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Latina Lista: News from the Latinx perspective > Palabra Final > Politics > Chertoff’s waiver of 30 laws sends wrong signal to young voters about the value of the vote

Chertoff’s waiver of 30 laws sends wrong signal to young voters about the value of the vote

LatinaLista — Today, an unprecedented marketing move to get (Latino) youth to register to vote was launched. A three-way partnership between get-out-the-vote organization Voto Latino, iTunes and Nacional Records made possible a special album of Spanish Rock, Latin and Pop music created by famous Latino artists.

All proceeds of the Voto Latino album are being donated to Voto Latino to help with their efforts to get more Latino youth to register to vote.
Yet, some youth are wondering how much value their vote has in the face of a government official who can waive laws at will.


Today, at the University of Texas-Pan American in Edinburg, Texas, university President
Blandina Cárdenas hosted a student forum on the one topic that is on every mind in the Texas Rio Grande Valley these days — the border wall.
The forum was broadcast live on streaming video to college campuses located in other parts of the country. Students, from all over, were able to email questions to the forum’s panelists.
Some of those attending the student forum were border mayors, economic development, business and environmental leaders, as well as, elected officials from Mexico.
Needless to say, there was no balance to the forum. Everyone pretty much came to a consensus that the wall is bad and not wanted.
Cárdenas urged the students to get involved and to start speaking out more to defend the border. She told the students that the first step in challenging such an unjust federal decision began with one simple act:

“I want each and every one of you to go out and register to vote. Go and get your friends and your family to register to vote because in a democracy the only defense that one has is the vote,” she said.

Ordinarily, that’s true.
When it comes to electing our next President and all public officials but it’s not proving true in changing the mind of the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, Michael Chertoff, who is waiving 30 laws and regulations to bulldoze his will to get the fence/wall built.
And that’s why Sec. Chertoff’s actions are very dangerous if left unchallenged.
If someone doesn’t rein in the obscene disregard Chertoff has shown for our laws then how can we expect the next generation to believe in the value of the vote, in the value of our system of government?
The students who heard university President Cárdenas would have been right to doubt how much their vote could influence the building of the wall. After all, Chertoff was not voted into office.
While the vote has been pushed onto our young people as the salve to heal all ills, what’s missing is pushing what the rights are that are granted under a democracy.
Too many, young and old, don’t know what rights or expectations of government they are entitled to in this country.
Two of those rights are to expect federal officials to heed our concerns and observe the laws passed meant to protect the well-being of all inhabitants of this country.
While voting is important and should be practiced, the opportunity only comes around so often.
Yet, asserting our voices and our rights happen every day.
It’s time we took advantage of those rights.

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Comment(5)

  • Frank
    April 15, 2008 at 7:10 pm

    Isn’t that what you pro-illegals are advocating? Waving of our immigration laws by rewarding those who entered our country illegaly with legalization or worse yet, citizenship?

  • Frank
    April 15, 2008 at 7:17 pm

    Also what you fail to realize is that the “waving of those laws” can legally be done if it is in the national interest especially where our nation’s security and sovereighnty are involved. So it isn’t the big horror or illegality as is implied here.
    We Americans don’t vote on issues such as the fence anyway, congress does. So the push to register more voters does what, as far as the fence goes?

  • jax
    April 15, 2008 at 7:26 pm

    I think every legally registered voter should vote. It is their right to do and they would be very foolish not to do so.
    Of course, illegals are not entitled to vote and, ergo, should be arrested and jailed if they are apprehended trying to do so. Following their time in the slammer they should be summarily deported.

  • EYES OF TEXAS
    April 16, 2008 at 8:59 am

    It is ironic that all of the sudden the pro-illegals are all about enforcing the laws. If by some strange twist Chertoff is forced to uphold the 30 laws and regulations that would prevent the fence from being erected, he should immediately call for full enforcement of our immigration laws. That is a better solution to the problem anyway. Instead of preventing future illegal immigration with the fence, it would remove the illegal aliens currently in the country.

  • Horace
    April 16, 2008 at 7:40 pm

    You won’t hear advocates for illegal aliens complaining about the environmental damage caused by their constituency. Evironmental laws and damage to the environment only matter if it suits their purpose in demonizing our law enforcement agencies and in reducing the efficacy of or our law enforcement measures. More whining with an agenda that an idiot could see through. Get real, Marisa.

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