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  1. Echoing Hitler, Trump Celebrates July 4 by Praising ICE, CBP for Being "Tough"; Condemns "Weak" Immigration Laws. Roger Algase

    The following comment is revised and updated as of July 5, 9:52 pm:

    Trump's "tough" treatment of Latin American and other non-white detained immigrants has admittedly not yet reached the depths of Nazi concentration camps such as Dachau and Buchenwald, but the differences are becoming harder and harder to notice as time passes, as shown by the latest (July 5) report about horrendous conditions at a California immigration prison where one inmate has already committed suicide.

    In a July 3 pre-holiday rant at a dinner in West Virginia, Trump defended ICE and the Border Control against nationwide criticism and outrage over his brutal family separation policy and latest support for illegal indefinite family detention. In doing so, he continued his attempts to vilify and smear Central American immigrants fleeing intolerable and dangerous conditions in their home countries as all being members of the MS-13 gang.

    And echoing Adolf Hitler, who told a 1935 Nazi Party rally that German youth must be:

    "...tough as leather, and as hard as Krupp's steel"

    Trump praised the DHS agents for being tough on "MS-13" immigrants - presumably by tearing breastfeeding babies away from their asylum seeking mothers, shackling 4-year old children and locking them in cages, or sending them to desert tents.

    This is what Trump had to say about ICE and CBP in celebrating the spirit of democracy, freedom and equality for all people in America which July 4 stands for:

    "These are tough people...And you have to be tough. And when they have a problem with MS-13 gangs, and all of these others that came in through horrible and weak immigration laws - that surely we're strengthening up, we're going to get them done. We need tough laws, we need fair laws."

    Trump continued:

    "These guys they walk into those areas, they take them out of there so fast - they're not afraid of anything. It is, it's like you're liberating a town...And ICE goes in there, and they go in there and sometimes they have to go in swinging. They don't mind. They're tough."

    Aside from the not-so-faint resemblance of this kind of talk to Hitler's glorification of violence on the part of his "enforcement" apparatus, such as the Storm Trooper and the Gestapo, which he claimed was justified by the alleged danger to Germany from the Jews, Socialists and Communists, just as Trump rants on about MS-13, there is one key point that stand out from Trump's above inflammatory rhetoric:

    This is that, despite Trump's attempt to conflate all Latin American, and by extension other non-white, immigrants with criminal gangs, and illegal immigration in general, his attacks are not limited merely to enforcing existing immigration laws, as some of his defenders like to claim.

    Instead Trump is attacking our current immigration system itself, including our legal immigration laws, as "horrible and weak".

    Nor are these attacks limited to current asylum laws, which Trump and Jeff Sessions have constantly criticized as allegedly too easy and are now trying to rewrite by administrative fiat without going through Congress, as I have discussed elsewhere in a previous comment.

    Neither are Trump's attacks on the legal foundations of our immigration system limited to his recent statement that he wants to abolish the immigration court system, and its judicial process, entirely.

    (Even the German Fuehrer didn't abolish the court system entirely, as Trump wants to do with America's immigration courts, but Hitler instead set up "Special Courts" - Sondergerichte - which he controlled, but which still at least on the surface, operated as real courts.)

    Instead, these are part of Trump's attacks on America's entire structure of legal immigration, including, to give only one of many examples, his furious attempts to abolish the Diversity Visa and what he calls "horrible" extended family immigration (see his December 29, 2017 tweet), which he refers to by the misleading and racist pejorative: "Chain Migration".

    These forms of legal immigration have little or nothing to do with what is taking place now along the Mexican border or with any criminal gangs, but they have a great deal to do with having allowed millions of non-white immigrants to come to the US legally over the past several decades - something which Trump and his supporters are far more interested in putting an end to than they are with stamping out MS-13.

    Therefore, Trump's focus on MS-13 is not just an attempt to eliminate an admittedly dangerous and violent criminal gang. MS-13 is his metaphor for all non-white immigration.

    Nor is any of this new.

