LEGALIZING ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS IS A BAD IDEA: THE OP-ED THE CHICAGO TRIBUNE PUBLISHED

THE HISPANIC BLOG IS THE LATEST HISPANIC NEWS BY JESSICA MARIE GUTIERREZ

illegal_immigration_xlarge

The Chicago Tribune published an op-ed rehashing claims about undocumented immigrants that have been widely debunked, without noting that the author is a fellow at nativist organization the Center for Immigration StudiesCIS is an anti-immigrant organization whose affiliation with hate groups has been thoroughly documented by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

In the February 8 op-ed titled, “Legalizing Illegal Immigrants A Bad Idea,” CIS fellow David Seminara repeated the false claims that undocumented immigrants steal jobs from hard-working Americans and that they put a strain on social services. The Tribune identified Seminara simply as a former diplomat who has “issued thousands of visas during his career at the State Department.”

According to his bio on the CIS website, Seminara has been a fellow at the organization since 2009. He has written extensively for the group’s blog, including writing posts that have criticized an undocumented immigrant fearful of applying for deferred action and attacked scholarships for undocumented immigrants.

Knowing Seminara’s affiliation with CIS would have alerted readers that the op-ed was presenting a biased view of the immigration debate as it repeated many of CIS’ and other nativist groups’ talking points. Indeed, his claim that undocumented immigrants steal Americans’ jobs is not new; it has been discredited by economists and immigration experts using mountains of research: Undocumented immigrants do not generally compete with Americans for labor, and in fact have been found to boost Americans’ wages.

Immigrants given legal status under the immigration reform framework announced by the Senate are also unlikely to be a strain on the welfare system. Under the current framework, newly legalized immigrants would not be eligible for Medicaid or any government social benefit. In addition, immigrants are more likely to have jobs and over half have a high school degree or more.

In Illinois, consumer spending by undocumented immigrants already generates $5.45 billion in gross regional spending which accounts for 31,000 jobs in the Chicago area,according to the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights. In fact, the Immigration Policy Center reported that in 2010, undocumented immigrants in the state paid nearly half a billion dollars in taxes.

Read More: Media Matters

SUBSCRIBE to The Hispanic Blog to stay on top of the latest latino news, politics and entertainment!

Don’t be shy SUBSCRIBE – COMMENT – LIKE ME -CIRCLE ME AND FOLLOW ME

If you have any questions, concerns or simply would like to get a quote on my Marketing, Public Relations, Social Media and/or Events services, please feel free to contact me at thehispanicblog@me.com.

God Bless and make it a fabulous day!

powered by Influential Access – “Transforming the Ordinary to EXTRAordinary!” – CEO – Jessica Marie Gutierrez – Creator of The Hispanic Blog #thehispanicblog

GERALDO RIVERA ASKS FELLOW REPORTERS TO DROP THE “ILLEGAL ALIEN” PHRASE ENTIRELY

THE HISPANIC BLOG IS THE LATEST HISPANIC NEWS BY JESSICA MARIE GUTIERREZ

Just as blacks marched in the 1960s for civil rights, Hispanics are marching today for immigrant rights. And just as many non-blacks marched back then in support of black civil rights, today many non-Hispanics are marching in support of Hispanic immigrant rights.

Cable news and talk radio are making a killing demonizing undocumented immigrants. In terms of ratings, few issues resonate as reliably. Since the fiery period of 2006-2008 when Congress first seriously contemplated rational immigration reform under the leadership of senators John McCain, R-AZ, (yes, that John McCain) and the late Ted Kennedy, D-Ma, but then ran from the issue in the face of furious backlash, ample file footage exists in every news outlet’s video library of young Latinos jumping the border wall or wading across the Rio Grande.

The story is therefore easy and cheap to illustrate. The fact that it is a lazy stereotype of undocumented immigrants, which ignores the hefty percentage of European, Asian, Australian and African visitors who overstay their visa is irrelevant, too complicated and lacking emotional punch. Thus, the typical report consists of a TV anchor or radio talk host lamenting either how our nation is being drowned by the brown tsunami from south-of-the-border, how they are sucking the nation’s life blood or how one of the invading Latino hordes committed a crime, which is far more egregious than if a citizen committed the same crime, “because they had no right to be here!”

photo source: AP

Further, no branding has proven more effective than the combination of two powerful pejoratives, illegal and alien.

