Latina Lista: News from the Latinx perspective > Palabra Final > Immigration > Candidates’ rhetoric about immigration reform is like peeling an egg

Candidates’ rhetoric about immigration reform is like peeling an egg

LatinaLista — It doesn’t matter which side is talking about immigration these days because, like an overboiled egg, there are too many cracks in what’s being said to know if their ideas are fully cooked or not.

For example, today, Senator John McCain, chose to speak about immigration before a “non-Hispanic” audience. That’s a rarity since it’s pretty much understood that it’s a radioactive topic with most of his supporters. What made today so different was that he was in Scranton, PA and he wasn’t talking about Hispanic undocumented immigrants but Irish.
Yet, in reading the following quote, one can’t shake the notion that it was delivered along the same lines as his infamous “Hispanics are God’s children too” ad.
“This nation is all the stronger — this nation is stronger, this nation is stronger — for the infusion of fresh blood and vitality that has come to this nation wave after wave: Irish, Italian, Poles, everybody who’s come to this nation has enriched our nation, including our Hispanic citizenry. OK? That’s what America’s all about.”
While McCain has made no secret that before he supports any type of immigration reform, the border has to be secured first, it’s clearly not a priority issue with him. As one reporter noted, McCain won’t talk about immigration “unless the subject is something of particular interest to his audience, or he is asked about it.”
On the other hand, Obama has talked about reforming immigration and he even answered a questionnaire on the topic sent to his campaign – something the McCain campaign refused to do, let alone acknowledge.
In the past, Obama has said that he will address the topic of immigration reform in his first year of office. Yet in an interview aired on 60 Minutes over the weekend, Obama identified the two most pressing issues that he would work on immediately — the economy and the war in Iraq.
Two issues that definitely are of vital importance to the nation and which are, in and of themselves, as complex as the immigration issue. It’s a safe bet that these two issues alone can occupy any new administration for a good while.
So where does that leave the issue of immigration?

If the current rhetoric is applied to fixing the immigration problem, then it’s clear that both sides want to still address only the symptoms of illegal immigration, rather than looking at the core of the problem which is two-fold: undocumented immigrants are overcoming border security measures to arrive daily because work still exists and/or undocumented immigrants are reuniting with family members.
It’s one thing to force all businesses to run their hires through E-Verify and penalize them for hiring undocumented workers but it’s another to purposely keep parents separated from children or children separated from their parents because of a difference in legal status between the two.
The trouble with the current rhetoric on immigration reform is that everyone thinks that there are no more solutions for the issue or even a new way to address it. Just like most everyone thinks there’s only one way to peel an egg.
There’s always a new way to think about something — there just has to be the will to create a new vision.

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  • laura
    September 22, 2008 at 7:24 pm

    Marisa, you are so right.
    We know McCain will continue the Bush/Chertoff approach to immigration: raids, imprisonment, tearing families apart. It is simple: “securing the border first” means there will never be immigration reform. Because unless it is landlocked and builds an Iron Curtain, no country can “secure the border.” At least I don’t know of any country in the world that has “secured the border,” with the exception of the Soviet block countries on their Western side 20 years ago.
    McCain/Palin will mean more concentration camps for immigrants, and for poor Americans in crisis – this happened to the people of New Orleans who have no car to evacuate from a threatening hurricane, just this month.
    As for Obama: certainly he will be infinitely better for the country, and for immigrants, than McCain/Palin. But unless he is pushed very very hard – by us, by the people whose vote he is asking for today – immigration reform will drop quickly down on his To Do list on January 20, 2009.
    Certainly Bush has left him with enough disastrous crises to deal with that unless we put immigration reform back on his To Do list, it is easy to imagine how it could be “forgotten.”

  • Irma
    September 23, 2008 at 10:11 am

    Obama is all talk. I dont think he will do anything for immigrants. He wants to get elected pure and simple. Answering a
    questionairre is easy – he can always take it back. And we all know , that he has no problem in throwing things under the bus.