    In a forthcoming post, I will discuss a comprehensive study by a group called Political Research Associates showing that Trump's war on non-white immigrants, legal and unauthorized alike, did not by any means start with Donald Trump, but is part of a movement that has been promoted by white supremacist and anti-immigrant groups for at least the past three decades. See:

    Where the White House Gets its Racist Immigration Policies

    This study will show that, despite all the histrionics and rhetoric, Trump's immigration agenda has very little to do with MS-13 and a great deal to do with taking America back in the direction of the whites-only immigration system which this country had prior to 1965, and which many of Trump's most vocal and ardent supporters are so eager to reinstate now.

    Roger Algase
    Attorney at Law

    Updated 07-06-2018 at 01:46 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  2. Overturning Roe v. Wade Could be The Worst Event for US Immigration in More Than a Century. Birthright Citizenship Might be Next to go. Roger Algase

    The following comment has been updated and slightly expanded as of July 3 at 8:40 am:

    ​As the Donald Trump administration hurtles on course toward remaking every aspect of American life in his radical right wing image by gaining total control over the US Supreme Court, immigrants and immigration advocates may be tempted to be complacent over the coming inevitable demise of Roe v. Wade, which Trump confirmed in a July 2 interview on what is now the official state news channel, Fox News (just as the Voelkischer Beobachter newspaper was the official government organ in National Socialist Germany or Pravda was in Soviet Russia).

    At first glance, one might ask, what would reverting back to the days when state and local police in every part of America occupied their time hunting down and throwing people in jail for providing abortion services to women have to do with immigration policy? Why should immigration advocates care if half the population of the US suddenly, by 5-4 judicial fiat, becomes deprived once again of control over their own bodies and reproductive rights?

    One can ask the same thing about other issues where the rights to basic dignity and equality before the law of large segments of our population will now be on the Supreme Court's chopping block - such as same sex marriage and gay rights in general, for example.

    Will America also go back to the days when the same state and local police who will, without any serious question, soon be back in the business of arresting and jailing abortion providers in many states, may also once again go back to locking up people for engaging in same sex relations, as was the law in America up until as recently as only 15 years ago, before Lawrence v. Texas (2003) was decided?

    But again, why should immigrants or immigrant advocates be concerned about what happens to women or gay people? Don't immigrants have enough worries trying to get their young, in some cases, only breastfeeding, children out of ICE's cages and back into the arms of their parents in Donald Trump's America?

    And also, the rights of women or of LGBT people might not as obviously be tied up with the issue of racial discrimination, which has been at the care of the immigration issue from the enactment of the first Chinese exclusion law in 1882 up until Donald Trump and Jeff Sessions led the most recent brown skinned 4 year old child away in shackles as part of their "zero tolerance" policy for for immigrants who do not happen to come from "Countries like Norway" only a week or so before this writing.

    But no one can seriously think that under a Supreme Court which can and absolutely will overturn Roe v. Wade, precedents protecting racial equality will be any safer. If the Court can overturn abortion rights, what is there to stop it from overturning the 1967 decision in Loving v. Virginia, which outlawed state laws against interracial marriage, or even the landmark 1954 Brown v. Board of Education School desegregation decision itself?

    Still, immigration supporters might argue, while these decisions involve critically important issues of racial justice and equality in an era when non-white immigration, both legal and unauthorized, is under fierce and concerted attack from the federal government for the first time in more than 50 years, still, these issues are not directly related to immigration. They mainly involve the rights of US citizens.

    So why shouldn't immigration advocates and supporters stick to their knitting and not bother with these other issues? Or to quote the 2nd - 3rd century AD early Christian writer Tertullian: Quid ergo Athenis et Hierosolymis? ("What has Athens to do with Jerusalem?")

    Indeed, what, one might ask, do abortion, LGBT rights or even protecting Americans against racial segregation, have to do with immigration?

    The answer is that these issues have everything to do with immigration.

    A Supreme Court which is capable of overturning Roe v. Wade, as Trump's Court will unquestionably do without the slightest doubt or hesitation, might very arguably not hesitate to overturn the 1898 Supreme Court Wong Kim Ark decision protecting the right to US citizenship at birth for every child born in the United States, regardless of race. color or ancestry.

    During his campaign, Trump, as part of his strategy of vilification and scapegoating of Latino and other non-white immigrants. made a promise to eliminate birthright citizenship as one of the central features of his agenda.

