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Martin Lancaster’s last act may be his best.

Lancaster is retiring next year as president of North Carolina’s community college system. He used to be a legislator and a congressman before he lost to Walter Jones in the 1994 landslide.

But this is his finest hour.

Lancaster is another rare politician who has the guts to stand up to the illegal-immigrant lynch mob.

Click here to read what Lancaster said about the community colleges’ policy.

Clearly, Republicans hope illegal-immigration frenzy is the life raft that will save them from an election Titanic in 2008. They could be right.

But we’ve seen this movie before: Politicians whipping up public sentiment to keep some people in North Carolina from getting an education.

Fifty years ago, it was black kids. Today, it’s Latino kids. Yes, the children of illegal immigrants. But kids who still deserve an education and a chance in life.

Pardon me for not pillorying people who come here – yes, even illegally – for a better life. If I was in their place, I hope I’d have the guts and gumption to come to America, too.

And the politicians like Lancaster, Mike Easley and Mike Huckabee who stand up to the mob make me feel even better about America.

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