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Latina Lista: News from the Latinx perspective > Palabra Final > Business > Breaking News: Dallas Federal Judge rules against Farmers Branch ban on renting to undocumented immigrants

Breaking News: Dallas Federal Judge rules against Farmers Branch ban on renting to undocumented immigrants

LatinaLista — The brakes have been applied to the mean-spirited city ordinance that would have banned the rental of apartments to undocumented immigrants.
The federal judge, U.S. District Court Judge Sam Lindsay, found the ordinance to be unconstitutional and has issued a permanent injunction blocking the city from implementing the measure.

This will not be good news for the new Mayor, Tim O’Hare, who as a Councilman, spearheaded the creation of the ordinance.
With this defeat, the Mayor may feel like he is now under siege. This morning in a Dallas courtroom began testimony by some Hispanic residents of Farmers Branch who are trying to force the city to elect City Council members by district rather that the current process of citywide.
The residents’ contention is that the current system makes it impossible for a Latino candidate to win a city election. If it were done on the basis of districts, the rationale is that a district created by a Latino voting majority would be able to elect a representative.
As it stands now, Farmers Branch has a population of 27,025 — 78.4% are white, 2.4% are black and 37.2% are Hispanic. Yet, a quick look at the Mayor and City Council page reveals a very white leadership.
It’s true that it’s time for change in Farmers Branch and the most basic place to start is to add some color to City Hall.

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Comment(37)

  • Avatar
    Challis
    May 28, 2008 at 4:54 pm

    I feel like this article is a little scatter-brained.
    which is weird because it is so brief.
    is it about the ban on renting, the mayor, or the Farmers Branch elections?

  • Avatar
    Marisa Treviño
    May 28, 2008 at 5:22 pm

    You sound like an editor or publisher 🙂 No, the article is basically about the two court cases that are happening in regard to Farmers Branch.

  • Avatar
    Horace
    May 28, 2008 at 5:51 pm

    Yes, color is always the panacea for Hispanic woes. After all, look how Mexico and the rest of Latin America have turned out. This is so racist, Marisa. You ought to be ashamed of yourself. By the way, I suspect that those colorless Hispanics might take offense. It’s lucky for you that they never read your blog or you’d be pilloried like Lou Dobbs. Maybe a public apology is in order.

  • Avatar
    Marisa Treviño
    May 28, 2008 at 8:08 pm

    Excuse me, Horace but this is the USA and people of color — ALL COLORS — deserve to be elected to office too. As far as colorless Hispanics, let me just say, I’m about as fair as a person gets — and I read my blog all the time:)

  • Avatar
    Frank
    May 28, 2008 at 8:22 pm

    It truly baffles me that any American would say that deterring illegal immigration in our country in any way possible is “mean spirited”.

  • Avatar
    yave begnet
    May 28, 2008 at 8:46 pm

    This is so racist, Marisa. You ought to be ashamed of yourself.
    Horace, you’ve finally jumped the shark. Marisa is racist for pointing out that 37% of the population deserves some measure of representation in the city council? Representation is a basic principle of democracy–this is MLK 101. Unless you’re not on board with MLK and want to go back to the days before people of color were included in local and state legislatures. It’s hard to read your comment any other way.

  • Avatar
    Horace
    May 28, 2008 at 9:05 pm

    Maybe you feel as though color makes a difference in qualification and the ability to represent the people, but representation by race or ethnicity is not what this country should be striving for. Ideally, justice should be blind. Aside from that, if elected, what makes you think that a white Hispanic wouldn’t represent the Hispanic community fairly?

  • Avatar
    Publius
    May 28, 2008 at 9:14 pm

    Not so fast Marisa, you didn’t read the ruling correctly. Time for a retraction. This from the AP:
    http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/APStories/stories/D90URD2G0.html
    ——————————————
    Judge denies suburb’s request for ruling on immigration rule
    05/28/2008
    By ANABELLE GARAY / Associated Press
    A federal judge has denied a Dallas suburb’s request to have its latest rule banning home and apartment rentals to illegal immigrants declared constitutional.
    The decision issued Wednesday focused on a Farmers Branch ordinance that would require prospective tenants to get a rental license from the city. Farmers Branch would ask the federal government for the applicant’s legal status before approving the rental license. It was set to take effect 15 days after a ruling on a similar ordinance currently being contested in court.
    U.S. District Judge Sam A. Lindsay wrote that federal courts do not give advisory decisions to assure governments that their statues pass constitutional muster.
    He pointed out that no one has challenged the constituionality of the ordinance.

