Tag Archives: illegal immigrants

Thoughts On the Kirstjen Nielsen Resignation

Over the course of a politician’s time in office, a certain amount of turnover, as there is in any job, is normal. In this current Presidential administration, the amount of turnover seems higher than past Presidential administrations.

The most recent resignation came yesterday from DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen.

It is staggering and mind blowing how much pain and heartache Ms. Nielsen and you know who have caused. 99.9% of those who are coming to our Southern borders are not looking for trouble; they are looking for a better life. Instead of being treated as human beings, they were treated as less than human. As if it is a capital offense to be brown skinned and wanting a better life for themselves and the families.

Today the news reported that it will take 2 years to reunite all of the children who were separated from their parents. From my perspective, this a massive waste of resources. But then again, this current administration is not known for thinking things through.

This is just another reason why you know who is taking the country down a path that I fear we may never get out of.

 

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The Path to Genocide Starts With the Label of Inhumanity

The Holocaust did not start with gas chambers, death camps and mass killings. It started with words. It started with calling Jews inhuman, comparing them with rats.

It’s obvious to anyone with a brain that the American immigration policy is in need for an urgent re-write. You know who does not help when he compares deported immigrants to animals:

“You wouldn’t believe how bad these people are. These aren’t people. These are animals and we’re taking them out of country at a level and at a rate that’s never happened before, and because of the weak laws they come in fast… it’s crazy.”

99.9% of those who are seeking asylum are not criminals. They are escaping a life that is defined by poverty, hunger and violence. They should not be defined by a minority who are motivated by violence.

America, as we all as know, is the land of immigrants. Most Americans can say with some level of certainty that someone in their family was born someplace else and then made their way to America at some point in their lives. We should not be criminalizing these people who are escaping from countries where the basics are hard to come by.

From my perspective, this is just another reason as to why you know who should not be President.

P.S. Is anyone else disturbed that you know who lied about his father’s birthplace? I have to question that if he is lying about where his father was born, what else is he not telling the truth about?

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There Is No National Emergency

In spite of America being the land of immigrants, there are many in this country who would prefer to limit who can come through our borders.

You know who is one of them. When he did not get the funding for his border wall by shutting down the government, he threatened to declare a national emergency and bypass Congress.

As of earlier this evening, the threat of using the “national emergency” has become a promise and with the backing of Mitch McConnell (R-KY), the bill to release the funds will be signed.

This “national emergency should be a concern for a number of reasons:

  1. From my perspective, Mitch McConnell is not agreeing to the bill because it is the right thing to do for the country. He is agreeing to it to save his own skin.
  2. The border wall is not only a waste of money and resources, and will not solve the complicated issue that immigration.
  3. The use of  the “national emergency” measure creates a dangerous precedent. It allows future Presidents to declare “national emergencies” for pet issues or projects when Congress says no.

We need comprehensive immigration reform, that is clear. But we must do so in a way that does not waste precious money or resources. This wall is a waste of both.

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You Sir, Have Blood On Your Hands

Dear Mr. President,

It is a title I loathe to use, but it is the way I feel that I must address you in this letter.

America is the land of immigrants. Most, if not all of us (yourself included), can trace our family trees back to another country to at some point in history.

Jakelin Caal wanted to come to this country like many of our ancestors did, for opportunities and freedoms that did not exist in her birth country of Guatemala. If your immigration policy were human and moral instead of inhuman and immoral, this girl would be alive. Instead, she is dead and her blood is on your hands.

I completely understand the need for safe borders. We should not be letting into this country anyone who wants to come in. But, at the same time,  if we close the borders or only let in those who fit into our narrow little world, we have thrown away the vision of America that goes against everything that this country stands for.

Sincerely,

A Concerned Citizen

 

 

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While He Bashes Illegal Immigrants, He Pays Them To Keep His House Clean

From day one of his Presidential election campaign, a certain person made it perfectly clear that one of his main goals was to severely downgrade or prevent illegal immigration entirely.

Today, several news outlets have reported that some of the staff at his golf club in New Jersey are either currently illegal immigrants or were illegal immigrants at the time of their employment and are now in the country legally.

The thing with him is that the image he projects is defined by the following statement “do as I say, not as I do”. His organization and those who work for the organization are willing to look away from the fact that one or more of their workers is not in the country legally because it suits their needs as a business. My guess for their hiring choices is that illegal immigrants are less likely to accept infringement on their rights as employees and receive a lower salary than those who were born here or have legal immigration status.

While he and his organization quietly pay employees who are not here legally, as President, he continues to verbally denigrate immigrants, especially illegal immigrants.

Just another reason to add to the list of reasons as to why he is ill equipped and ill qualified to lead this country.

 

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In the Country We Love: My Family Book Review

The question of immigration has existed since the founding of the United States in the late 1800’s. These days, it has become an issue that is dividing the country. But underneath the issue are thousands, if not millions of individual stories that need to be heard and seen. Diane Guerrero‘s story is one of them.

Best known for her role in Orange Is The New Black, Ms. Guerrero is the American born daughter of Colombian immigrants who were deported back to the country of their birth when their daughter was a teenager. Her life story is detailed in the new memoir In the Country We Love: My Family. Born in the mid 1980’s to Colombian immigrants who cam to America on a visa and tried to gain citizenship up until the time that they were deported, Ms. Guerrero understood from a very young age about her parents immigration status. After her parents were deported, she survived as best she could, but the loss of her parents took a toll on her that took years to deal with. It was only with professional help and revisiting her love of performing that put the spark back in her life.

This book is amazing and a must read, regardless of where the readers stands on the immigration debate. Not only is is easy to read, but it puts the humanity and a face on a subject is often hard to humanize.