Like the words ‘Jew’ or ‘slob’ or ‘slut’, the phrase ‘illegal alien’ has the elegance of being harsh, but defensible, if accurate. Although it can be used as a cutting reference, it can still be uttered in polite company without fear of raising many eyebrows, especially among those who feel similarly negative about the individual being described.

photo source AP

Recently, a campaign has been mounted by Latino activists and supporters to ban use of the “I” word (as in Illegal). Ironically, the campaign has found traction first in Arizona, the state now most vividly associated with anti-immigrant sentiment and the birthplace of SB1070. Back in 2008, before things got truly vitriolic in the Grand Canyon State, Supreme Court Chief Justice Ruth McGregor agreed to ban the terms “illegal” and “alien” in all hearings or trials in state courtrooms.
The decision came after the High Court was criticized for using the words “illegals” and “illegal aliens” in several opinions by Arizona’s Hispanic Bar Association, known locally as “Los Abogados,” which asked Chief Judge McGregor for the ban. Their reasoning is as obvious as the motive of those who resort to using the offensive language. The terms create a contemptible brand, which stokes anti-immigrant bias and in the process, “tarnishes the image of state courts as a place where disputes may be fairly resolved.”

The biggest myth they were peddling, of course, was that Arizona Supreme Court Chief Justice Ruth McGregor had banned the use of the words “illegal” and “aliens” to refer to the undocumented migrants in state courts. In reality, McGregor received a letter from the Hispanic Bar Association (Los Abogados), expressing concern over the use of what they deem to be derogatory terms towards MMPs (Mexicans Minus Papers). McGregor simply shared the letter with her colleagues. She didn’t order them to do anything about it.

Because the cause is righteous, the movement to ban the expression has recently been re-energized and may spread, perhaps first to Florida. There, Congresswoman Frederica Wilson, D-Miami, has introduced a bill to ban the phrase “illegal alien” from official state documents.

(AP Photo/J Pat Carter)

“I personally find the word ‘alien’ offensive when applied to individuals, especially to children,” she said recently. “An alien to me is someone from outer space.” While no penalty is attached for using the expression, the flamboyant Senator Wilson added, “we don’t say ‘alien,’ we say ‘immigrant.'”

Aside from its unstated but intended negative reaction, I have a lawyer’s reason for wanting media outlets like my own to ban or at least modify the phrase. Absent a finding by a judicial or administrative body, it assumes a legal conclusion, that a person has no right to be in the United States. Given that every person whose resident status is questioned has the presumed right to a hearing on the matter, with an appellate process following a negative result, isn’t the media’s use of the expression as lazy as assuming the guilt of a person accused of every other crime?

Sheriff Richard K. Jones has a website for “illegal aliens” http://butlersheriff.org/illegals/

How is it that accused murderers, robbers and child molesters are called “alleged” perpetrators, but immigrants are not accorded the same courtesy of accuracy, indeed, the same presumption of innocence?“Illegal alien” is a cheap shot. The oft-used plural of the adjective “illegal” as in “illegals” isn’t even recognized as an English noun by Microsoft Word.

photo source: Fickr

It is stigma piled on stigma, and the potential consequences to a person so described following a judicial finding can be devastating. Anyone who suggests that deportation isn’t punishment is being disingenuous. So, if you insist on using the ungrammatical slur, at least await a finding of illegality before branding usually hard-working, otherwise law-abiding undocumented immigrants snared by authorities.

photo source: Flickr

photo source: Flickr

“Alleged illegal alien” may not be much of improvement, but it’s a step in the direction of accuracy. A voluntary decision by my cable news and talk radio colleagues to drop the phrase entirely would be humane and more in keeping with our immigrant nation’s centuries old traditions.

Read more: Latino FOX News

SUBSCRIBE to The Hispanic Blog to stay on top of the latest latino news, politics and entertainment!

Don’t be shy SUBSCRIBE – COMMENT – LIKE ME -CIRCLE ME AND FOLLOW ME

If you have any questions, concerns or simply would like to get a quote on my Marketing, Public Relations, Social Media and/or Events services, please feel free to contact me.

God Bless and make it a fabulous day!

powered by Influential Access – “Transforming the Ordinary to EXTRAordinary!” – CEO – Jessica Marie Gutierrez – Creator of The Hispanic Blog #thehispanicblog

 

DID THE CEO OF AMERICAN APPAREL MARCH IN SUPPORT OF IMMIGRANTS’ RIGHTS: ACCORDING TO CHARNEY IMMIGRATION REFORM IS CRITICALLY IMPORTANT FROM A HUMANITARIAN AND ECONOMIC PERSPECTIVE

THE HISPANIC BLOG IS THE LATEST HISPANIC NEWS BY JESSICA MARIE GUTIERREZ

A May Day activist dressed as U.S. President Barack Obama marches through downtown Los Angeles marking the International Worker’s Day on May 1, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. Occupy Wall Street groups across the country have joined with unions during the May Day protests, a traditional day of global protests in sympathy with unions and leftist politics.

On May 1, 2012, several rallies and protests took part in Los Angeles to recognize the contributions workers are making to the country and to protest for better working conditions, fair pay, and immigration reform.
American Apparel (AMEX: APP), which has long advocated for comprehensive immigration reform and criticized the apartheid-like treatment of undocumented workers, will close its factory for several hours May 1 so its workers can join the march and related pro-worker activities.

