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Via The Arizona Daily Star:
So far this fiscal year, which started in October, more than 50 bodies have been found. And the deadliest months for migrants are coming.
In fiscal year 2015, there were 21 deaths per 10,000 apprehensions in the Tucson Sector. That year alone, remains of 135 migrants were found in the desert, while the Border Patrol reported a little more than 63,000 arrests.
That’s more than double the rate in 2010, the deadliest year on record. Until 2007, the death rate for border crossers never exceeded 4 per 10,000 apprehensions.
Click here for the original source of the story.
Updated 05-23-2016 at 09:21 AM by MKolken
Update, May 24, 1:36 pm:
Over 450 American writers have published An Open Letter to the American People opposing Donald Trump's candidacy: The letter reads in part:
"Because American history, despite periods of nativism and bigotry, has from the first been a grand experiment in bringing people of different backgrounds together, not pitting them against one another;
Because the history of dictatorship is the history of manipulation and division, demagoguery and lies; ...
Because the rise of a political candidate who deliberately appeals to the basest and most violent elements in society, who encourages aggression among his followers...intimidates dissenters, and denigrates women and minorities...
For all these reasons, we, the undersigned, as a matter of conscience, oppose, unequivocally, the candidacy of Donald J. Trump for the Presidency of the United States."
The above statement is one more voice dealing with the question whether opposition to Donald Trump is only based on a dispute over the details of immigration policy, as some of his supporters contend; or whether Trump's immigration proposals are indicative of a more fundamental issue, namely whether America will continue to be a democracy based on equal opportunity and justice for all people, without regard to race, color or religion.
My previous updates and original post appear below:
The following includes a revised version, as of May 22, of the opening portion of these comments, which were originally posted on May 21.
Is Donald Trump merely another immigration restrictionist who is calling for more rigorous enforcement of existing immigration laws in order to protect America from terrorism, crime and job losses, especially among working and middle class Americans who are worried about their future; but who is willing to operate within America's democratic system if he becomes president, and who knows better than anyone else how to make deals to get America's broken immigration system working again?
This is the explanation of some of Trump's defenders, who believe that criticism of him for allegedly using anti-immigrant prejudice in order to pave the way for the overthrow of democracy and its replacement with one-man authoritarian rule is highly exaggerated, or entirely without foundation; and that it is only motivated by attempts on the part of immigration advocates to vilify and tear down his reputation for refusing to support more liberal immigration policies.
On the other hand, there are those who see a more sinister aspect to Trump's anti-immigrant pronouncements, one which goes far beyond merely calling for stricter enforcement of existing laws on order to protect ordinary Americans, and seeks to exploit fear and prejudice against unpopular minorities as a stepping stone to overthrowing democracy and establishing dictatorship; as Hitler did in Germany, as other dictators have done since then in Africa, Asia and Latin America, and as a number of right wing neo-fascist parties, some of which claim to be inspired by or in the same mold as Trump, are seeking to do in Europe today.
A succinct summary of this view by slate.com's Jamelle Bouie reads as follows:
"Trump is a bona fide authoritarian, with a tenuous commitment to the foundations of liberal democracy (eviscerated by his plan for mass deportation) to freedom of the press. His entire campaign is an exercise in conjuring bigotry for political gain, from his initial call for a wall to keep Mexico from sending "criminals" and "rapists" and a subsequent one for a ban on Muslim entry to the United States to his coy relationship with white supremacists (Trump refused to disavow former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke) and constant repetition of anti-Muslim myths, including a widely-debunked claim that New Jersey Muslim-Americans celebrated the attacks on September 11, 2001."
Of all the comments warning of a possible Trump dictatorship, one of the most powerful and comprehensive is a May 20 article by Adam Gopnik in the New Yorker called: The Dangerous Acceptance of Donald Trump. Even though this article does not mention immigration issues specifically, many of Trump's stated positions on immigration are entirely in line with Gopnik's warning that American democracy could be in grave danger from a Trump presidency, and that this country might never fully recover from the loss of its freedom even after the era of Donald Trump is behind us.
I will quote from the article, and add my own comments about how Trump's positions on immigration support Gopnik's conclusions. First:
"One can argue about whether to call him [Trump] a fascist or an authoritarian populist or a grotesque joke...but under any label Trump is a declared enemy of the liberal constitutional order of the United States - the order that has made it, in fact the great and plural country that it already is."
"He announces his enmity to America by word and action almost every day. It is articulated in his insistence on the rightness of torture and the acceptable murder of non-combatants. It is self-evident in the threats he makes daily to destroy his political enemies..."
