Saturday, October 22, 2011

Jim Crow Lives On in Alabama: Hate Crimes Against Latinos Running Rampant Due to Alabama's Racist Immigration Law

It was a neighborhood basketball game. A team of Latino boys were playing basketball against a group of non-minority neighborhoods boys. The reaction was immediate and rooted in the state's new law on illegal immigration. One mother, witness to the incident said, "They told them, `You shouldn't be winning. You should go back to Mexico." Latino children are facing more bullying and taunts at school since Alabama's tough crackdown on illegal immigration took effect last month. Many blame the name-calling on fallout from the law, which has been widely covered in the news, discussed in some classrooms and debated around dinner tables.

The Department of Justice is monitoring bullying incidents linked to Alabama's law.
"We're hearing a number of reports about increases in bullying that we're studying," the head of the agency's civil rights division, Thomas Perez, said during a stop in Birmingham. The Justice Department has established a bilingual telephone hotline and special email account for residents to report any violence or threats based on racial or ethnic background that are linked to the law. Federal officials say some parents -- particularly Latinos -- may not report bullying to teachers and principals because they fear coming into contact with government officials.

Supporters of the law claim it is vital to reducing the cost of state and local government by getting illegal immigrants off public assistance, though they have no facts to prove their allegations. They also argue the measure will create jobs for legal residents by opening up positions that had been held by people living in the country illegally. However, Americans have shown little to no interest in the backbreaking, low-paying jobs at farms and poultry factories that are held by many of the Latinos they are targeting with the law.

Those that oppose this racial profiling law say the law is creating a climate of fear and mistrust in the state that's unsettling for all Latinos -- citizens and immigrants. Immigrants tell of dirty looks in grocery stores, and online forums are full of angry, anonymous comments from both supporters and opponents of the law.

Machine shop manager Hector Conde said his family has seen the problem firsthand. He Latino and his family are citizens. Conde, whose family lives in Autauga County north of Montgomery, was appalled when his 12-year-old daughter, Monica Torres, told him a schoolmate called her a "damn Mexican" during a school bus ride. "She is a citizen. She doesn't even speak Spanish," said Conde, a U.S. citizen originally from Puerto Rico. "The culture being created (by the law) is that this sort of thing is OK."

A Hispanic woman said her 13-year-old niece was called a "stupid Mexican" and told to "go back to Mexico" by a classmate in Walker County. "She said, `If you're not going I'm going to punch you."'

Courts have struck down sections of the law, including a provision that required public schools to verify the citizenship status of students. Other sections remain in effect, including a part that lets police check a person's immigration status during a traffic stop. Courts also can't enforce contracts involving illegal immigrants, such as leases, and it's still a felony for an illegal immigrant to do business with the state for basic things like getting a driver's license.

U.S. Attorney Joyce Vance, the lead federal prosecutor for north Alabama, said many Hispanic parents may be afraid to report bullying for fear of coming in contact with government officials. Under the law, authorities are supposed to detain suspected illegal immigrants found living in the state and hold them for federal immigration authorities. Parents may be afraid to even go to school teachers and principals, she said. "It seems likely to me that people are trying to keep their heads down and stay out of trouble," said Vance.

Charles Warren is school superintendent DeKalb County, where about 18 percent of the 8,900 students enrolled in public schools are Hispanic. He doesn't see much tension between Hispanic students and others -- Crossville High School has had a Hispanic homecoming queen the last two years, he said. "The kids get along great, it's the adults who are the problem," Warren said. "There are a lot of similarities to what went on back in the `50s and `60s with the civil rights movement. A lot of people are out of work now and they want to blame someone. I think the Hispanic people are catching a lot of that."


Felix Jaure said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Vicente Duque said...

VIDEO, Obama is hugged by Latinos and talks to Children that are surprised and elated with the Unexpected Apparition or Epiphany of the President showing up to eat chicken. Great Presidential Empathy and Sympathy to the common man and voter - Great Campaigner

Uploaded by Coolins335 on Oct 25, 2011

President Obama visits Roscoe's chicken and waffles


Vicente Duque said...

Obama in Hollywood Gala : "thank you to Eva [Longoria]. She is just a powerhouse. I don’t know how much -- (applause) -- I couldn’t say no if she had called me". (Laughter.) - "To Melanie and Antonio -- could not be more gracious hosts, and their beautiful family. Read Full Speech here

I link to Obama's Full speech, but I cut and present the most impressive part of what this Superb Campaigner said :

Appearing at his second fundraiser last night at the Hancock Park home of Melanie Griffith and Antonio Banderas, This is Obama's speech :

Wilshire and Washington
Obama at L.A. Latino Event: "These President Years Are Dog Years"
By Ted Johnson
Tuesday, October 25, 2011, 8:25 AM

Some excerpts of the Speech :

Hello, everybody! Well, it is good to be here tonight. Everybody please have a seat. Make yourselves comfortable.

Although some of them have already been acknowledged, I just want to say, first of all, thank you to Eva. She is just a powerhouse. I don’t know how much -- (applause) -- I couldn’t say no if she had called me. (Laughter.) So -- and between her and Giselle and all the folks who helped to make this Futuro Fund possible, I am grateful.

To Melanie and Antonio -- could not be more gracious hosts, and their beautiful family. Thank you so much. (Applause.) We are grateful to you.

We have some great guests. Somebody who -- daughter of a Teamster, fighting for working people every single day, and one of my favorite people, just a great member of my Cabinet, Hilda Solis. We are so proud of her. (Applause.)

There are two of my majors -- two -- there are two of my favorite mayors as well: Mayor Villaraigosa and Mayor Castro. They work hard every single day on behalf of their constituents. So we’re proud of them. (Applause.)