  • Evelyn
    September 23, 2008 at 12:49 pm

    Instead of protesting against those who feed you and clean up after you. The anti-Hispanics especially Mexicans should be protesting the actions of the people they elect to office.
    The next wave of immigrants will be from Bolivia if the U.S. gov. can oust their president who hasn’t allowed the Americans to steal the wealth of their nation.
    Is a U.S.-Approved Coup Under Way in Bolivia?
    By Benjamin Dangl
    Bolivian President Evo Morales announces that a coup d’etat by right-wing regional governors is under way.
    On Monday, Sept. 15, Bolivian President Evo Morales arrived in Santiago, Chile for an emergency meeting of Latin American leaders that convened to seek a resolution to the recent conflict in Bolivia.
    Upon his arrival, Morales said, “I have come here to explain to the presidents of South America the civic coup d’etat by governors in some Bolivian states in recent days. This is a coup in the past few days by the leaders of some provinces, with the takeover of some institutions, the sacking and robbery of some government institutions and attempts to assault the national police and the armed forces.”
    Morales was arriving from his country, where the smoke was still rising from a week of right-wing government opposition violence that left the nation paralyzed, at least 30 people dead, and businesses, government and human rights buildings destroyed.
    During the same week, Morales declared Philip Goldberg, the U.S. ambassador in Bolivia, a “persona non grata” for “conspiring against democracy” and for his ties to the Bolivian opposition.
    The recent conflict in Bolivia and the subsequent meeting of presidents raise the questions: What led to this meltdown? Whose side is the Bolivian military on? And what does the Bolivian crisis and regional reaction tell us about the new power bloc of South American nations?
    Massacre in Pando
    On Sept. 11, in the tropical Bolivian department of Pando, which borders Brazil and Peru, a thousand pro-Morales men, women and children were heading toward Cobija, the department’s capital, to protest the right-wing Gov. Leopoldo Fernández and his thugs’ takeover of the city and airport.
    According to press reports and eyewitness accounts, when the protesters arrived at a bridge 7 kilometers outside the town of Porvenir, they were ambushed by assassins hired and trained by Fernández. Snipers in the treetops shot down on the unarmed campesinos.
    Shirley Segovia, a Porvenir resident, recalled to Bolpress, “We were killed like pigs, with machine guns, with rifles, with shotguns, with revolvers. The campesinos had only brought their teeth, clubs and slingshots, they didn’t bring rifles. After the first shots, some fled to the river Tahuamanu, but they were followed and shot at.” Others reported being tortured; days later the death toll rose to 30, with dozens wounded and more than 100 still missing. Roberto Tito, a farmer who was present at the conflict, said, “This was a massacre of farmers; this is something that we should not allow.”
    After the massacre, Morales declared a state of siege in Pando and sent in the military, and by Sept. 15 a tense peace had reportedly returned to the region. Morales also called for the arrest of Fernández, who fled across the border into rural Brazil. (Fernández has since been arrested and taken to the Bolivian capital.)
    This massacre took place just weeks after an Aug. 10 national recall vote invigorated Morales’ mandate: He won 67 percent support nationwide, showing that his staunch, violent opponents are clearly in the minority. In Pando, Morales won 53 percent of the vote, an increase of 32 percent from the 21 percent he received from Pando residents during the presidential election in 2005.
    The days leading up to the Sept. 11 massacre in Pando were full of anti-government protesters ransacking businesses and human rights organizations across the country. On Sept. 10, an explosion reportedly set off by opposition groups disrupted the flow of gas lines to Brazil from Tarija, Bolivia.
    U.S. Ambassadors Expelled
    Following these tumultuous events, Morales demanded that Goldberg, the US. ambassador, leave the country. “Without fear of anyone, without fear of the empire, today before you, before the Bolivian people, I declare the ambassador of the United States persona non grata,” Morales said. “The ambassador of the United States is conspiring against democracy and wants Bolivia to break apart.”
    The announcement came after a private meeting Goldberg had with the right-wing governor of Santa Cruz on Aug. 25, and a later visit to the opposition governor of Chuquisaca. Throughout Goldberg’s time as ambassador, which began in 2006, the Morales government has accused him of orchestrating U.S. funding and support to opposition groups in the eastern part of the country. (See the February 2008 The Progressive magazine article “Undermining Bolivia” for more information on Washington’s destabilization efforts in Bolivia.) Before coming to Bolivia, Goldberg worked as an ambassador in Kosovo from 2004 to 2006 and consular in Colombia. At a press conference that Goldberg held in La Paz before leaving for the United States, he said: “I want to say that all the accusations made against me, against my embassy … against my country and against my people are entirely false and unjustified.”
    Following the U.S. ambassador’s expulsion from Bolivia, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez announced that the U.S. ambassador in his country had to leave: “He has 72 hours, from this moment, the Yankee ambassador in Caracas, to leave Venezuela.” The United States responded by asking the ambassadors of Venezuela and Bolivia to leave the United States. This all took place during a tense few months in U.S.-Latin American relations in which the U.S. Navy reinstated its Fourth Fleet in the Caribbean after decades of inactivity.
    Chavez announced joint exercises with Russia in the Caribbean, and Bolivia strengthened its ties with Iran.
    On Sept. 15 in Santiago, Chile, the nine presidents within the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR), including Argentina, Ecuador, Brazil, Venezuela, Colombia, Chile and even Colombia, a close U.S. ally, met to come to a resolution on the Bolivian crisis. This organization is one of the newest in a series of regional networks that are making increasingly collaborative political and economic decisions throughout South America. All of the leaders backed Morales, condemned the opposition’s violent tactics and emphasized that they won’t recognize separatists in the country.
    U.S. Influence in a Changing South America
    The current crisis in Bolivia and the ongoing diplomatic drama between the United States and Latin America says a lot about the future of the region and its cooperative handling of economic and political questions. In an interview via e-mail, Raúl Zibechi, a Uruguayan journalist, professor and political analyst who writes regularly for the Americas Program, said he believes the expulsion of U.S. ambassadors, and the regional leaders’ response to the conflict in Bolivia, “is the manifestation of the fact that the USA can no longer impose its will on Latin America, and very concretely in South America.” He says there are two reasons for this change: “the birth of a regional power that seeks to be a global player, such as Brazil, a capitalist power but with different interests from the USA; and the existence of governments born of the heat of the resistance of social movements in countries that are large producers of hydrocarbons, as in Venezuela, Bolivia and perhaps Ecuador.”
    Though working to overthrow leftist governments is unfortunately nothing new in South America, region-wide cooperation between left-leaning governments, without the presence of the United States, is new. As Morales and other regional leaders forge ahead with progressive policies, there may be no turning back for this changing continent — regardless of the challenges posed by the Bolivian opposition. The geopolitical map of the hemisphere is being redrawn, in large part by the new alliances between South American nations, and the region’s increased resistance to Washington’s political and economic interference.