  • Avatar
    Daniel
    May 29, 2008 at 1:13 am

    similar laws have been struck down before. this was just a bunch of hoopla at taxpayers expense.

  • Avatar
    Marisa Treviño
    May 29, 2008 at 8:50 am

    Hmm Publius, I don’t think quite yet. Here’s a fuller account of what happened. The bottom line is that the judge found the ordinance to be unconstitutional — http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/dws/dn/latestnews/stories/052908dnmetapartment.3af44c62.html

  • Avatar
    Alessandra
    May 29, 2008 at 10:15 am

    An elected official should be representing the best interests of the community at large and ALL of the people regardless of race.
    If we’re going to start thinking otherwise, then I guess Barack Obama can’t represent me adequately and fairly because I am not African American.
    Electing people because of their race is not what this country is about. It is identity politics run amok.

  • Avatar
    yave begnet
    May 29, 2008 at 1:09 pm

    Horace, you’re talking about whether someone of one ethnicity can dutifully represent people of other ethnicities. Obviously, we all agree that is the case. But I hope you’ll acknowledge that having a legislative body entirely composed of one ethnicity when nearly 40% of the population is of another ethnicity presents a problem. Based on historical experience, the chances that such a situation arose by chance and that the majority group will faithfully represent the minority group are quite low. This was the situation of the Jim Crow South: a large number of blacks were not well-represented by the entirely white legislatures, the vocal protestations of the white legislators themselves to the contrary aside. It’s hard to ignore the similarities of this to the Farmer’s Branch case.
    As you’ll note from the numbers Marisa lists, it appears that some residents have identified themselves as both white and Hispanic. I can’t say whether any of the city council members are Hispanic. If not, I see a problem of potential disenfranchisement.
    Anyway, your claim that it makes no difference whether the ethnic or racial composition of a legislature has any correlation to the composition of the constituency is ridiculous on its face and contradicts thousands of years of human history. I suppose it means you’d be fine with having no people of your ethnicity representing you at the state, local, or federal level. Nice in theory, but since it’s likely not something you’ve ever experienced yourself, may I suggest it’s little more than a diversionary tactic.

  • Avatar
    Dee
    May 29, 2008 at 8:29 pm

    Marisa,
    I live in a suburb in the DFW area. Not all are like Farmers Branch. It seems to me there are pockets of the DFW area that have larger numbers of MM supporters. Farmers Branch is an older suburb and not particularly affluent. Many of their 78% are comprised of MinuteMen supporters and other like minded people. If they really wanted to make a difference, the city would move to sanction and imprison employers who hire illegal immigrants. I have not seen one case of this happening! Instead these MM old-towns vote in these mean spirited laws just to give themselves the jollies! I think if this town changes districts, as proposed, then we will see positive change and all people represented.

  • Avatar
    Horace
    May 29, 2008 at 9:51 pm

    Yave,
    Other than the promotion of amnesty and illegal immigration, what needs do Hispanics have that are different from that of the rest of the population? Name one. Expansion of welfare benefits? Apparently you are a prisoner of history, because the past doesn’t represent the egalitarian practices of the present.
    I find no similarities with Farmers Branch and Jim Crow. Illegal immigration is a duel between the people of this nation who wish to maintain sovereign control and those who would deny them that right. Comparing cooperation between cities, states and federal authorities efforts to identify and deport illegal aliens to Jim Crow laws overlooks the fact that these people were never endowed with the right of citizenship, or were ever unlawfully denied enfranchisement to become citizens. If what’s being done with illegal immigrants is Jim Crow, then you’d probably have support of the international courts and the Supreme Court of this land, but you don’t. As a matter of fact, you can’t cite one international legal authority that objects to our right to enforce out immigration laws. Furthermore, our right to control immigration is supported by the fact that every other nation on this planet reserves the same right to do so. Invoking the claim of Jim Crow is merely a ridiculous contrivance without any foundation in international law.
    Actually, I have not idea and could care less whether there’s a Lithuanian representing me. I find your nexus between fairness and race/ethnicity appalling and divisive, as do most Americans. Our national goal should to be one of eliminating such thinking but apparently we still have some Neanderthals like yourself who can’t get past it. I loathe the politics of race, but apparently you relish it.

  • Avatar
    Horace
    May 29, 2008 at 10:11 pm

    “I have not seen one case of this happening! Instead these MM old-towns vote in these mean spirited laws just to give themselves the jollies! I think if this town changes districts, as proposed, then we will see positive change and all people represented.”
    Judging by the rapid rate of change of demographics of Farmers Branch, one characteristic of an massive influx of illegal aliens, most of those Hispanics aren’t eligible to vote, unless of course they lie about their citizenship and vote illegally. It’s likely that Hispanics would have few members, no matter how they were elected.

