Sunday, August 1, 2010

Guest Voz - Flavia: The Leaked USCIS Memo and the Loony Bin Attacks

Last week, somebody (who, according to my sophisticated profiling skills, is a creepy middle-aged man with a sketchy mustache who lives in his mother’s basement and uses a Confederate flag as a bed sheet) leaked this internal USCIS memorandum, which is designed to promote “family unity, foster economic growth, achieve significant process improvements and reduce the threat of removal for certain individuals present in the United States without authorization.”

At this terrifying prospect, the members of far-right brigade had mild, self-induced heart attacks, and everybody from our friends John and Ken at KFI on the best coast (colloquially known as KKKFI) to the supremacist training camps in Michigan started ringing alarm bells about “shamnesty”.

At this point, they’ve racked up enough points to qualify for the loony bin. Let’s review:
1. “Deferred action for immigrants who came to the country as 4 year olds, went to Harvard, and want to become oncologists to find a cure for cancer? Ridiculous. Un-American. Heresy. How could they possibly contribute to this country?”
Of course, an attack on DREAM-eligible youth. The memo suggests deferred action for DREAM-eligible youth, and the far-right is freaking out over this one, because deporting aspiring doctors, teachers, lawyers, and engineers is reasonable. Imposing a self-created brain drain is the best thing for America. Because we have too many college-educated citizens, and we really should put a cap on that.
LOONY POINTS: A quadrillion.

2. “Let’s throw out the 14th amendment!” Representative Louie Gohmert (R-TX), Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC), senatorial candidate J.D. Hayworth are really passionate about proposing a constitutional amendment to ensure that only the children of citizens can be citizens. According to Graham, “Birthright citizenship, I think, is a mistake.”
The 14th amendment states, and I quote, “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside.” Are you really sure that something intended to secure equality for all people should be overhauled? This wonderful addition to the Constitution was put in place because a long time ago, black people didn’t have any rights. They were called “slaves”. They were treated like cattle- constantly humiliated, separated from their families, and doing back-breaking work with little reward. We wouldn’t want anything like that to happen again, would we?
We know what you’re doing. We know that you don’t want the children of immigrants to have citizenship, because it simply isn’t FAIR. It hurts so much! Just like gay marriage. Every time two men kiss, it just hurts me, real deep inside. It would be the end of the world to have it be, you know, legal. I mean, can you imagine!? Two men… kissing! Legally! Similarly… people who are born here… getting citizenship!? It’s unthinkable. The mind reels.
**For full disclosure, my grandparents came to this country from Chile for a year in 1955, my grandmother gave birth to my father, and they then returned to Chile after 8 months. My father (yes, an American citizen by birth) left behind a dictatorship in Chile in the 80s to work in the United States. He is now an executive in the aerospace industry. Every time I see my dad, I see all the damage being done to this country by birthright citizenship. It’s pretty awful.

3. “Let’s deport citizens!”
Representative Duncan Hunter (R-CA) has suggested that he would deport a natural-born citizen child with undocumented parents. “You can look and say, ‘You’re a mean guy. That’s a mean thing to do. That’s not a humanitarian thing to do.’ We simply cannot afford what we’re doing right now,” said Hunter, also adding: “And we’re not being mean. We’re just saying it takes more than walking across the border to become an American citizen.”
Seriously? What does it take to be an American citizen, Mr. Hunter? Do I have to be white, rich, landowning? Because in that case, you may enjoy the east coast circa 1750.
LOONY POINTS: 5 stars.

4. “Deny access to permanent residence for current TPS holders who have escaped horrific conditions and war torn countries!”
Among the elements of the memo to which the far-right objects is access to permanent residence by current TPS holders.
Immigrants who have Temporary Protected Status are those who have left behind countries that are in shambles. And when I say shambles, I mean shambles. I mean genocide in Sudan. I mean 7.0 earthquakes in Haiti. I mean the mass gang-raping of women in the Congo. I mean “ongoing armed conflict within the state”, “environmental disaster resulting in a substantial, temporary disruption of living conditions”, and “extraordinary and temporary conditions in the state that prevent nationals from returning in safety”.
The memo doesn’t even propose to increase the number of TPS visas available. It just proposes that maybe giving people legal recourse to apply for permanent residency might be reasonable, so they don’t have to wonder if they’re going to be sent back to hell on earth.
The members of the far-right would deny people who escaped genocide, total destruction by 7.0 earthquakes, and systematic gang-rape to come to the U.S. the mental comfort of knowing that they are safe from deportation.
LOONY POINTS: 45, and Mother Teresa does somersaults in her grave.

5. “Family unity? For military families? Who cares, they’re illegals!”
They claim to support America’s troops, but they don’t seem to care if our bravest and proudest come home from tours of duty to find that their spouses and children have been deported. The memo proposes preserving family unity for the spouses and children of active duty military service members, and giving them housing, medical, and dental services. Given the sacrifices these families are making, it’s the very least we can do for the men and women and uniform.
LOONY POINTS: Stupid^nth degree
TOTAL LOONY POINTS: Too close to call… Just kidding! Based on this very scientific measurement, they’re crazy!
So, that’s the story. They’re officially totally disconnected from reality. They’re officially rank and file members of the loony bin- which doesn’t require birthright citizenship, mind you…

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