  • Evelyn
    September 23, 2008 at 12:56 pm

    Oh, I almost forgot!
    I didnt copy the whole article because it is too long liquid.
    Just wanted to make that clear before you try to make that the issue by refocusing on it, instead of focusing on the issues the article exposes!

  • rolandthick
    September 23, 2008 at 2:55 pm

    I have one question: Why do so many latinos identify with republicans? Do they have any idea whos side they are on at all? Republicans DO NOT have latinos in the best interest at all. What are you thinking?

  • Liquidmicro
    September 23, 2008 at 9:11 pm

    Why would I try to make an issue out of your post? You posted the link to it, anybody can read the entire post before forming an opinion.
    What I usually point out is the fact that you aren’t focusing on the points asked by other posters. You change the subject or try to refocus the subject to a point of non-compliance of the time line. If the article focuses or creates a point, I do acknowledge the point however I also correct the point by showing what was missed in the authors opinion.
    Your posting comes down to who and what it is you believe in, “Although Morales recently won a nationwide recall vote with 67 percent support, most of his backers are concentrated in the country’s western highlands, whereas people in the wealthier eastern provinces largely support the opposition.
    Many people in the east see Morales as too radical and fear he might try to install a Cuban-style communist regime.”
    Or this:”And while he won broad vindication, so did the governors of the four eastern states that have vigorously resisted him by declaring themselves autonomous earlier this year – a largely symbolic act.
    All four survived Sunday’s vote, in which eight of the country’s nine governors were also subject to recall.
    Most powerful among them is Gov. Ruben Costas of Santa Cruz, the soy-growing lowland center of resistance to Morales. He said Sunday night his province will now create its own police force and call elections for a provincial legislature.”