    It would be the height of foolishness to think that either he or his white supremacist supporters have forgotten this promise. See: 66 Am U. L. Rev 1383 (2017)

    And if birthright citizenship goes, that obviously means the end of immigration in the United States as we know it. It also means the end of the United States itself, as a country that upholds or has even the slightest concern for basic human rights. See:

    Katherine Culliton-Gonzalez:

    Born in the Americas: Birthright Citizenship and Human Rights

    25 Harvard Human Rights Journal 127 (2012)

    It would also mean the end of the United States as a society where everyone is equal before the law, and it would transform this country into a racially tiered nation resembling apartheid South Africa where the benefits of citizenship are reserved mainly for white people of European ancestry, while American born people of Latin American, Asian, African and Middle Eastern ancestry become pariahs, without any rights or legal status - much as the Jews who were stripped of German citizenship by the Nuremberg Laws in became in that country after 1936 - or black slaves were considered to be in America when Dred Scott v. Sandford was the law of the land.

    The author of the above Harvard Human Rights Journal article writes, at pages 128-129:

    "As will be discussed herein, the Fourteenth Amendment was enacted to prevent discrimination against people of color, including immigrants of color...It is no coincidence that birthright citizenship for children of undocumented immigrants is being seriously challenged now that the 2010 Census found that 23% of children in the United States are Hispanic and that many of their parents are immigrants."

    In my next comment, I will look in more detail at the momentous decision in U.S. v. Wong Kim Ark 169 U.S. 649 (1898) in which the Supreme Court engaged in an extensive analysis of the 14th Amendment's citizenship provisions and issued a decision which has been the law of the land on the issue of birthright citizenship ever since.

    This decision is without doubt the most important one on race and immigration and citizenship since Dred Scott, but one that has received far less attention than it should.

    In the meantime, as the future of immigration - and racial equality for everyone in the US hangs in a precarious balance under Donald Trump's new upcoming Supreme Court, no matter which right wing ideological extremist he may pick to take the place of Justice Anthony Kennedy, I wish all Immigration Daily readers, regardless of nationality or immigration status, a very Happy 4th of July holiday.
    Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. For more than 30 years, Roger has been helping mainly skilled and professional immigrants from diverse parts of the world obtain work permits and green cards.

    Roger believes that the purpose of immigration law is upholding the basic concepts of racial equality, justice for all people before the law and fundamental human rights on which our nation was founded, and without which America would no longer be a country of democracy and freedom as we know it today.

    Roger's email address is

    Updated 07-04-2018 at 05:47 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  3. Supreme Ct. Muslim Ban Decision Could Allow Trump to Ban All Non-White Immigration Through "National Security" Executive Fiat. Roger Algase

    This post is updated as of 7:22 pm on June 30.

    Two recent developments, one, directly related to immigration, and the other dealing with foreign trade, show that the decision by a right wing 5-4 Supreme Court majority to uphold Donald Trump's Muslim Ban executive order is likely to have an effect far beyond the immediate objective of reducing immigration to the US by people who belong to a religion which America's current president doesn't happen to hold in very high esteem - just as other leading US politicians in the not at all distant past looked unfavorably on immigration by people belonging to Jewish communities of the world.

    The first is the report on the site that the Trump administration is planning a massive overhaul of the asylum regulations which would in effect make it impossible for Central Americans to receive asylum, and thereby make a major reduction in immigration by brown people from that part of the world.

    Just one example of the draconian new proposed regulations now reportedly in preparation would be to make anyone who is convicted of the misdemeanor of entering the US at any place other than an authorized port of entry permanently ineligible to receive asylum, no matter how strong the case for asylum might otherwise be.

    This might at first glance not seem to be so unreasonable. What is the point of having a system of legal entry points at all, if people can come in anywhere along the border that they choose, make an asylum claim, and then stay in this country during the entire time that the claim is wending its way through our legal system? If that is not the very definition of "open borders". what is?

    The only problem with this line of thinking is that the Trump administration has now closed the legal points of entry to asylum seekers and is telling them that the entry points are filled up to capacity and are not accepting any more people.

    This leaves no way that someone from Central America can enter the US to file an asylum case, despite a 2008 US law that allows them to do exactly that.

