
Also, sending the 'petition' to the whitehouse when it reaches a given number of names (here, 1000 names are required) will inevitably result in more confusion than it would be helpful. Expect that each person forwards the email to 4 or 5 other concerned friends; the petition sign-up will result in tens of thousands of petitions with the same people signing up. Also, petitions are not legitimate without the full residential address. Just giving the town and state does not uniquely identify petitioners.
Finally, we should all be more considerate of our own and our friends' confidentiality. We don't want our names to be displayed across the internet, if only to protect ourselves from Identity Theft.
Please, for your sake and for mine, do NOT proliferate SPAM ... for this is what we see here.
I've just spent 5 minutes researching the subject and came up with links showing that the last time a bill even close to this one is at least three years old, and no current bill comes close enough to the 'warning' to be a definite match.
As concerned citizens, we need to be aware of current pending legislation; but signing 'email petitions' is not the way to respond to offensive bills.
Instead, if you would rally your friends and neighbors, do the research and ALWAYS include the bill number (and date, and applicable text to support your contention that the bill is odious.)
And then, do NOT add your name to a chain-letter. Write directly to your congress-critter. Or better yet, send a snail-mail letter, or phone their congressional office.
Whatever you do, don't send it to me!