  • Delfina
    September 24, 2008 at 6:47 am

    Obama said:
    Obama will use us for our votes…..but don’t count on him to give us jobs.
    Obama has done ZERO to help out the Latino/Hispanic community and he clearly doesn’t have our best interests at heart.
    We need to see these people for what they really are and we need to question their loyalty to our community.
    As a Democrat the only person I felt would have helped us is Hillary Clinton, now that she is gone I will have to vote for the next person I believe will help our people……JOHN MCCAIN

  • laura
    September 24, 2008 at 9:36 am

    Rolandthick – you said it.
    What strikes me lately most of all, is how Republicans’ plans for out-of-status immigrants -“enforcement” by warrantless raids on homes, imprisonment in a chain of concentration camps called “detention centers”, raids on factories where workers are trying to unionize – resemble what they are doing to American citizens they don’t like. Which American citizens don’t they like? Americans who are not rich, who are not white, or who vocally disagree with them.
    Raids on homes is what they did in Minneapolis during the Republican Convention to stop protesters. Detention was what they did to people without cars during Hurricane Gustav recently in New Orleans, when they took people in buses to warehouses in locations they refused to tell the evacuees, put them 1,000 people to a hall, and guarded them with National Guard.
    The violence they practice against immigrants is beginning to be used against Americans. If McCain/Palin win, that violence will become standard against the Americans they don’t like.
    That is another reason all Latina/os who have a chance to influence this election – by talking to family and friends, by registering to vote, by voting – are called upon to do their best to prevent a Republican victory on November 4.

  • Irma
    September 24, 2008 at 12:26 pm

    yes, it is true . The Obamites dont give squat about Hispanic issues. This includes
    Mexicans of course, since there are more of us than of any other type of Hispanic.
    I am tired of the hypocrisy of the Democrats – they are definitely looking like Republicans now.
    Biden and Obama have been CHIRPING about the Bridge to Nowhere and they voted FOR IT. McCain didnt cast a vote for this bill.
    I am sorry McCain picked Palin.
    I wont vote for him because of her.
    But this doesnt mean that I will vote
    for Barak Obama.
    He has singlehandedy dragged Democrats down into the gutter.
    I want no part of that.

  • Evelyn
    September 24, 2008 at 2:52 pm

    Liquid, did you help write this?
    Playbook for True Bigots, Xenophobes, and people who demonize other people of color.
    * If your opponent presents facts and logic you can’t refute, just lie, act incensed. Under no circumstances
    “dignify” his argument by responding with facts and logic of your own.
    * Just lie, and get angry (or at least pretend to be) and call your opponent names. Call him a “traitor”. Call him “Anti American”, or a “racist” or a “bigot”. That should scare most people off and draw their attention away from the facts and logic you can’t refute.
    * Attack! Always attack, just lie, never defend. Remember, you can make up 10 new lies while he is still trying to present his carefully footnoted, meticulously researched refutation of your first lie. While he’s boring everyone to death, you can be showboating. He’s doing all the intellectual work, and YOU are getting the credit for being the intelligent one. Such a deal, VIVA!
    * Always tell your opponent he’s “ignorant”, but remember the first rule and never sink to telling him exactly what he is ignorant of. Just lie, that way you can retain the appearance of superior knowledge without running the risk of being exposed as a fraud.
    * If your opponent cites expert opinion, just sneer at his sources. Just lie and say they are “pseudo-activist’s” who have been “discredited”. Always demand more and better proof, even of things that are obvious. Eventually, he will get tired of your nonsense, and you’ll look like a winner when he doesn’t respond.
    * Keep in mind that, as a MINUTEMAN, ALIPACer or their supporters, you can refute a mountain of opposing evidence by simply citing a single “credible” (and of course, F.A.I.R) source of your own. NEVER NEVER NEVER debate the underlying facts of the matter, just lie. That’s boring and will lose the audience’s attention. It’ll make you look like a schmuck!
    * Pathologize your opponent. Just lie, he must be made to seem to have some mean, perverse motive for presenting those pesky facts and logic you can’t refute. Depict him as suffering from psychological problems. He’s got an inferiority complex, or he’s jealous, or he’s ashamed of being petty and mean in some other way. Here’s an area where you can really let your imagination run wild! Your goal is to create the impression that the only possible motive he has for opposing you is a sick one. BONUS: The sicker you make him look, the better YOU look! You, Dr. Freud, will seem the picture of mental health and well-being by comparison. ADDITIONAL BONUS: The facts and logic you can’t refute will all seem to magically disappear, washed away in your torrent of slime. VIVA!
    * Shout your opponent down. If you can’t intimidate him into silence, then use censorship. Get his website shut down/posts removed/ISP yanked, etc. Get him fired from his job. Even get laws passed to make saying what he’s saying a criminal offense. Just lie, have no shame about it. Remember, he is anti-American, and that means you have the moral high ground, no matter what!
    * Never explain, never justify, never sink to reasoning with a Constitution Supporting American. As a Minuteman, Alipacer, KKKer or one of their supporters, that is beneath you. Remember, ‘Manifest Destiny’ you’re the Chosen People and this is your land!