    And this is just one of many drastic changes in the asylum laws that the Trump administration is now planning to bring about by executive fiat, without going through Congress, to stop brown people from entering the United States with legal permission. For the full story, see:

    No one should think for a moment that this latest attempt to cut off immigration from outside Europe is limited to asylum law. Trump's furious attacks on the current laws allowing extended family immigration, including his own mother, grandfather and, much more recently, wife's parents, as well as the diversity visa, because many of the beneficiaries of these provisions have darker skin color than his own relatives did, as well as his administration's assault on the Asian-professional friendly H-1B visa, show that the ultimate goal is ending most or all non-white immigration, not just this or that legal immigration category on one pretext or another.

    And how is this goal of returning America's immigration system back to the white supremacist one that America had before 1965 to be accomplished? This is what makes the Supreme Court's Muslim ban decision so dangerous.

    Obnoxious as it was, even the openly racist, antisemitic "national origins" immigration act of 1924 which Adolf Hitler claimed to be inspired by writing in Mein Kampf, and which Trump's AG Jeff Sessions (even though he is of course not in the least anti-Jewish - nor is Trump) also praised as a Senator in his immigration "Handbook" only 3 years ago, in January 2015, was passed by America's elected representatives in Congress through democratic procedures.

    But now, under the Supreme Court's Muslim ban decision, the door is now open for Donald Trump to go back to that bigoted, "Nordics-only" law, or something similar, and abolish the race-neutral immigration system that America has had, at least in principle, for the past half century, merely by declaring a "national security emergency" caused by an "infestation" of vermin and "invasion" by "animals" (to quote from Trump's own recent statements) who are not from "Countries like Norway" ( as per his January 11 statement at a White House meeting).

    Is this unthinkable, even from Donald Trump? Not at all.

    The New York Times reports that Trump is considering declaring a national emergency to stop certain Chinese investments in the US merely as part of his trade war.

    If Trump can do this by executive fiat to stop investment from coming into the US using national security as a pretext, what can stop him from doing the same to stop people who have the "wrong" skin color or religion from coming to America in the same way?

    The Supreme Court has now given Trump a green light to do exactly that. Is there any reason to think that a president whose unspeakably cruel and inhuman "zero tolerance" family separation policy, even though it has officially been rescinded (and is being replaced by an almost equally brutal and sadistic "indefinite" family detention policy) is now being protested by thousands of outraged immigrants and Americans alike in, according to the latest reports, more than 700 cities and towns across America.

    For an earlier report, see:

    will hesitate to accept the High Court's open invitation to run America's entire immigration system as an absolute dictator, accountable to no one but himself, rather than a constitutionally constrained chief executive of a democratic country, in order to carry out his white supremacist agenda?

    Roger Algase
    Attorney at Law

    Updated 07-01-2018 at 08:15 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  4. Ex-Clinton aide: 84 percent of Americans support turning undocumented immigrants over to authorities.

    Prominent Democratic pollster Mark Penn said on Thursday that a vast majority of Americans don’t really support so-called sanctuary cities that shield immigrants in the country illegally from deportation.

    Penn, who served as chief strategist for Hillary Clinton's 2008 presidential campaign, revealed that 84 percent of Americans favor turning undocumented immigrants over to federal agents.

    “I asked them, ‘Do you think notifying ICE [Immigration and Customs Enforcement] would in fact increase crime because it would inhibit people from reporting crimes or does it decrease crimes because it takes criminals off the street,’ and they overwhelming said ‘decrease,’ ” Penn told Hill.TV's “Rising.”

    Penn said the response was strikingly “out of sync” with what the public might think about sanctuary cities. The broad term refers to cities that don’t fully cooperate with federal authorities when it comes to turning over people in the country illegally to immigration enforcement.

    “When someone’s arrested, they expect someone will notify federal immigration authorities just as they would expect someone who violates state tax law will find out that they notified the IRS,” the pollster said.


    Published originally on The Hill.

