Monthly Archives: July 2008

UNDOCUMENTED WILL BE INVITED TO “SELF-DEPORT”

US ICE will be announcing a program that will allow those who are here unlawfully to turn themselves over to ICE agents and self-deport:  No incentive, no waiver of the bar of inadmissibility, just turn themselves over to be processed and go home. 

For once, both pro and anti-immigrant organizations agree, this is a ridiculous idea.  Why would anyone participate in such a program when they could simply leave the US without turning themselves over to anybody?  Sometimes I have to do a double-take when I read some of the ideas our elected and appointed officials come up with!   

ILLEGALLY APPOINTED IMMIGRATION JUDGES?

According to an article on reuters.com:  “Top aides to former U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales broke the law by injecting politics into what should have been the non-partisan hiring of career lawyers and immigration judges, according to a Justice Department report released on Monday.”

No big surprise.  The concern however, is that less-qualified immigration judges who have a right-leaning, conservative bent may be less likely to display compassion towards immigrants who appear before them than better-qualified judges who may hold more moderate or liberal political views.  

IOWA RESIDENTS ASK CONGRESSIONAL REPS TO STOP IMMIGRATION RAIDS

According to the Associated Press:  “Reps. Luis Gutierrez, D-Ill., Albio Sires, D-N.J., and Joe Baca, D-Calif., members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, heard three hours of often emotional testimony. Women whose husbands are being detained talked about their longing to be reunited, underage workers detailed deplorable working conditions and city and religious officials lamented the impact on the community.”

Based on recent occurrences it seems that the country will be ready for an overhaul of our immigration system when the subject resurfaces before Congress. 

Prior to the enforcement-only kick that the US has been on for the past year, the immigration laws clearly needed changing.  However, rather than change the laws, the policy was geared toward lax enforcement.  Now, rather than fixing the problem, the outdated laws that serve noone, the environment has become one in which the policy is mass enforcement to the point where immigrants are allegedly being denied basic due process such as in the Postville raids and a young undocumented woman was allegedly beaten to death while her attackers used racial slurs.  Our lawmakers must do better than they have in 2009 and pass Comprehensive Immigration Reform that balances:  enforcement with  improving avenues for legal immigration to keep America competitive and an earned legalization program for the undocumented. 

INTERVIEW OF BRAIN SURGEON WHO WAS AN “ILLEGAL ALIEN”

I received a kind e-mail from someone at bigthink.com who informed me that there is an interview with Dr. Q on that site.  The interview puts a face to the story of the man who started in the U.S. as a migrant farm worker and became a John Hopkins brain surgeon and is worth checking out.

In our practice we come across people who are living the American Dream because our immigration laws gave them that opportunity.  They benefit as does the country as a whole.

When Comprehensive Immigration Reform comes up again in Congress, I hope the cool-headed, compassionate majority will be motivated to call their congressional representatives to drown out the loud, yet passionate minority who oppose changing our laws so that they make sense.

U.S. EMPLOYERS PUSH BACK AGAINST IMMIGRATION SANCTIONS

According to an article on reuters.com:  “Immigration has turned many business into activists across the country and it has stirred strong passions in the United States in this election year.”

Given aggressive Federal enforcement and a hodgepodge of new state laws, employers are feeling the crunch and are trying to lobby for changes to the laws, both at the state level and nationally. 

Hopefully Congress and the new President will have the courage to enact comprehensive immigration reform in 2009 so that the country can be on the same page regarding this issue.  It is a shame for states and municipalities to have to pass laws or ordinances that are either pro or anti-immigrant because the federal governement has failed to act.    

IMMIGRATION STATISTICS ARE A HOAX

According to an entry on latimesblogs.latimes.com:  “We have received some responses to our post this morning about illegal immigration numbers that quote different figures — figures that allegedly come from the Los Angeles Times. . .Those figures are a hoax, which you can read about here on Snopes.com.”

Statistics are often deceiving and as we see day in and day out, can be used to manipulate information to suit one’s purposes.  Moreover, “studies”, especially when conducted by an interested party or organization should be taken with a cup of salt.