  • Avatar
    Frank
    May 30, 2008 at 9:33 am

    Hmm, the Farmer’s Branch citizens may or may not be supporters of the MM and that would be irrelevant anyway. The correct statement would be that they are law abiding Americans who want out immigration laws enforced by the powers that be.
    It isn’t up to citizens to make sure that employers are sanctioned. Those are cases for the courts to settle. Just as it isn’t up to citizens to detain and deport illegal aliens.
    So using effective methods to help deter illegal immigration is “mean spirited”? What a ridiculous statement to make unless of course you are a seditionist in our country.
    So Hispanics need representation in government so they can push amnesty and legalizastion for their own ethnic kind here illegally in our country? Sounds like an act of sedition to me!

  • Avatar
    Dee
    May 30, 2008 at 9:50 am

    Horace, We are getting an inside view of your agenda. Despite what you think, we are educated, hard working, and have close to 50M Latino citizens in our great USA. We serve the front lines in Iraq. We are in business. We are in colleges-universities. We continue to support and build our great USA!
    Of course we can vote and vote for people of our choice.
    What will we vote for:
    1. Stopping Racial Profiling
    2. Closing the heinous Detention Centers
    3. Opposing laws that promote Racial Profiling and hurt the populace.
    Of course there is racism against minorities in our country. How do we fight back? Through our votes and through our purchase power. We stop watching CNN (Dobbs, Beck) We stop spending our $$ in locations that promote xenophobia.

  • Avatar
    laura
    May 30, 2008 at 5:50 pm

    Dee,
    great points.
    Let me add:
    4. Asking all candidates for elected office whether they support stopping the brutal ICE raids as of NOW – and voting accordingly

  • Avatar
    Frank
    May 30, 2008 at 6:23 pm

    In other words take away all the nessesary tools to fight and deter illegal immigration? Sounds like sedition to me.
    FYI, there are not 50 million Hispanic CITIZENS in this country. It is more like 40 million. Don’t over inflate your numbers.
    80% of illegal aliens are of Latino extraction. Whom should law enforcement be questioning, the Chinese? Why wouldn’t any good American want law enforcement to be able to do it’s job by using all of these necessary tools?
    Nowadays there is just as much racism towards Whites as there is against minorities. Racism has nothing to do with illegal immigration anyway so why bring that up?
    Xenophobia is a fear of strangers. We are the most diverse country on the planet. How can we be xenophobic? This is about illegal immigration, not a fear of strangers.

  • Avatar
    Horace
    May 30, 2008 at 7:06 pm

    “Horace, We are getting an inside view of your agenda.”
    And just how do you characterize my agenda, Dee?
    “Despite what you think, we are educated, hard working, and have close to 50M Latino citizens in our great USA. We serve the front lines in Iraq. We are in business. We are in colleges-universities. We continue to support and build our great USA!
    Of course we can vote and vote for people of our choice.”
    But Hispanic is so artificial as a political group.
    1. You aren’t from the same homelands.
    2. You aren’t all of the same race.
    3. You don’t really have the same culture, as you don’t all eat the same food, or go to the same church.
    4. You’re not even of the same skin color.
    About all that you have in common is language, so what kind of depth is that for a society?
    “What will we vote for:
    1. Stopping Racial Profiling”
    This is an invention of your advocates who have little else to use in defense of deportations as the result of illegal immigration.
    “2. Closing the heinous Detention Centers”
    Most of this is lies and exaggerations, shamelessly exploited by your political representatives.
    “3. Opposing laws that promote Racial Profiling and hurt the populace.”
    None of the laws proposed by state and local communities have any reference to race. You yowl because most apprehended illegal aliens are Hispanic, ignoring the fact that coincidentally most illegal aliens are Hispanic. I’m sorry but, just as the majority of crime in the inner city is commited by black people, most of the violations of immigration laws are committed by Hispanic illegal aliens. Then you disingenuously claim racial profiling. Were on to this little gimmick, so forget about stiffling local and state support of immigration laws because of it. The courts are starting to see through this as well.
    “Of course there is racism against minorities in our country. How do we fight back? Through our votes and through our purchase power. We stop watching CNN (Dobbs, Beck) We stop spending our $$ in locations that promote xenophobia.”
    It’s doubtful that Hispanics would ever affect CNN or Lou Dobbs bottom line, as it’s well known that Hispanics are not even within their demographics of customers.
    Xenophobia? Hispanics as an ethnic group are among the most xenophobic of peoples. Try working illegally in Mexico or other countries in Central America and see how far it gets you. How many nations on this planet would accept the invasion of 12 million foreigners with eqanimity. The number is zero. Is it any wonder why your claims of xenophobia ring hollow with the vast majority of Americnas. If our complaints are xenophobic, then try making comparisons with the rest of Latin America. Xenophobia is exactly what’s keeping Mexico from accepting investment from abroad that would make marked improvments to its people. Latin Americans have nothing on this country when it comes to xenophobia, so don’t give me that shit.
    P.S. I’ll bet none of you even knew the word xenophobia before the facist open borders people made it part of their abusive lexicon.

