Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Illegal immigrants demonstrate to express their desire to be US citizens

At least with these demonstrations, the majority of people involved seem to be eager illegals looking for citizenship, whereas the last rallies were hijacked by students ditching class and MeCHa-type racist groups. These rallies saw many more American flags being carried as opposed to the previous rallies where the demostraters were simply out to display Mexican pride.

Hundreds of thousands of pro-immigration demonstrators mobilized on the Mall and in scores of cities across the country yesterday in a powerful display of grass-roots muscle-flexing that organizers said could mark a coming-of-age for Latino political power in the United States.

Calling for legal protection for illegal immigrants, the demonstrators -- the overwhelming majority of them Hispanic -- streamed past the White House in Washington, jammed streets near City Hall in Lower Manhattan, marched in Atlanta, held a small candlelight vigil in Los Angeles and, in Mississippi, sang the civil rights anthem "We Shall Overcome" in Spanish.

These people desperately want to be US citizens, and I understand that. These 11 million of people came to the US with dreams and hopes, having heard of the opportunities here. This country was built on immigrants with similar ideas of freedom. They left behind injustice and poverty. Many risked their lives to get here, but this time they got here illegally. So now that they're here they simply expect to be made citizens and given all the rights that go along with that? So I can understand the anger US citizens feel when confronted with so many, especially those who have a large sense of entitlement about US citizenship.

Having said that we can't deport 11 million people. Well, we could, but I shudder when I think about that process... rounding up Hispanics, putting them on buses and trains, taking to Mexico, and what? Dumping them there? If they're from El Salvador or Honduras or Cuba do we have to fly them back to their homeland? And the budget to do this? Whatever it is, it's not going to be pretty.

I'm still for deporting all criminals and building the fence, then it's a matter of dealing with those that are here and dividing them into groups based on how long they've been here, issuing ID cards, determining who gets citizenship, and who, after completing the time on their guest worker visa, has to go back to their homeland. Not to mention the penalties and fines involved for those individuals and businesses that don't follow the rules, and of course actually believing the government can and will enforce these new laws.