Hayley Fox/Blogdowntown
Dov Charney, founder and CEO of American Apparel marched in support of immigrants’ rights at the downtown L.A. May Day parade on Tuesday.

CEO Dov Charney joined the workers to show his support for the fair treatment of all workers, domestically and internationally, and his unwavering support for prompt, fair, and effective immigration reform in the United States.

According to Charney, “Immigration reform is critically important not just from a humanitarian perspective, but also from an economic perspective. Economic growth and stability are adversely affected by the ability of employers to exploit undocumented workers, engage in sweatshop tactics, and drive wages down. Immigration reform will help raise wages and working conditions in Los Angeles and throughout the country.”

Read more here: Sun Herald

SUBSCRIBE to The Hispanic Blog to stay on top of the latest latino news, politics and entertainment!

Don’t be shy SUBSCRIBE – COMMENT – LIKE ME -CIRCLE ME AND FOLLOW ME

If you have any questions, concerns or simply would like to get a quote on my Marketing, Public Relations, Social Media and/or Events services, please feel free to contact me.

God Bless and make it a fabulous day!

powered by Influential Access – “Transforming the Ordinary to EXTRAordinary!” – CEO – Jessica Marie Gutierrez – Creator of The Hispanic Blog #thehispanicblog

 

DID MISSISSIPPI VOTE FOR A CRACKDOWN ON UNDOCUMENTED IMMIGRANTS?

THE HISPANIC BLOG IS THE LATEST HISPANIC NEWS BY JESSICA MARIE GUTIERREZ

Joining a nationwide trend, Mississippi House members voted for a bill Thursday that seeks to crack down on undocumented immigrants.

The bill, which passed with a 70-47 vote, calls for police to check the immigration status of people they arrest.

Leaders stripped more controversial provisions before the vote on House Bill 488. Next, the Republican-controlled state Senate is expected to pass it, and the governor has expressed support for the measure.

After initially failing, opponents of the bill were able on a second attempt to strip a provision requiring schools to count undocumented immigrants, saying it would violate federal law.

House Judiciary B Committee Chairman Andy Gipson, a Braxton Republican, denied opponents’ claims that the measure was racist or immoral, saying it was about enforcing the law. Gipson said he tried to craft a bill that would survive court challenges and allow charity toward migrants.

“It’s about the rule of law,” he told House members. “We want to say you’re welcome here, we just want you to follow the proper procedures, the proper protocols.”

Opponents warned families would be shattered by deportations and that the bill would reinforce outsiders’ stereotypes of Mississippi.

“If we pass this bill, it will set Mississippi back 60 years,” said Rep. Sonya Williams-Barnes, D-Gulfport. “Let us show America we are not the narrow-minded people they say we are.”

No Republicans opposed the bill, while 10 mostly white and rural Democrats voted for it. They crossed party lines despite an appeal from House Agriculture Chairman Preston Sullivan, D-Okolona, a rural white Democrat who warned the bill would hurt farmers.

A provision that allowed law enforcement officers to ask about a person’s immigration status in a traffic stop was removed. That means someone would have to be arrested for another offense before inquiries could be made.

“If they’re stopped, that in itself will not trigger this bill,” Gipson said. “It would require an arrest to be made. If they are found to be unlawful, then they would be deported.”

Among earlier changes was the removal of a clause that said people could be arrested for not carrying identification, a clause that had led opponents to nickname the measure the “papers, please” bill. That portion, like several others removed in committee last month, have been blocked by courts in Arizona, Alabama and elsewhere.

During the debate that ran from late Wednesday into Thursday, Gipson also removed a provision that could have allowed municipal utilities to refuse power, water, sewer and other services to undocumented immigrants. Such a provision was also recently blocked by a federal court in Alabama.

Gipson said he was balancing the need to write a law that will survive court scrutiny versus the desire to remove undocumented immigrants.

“I have tried to bring the best possible product to the body for a vote,” he said.

The changes did little to mollify critics, who continued to question whether the bill was needed. Opponents emphasize that Mississippi doesn’t need to summon any ghosts of its racist past.

Opponents in the House debate zeroed in on the possibility that parents could be arrested, leaving behind children who are U.S. citizens. Those who have fought the Alabama and Arizona measures have highlighted such problems.

“Your bill has nothing in it to show any kind of compassion or any kind of consideration for the children who are left behind,” said Rep. Kelvin Buck, D-Holly Springs.

Gipson admitted that “some separations” were a possibility.

Mississippi has a relatively small undocumented population, although it appears to have grown in recent years. The Pew Hispanic Center estimated that in 2010, the state had about 45,000 undocumented immigrants out of nearly 3 million total residents.

The bill is supported by Gov. Phil Bryant, a Republican who has been campaigning against illegal immigration since his days as state auditor.

