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Ann Coulter Needs a Geography Lesson

Reported by Judy - April 21, 2006

Ann Coulter makes her living saying outrageous things, but she ventured Thursday (April 20, 2006) into the territory of stupid, as opposed to outrageous, with her appearance on Fox News' "Dayside," when she claimed that illegal immigrants routinely run nearly 130 miles in order to give birth.

Coulter was debating her "plan" to have illegal immigrants build a wall (the Great Wall of Coulter) along the U.S.-Mexican border to keep themselves out (and us in?) Her opponent was Susan Estrich, a sometime progressive strategist and regular Fox News guest.

Coulter says what she's been saying for several weeks now, that the U.S. is a country, not a department store, and its citizens ought to have a say in who gets to come in and stay. Then she added this gem:

"Eighty percent of the babies being born at the Los Angeles Public Hospital were from illegal aliens running across the border right as they are about to give birth. Their children immediately become citizens and they get to stay. This isn't the way we should be choosing citizens," she said.

Whoa there, Coulter. Los Angeles is some 129.54 miles, give or take a Mapquest hiccup, from the U.S.-Mexican border crossing at San Ysidro/Tijuana. The driving time is 2 hours, 10 minutes and 21 seconds. I am not a runner, but I'm in decent shape for my age, and I walk at a four-mile-an-hour pace on level ground. Assuming a woman "right as they are about to give birth" can keep that same pace, she would need 32.38 hours to "run" from the border to Los Angeles.

But let's say a woman carrying an extra 20 pounds is a little slow (I remember my late-pregnancy waddle but Coulter apparently is ignorant of the physical state of that period) and can only do a three-mile-an-hour pace. Then she'll need 43.18 hours to "run" across the border to Los Angeles.That's walking non-stop, no breaks for toilet, food, or rest. Since the woman is in a hurry, let's say she takes minimal breaks and let's add only four hours for such luxuries. That brings us to 47.18 hours -- roughly two days of nearly non-stop walking by someone on the verge of going into labor. This has got to be some superwoman. And there's not just one of them, according to Coulter, but 80 percent of the babies being born at a major L.A. hospital have mothers who are capable of such a feat.

Coulter thinks this is a poor way to choose U.S. citizens. Maybe so, but it's a great way to create a U.S. Olympic track team. With mothers like those, can you imagine what kinds of athletes these kids will turn out to be?

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