  • Avatar
    yave begnet
    May 30, 2008 at 11:00 pm

    Xenophobia is a fear of strangers. We are the most diverse country on the planet. How can we be xenophobic? This is about illegal immigration, not a fear of strangers.
    As I’ve said before, this stuff is impossible to parody.
    I’ll bet none of you even knew the word xenophobia before the facist open borders people made it part of their abusive lexicon.
    I can’t get enough of this.
    It’s beyond rich that the same strain of conservatism that fought MLK’s vision of a colorblind society tooth and nail now uses it as a shield against charges of racism and as a sword to reverse progressive policies that would benefit people of color. You may have fooled yourself, but that’s about it.
    Regarding international authority and immigration policy, the whole problem with Jim Crow was that it had the support of the Supreme Court of the day. Likewise, we have a Court now stacked with conservatives who will uphold our unjust immigration laws for the foreseeable future. If your measure of justice always relied on the contemporary position of the Supreme Court, then Plessy and Dred Scott were fair and correct decisions. Likewise, today’s laws as interpreted by courts and enforced by the executive are out of step with basic principles of fairness.
    As far as international precedent, this ECHR decision chastised Belgium for treating its asylum-seekers in detention far more humanely than we routinely treat ours. And this statement (pdf) from leading human rights organizations rebukes U.S. violation of the principle of nonrefoulement, or sending non-citizens to countries where they are likely to be tortured. I’m sure there are others. Also, I didn’t know anti’s were big proponents of international law–John Bolton doesn’t even think it exists. But your point is a good one–many countries treat their immigrants poorly. That is no reason for us to do so as well; in fact, this is an area where the U.S. can lead others towards more equitable, enlightened immigration policies.
    Anyway, debating the trolls on these threads is like banging your head against a wall (kind of like dealing with DOS and USCIS in some respects). You can only do it for so long before sanity intervenes and you move on to something more productive.

  • Avatar
    Horace
    May 31, 2008 at 7:34 am

    “As far as international precedent, this ECHR decision chastised Belgium for treating its asylum-seekers in detention far more humanely than we routinely treat ours.”
    Yave, I notice that when you fail to have a legitimate counter argument you revert to your old habit of calling people trolls.
    Few Mexicans illegal aliens qualify as political asylum seekers under international law. Most illegal aliens in Europe and the rest of the world would be deported in consonance with international law, just as we do in this country. There has been no international convention that has resulted in a treaty to grant open border migration to migrants. Once more you fail to address the issue. You have no international precedence in which nations are denied their sovereign right to determine who they permit to immigrate, so you resort to answering a question that wasn’t asked. This is the trash spin we get from transnationalists who would ignore this nation’s right to govern its destiny.

  • Avatar
    Frank
    May 31, 2008 at 8:09 am

    Yave, calling anyone in this blog a “troll” just because they don’t agree with your point of view is childish and immature.
    It sounds like your beef should be with our government, not law abiding Americans who trust that our immigration laws are based on what is best for our country. There is no reason to think otherwise. Those who set immigration policy in our country know what numbers of immigrants we can absorb into our country yearly and what our labor needs are. They know that favoring one ethnic group over an another is not fair nor does it result in the assimilation process.
    Stop attacking American citizens if you don’t like our immigration laws and policies. Go to our govenrment and protest where our policies are set. This name calling of citizens who don’t agree with you is juvenile and is dividing us citizens on this issue.

  • Avatar
    laura
    May 31, 2008 at 1:01 pm

    Dear yave,
    I completely agree it is a simple waste of precious time to respond to the writings of people like “Frank,” “Horace” etc. You will note two things: 1. they are very few 2. they have an enormous amount of time to spend on all kinds of websites, writing long repetitions of their racist slogans, over and over again. I.e., they have no actual content in their lives that would require them to dedicate time and energy.
    In my view, Marisa’s – and other – blogs are valuable as opportunities to learn new facts, new ideas, and to discuss among ourselves what we want to do about them.
    Tengo mucho trabajo, y hay muchas cosas que no se y que quiero aprender. No tengo tiempo para idiotas.
    Personally, I simply skip over the posts that I know contain only the same ignorant racism repeated over and over – and look to reading what new thoughts, ideas, and information come from others – people like you.

