Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Trump Welcomes Immigrants, but Only if They Can Be Exploited

After three years of telling his base that he “puts American jobs first,” surely Trump wouldn’t try to expand the guest worker programs — or would he?

By David L. Wilson, Truthout
July 31, 2018
The US mainstream media had two competing events to cover the night of April 28: the annual White House Correspondents’ Dinner in Washington, DC, and a Trump rally in Macomb County, Michigan, a predominantly white working-class suburb of Detroit. Journalists mainly focused on the dinner, but the more important story may have been a remark President Trump made in the course of his 80-minute speech at the rally.

As reported by the immigration-restrictionist Center for Immigration Studies (CIS), around 33 minutes into his talk, Trump began praising guest worker programs. “For the farmers it’s going to get really good,” he started.[...]

Read the full article:

An H-2A guest worker picks oranges. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Saturday, June 30, 2018

Escraches Come North: “Incivility” or an End to Impunity?

It’s hard to say now what direction the protests will take, but they could turn out to be the U.S. version of Argentina’s escraches. Someday members of our political elite may finally have to answer for their crimes in front of a judge and a jury.

By David L. Wilson, MR Online
June 29, 2018
Seven years of military dictatorship in Argentina ended in 1983, but the regime’s officers remained a powerful force. The newly formed democratic government tried to appease them by passing two laws that granted almost total impunity for the junta’s many crimes: the “disappearance” of as many as 30,000 people, systematic torture, the dumping of live detainees from airplanes, and the practice of seizing the children of murdered activists and handing them over to childless military couples.

In the mid-1990s many of the survivors began fighting back against the impunity.[...]

Read the full article:
https://mronline.org/2018/06/29/escraches-come-north-incivility-or-an-end-to-impunity/
"Prison for the torturer": confronting Astiz. Photo: Clarin/AFP

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Roseanne, Immigration, and the Unasked Question

[T]here’s a second way the elite can exploit immigrant workers—as scapegoats. When people like Dan and Roseanne complain about their economic problems, the superrich and their hired propagandists point their fingers at undocumented immigrants.

By David L. Wilson, MR Online
June 18, 2018
On May 8, a few weeks before its cancellation, the popular sitcom Roseanne devoted an episode to immigration.

The main focus was on the title character’s anit-Muslim prejudices, but the plot hinged on a problem for Roseanne’s husband, a construction contractor: his loss of drywall installation work to a rival who employs undocumented immigrants. “I got underbid on Al’s job,” Dan, the husband, explains to Roseanne. “He’s using illegals… It ain’t right, Rosie. These guys are so desperate they’ll work for nothing, and we’re getting screwed in the process.”

This scene got its share of pushback.[…]

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Thursday, June 7, 2018

The Delusion of Deporting the Country’s Troubles Away by Banishing “Criminal Aliens”

[T]he Court’s decision presents the nation with a chance to address a more fundamental issue: Is there really any reason for the US government to deport non-citizens with criminal records?

By David L. Wilson, Truthout
June 6, 2018
On April 17 the Supreme Court handed down a ruling that limited some of the excuses the government can use for deporting people. At issue in the case, Sessions v. Dimaya, was the meaning of “crime of violence” in immigration law; immigration judges have relied on this very broad category to order some non-citizens deported as “criminal aliens.” The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in 2015 that the category was unconstitutionally vague and therefore not a basis for deportation, and the Supreme Court’s 5-4 decision upheld the Ninth Circuit’s ruling.

The decision got a good deal of media attention. Time ran a headline claiming that the Court had “Dealt the White House a Big Blow on Immigration.” But this type of coverage probably exaggerates the ruling’s practical effect.[...]

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Monday, April 2, 2018

Stand Up, Fight Back: The Rising Militancy of the Immigrant Rights Movement

May 1, 2017, in San Francisco. Photo: Peg Hunter

“The only way we can stop the deportations now is to demonstrate, to commit mass civil disobedience, over and over again. Sanctuary in churches must become militant mass sanctuary in the streets.”

By David L. Wilson, Truthout
April 2, 2018
Activism for immigrant rights may be about to get much more militant.

Some 1.1 million undocumented people -- beneficiaries of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) or Temporary Protected Status (TPS) -- are slated to lose their protection against deportation over the next two years, along with the possibility of obtaining work permits or aid for higher education. The result will of course be devastating for them and for their relatives, friends and communities, but there will also be repercussions for the society as a whole, especially in areas with large immigrant populations.[...]

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Wednesday, February 7, 2018

The Latest Nonsense About Immigration—a Quick Guide


By David L. Wilson, MR Online
February 7, 2018

We’ve seen and heard a lot about immigration in the past few weeks, and a good deal of it has been out-and-out nonsense. Many journalists and politicians simply don’t understand U.S. immigration policy, some consciously lie about it, and a few, like Donald Trump, manage not to understand and at the same time consciously lie.

Here’s a list of some of the immigration absurdities now circulating in the media and in the political class.[…]

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Friday, February 2, 2018

Humans, “Aliens,” and “Shithole Countries”

There is no evidence that Donald Trump has ever in his life performed a single selfless act, let alone any act of heroism. Probably he wouldn’t be able even to imagine the nobility of character I witnessed among Port-au-Prince residents after the earthquake, and among “alien” activists like Ravi and Jean here in New York.


By David L. Wilson, MR Online
January 14, 2018
Exactly eight years ago, on January 12, 2010, I happened to be in Port-au-Prince when a major earthquake struck southern Haiti, killing tens or hundreds of thousands of people.

That night and in the five days that followed I saw a few Haitians acting selfishly, but mostly I watched and interviewed people trying to help each other, many of them digging through rubble with hand tools or bare fingers, sometimes endangering themselves in attempts to rescue friends, neighbors, and even complete strangers.[…]

Read the full article:
https://mronline.org/2018/01/14/humans-aliens-and-shithole-countries/