Archive for undocumented immigrants

Teen on hunger strike: "My mom [was] handcuffed, pushed into van" by 10 I.C.E. officers

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hunger strike immigration Cynthia Diaz teen

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Melissa Harris Perry interviewed hunger strike activist Cynthia Diaz, 18, who spoke out on the detention of undocumented immigrants, one of whom is her own mother. The hunger strike is taking place outside of the White House.

Her words and actions affected me deeply, as did Melissa Harris-Perry's:

DiazI am doing this hunger strike for my mom. She was unfairly deported in May, 2011. When I.C.E. raided our home, it was a Saturday morning, I was 15 at the time, and I have a younger brother who was 13. ...My dad's screaming out, "Cynthia, they're taking your mom!" I was confused because I didn't know what that meant and so I went to my front yard and there I saw ten I.C.E. officers all over my front yard and I saw my mom being handcuffed and pushed into a van.

And then the door shut and we were really confused.

My brother heard everything but he didn't leave his room because he didn't want to see what was happening.

That was really traumatizing for me because, like I said before, I was only 15 at the time...

I was born and raised in Phoenix, Arizona... I have a brother and my dad who are U.S. residents, but I didn't know until they took my mom that, you know, she was undocumented.

MHP: So you're an american citizen. You have U.S. permanent residents in your family, and you have not eaten in days because you are trying to get your president and your government to let your mom out of detention. ...

Diaz: I talked to her last night. right now she's in San Luis, Arizona in, a private detention center. She does tell me that it's really cold there, the beds are really uncomfortable, the food is not pleasant at all.

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Not news: Republicans could slide even further with women, Latinos

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gop disaster zone republicans

Women and Latinos do not trust Republicans. Oops, sorry, Captain Obvious got hold of my keyboard again. But he's right, which is also obvious:

obvious

And those are only two of the most recent headlines. The GOP's history of misogyny and racism is appalling, and their efforts to deny their fellow human beings equal rights is disgusting.

Republicans have sworntogod that they want to broaden their appeal. Oh really? Well, if their relentless assault on women's reproductive rights, gay rights, voting rights, and their treatment of undocumented (and documented!) immigrants (or anyone else, for that matter) who don't look or sound like them is the barometer, then they're in deep trouble.

They're still saying exactly the same old thing about the same old things. Reed Galen, a GOP strategist in Orange County who also worked for Bush said, "If we want that number to grow, we have to find ways to talk to Latinos about the issues we all care about." How many Republicans have made identical comments? And how many have actually followed through, or even done the opposite? Exactly.

Remember their post-2012 election "autopsy"? That reinvention they keep promising... not so much. How's that reachy-outy, makeovery thing workin' for ya, GOP?

The Los Angeles Times takes it from here:

Donnelly, the GOP front-runner according to public opinion polls, has stood by his 2006 speech, delivered when he was leader in the volunteer Minuteman border-patrol organization. In it, he said illegal immigration would lead to a fight comparable to the Civil War. [...]

"I am not backing away from the fact that we are in a war," Donnelly told reporters in Sacramento on Tuesday, after reports of the speech caused an outcry. He said he did not believe the remarks would hurt his prospects among Latino voters.

See how they've changed?

The Pelosi flap on the new Breitbart CA website prompted House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy of Bakersfield to ask that his column be taken off the site.

Republican strategists said that while the imagery was "problematic," they viewed it as less significant than the immigration issue.

So the problems with their antiquated policies, views, and (mis)treatment of women are "less significant." Not right up there on their To Do list. Got it.

Keep up the good work, guys. If it weren't for dirty tricks and gerrymandering, they wouldn't stand a chance in 2014. And don't even get me started on the Supreme Court ruling that favors billionaires...

UPDATE: New Rule Prohibits Voters In Miami-Dade County From Using The Restroom, No Matter How Long The Line. 'Nuff said.

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GOP candidate Tim Donnelly: Breitbart CA site A-OK, undocumented immigrants are rapists, child molesters

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Former Minuteman and Assemblyman Tim Donnelly (R-Hesperia) speaks at a state Capitol rally in support of his legislation, AB-26, on April 4, 2011.

Meet conservative California GOP candidate for governor, Tim Donnelly. Actually, you'd be better off avoiding him. He's hoping to beat Gov. Jerry Brown. Good luck with that, Tim. Why? Well for one thing, per the Los Angeles Times, he's fine with his columns appearing in a new ultra-conservative website, one that features an appallingly controversial image:

Republican candidates for governor are using the website to publicize their platforms.

Assemblyman Tim Donnelly (R-Twin Peaks) wrote a column criticizing Democrats’ education policies, including a recent attempt in the Legislature to restore affirmative action to university admissions in California.