One of the finest senators we have in the country, Bob Mendendez of New Jersey is here in the house. (Applause.) And a personal hero of mine, Dolores Huerta is here. (Applause.) Where’s Dolores at? Where is she? There she is back there. We love her.

Before I came to Los Angeles today, I was in Las Vegas. And I think as many of you know, Las Vegas has been hit as hard as any part of the country as a consequence of a housing bubble that burst. Unemployment is higher than it is any place in the country. There are more homes that are underwater than just about any place in the country.

And we went to announce a new program that we have for refinancing of mortgages, because so many people are having difficulty refinancing, taking advantage of these low rates. Their mortgages are now higher than what the homes are being valued for, and as a consequence the banks won’t refinance. And so we took some executive action to try to get this fixed.

Vicente Duque said...

Obama continues :

But what was interesting was the setting. We went into this subdivision and we visited the home of the Bonillas -- Jose and Lissette. And their story is a classic American story. Jose had come here 26 years ago as an undocumented worker. And he got a job sweeping floors in a supermarket.

He met Lissette, who was also undocumented, and was a housekeeper. And when the amnesty program came, they were able to get legal status here in this country. They had three beautiful children, and for 17 years they lived in a one-bedroom apartment -- all three, the three kids in bunk beds in one room and Jose and Lissette slept in the living room. And that’s how they raised their family. But they worked incredibly hard, they saved. Eventually each of them got U.S. citizenship. And Jose rose up through the ranks until he was finally a manager at this supermarket. But they still didn’t have enough money for a home. And then a program that we had set up, that we’re now trying to replicate all across the country, took homes that were vacant, that had been foreclosed on, and converted them. And so they finally got their first home.

And they invited in the President of the United States, after apologizing to their neighbors for blocking the streets -- (laughter) -- to their home, and we sat around the dining room table and talked about their life and their experience and what was happening to their friends and neighbors and those who had lost their homes and those whose families had been separated. And at one point in the conversation, Jose says, “Understand our dream is not complete. Our dream will not be complete until my children have all gone to college, and they have a home of their own, and everybody here in this country understands that they are full-fledged Americans.” (Applause.)

Now, what struck me in this conversation was not how unique their story is but how typical their story is of what built this country -- that spirit of being willing to take enormous risks, of coming to a new land, of charting a new course, of starting at the bottom and working your way up, of putting your blood, sweat and tears into this distant vision for the future. That’s what built this country. That’s the essence of America; that’s its foundation. And when I ran for President I ran not because of the title, not because of a pursuit of power, but because I so deeply believed in those ideals and those values -- (applause) -- that helped to propel this country forward and made it a beacon for all the world.

Vicente Duque said...

That’s what America is. That’s why all around the world even today people still think about this country differently than they think about other countries, no matter how critical they may be sometimes, no matter how frustrated they may be. The American ideal, the American creed is one that animates the entire world. And I ran for President because I want to make sure that this country remains that beacon and remains that ideal. (Applause.) And that the hopes of the Joses and the Lissettes, people all across the country, regardless of their station, regardless of what they look like, regardless of where they come from, that they’re going to be able to have that piece of the American Dream.

Now, part of the reason that I ran was because too many people felt that dream slipping away. For a decade, we saw that dream neglected. And so even though some of us were extraordinarily fortunate, those of us at the very top were doing very well, the average family saw their wages flatline, their incomes flatline -- even as the cost of everything from a college education to their health care to their groceries to their gas was going up. More and more people felt like they were working harder just to stay in the same place, or not to fall behind.

Here I cut a lot

But here’s the message I want to deliver to you today -- is, don’t get weary. (Laughter.) Don’t get tired. Because I’m not tired. I may be gray, but I’m not tired. (Applause.) My passion is still there. My commitment is still there. (Applause.) My vision for this country is still there. (Applause.) And if you’re still there, then we’re going to win this election, and we are going to create the kind of America that our children and our grandchildren deserve.

God bless you. God bless the United States of America. (Applause.)


Anonymous said...

I live in Alabama and totally support the Immigration bill we now have as law. It is amazing to me that such a fuss has been generated nationally as a result of this new law. We are regularly told how racist and bigoted we are because we have passed a law that merely reflects our attitude toward those individuals who have flaunted our existing Federal laws concerning our borders. If those illegals who violated the law to begin with had not done so, then there would be no need for the bill. But if you choose to violate our borders, then you need the big, bad hammer of the Alabama authorities to come down on your little brown head

Dee said...

It is obvious by your last sentence what a racist you are and you don't even realize it.

I almost feel sorry for you!

Anonymous said...

Racist? Dee, just because I use southern colloquialisms to reference illegals does not constitute racism. I fully understand the definition of racism and I do not find myself superior to latinos because I am white. Racism and prejudice do not share the same definition. I am prejudiced as are most, if not all, of the illegal aliens that I am familiar with. They have there own stores, their own clubs and restaurants, their own churches, and marry amoung themselves. Most of illegals interaction with whites and blacks for that matter is when they are on the jobsite. Working illegally, I might add. They do not show any desire to assimilate into our culture but rather wish to bring the culture from the slums from which they illegally emigrated. They are a huge burden on our economy and a bain to construction workers country-wide. It's time for a national identification card as a mandantory requirement for any work, housing, licensing, or schooling in the U.S. Then, as my fellow southerners so colorfully speak, those illegal bean-eaters wont have any choice but to return to their home country's and seek legally to return to the U.S.

Dee said...

Anonymous R,
You keep digging a deeper hole for yourself and proving my point about you.

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