Skip to comments.US immigrants mobilizing for major 'action' (7,000 Muslims to march in Chicago)
Posted on 04/09/2006 5:51:02 PM PDT by MammalModerate
LOS ANGELES - In Los Angeles, Eun Sook Lee will march on behalf of Korean illegal immigrants, at least 50,000, living in southern California. On Boston Common, Punam Rogers will join other Indian émigrés, as well as business clients and students from China, Germany, and Britain. In Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Ivalier Duvra will take to the streets to draw attention to Haitian newcomers who he says need refugee status.
Coming on the heels of demonstrations in several larger cities, a National Day of Action on Immigrant Rights Monday is expected to involve people in some 90 US municipalities, well above organizers' goal of 10. Described as the biggest social movement of Hispanics since the United Farm Workers of Cesar Chavez, the plans for protests, vigils, and marches include a less-visible tier of people stirred to action over American immigration policy: non-Latinos.
"If you watch TV and read the papers, you would think this [immigration reform] is primarily an issue only for Latinos or only illegals or only poor immigrants. [Monday] will show differently," predicts Abdul Malik Mujahid, a Chicago-based Islamic cleric who says 7,000 Muslims will march there Monday to protest the "climate of fear" since 9/11. "Latino organizers have done a big favor not just to themselves but to all other immigrants, as well as America itself, by standing up and saying this country's immigration system is broken and needs to be fixed. Now the rest of us must join in."
The national day of action seems to have expanded exponentially with the organizing power of the Internet. Besides demonstrations, speeches, processions, and assorted performances (from drumming to skits), groups are planning work-walkouts, product boycotts, fasting, and other measures.
Smaller cities where events are planned include Bakersfield, Calif.; Fort Myers, Fla.; Hays, Kan.; and Oxford, Ohio, and include groups as diverse as Ukrainians, Palestinians, Irish, labor, and antiwar coalitions.
"No one could have anticipated this kind of involvement even as little as six months ago," says organizer Rich Stolz of Fair Immigration Reform Movement, one of the organizing coalitions for National Action Day. "Once it got announced, it spread nationally, regionally, locally through groups which have been building relationships for years. They know this is the moment to do something unprecedented."
Organizers originally designed a broad platform they hoped would attract a wide array of immigrants - Pacific Islanders, Southeast Asians, Europeans, Africans, and Pakistanis. The specific objection is legislation, approved by the US House in December, that makes it a felony (rather than a civil offense) to be in the US illegally. But organizers are also asking for something: worker protections, civil rights measures, family reunification, and immigration reform that defines "a path to citizenship for current undocumented and future immigrants to the US."
"This is America's civil rights battle for the 21st century," says Chung-Wha Hong of the New York Immigration Coalition, an umbrella organization for about 150 groups in New York State that work with immigrants and refugees. Immigrants are anticipating a duel between the House and the Senate over immigration-reform language, she says, but Monday's actions are really about "whether or not America will continue to be what it has always been - a nation of immigrants.
Anger has been building among immigrants for decades, Ms. Hong says, but it has intensified over the past decade, as immigrants felt targeted by welfare reform, what they see as a civil-rights rollback, and, most recently, anti- terror laws. Post-9/11 crackdowns, legislation denying social services to illegals in California, and Minutemen border operations have roused immigrants, legal and not. "Immigrants have been feeling like targets for all that is wrong and want to stand up and show how they contribute to the diversity and richness of America," she says.
L.A.'s Ms. Lee says her major concern is law-enforcement sweeps through Korea-town, which have created a climate of fear in the immigrant community. Boston's Ms. Rogers says her priority is visa procedures for foreigners who come to America to study, which she says need to encourage the world's best and brightest to stay in America. Mr. Duvra says US refugee policy needs an overhaul.
While organizers say a big turnout and a broad diversity at Monday's events will send a signal to politicians in Washington wrangling over immigration reform, others see possible down sides.
"Each time immigrants have these giant rallies, the more they infuriate the rest of the American population with the idea that those who break the law get to march and somehow be rewarded," says Ira Mehlman, L.A. spokesman for Federation for American Immigration Reform. "We have seen in France what happens when you try to bring in millions of people ... in many cases who are hostile. We saw there that it didn't work, and it won't work here."
Others note that it is not likely so many participating groups will be able to agree later, when it's time to iron out the details in whatever legislation emerges. The Iraq antiwar movement and the antiglobalization movement are cases in point, they say.