I recommend it.

 

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Immigration Is Not A Black And White Issue: Thoughts On The Accused Killer Of Mollie Tibbetts And The Deportation Of Jakiw Palij

The myth about America pertains to the thorny issue of immigration. While Emma Lazarus‘s immortal poem, The New Colossus has greeted new American immigrants along with The Statue Of Liberty for generations, the immigrant experience has never been an easy one.

In 2018, the complications have become magnified, thanks to you know who.

Last month, college student Mollie Tibbetts went missing. This week, her body was found. Cristhian Bahena Rivera, who authorities have identified as an illegal immigrant originally from Mexico was accused of her murder.

My heart breaks for those who knew her and loved her. May her memory be a blessing.

It didn’t take long for certain political factions in this country to use this girl’s murder as a reason to paint all illegal immigrants with broad brush. Most, if not all immigrants, regardless of their status, did not come to America to become criminals. They came to this country for the freedoms and opportunities that for many immigrants are not available in the countries of their birth.

This case also bring to light two scourges on our global cultural landscape: sexism and racism. Some of the news reports stated that Mr. Rivera approached Miss Tibbetts.  When she rebuffed him, he didn’t understand that no means no. Racism comes into the picture because this case amplifies the myth that all men of color are predators when it comes to white women. Therefore, white woman need to be protected by white men from the men of color who might have less than honorable or harmless intentions.

The other news story that  brings into light the shades of grey when it comes to immigration is the case of Jakiw Palij.

In 1949, he came to America, claiming to be a farmhand and factory worker. Since then, he has lived in Queens, New York. According to news reports, Mr. Palij was actually a Nazi labor camp guard at Trawniki concentration camp and lied on his immigration paperwork. He is being deported back to Germany.

While I understand that he is 95 years old, justice must be served. From my perspective, when an immigrant is deported, the government must have a solid reason to send him or her back to their country of origin. In this case, I cannot disagree with his deportation. While it would be impossible in 2018 to prosecute every member of the Nazi party who stood by while their Jewish friends and neighbors were being murdered, the prosecution of Mr. Palij must proceed. The message must be heard loudly and clearly: those who had a hand in murdering Jews and other minorities during World War II will be judged and prosecuted for their actions.

Despite the promise of America, immigration will never be a black and white issue. It is my opinion that unfortunately, it’s taken Americans over 200 years to realize that fact.

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The Far Away Brothers: Two Young Migrants and the Making of an American Life Book Review

Unless one is living under a rock these days, it’s hard to ignore the fact that immigration is a hot button issue these days. The problem with the debate is that there are nuances and real human beings behind the debate that are more often than not, overlooked.

Last year, journalist Lauren Markham published her new non fiction book, The Far Away Brothers: Two Young Migrants and the Making of an American Life.

Born in El Salvador, Ernesto and Raul Flores were growing up in the midst of their homeland’s civil war. At the age of seventeen, as gang violence mounted, the boys knew that they had no choice. They had to leave their home and family for the United States. Surviving the treacherous journey to America, Ernesto and Raul face new challenges. In addition to the growing pains that every teenager deals with, the boys must deal with immigration courts, adapting to a new life in America and living with an older brother whom they had not seen for a number of years.

I was blown away by this book. It read more like a fiction novel than a true story. Above all, what I loved about this book was that it put a human face and a human story on a subject that many in this country do not see eye to eye to.

I absolutely recommend it.

 

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When Did Our Immigration Policy And Those Who Enforce It Lose Their Humanity? Part 2

Imagine the following scenario if you will: Pablo Villavicencio is 35. He is a loving and hardworking husband and father who earns his living delivering pizzas for a Queens pizza parlor. Earlier this week, Mr. Villavicencio was doing his job, delivering a meal to Fort Hamilton army base in Brooklyn. Instead of just making the delivery and moving onto his next stop, he was arrested and could be forced to return to his native Ecuador because he is not a legal immigrant.

If he is deported, there a possibility Mr. Villavicencio  that he may not see his wife and young daughters, all who are citizens, for quite a few years.

It’s obvious to me that in an attempt to protect America’s borders and her citizens, our government is going too far. I fail to see how putting this man in jail and potentially sending him back to Ecuador is making our country safe. If anything, it sends the message that the borders to America, the land made up of immigrants and their descendants, are closed. Especially to immigrants of color.

If nothing else, my heart aches for Mr. Villavicencio’s young daughters, who may have to grow up without their father.

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When Did Our Immigration Policy And Those Who Enforce It Lose Their Humanity?

America is a country of immigrants. Unless one is Native America, we can all trace our familial origins to one or more persons who left their countries of origin for a new life in the United States.

It’s no secret that the current administration’s immigration policy is not exactly open to immigrants, especially those of color.

According to Steven Wagner, the Acting Assistant Secretary, Administration for Children and Families, nearly 1500 immigrant children who tried to enter the US illegally are missing.  Mr. Wagner claims that his department is not responsible for the children once they are placed in sponsor homes.

In addition, families who cross together are being separated from one another.

I am the descendant of immigrants. I am appalled by the actions taken by those in Washington. While I am all for securing our borders and preventing terrorism, these actions are not disgusting, but inhumane.

At best, these kids could be living on the street or getting into trouble with the law. At worst, these kids could fall into the hands of human traffickers. I shudder to think what should happen if they do find themselves entangled with human traffickers.

This is not the America that I know and love. While following the law of the land is important, so is compassion, humanity and understanding. From where I am standing, things need to change, otherwise the America that our Founding Fathers envisioned will be nothing but a mirage.

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