I Don’t Even Know Where To Begin…
I read this article at WSJ Online the other day and I was absolutely livid. So much so I had to wait a couple of days to decide if I even wanted to post about. I have included the entire text of the post online article. My comments are after.
On July 20, 22 young illegal immigrants in caps and gowns entered the Hart Senate Office Building in Washington, D.C., and began sit-ins in the offices of several senators. Twelve soon returned to the atrium, where they formed a circle around a banner reading “Undocumented and Unafraid.” Refusing to be moved, the students were arrested by Capitol Police, as were nine others who had stayed put in the offices of Sen. John McCain and Majority Leader Harry Reid.
Less than two miles away, a similar protest by a separate but allied group was taking place at Lafayette Square in front of the White House. These students went a step further. Openly announcing their immigration status and giving their full names just across the Mall from Immigration and Customs Enforcement headquarters, they forced a difficult choice upon ICE officials.
Take no action, and ICE would undermine the law. But come down hard by deporting the students, many of them still teenagers, and it would risk drawing overwhelming public outcry.
These individuals—plus several hundred more high school and college students of illegal status—had come to the capital to call for passage of the floundering Dream Act. Dream, the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act, co-sponsored by 36 senators, including Dick Durbin (D., Ill.) and Richard Lugar (R., Ind.), would offer temporary residency to students who arrived in the U.S. illegally as minors if they attend college. It would grant them permanent residency upon graduating.
Young people have come to the capital every year since 2001 to demonstrate in support of the act. But many senators suggest that the bill remains five votes short of the 60 needed for cloture, and it has slim prospects of being passed during this session of Congress. So in order to draw greater attention to their cause, affected students decided to undertake a risky form of civil disobedience. If arrested, they faced deportation.
Yet ICE has stated that it has no intention of initiating deportation proceedings against the students arrested in the Washington protests. The officials likely wanted to avoid a repeat of what happened last month with a Harvard student named Eric Balderas.
Mr. Balderas had deportation proceedings opened against him after authorities discovered his status as he was passing through security at an airport. The case attracted widespread media attention and international backlash. Harvard administrators stated their support for Mr. Balderas, whose case was soon taken up by Mr. Durbin. After less than two weeks, ICE backed down, halting Mr. Balderas’s deportation indefinitely.
Hoping the sit-in will fade from the public view, ICE is sticking to the safe line that the students’ actions in Washington simply “illustrate the need for comprehensive immigration reform,” as spokesperson Gillian Brigham told me.
Yet this strikes many on Capitol Hill as an inexcusable failure to enforce the law. “It’s outrageous,” California Rep. Gary Miller told the Orange County Register. “How can you have a protest right in a U.S. senator’s office, admit you are here illegally in violation of the law, and we pat you on the back and do nothing?”
But even doing nothing stands to strengthen the “Dreamers.” Pictures of these students protesting with impunity are already making an impression on students of illegal status from coast to coast, spreading the movement with the aid of social networking websites.
With that momentum, the activists intend to maintain a continuous presence in the capital. One organizer, Mo Abdollahi, who was brought to America illegally from Iran as a child, told me that the protests will go on “as long as it takes” for Dream to pass. At the same time, Mr. Abdollahi disputes the notion that these actions are deliberate provocations in the mold of Gandhi or King. He says that the Dreamers are “just trying to live [their] lives.” If that means deportation, he says, it is a price they are willing to pay.
Is their goal to force another public deportation crisis like that of Eric Balderas? “We are not deliberately trying to do that,” he claims. If the students’ civil disobedience brings the force of the law down upon them, he says, that is simply a hazard of their activism. Other student leaders told me that there is more calculation behind the actions in Washington. But whether these activists are naïve or calculating, their effectiveness is impossible to dispute.
The protests this month are most significant not because of any direct influence they may have on lawmakers, but because they are drawing other young people with illegal status out into the open, undoing the chilling effect that legal vulnerability has long had on illegal immigrants’ political activism. As the fall elections near, such activism will likely serve as another flash point for an already volatile issue.
Well fuck me. My first reaction – these little fuckers are rubbing the taxpayer faces in the their taxpayer-funded educations and the administration is not going to lift a finger to do anything about it lest said administration upset the illegal alien Democrat voting block. This from an administration that, contrary to the hope and change it promised to get elected, has continued the prior administrations policy of not enforcing laws and regulations that might hinder those groups and entities it curries favor with and gets financial support from.
These are flagrant lawbreakers, in this country illegally, illegally using taxpayer funded services and facilities. And now they further break the law through civil disobedience, openly proclaiming their illegal status in order to influence a law that will flip a switch and make it all go away for them? Seriously, WTF? I think we need to ask ourselves about a government that is willing to look the other way while crimes are being committed in broad daylight, in the very seat of our national government, by foreign nationals here illegally attempting to influence national legislation and national elections.
Somebody help me understand how this is in the same vein as Gandhi and King? Somebody help me understand how this is in the best interests of the country as a whole and more immediately our national security? Somebody help me understand how this doesn’t make Arizona’s case for them? Somebody help me understand how we are going to stop this fucking madness?