"There are a lot of fringe groups tagging along on this to get exposure and legitimacy and to network," says Britt Minshall, a 16-year career law enforcer and now a pastor at United Church of Christ. "Once the main goal is accomplished, they begin to fight and hurt the cause they apparently came together for."
Activists themselves have some concerns. "I worry a bit over whether these events will be able to remain be peaceful," says Rogers. And demonstrators who carry the flags of their home countries may leave a bad taste in the mouths of Americans, she says. Such was the case in recent demonstrations in Washington.
IF we had thinking leaders, they would realize this is the reason NOT to let millions of illegal immigrants into the country.
What was that story about Pandora's Box. Our Gov't has failed us in this whole illegals problem.
It doesn't matter at this point. Every left-wing, radical, communist, socialist, queer, anti-gun, race-baiting group that has more than 2 members is going to use this opportunity for coming up against true Conservative Americans. Oh, let's not forget our own government.
This sh*t isn't looking real good for us at this time.
""No one could have anticipated this kind of involvement even as little as six months ago," says organizer Rich Stolz of Fair Immigration Reform Movement, one of the organizing coalitions for National Action Day.""
Sure I could have. Lots of money from the cheaper labor industries flowing into these ethnic front groups. Many of them were probably created in the NGO divisions of public relations firms. Now there's a story...
Plus many of them are protesting the "felony" provision. Brilliant move by the Dems/Industry to slip that into the House bill.
"it's going to come down to a war, a war that most illegals can't afford to wage and one that's going to be very ugly!"
The quicker it starts the better.
And I'll bet there will be no INS agents to be found at that rally, either, just like the ones in Cali, Arizona, Texas, and Colorado. No illegal alien arrests, no deportations...just more and more looking the other way from the feds.
Why in the frell are we even still paying the INS when they consistantly refuse to perform the duties of their job? If I had the success rate of these guys when I performed my job, it wouldn't be mine beyond Monday.
All right, immigration proposals under discussion. Let me add mine to the mix. I want to call this proposal the Limbaugh Laws. Here they are.
First, if you immigrate to the United States of America, you must speak the native language.
You have to be a professional or an investor. We are not going to take unskilled workers. You will not be allowed.
There will be no special bilingual programs in the schools, no special ballots for elections, no government business will be conducted in your native language.
Foreigners will not have the right to vote, I don't care how long they are here, nor will they ever be allowed to hold political office.
According to the Limbaugh Laws, if you're in our country, you cannot be a burden to taxpayers. You are not entitled, ever, to welfare, to food stamps, or other government goodies.
You can come if you invest here, but it must be an amount equal to 40,000 times the daily minimum wage. If you don't know have that amount of money, you can't come and invest. You have to stay home.
If you do come and you want to buy land, okay, but we're going to restrict your options. You will not be allowed to buy waterfront property in the United States. That will be reserved for citizens naturally born in this country.
In fact, as a foreigner, you must relinquish individual rights to property. These are the Limbaugh Laws.
Another thing. You don't have the right to protest when you come here. You're allowed no demonstrations, you cannot wave a foreign flag, no political organizing, no bad-mouthing our president or his policies, or you get sent home. You're a foreigner. You shut your mouth or you get out, and if you come here illegally, you go straight to jail and we're going to hunt you down 'til we find you.
I can imagine many of you think that the Limbaugh Laws are pretty harsh. I imagine today some of you probably are going, "Yeah! Yeah!" Well, let me tell you this, folks. Every one of the laws I just mentioned are actual laws of Mexico, today. I just read you Mexican immigration law. That's how the Mexican government handles immigrants to their country. Yet Mexicans and others come here illegally, they protest in our streets, they get on our welfare program, and we have members of the United States Senate, both parties, doing handstands and back flips, going through every contortion possible to allow it to continue so that it doesn't make these people mad, resulting in votes against these linguini-spined populations.
This is more than a double standard. It is an indication of just how gutless people in charge in this country are to protect the identity of this country. They don't care about border security, I know the ports deal notwithstanding, they're not doing a thing to shore up the border, because that might make somebody mad. It's a good thing there are a whole lot of Arab voters in this country or the port deal would have gone through, too.
Isn't it WONDERFUL to see our beloved country join the cesspool of 3rd world-ism???
It's true, I guess: you can take an individual out of the 3rd world, but you can't take the 3rd world out of the individual.
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