One could add that Trump's proposal to ban Muslims from every country in the world (including, very possibly, US citizens - he has never ruled this out) from entering the US solely on the basis of religion, his plan to build a Wall on our Southern border, and, above all, his plan to use a "special task force" to carry out mass deportation on an immense scale which can only be called ethnic cleansing of non-white immigrants, accompanied by racial and religious slurs that recall the darkest moments of our history, are also diametrically opposed to America's most fundamental freedoms and values.
This is true even though, as Trump's supporters have argued, some of these proposals may be legal under current immigration law, which still includes doctrines that were developed in the authoritarian, racially charged, period of the late 19th Century Chinese exclusion laws.
The New Yorker article goes on to say:
"To say 'Well, he would not really have the power to accomplish that' is to misunderstand the nature of thin-skinned authoritarians in power. They do not arrive in office and discover, as constitutionalists do, that their capabilities are more limited than they imagined. They arrive, and then make their power as large as they can."
"Ted Cruz called Trump a pathological liar, the kind who does not know the difference between lies and truth."
We can certainly see this in Trump's statements that most Muslims around the world hate America and have terrorist sympathies, and that Mexican immigrants are mainly "criminals" and "rapists".
"Whatever the clinical diagnosis, we do appear to be getting, in place of the once famous Big Lie of the 1930's, a sordid blizzard of lies...
He's not Hitler, as his wife recently said? Well, of course he isn't. But then Hitler wasn't Hitler - until he was. At each step of the way, the shock was tempered by acceptance. It depended on conservatives pretending he wasn't so bad, compared with the Communists, while at the same time the militant left decided that their real enemies were the moderate leftists, who were really indistinguishable from the Nazis."
Even though Gopnik does not mention this, Hitler of course also drew support from popular anti-Jewish feeling which had been widespread throughout Germany for at least 100 years before Hitler's rise to power. Many Germans were so anxious to get rid of the Jews that they did not mind giving up their freedom in order to do so.
The same could be said about numerous Americans who are so motivated by resentment and prejudice against Latino and other non-white immigrants, as well as by Islamophobia which many leading US politicians, not only Donald Trump, have been spreading, that they are looking for a strongman to "Make America White Again".
Gopnik's article then issues a powerful warning:
"The American Republic stands threatened by the first overly anti-democratic leader of a large party in its modern history - an authoritarian with no grasp of history, no impulse control, and no apparent barriers on his will to power.
And it concludes:
"if Trump came to power, there is a decent chance that the American experiment would be over...Countries don't really recover from being taken over by unstable authoritarian nationalists of any political bent, left or right - not by Perons or Castros or Putins or Francos or Lenins or fill in the blanks...Ask Argentinians or Chileans or Venezuelans or Russians or italians - or Germans."
One could also mention Syrians, whom Trump has pledged to send back from the United States (if any more are allowed in by a cowardly Obama administration which has set a pathetically low admissions target of only 10,000 refugees from the twin horrors of Assad and ISIS, in one of the worst humanitarian crises of modern times - comparable in at least some respects to America's refusal to let in Jewish refugees from Hitler in the 1930's, whether one likes this comparison or not).
Finally, Gopnik writes:
"The national psyche never gets over learning that tts institutions are that fragile and their ability to resist a dictator that weak. If he can rout the Republican party in a week by having effectively secured the nomination, ask yourself what Trump could do to the American government if he had a mandate."
And we should also ask ourselves what Trump could do with our entire immigration system as we know it if he takes over the White House. This question goes far beyond legitimate policy issues such as whether our immigration laws should be enforced more compassionately or more strictly; or whether certain types of legal visas should be available to a greater or lesser number of people.
A Trump presidency, based on some of his statements and proposals, could destroy the heart of our entire immigration system, as well as turning America into a country that Americans are more eager to leave than immigrants are to come to in the future.
The link to Gopnik's article is:
Multi cives aut ea pericula quae imminent non vident, aut ea quae vident neglegunt.
("Many citizens either do not see the dangers in front of them, or they disreard the ones that they see." - Cicero)
Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College, where he majored in Government, and Harvard Law School. For more than 35 years, he has been helping mainly skilled and professional immigrants obtain work visas and green cards.
Roger believes that promoting prejudice and discrimination against immigrants endangers the basic rights of Americans as well, and puts the foundations of our democracy at risk. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org
Updated 03-13-2017 at 03:15 AM by ImmigrationLawBlogs
It's not just Donald Trump. In two separate developments, a Republican Federal Judge and a Republican House Committee Chaiman have engaged in activities which, to say the least, are arguably intended to have a chilling effect on Obama administration lawyers and officials, who, in the view of the Republican officials involved, are not sufficiently tough in enforcing the immigration laws, not to mention many thousands of immigrants themselves.