  • Evelyn
    September 24, 2008 at 7:09 pm

    Liquid said
    What I usually point out is the fact that you aren’t focusing on the points asked by other posters.
    Do you really think I have the power to anticipate what points other posters are focusing on without them posting first?

  • Liquidmicro
    September 25, 2008 at 9:33 am

    I thoroughly enjoy your ignorance. I responded to your assumptions by providing information to the contrary of what you posted and I gave my links, credible out of country links. So in turn you insinuate that I helped write your Playbook and that I am in any way any of those names?? Seems so pathetic on your part.
    As for points others make that you respond to, yes, you should be able to understand the point they are making, you are the one responding. If you can’t refute their points, as they have refuted yours, YOU, change the time line and point all together. If you can’t argue the points, YOU, then shouldn’t argue.
    Besides, you are the one that brought me into this discussion by posting: “I didn’t copy the whole article because it is too long liquid.”
    I hadn’t even posted under this topic, until you invited my opposition.

  • Liquidmicro
    September 25, 2008 at 9:58 am

    You invite me to respond to your babble then you insinuate I helped write your posted “Playbook for True Bigots, Xenophobes, and people who demonize other people of color.”
    It seems you are the Bigot here and the one trying to demonize others.
    I have responded to your points, I have either added to them or I have shown others views, opposite of your view, such as above about Morales.
    You seem to be the one obstinately or intolerantly devoted to your own opinions and prejudices and the one who regards or treats others in here with hatred and intolerance because of a difference of opinion.
    Keep trying to attack me though, it just further proves my point.

  • Evelyn
    September 25, 2008 at 8:32 pm

    Liquidmicro said
    It seems you are the Bigot here and the one trying to demonize others.
    Because your answer is right out of the
    Playbook for True Bigots, Xenophobes, and people who demonize other people of color, did you, help write it that is?
    Funny how you took my STATEMENT letting you know, “I didn’t copy the whole article because it is too long liquid.” as an invitation or question even though it didnt have a question mark.

  • Liquidmicro
    September 26, 2008 at 9:32 am

    Funny how you had no need to then use my name, as I could have cared less about your article and its length.
    As for my answer being right out of this Playbook, you truly are a joke. It would seem as usual, you are the one right out of the Playbook, since I did call you ignorant and thoroughly explained why. Which is quite the opposite of what your Playbook states.
    Quit playing games, argue as an adult, or I will make you look the child each and every time, limiting your credibility to that of moron.

  • Evelyn
    September 26, 2008 at 7:52 pm

    Hit a nerve I see!
    You couldn’t make a moron look like a moron so quit slicking up the net by throwing alot of oil.
    The only thing you do is show your ignorance by spinning issues using the playbook.
    I had already told you once. I thought it was because you were mental, and that is the reason I always ignored you. Then I was told different.

  • Liquidmicro
    September 27, 2008 at 10:42 am

    Hit a nerve?? Hardly.
    You’re right Evelyn that I couldn’t make a moron look like a moron, you make yourself look the moron. Like I said, by you inserting my name into your post you brought me into this discussion, your insinuation I helped right some playbook is pure moronic on your part.
    You always ignored me?? That’s funny, I’m sure anybody and everybody could go back and see for themselves that rarely have you ignored my posts that have been in response to you. Even in this topic you have interjected my name into your post. Hardly ignoring me, more like inviting me.

  • Evelyn
    September 28, 2008 at 8:56 pm

    You’re right Evelyn
    I know, so quit patting yourself on the back and make sure to keep using the playbook so you can keep making a fool of yourself by showing your ignorance.

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