The following essay was written by Jonathan Perez, Project Manager at the Immigrant Youth Coalition. He has given me permission to repost it here. It is entitled "Obama's abusive relationship with undocumented immigrants." I found it both insightful and chilling.
We all have seen the movies or have experienced it for ourselves, an abusive relationship whether its physical or emotional there are signs that tell us that we are in one, it might have been good at first but it never lasts. The telltale sign of an abusive partner is fear of the abuser because they have harmed or threatened to harm you.
According to help guide.org a support site for domestic violence there is a cycle that follows 6 stages when it comes to abusive relationships.
It begins with Abuse - Your abusive partner lashes out with aggressive, belittling, or violent behavior. The abuse is a power play designed to show you "who is boss."
Second is Guilt - After abusing you, your partner feels guilt, but not over what he's done. He's more worried about the possibility of being caught and facing consequences for his abusive behavior.
Third is Excuses - Your abuser rationalizes what he or she has done. The person may come up with a string of excuses or blame you for the abusive behavior--anything to avoid taking responsibility.
Fourth is "Normal" behavior/Honey moon -- The abuser does everything he can to regain control and keep the victim in the relationship. He may act as if nothing has happened, or he may turn on the charm. This peaceful honeymoon phase may give the victim hope that the abuser has really changed this time.
Fifth is Fantasy and planning - Your abuser begins to fantasize about abusing you again. He spends a lot of time thinking about what you've done wrong and how he'll make you pay. Then he makes a plan for turning the fantasy of abuse into reality.
Sixth is Set-up - Your abuser sets you up and puts his plan in motion, creating a situation where he can justify abusing you.
Lets look at our abusive relationship with Obama from its first stage.
Abuse- Obama when he came into office began expanding the reach of programs like "secure communities" and 287g leading to over a million deportations in just a few years.
Guilt- Obama then said that he supports the DREAM Act and that it should pass, although he didn't do much to make sure it was passed he didn't want people to find out that he is deporting hundreds of thousands of immigrants.
Excuses- He then justified his actions by saying they are only targeting criminals and people who pose a threat to national security.
"Normal" Behavior/honey moon- Memo #1 is issued stating that the Department of homeland security would only target "criminal aliens" and many people believed he had changed at this point and things would get better.
Fantasy and Planning- Obama secretly had approved a goal of 400,000 deportations a year starting in 2010.
Set up- It is revealed that they came close to their goal of 400,000 a year but Obama clarifies that it is only for criminal aliens and no one said a thing, with no training and a quota to meet, ICE agents ignored the memo and continued to relentlessly deport even DREAM Act eligible youth.
We did not stop the abuse and we began a new cycle where the second memo "prosecutorial discretion" was the "normal Behavior/honeymoon" and 1% of cases reviewed were granted prosecutorial discretion. Now we find ourselves in the cycle for a third time Obama says he will change again by his latest memo of deferred action. We are in the honeymoon stage but remember he has a plan still the quota is still there. Advocates and Non Profit organizations continue to say that we must support Obama because he is better than Romney.
Well if you are in an abusive relationship you do not stay with that person because the other option is worse! Many celebrate and choose to ignore the warning signs, but when are we as immigrants going to say enough and continue to believe that our abuser has changed but I guess third time is a charm right, but as we all know sometimes it's too late and we could have stopped it.