The first involves the latest order of Texas Federal District Judge Andrew Hanen in Texas v US, the lawsuit by 26 state governors which seeks to invalidate President Obama's November 2014 DAPA and DACA extension executive actions. The most comprehensive description of the content and background of this order that I have found appears in a May 20 thinkprogress.org article. even though I do not agree with or endorse the characterization of this order in the link below. See
The second involves an attempt by the Republican-controlled House Judiciary Committee to inflame fears and antagonism toward immigrants by highlighting some sensational violent crimes committed by immigrants and pillorying the DHS for allegedly being too lenient in releasing criminal immigrants. See Nolan Rappaport's May 20 ilw.com article.
This is despite evidence that immigrants have a lower crime rate than US citizens.
To be continued.
Updated 05-20-2016 at 09:18 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs
From the New York Times:
A federal judge in Texas on Thursday excoriated the Justice Department, demanding ethics classes for the departmentís lawyers and ordering other sanctions for those who argued the case involving President Obamaís immigration executive actions.
He also ordered the government to produce a list of about 100,000 immigrants who entered illegally and who are participating in a government program that protects them from deportation.
In a blistering order, Judge Andrew S. Hanen of Federal District Court in Brownsville accused the Justice Department lawyers of lying to him during arguments in the case, and he barred them from appearing in his courtroom.
He also demanded that Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch provide a ďcomprehensive planĒ within 60 days describing how she will prevent unethical conduct in the future, as well as making sure the departmentís Office of Professional Responsibility effectively prevents misconduct among its lawyers.
He also said that any Justice Department lawyer who wants to appear in a state or federal court in any of the 26 states who filed suit to block Mr. Obamaís executive actions should be required to take an annual three-hour ethics course for the next five years.
The Justice Department has until June 10, 2016, to comply with the Court's order.
Click here to read the rest of the article.
A controversy has been brewing at the Department of Labor over the exact wording for online Program Electronic Review Management (PERM) newspaper ads.The PERM rule, which was implemented in 2005, contains detailed instructions for what must be included in a newspaper ad, namely: (1)l the employer's name; (2) the geographical place of employment (this does not have to include the street address);(3) a job description; and (4) instructions for contacting the employer (eg, a PO box number, fax number or other identifier).The PERM rule further states that newspaper ads cannot contain: (1) a wage rate that is lower than the prevailing wage rate; (2) job requirements or duties that exceed those listed on ETA Form 9089; and (3) wages or employment terms and conditions that are less favourable than those offered to US workers.
In addition to newspaper ads, occupations that are deemed to be professional require three additional recruitment steps that may be chosen by the employer from a list of 10 options. When the Department of Labor planned the recruitment instructions for the PERM process, it deliberately left out any rule pertaining to the text of professional occupation ads, enabling employers to elaborate them as they see fit.
The recruitment process for professional occupations is diverse and includes advertising via websites, the radio and television, college campuses and placement offices, employee referral programs, ethnic and local newspapers, private employment agencies, job fairs and trade and professional journals.Free to determine what to include in professional ads, most employers have played it safe by following the rules for newspaper ads.
Ads should always include the employer's name, the place of employment, the job description and instructions for contacting the employer to send a curriculum vitae. However, employers do not always realise that while some information may be omitted, it may not violate the law if included. These would be ads offering a wage rate that is lower than the prevailing rate, excessive requirementsor duties or employment terms and conditions offered to the foreign worker that are less favorable than those offered to US workers.
When employers publish optional information in the ads, needless errors may occur and result in denial. Online ads In recent years the Board of Alien Labor Certification Appeals has recognised that in practice, the content of professional ads may not always reflect what is required for newspaper ads. In a number of cases dating back to 2011, the board has granted approvals to employers that did not include their address on the same web page as their online ad. The address appeared elsewhere on the website, but was easy to find.
In April 2016 the Board of Alien Labour Certification Appeals considered Matter of VLS ITConsulting, Inc (2012-PER-1769). In this case, the employer's website had included all of theinformation required to notify workers of the job opportunity. However, because the web page that contained the ad did not bear the employer's name, the certifying officer issued a denial. The employer responded that the website showed the employer's name on a different page, and that job applicants could easily navigate the site to find all of the required information. The board then granted approval to the employer.
In addition, the en banc decision in Symantec Corp (2011-PER-1856, July 30 2014) held that the requirements for newspaper ads do not apply to professional recruitment steps.Despite the apparent liberalisation of the professional recruitment rule, employers should always consider using the requirements for newspaper ads detailed in 20 Code of Federal Regulations 656.17(f)(4). Otherwise, it might be necessary to appeal the case to obtain an approval Ė a process that can take several years.