By Steve Croyle
TOPIC: Local illegal immigrants
Let her stay
When Donald Trump was running for office he pointed a freakishly small, but pudgy finger at immigrants. Mexico, he said, was not sending us their best and brightest, and he vowed to mobilize Immigrations and Customs Enforcement to purge the “bad hombres” from our society.
Of course, Edith Espinal is not a “bad hombre” she’s a mother who has been doing everything she can to do right by her children. One of those things is providing them with a home here in Columbus, Ohio. For more than 20 years, Edith lived here quietly raising her children, returning to Mexico briefly to bring her now 19 year-old son back to Columbus where he would be safe from the increasing violence prevalent throughout Mexico. Violence, by the way, fueled by our counterproductive war on drugs.
It’s something any parent would do. It’s also the scenario Trump insisted wouldn’t happen, yet, after appealing her case to Immigrations officials, Edith Espinal was ordered to buy a plane ticket for Mexico, and leave the United States for a minimum of 20 years. If Trump was sincere about not deporting good people, one would expect him to grant Espinal amnesty.
Edith Espinal has been a good citizen. She doesn’t have a criminal record. She works, pays taxes, and takes care of her family. Deporting her doesn’t make anybody safer. All it does is put her life in danger, and throw a family into turmoil.
Two of her children are US Citizens. The third, her middle son Brandow, has an immigration hearing scheduled for sometime in 2020, although ICE, the charming acronym our government uses for Immigration Enforcement, has been intimating that Brandow’s status could change is Edith doesn’t accept her deportation order.
ICE hasn’t provided any explanation for their zealous pursuit of this matter, and the only reason it’s been at the forefront of the news cycle is because Espinal has sought asylum in a local Mennonite Church which has everybody wondering how ICE will respond. Espinal almost acquiesced to the order, hoping to spare her son any additional hardship, but her attorney has applied to have the deportation order stayed, while her eldest son, Isidro, applies to have his parents grant legal status.
Our porous borders have allowed millions of people like Edith to trickle into this country. Our lax employment authorization process has allowed those people to gain access to employment. From the outside looking in, it almost looks like our immigration laws are there for show. Our economy–our entire way of life here in the US is dependent on illegal immigrants. For decades we’ve used Immigration enforcement selectively, which is precisely why somebody like Edith Espinal is able to get by for 20 years without issue. Then, when a few blowhard politicians want to score points with the ignorant rubes who blame immigrants for languishing wages, and underemployment, rather than the supply-side economic policies that are more difficult to understand, we rally the troops and make an example of people who have done nothing wrong. In Edith’s case, she’s been a productive citizen for 20 years.
America ought to be better than this. If you want to beef up immigration enforcement to reduce the number of people coming into the country, that’s one thing. If you want to crack down on the undocumented immigrants already here by apprehending and deporting those engaged in illegal enterprises, that’s another. Tearing apart families, and destroying the lives of people who have done nothing but try to live that American dream of providing a better life for their children is not what this country is all about.
Sure, there’s the argument that an undocumented immigrant is a criminal who is perpetually in the act of breaking the law by living here illegally, but with most crimes we have statutes of limitations. If the criminal justice system is on the clock for crimes like taking bribes, or conspiring to rig elections, shouldn’t there be an expiration date illegal immigration?
As the children of immigrants ourselves, we should be ashamed.
QUICK TAKE I
Oh really Hillary, you didn’t know?
Topic: Clintons and Weinstein
Hillary Clinton was ever so slow to step forward and condemn Harvey Weinstein, a long time surrogate for both Hillary and her husband, as well as numerous other high profile Democrats. Taking money from a dirtbag, sexual abuser doesn’t necessarily cast you in an favorable light, but the Clintons have maintained a much deeper relationship with Weinstein, one that should have provided the Clinton’s with some insight into Weinstein’s behavior.
Between this decades-long relationship, her own diligent defense of her husband’s serial sexual abuses, and a strange friendship with Donald Trump that seemed warm and gracious right up until Trump decided to run for President, one should question Hillary’s true commitment to women’s rights. Is her feminism for sale, or just a political prop she brings out to score votes?
If Hillary were truly done with politics it wouldn’t matter, but her twisted sense of personal values is important if she chooses to remain engaged with the Democratic Party. The Clintons are the ones who helped the Democratic Party cultivate such a strong relationship with Hollywood, and Weinstein was their Huckleberry. Somebody’s got to take responsibility for failing to vet such a prominent benefactor.
Politicians love plausible deniability, however. So the Clintons will maintain that they are shocked to discover that their close friend was a sexual abuser. That doesn’t mean, we should believe them. Taking them to task for failing to vet an associate will only ensure other politicians are more cautious about who they embrace.
QUICK TAKE II
Back off, white people
Topic: Racism in America
Come together and stop the hate? I’m sorry, but when you say things like “come together” it implies that there’s fault on both sides of the issue. When it comes to racism in this country, there is no middle ground. White people need to step up and remove the socio economic hurdles that we’ve thrown before the black community. This ongoing outrage over the national anthem is just another example of white people choosing to shout down black people who are exercising their rights in airing a grievance.
Sadly, the President of the United States is the most obnoxious bigot of the lot taking to twitter with his thoughtless 140 character screeds, picking fights with sports leagues, commentators,and athletes while the world, quite literally, burns.
Racism was reinvigorated during the Obama administration. In retrospect, Obama’s political compass wasn’t that far left of Reagan’s but in a country that never really dealt with racism so much as it just stuffed everything into the hall closet, a black man in the oval office was the catalyst needed to breathe life into those old bones. Donald Trump simply traded the dog whistle for a megaphone and empowered bigots.
This country has chosen to compromise on equality for far too long. Trump’s presidency doesn’t validate bigotry, it underscores the need to confront it once and for all.