Donnelly said Monday he had not seen the Pelosi image, but he was happy to have his column gain a wide audience.

Here's the ABC headline describing Rep. Nancy Pelosi's reaction to the image: "Nancy Pelosi Says Breitbart-Altered Pic of Her Twerking Is ‘Tasteless.’"

Here's the image:

pelosi breitbart twerking

Gee, that's not at all sexist, completely offensive, and infantile. But the new Breitbart California site defended it, because, you know, Benghazi. Or Obamacare. Or sick and desperate. Or something.

Let's move on to the second L.A. Times article that goes into more detail about the real Tim Donnelly.

For starters, Tim Donnelly was a leader of the Minuteman organization, a group of militia men ("bigots and weekend warriors") that got off on patrolling the US-Mexico border. They "thought it should be legal to kill illegals."

In a speech a few years back, Donnelly described undocumented immigrants as "an insurgency," and compared crossing the border to war.

Note to Donnelly: "Illegal aliens" is a slur. These are people, and people are not illegal. Their acts may or may not be, but they are human beings, not "illegals." Tim Donnelly, in his own words:

"Right now, in the United States of America, there are 850,000 gang members, two-thirds of whom are illegal aliens," he said. [...]

In the 2006 speech, Donnelly painted an alarming picture of illegal immigrants' effect on the United States. They have caused the destruction of schools, the bankruptcy of hospitals forced to provide them free medical care and led the government to abandon its citizens, he said, asserting that the country was on the brink of a battle similar to the Civil War.

The notion that illegal immigrants come to this nation for a better life "is one of the lies," he said. "At least 20% are coming to commit the crimes that American criminals will no longer commit."

He paused as the crowd laughed, then continued: "Of that 20%, how many are rapists? How many are murderers? How many are child molesters? And how many are terrorists? We don't know."

"Crimes that American criminals will no longer commit"? What, American bad guys started boycotting certain crimes? They look down their noses on some criminal acts as beneath them, do they? Certain ones have fallen into disfavor, have they?

Here's the real crime: Everything he said, plus the crowd's disgusting response. I wonder if any of his audience members might have been rapists or child molesters? Oh, sorry, my bad. It was likely a monochromatic group (read: white), and we all know white people don't commit despicable acts like those.

He's all yours, GOP. By the way, how's that outreach thing workin' for ya?

You can read more about him at the link if you can stomach it.

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Arizona, meet North Carolina, your wannabe "Papers Please" law twin.

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immigration arizona human

Think Progress is reporting that North Carolina is competing with Arizona's asshatitude status when it comes to anti-immigrant laws, racial profiling, labeling, shaming, disrespect, and Sheriff Joe Arpaio-style despicability:

North Carolina is set to vote on a piece of anti-immigration legislation on par with Arizona and Alabama’s racially-tinged laws that drew national attention and ire from immigration advocates. The Reasonable Enactment of Comprehensive Legislation Addressing Immigration Matters (RECLAIM) in North Carolina Act, or HB 786 would expand the scope of law enforcement officials with “reasonable suspicion” to authorize immigration status checks on anyone who has been lawfully stopped. [...]

The measure also allows for law enforcement officials to have the ability to “securely transport an alien… to a federal facility” potentially without ever having seen a lawyer.

Here is what North Carolina conservative policy makers have previously been up to. Hint: They’re up to no good.

For people who claim to revere constitutional rights and freedoms, they sure have a funny way of showing it. Latino voters will surely warm to the Republican party now. How could they not?

I wonder how many Canadians and Swedes will be pulled over and questioned.

Please read TP for more details, but some of negative impact includes "severely undermining public safety benefits" because immigrants are likely to duck and cover, avoiding driver’s licenses that conspicuously feature the words “no lawful status.” Then there's that little problem of tourism dropping (that sound they'll hear is an economic thud) due to concerns about being asked about legal status.

I am becoming more and more concerned about the direction this country is taking, the intensity of conservative disdain, intolerance, and bigotry, and the perpetual obstruction that cuts any attempt at compromise or reasonable, constructive lawmaking off at the knees.

And those are just a few of my worries. I've resisted writing about this because I am not an alarmist and try not to indulge in overly negative feelings and writings that would bum everyone out, especially in my current state of mind.

But with all the gerrymandering and redistricting to assure Republican wins and single party rule in state legislatures, and the ease with which those on the right pass laws that are so unhealthy, so restrictive, and so hateful, it's not easy to feel optimistic about our chances of overcoming their perpetual obsessions, greed, backward attitudes, and power grabs.