  • Avatar
    Horace
    May 31, 2008 at 5:54 pm

    “.. they have an enormous amount of time to spend on all kinds of websites, writing long repetitions of their racist slogans, over and over again. I.e., they have no actual content in their lives that would require them to dedicate time and energy.”
    Thats funny. The fact is that Laura, you have no idea how many blogs that I post to or how much time I spend in doing so, yet you persist as always, making declaritive statements that have no evidence to back them up.

  • Avatar
    Frank
    May 31, 2008 at 6:59 pm

    laura, instead of making empty and false accusations like a little child, why don’t you point out those posts of ours that are racist! You won’t be able to! There aren’t any, race card puller and chidish name caller!

  • Avatar
    Evelyn
    June 1, 2008 at 4:24 am

    Amman Laura,
    Like I stated, their racist views are ground in stone. Even when confronted with truth they choose to go on believing and regurgitating the lies.
    Just ignore um, they will probable go out with a big bang for doing something stupid and then they will be history.

  • Avatar
    Frank
    June 1, 2008 at 5:39 pm

    Just as I suspected not one of the pro-illegals in here can produce one post by us anti’s that is racist in nature. That is because the true racists are those in their mirrors.

  • Avatar
    Evelyn
    June 2, 2008 at 2:56 am

    Still regurtating the same BS. In the past I gave you list after list of your racist rants. You should think of something original to say instead of serving as Tanton’s puppets.

  • Avatar
    Frank
    June 2, 2008 at 11:58 am

    Not one pro-illegal has posted anything that could be called a racist rant in here by us anti’s. It is merely what an ethnocentric racist’s opinion is not based on any facts at all.

  • Avatar
    Evelyn
    June 5, 2008 at 12:37 am

    BIG OMG OK, listen up now everybody, the racists are the only ones who know everything. They never lie. Their hate of Mexicans is pure and chaste. They were sent here by God. So the rest of you SHUT UP, GOT IT! Ha! Ha! ROTFLMAO

  • Avatar
    Frank
    June 5, 2008 at 8:21 am

    There is no hatred of Mexicans by the anti-illegals per se. We object to our immigration laws being violted by them and others. It just so happens that Mexicans comprise the majority of them and that is why most of the focus is on them. As a matter of fact Mexicans make up 60% of the illegals in this country and other Latinos make up another 20%!

  • Avatar
    Evelyn
    June 6, 2008 at 8:13 pm

    Violated the law, quit spinning this issue. Most of the immigrants were welcomed with a job, free transportation, housing. Heck that seems like a welcome with open arms to me!
    Immigration laws are broken, they violate themselves because they are uninforceable as they stand. We need CIR passed, and make sure those new laws are inforced.

  • Avatar
    Frank
    June 7, 2008 at 8:50 am

    The employers are violating our laws by hiring illegal aliens and the illegal aliens are violating our laws by entering our country illegally. What part of that don’t you get?
    The employers have no right to circumvent our laws or the will of the majority of the rest of Americans by doing what they are doing.
    Our immigration laws are enforceable and they should be. 1. Secure our borders by any means necessary, including the fence. 2. Force employers to use the e-verify system to determine the legality of any potential employee and those already on their payroll via the Save Act. 3. We need a National I.D. card implemented.
    4. Deny any social benefits to illegal aliens in this country. 5. Rescind the 14th Amendment that allows birthright citizenship to children born of illegal aliens. All of the above would cut back illegal immigration tremendously.
    Our immigration policies need to be based on our needs, not the needs of the immigrant. If we need foreign workers they must come legally, no excuses.

  • Avatar
    Evelyn
    June 9, 2008 at 6:14 am

    Immigration laws as they stand are not enforceable. If they were you wouldn’t need 1,2,3,4,and 5.

  • Avatar
    Frank
    June 9, 2008 at 2:52 pm

    1,2,3,4 and 5 should have been implemented long ago. These are the “method” of enforcement but just haven’t been done. So when you put the necessary “methods” into place our immigration laws would automatically be enforced.

  • Avatar
    Evelyn
    June 12, 2008 at 6:42 pm

    That is what I said, the way immigration laws stand now, with out the help of 12345 cannot be enforced.
    That is why we need CIR. To be enforceable congress needs to add 12345. They must also address the immigrants that are here now, because 12345 were not in place and immigration laws as they stood were not enforcable.

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