The following is one of those stories that at first blush, you check the calendar to make sure that it isn’t April 1st. The next thing you do is pinch yourself to make sure you’re awake. Finally, desperate not to believe what you have just read, you swear off dropping acid, smoking pot, and taking other mind altering substances in hopes that the hallucination that has appeared in front of you will disappear – the result of some drug addled stupor you’ve fallen into.
Alas, you then read the story again and realize that it is not April 1st, you are, in fact, awake, and that you haven’t dropped acid for 30 years anyway so what’s the point?
A 22-year-old woman is suing a Chicago Spanish-language radio station over allegations that they refuse to give her the car she won in a contest because she’s undocumented.
Maribel Nava Alvarez won the Corvette on July 4, 2005, in a raffle sponsored by 107.9 FM La Ley.
In a lawsuit naming both the radio station and its parent company, Spanish Broadcasting System, Alvarez says La Ley withheld the car when officials found out she’s undocumented.
She is suing for breach of contract and emotional distress.
In a written statement, La Ley said that it is legally required to get a valid Social Security number or tax identification number from anyone who wins prizes worth more than $500.
The station tried to give Alvarez the car even though her tax information couldn’t be verified, the statement said.
Alvarez said she was never told she needed to be a U.S. citizen or legal resident to win the car.
I’ll give you a moment to pick your jaw off the floor…
What’s wrong with this picture? We can start by taking the Tribune to task for referring to the woman as “undocumented.” She is, of course, an illegal alien who is breaking the law by residing in the United States without a visa or green card. But hey! Whose counting?
And I don’t know what’s more shocking; the fact that the station tried to give her the car anyway without collecting the necessary tax information or the unmitigated gall of the woman to sue for “emotional distress.” Living here illegally is emotionally distressing in and of itself. But to try and soak a radio station for trying to follow the law and deny her the benefit of her ill gotten gains is beyond the pale, beyond avarice, and beyond belief.
The Spanish Broadcast System attorney played a little hardball with the woman:
Alvarez’s suit also names SBS lawyer James Cueva, who sent her attorney a letter on Dec. 19, 2005, threatening to contact immigration officials if she pursued a lawsuit.
“I will caution you that if you insist on filing suit against SBS, I will in turn be forced to refer this matter to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement as I believe your client is in this country illegally,” the letter said.
Cueva’s remarks “have sometimes been presented without proper context,” the station’s statement said.
Alvarez said she has left the Chicago area out of fear that she would be deported.
Why should the station apologize for a lawyer doing his duty as a citizen and reporting an illegal alien? The context is perfect; an illegal alien was trying to claim an expensive prize without having to pay taxes on it and was threatening to sue in order to get even more loot from the station. Whatever context you want to view that in is fine with me.
The woman is a fool. She should have waited a few months when the amnesty bill that will almost surely be passed gives her everything her little mercenary heart desires.
Until then, I sure hope she finds a way to deal with her “emotional distress.”