    Posted by Nolan Rappaport

    Updated 06-29-2018 at 09:08 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  5. DHS Agents' Intimidation of ICE Whistleblower Who Quit to Protest Sessions' Lie Brings Trump's "Deportation Force" Closer to Gestapo. Roger Algase

    America is getting used to the growing use of fear, lies, and violence against immigrants on the part of Donald Trump's DHS "Deportation Force", most recently against 2,300 terrorized young children, many of whom may never see their parents again.

    With every passing day, comparisons between Trump's immigration "enforcement" apparatus and Hitler's Geheime Staatspolizei ("Secret State Police", more commonly known as the Gestapo) are, very arguably, becoming more relevant, if not already part of America's "New Normal".

    But the latest attempt by DHS agents to intimidate a former ICE agent turned whistleblower during a media interview at his home are disturbing indications that the basic rights and freedoms of American citizens, not only immigrants, are also in danger, as the Trump administration, which could more accurately be called "Regime", moves closer toward full blown fascism.

    CBS News reports the following on June 28 concerning an attempt by two DHS agents to intimidate an ICE whistleblower who resigned in protest against attempts by the agency to force him to lie about an Oakland, California deportation raid.

    "In his first television interview, former Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) spokesperson James Schwab has opened up about why he abruptly resigned in March. But his interview with CBS News' Jamie Yuccas on Wednesday was unexpectedly interrupted by agents identifying themselves as agents from the Department of Homeland Security Inspector General's Office."

    The interrupted interview related to Schwab's stated reason for resigning from ICE, namely his refusal to put out a statement which he know to be completely false by Attorney General Jeff Sessions relating to an ICE raid about which the mayor of Oakland allegedly warned that city's immigrant community in advance.

    At first, Schwab said, he was instructed to release a "spin statement" about the raid which was able to live with: CBS reports:

    "He [Schwab] helped craft a statement to the media saying 'Some of them [unauthorized immigrants] were able to elude us thanks to the mayor's irresponsible decision.' He was comfortable with that statement, he said, because it included the words 'some of'."

    But then, according to the report, Schwab was asked to lie:

    "A week later, Attorney General Jeff Sessions language was noticeably different. He said 'ICE failed to make 800 arrests' because of the mayor's statement. Sessions' words didn't sit well with Schwab.

    'Completely false...that made me extremely uncomfortable,' Schwab said."

    When instructed to disseminate this lie, Schwab resigned. CBS quotes him as follows:

    "I could not fathom staying at an organization that was OK with lying to the American public...In 17 years in the military, at the Department of Defense as a civilian, at NASA, and now, at Homeland Security, I have never been asked to lie."

    This background ultimately led to the surprise visit by two DHS agents at Schwab's home three months later during his interview about these events, as CBS News also reports:

    "During the interview at his home, some three months after he quit, Yuccas and Schwab were interrupted by a surprise visit from men who said they were agents from the Department of Homeland Security Inspector General's Office. He was 'completely shocked' to see them.

    Schwab said his conversation with the agents had to do with Oakland's mayor."

    After denying that he had ever had any contact with the mayor whatsoever about the raid, Schwab told CBS News that the visit from the DHS agents was "absolutely" an intimidation technique:

    "'Why, three months later, are we doing this?' Schwab said. 'This is intimidation. And this is why people won't come out and speak against the government."

    The CBS report concludes by saying that, according to Schwab, employees in other federal agencies who have reached out to him are also feeling too intimidated by the government to speak out about their own concerns.

    To be sure, unlike Nazi Germany, Schwab is not in danger of being sent to American versions of places like Dachau and Buchenwald for speaking out against Trump's Deportation Regime - yet. But, according to an increasing number of news reports, some of the conditions in which detained immigrants, including toddler-age children - are being held are starting to approach that description.

    This raises the question of what the significance of Trump's mass deportation agenda is for the American people. Is the point only that expulsions of brown-skinned unauthorized immigrants are not moving along as fast as some immigration commentators and analysts might think they should be?

    Or is there a deeper question at stake, namely whether, and for how much longer, America's democracy and the basic freedoms of American citizens such as this ICE whistle blower and anyone else who may oppose Trump's Gestapo-like Deportation "Task Force" or any other policy of this Regime can be expected to endure?

    Roger Algase
    Attorney at Law

    Updated 06-29-2018 at 08:02 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

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