Proponents say the state spends more money providing services to immigrants than it reaps in taxes, and claim that undocumented immigrants, if they leave, will vacate jobs that unemployed citizens can take. They say the bill is about legal compliance and that they welcome legal immigrants.

Gipson denied any racist intent, saying he had helped start a Hispanic ministry at a church nearly 20 years ago.

“I have been accused of being a racist,” he said. “I reject that.”

Gipson earlier added an amendment that allows any church or religious organization to minister to “immediate basic and human needs.”

He told a questioner Wednesday that a soup kitchen could feed an undocumented immigrant every day and not run afoul of the proposed bill. But Gipson said that, “if the question is `Can they harbor these people?’ the answer is `No.”‘

The bill now goes to the Senate, which has not advanced its own immigration bill.

Based on reporting by The Associated Press.

Photo: jimmywayne @ Flickr

Read more: LATINO FOX NEWS

SUBSCRIBE to The Hispanic Blog to stay on top of the latest latino news, politics and entertainment!

Don’t be shy SUBSCRIBE – COMMENT – LIKE ME -CIRCLE ME AND FOLLOW ME

If you have any questions, concerns or simply would like to get a quote on my Marketing, Public Relations, Social Media and/or Events services, please feel free to contact me at thehispanicblog@gmail.com.

God Bless and may you have a fabulous day!

powered by Influential Access – “Transforming the Ordinary to EXTRAordinary!” – CEO – Jessica Marie Gutierrez – Creator of The Hispanic Blog #thehispanicblog

PRESIDENT OBAMA RESPONDS: WHY IMMIGRATION REFORM WAS NOT PASSED IN FIRST TERM

THE HISPANIC BLOG IS THE LATEST HISPANIC NEWS BY JESSICA MARIE GUTIERREZ

On GOP‘s Super Tuesday, Obama Talks Immigration Reform

President Barack Obama acknowledged Tuesday that his administration was unable to pass comprehensive immigration reform, a promise he made during his 2008 campaign, but said that was because immigration had become a partisan issue.

“When I came into office I said ‘I’m going to push to get this done.’ We didn’t get it done,” Obama said during a press conference at the White House. “The reason we haven’t got it done is because what used to be a bipartisan issue, agreement that we should fix this, ended up becoming a partisan issue.”

Obama was responding to a question about recent polls showing the president holding a favorable lead among Latinos against the GOP candidates in the run-up to November’s elections, despite growing disappointment among the community about the failure of any immigration reform.

A Fox News Latino/Latin Insights poll released Monday of likely Latino voters indicated that 73 percent of them approved of Obama’s performance in office, with over half those questioned looking favorably upon his handling of the healthcare debate and the economy, at 66 percent and 58 percent respectively.

More than half of the poll’s respondents, however, said they felt U.S. immigration policy was too strict and an overwhelming majority – 85 percent – would like to see undocumented immigrants have a chance to legalize their status. A huge percentage, 82 percent, believe undocumented immigrants do work that Americans will not do. They feel the undocumented workers help expand the economy.

“My hope is that after this election the Latino community will have sent a strong message that they want a bipartisan effort to pass comprehensive immigration reform that involves making sure that we got tough border security, and this administration has done more for border security than just about anybody,” Obama said, adding that immigration reform also needed to include making sure companies don’t take advantage of undocumented workers and that there was a clear path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.

An overwhelming majority of those polled –nine out of ten– support the DREAM Act, which would allow undocumented immigrants brought as children to gain legal U.S. residency if they attend college or join the military.

Obama praised former President George W. Bush and his advisors for saying that immigration reform should not be something that just the Democrats support. “That was good advice then, it’s good advice now,” Obama said.

The president continued on to say that Congress needs to unify under this matter if any progress is going to be made toward passing immigration reform.

“Ultimately I can’t vote for Republicans. They’re going to have to come to the conclusion that this is good for the country and that this is something that they themselves think is important,” Obama said. “Depending on how Congress turns out, we’ll see how many Republican votes we’ll need to get it done.”

Read more: http://latino.foxnews.com/latino/politics/2012/03/06/obama-calls-for-bipartisan-support-in-immigration-reform/#ixzz1oO56iYXI

SUBSCRIBE to The Hispanic Blog and stay on top of the latest Latino news, politics and entertainment!

Don’t be shy SUBSCRIBE – COMMENT – LIKE ME -CIRCLE ME AND FOLLOW ME

If you have any questions, concerns or simply would like to get a quote on my Marketing, Public Relations, Social Media and/or Events services, please feel free to contact me at thehispanicblog@gmail.com.

God Bless and may you have a fabulous day!

powered by Influential Access – “Transforming the Ordinary to EXTRAordinary!” – CEO – Jessica Marie Gutierrez – Creator of The Hispanic Blog #thehispanicblog