We are all real, living, breathing, struggling, caring participants in this country. We the people. Immigrants are people, my friend. Corporations-- and sometimes it seems like Republicans-- are not.

outreach my ass reach out inclusive

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VIDEO-- Paul Ryan's version of "outreach": Using the derogatory "anchor babies" term-- again

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Paul Ryan anchor babies 1
Anchor-Babies-what-now-301

Hey Paul Ryan, how’s that GOP reachy-outy, makeovery, reinventiony thing workin’ for ya?

Apparently, it's not. At a town hall meeting in Burlington, Wisconsin, while he was pushing his idea of a House immigration reform bill, he used the offensive term "anchor babies." Classy, Paul, classy. You know who else uses that one? Michele Bachmann, for one.

What next, "wetback"?

As Think Progress notes, that little "anchor baby" slur is used to describe American-born children of undocumented immigrants, who, by the way, are citizens under the 14th Amendment.

In 2012, Ryan got an earful for dropping the "A.B." term:

Oops! He did it again:

Paul Ryan:

To the anchor baby issue-- That’s what they call it, anchor babies. It’s a person who comes and has a child here, if you’re born here you’re a naturalized citizen. You have to change the Constitution. There’s a little bit of legal debate about whether you have to or not. I think it comes down fairly clearly that you have to change the Constitution to change the definition of citizenship to not being born here, right? Or being born with legal parents. That will take a long, long time, years ...

But it’s really treating a symptom, right. People are coming across the border illegally, or overstaying their visas. And therefore illegal immigration is fairly easy, and then people are having what’s called anchor babies.

Note to Paul about his "legal parents" moment. People are not legal or illegal. Their actions are, but they are not. They are people, not "illegals" or "legals."

They. Are. People.

paul ryan anchor babies 2 racist manner

So much for all that New and Improved Republican Outreach.

outreach my ass reach out inclusive

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AK Rep. Don "Young's Republican Party should not think that Americans like myself will be swayed by outreach."

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outreach my ass reach out inclusive

For the back story, see this previous post: VIDEO: The “stupid party,” er, Republicans blast GOP Rep. Young for his “wetbacks” comment.

don young wetback comments immigration

And with that, here is today's L.A. Times letter to the editor, because our voices matter:

Re "Republican apologizes for slur against Latinos," March 30

As an American with a Hispanic last name, reading the story of the Alaskan member of Congress using the term "wetback" brought back childhood memories.

I grew up in San Antonio, a predominantly Hispanic city, on the mostly white north side of town. Any time I heard "wetback," it made me uncomfortable because of the view underlying it: I and the people like me were less than everyone else. Passing off using the term as just the common vernacular of a bygone era doesn't fool anyone.

For Don Young (I don't respect him enough to call him a congressman) to speak in those terms so easily betrays an ingrained view of Hispanics. Young's Republican Party should not think that Americans like myself will be swayed by outreach.

Andrew Ximenes

Los Angeles

All our other GOP "outreach" posts can be found here.

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VIDEO: The "stupid party," er, Republicans blast GOP Rep. Young for his "wetbacks" comment

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gop stupid party jindal don young wetback comments immigration

Alaska Rep. Don Young:

"My father had a ranch; we used to have 50-60 wetbacks to pick tomatoes."

House Speaker John Boehner, per CNN:

"Congressman Young's remarks were offensive and beneath the dignity of the office he holds. I don't care why he said it – there's no excuse and it warrants an immediate apology."

Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus:

"Our party represents freedom and opportunity for every American and a beacon of hope to those seeking liberty throughout the world. Offensive language and ethnic slurs have no place in our public discourse."

Is Priebus kidding? Does he have no awareness of what his party has said and done to diminish the dignity and rights of not-white people and how all too many conservatives still refer to them (scroll)?

Rep. Young:

"I used a term that was commonly used during my days growing up on a farm in Central California. I know that this term is not used in the same way nowadays and I meant no disrespect."

Psst! Don! It's 2013.

Psst! Don! Your statement, excuses, and non-apology have now been documented and will be available for review forever.

CNN:

The word is widely considered an ethnic slur and generally refers to those from Mexico who come to the United States illegally by crossing the Rio Grande River. It was used by the government in the 1950s for "Operation Wetback," a massive crackdown on illegal immigration along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Let's take a gander at the ol' GOP playbook, shall we?

1950s mentality:

check mark smaller

 

 

 

Slurs:

check mark smaller

Massive crackdown on immigrants:

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How's that reachy-outy thing workin' for ya?

outreach my ass reach out inclusive

UPDATE via Think Progress:

By Friday afternoon, Young had issued a full apology:

“I apologize for the insensitive term I used during an interview in Ketchikan, Alaska. There was no malice in my heart or intent to offend; it was a poor choice of words. That word, and the negative attitudes that come with it, should be left in the 20th century, and I’m sorry that this has shifted our focus away from comprehensive immigration reform.”

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