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E-coyotes take advantage of Facebook
Ten years ago, if you lived in Central America and were looking for a guide to help you sneak across the US-Mexico border, you'd ask your neighbors and call your relatives in the US to see if they knew any coyotes, or people-smugglers. Now, you can just log onto Facebook. Social media is playing....
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Migrant children need access to lawyers
In 2008, 15-year-old Wilmer Villalobos Ortíz fled his native Honduras. The previous year, the 18th Street Gang that controlled his neighborhood tried to recruit him and threatened him with death if he refused. Ortíz’s journey to the United States included a month and a half riding on the infamous ....
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A nation of immigrants, where is our leadership?
Protesters to the current immigration crisis and particularly those highlighted in nearby Murrieta, California recently have sparked some very sad days for the USA, a nation of immigrants. One may recall that the protesters initially blocked two busloads of immigrant children from a border patrol ....
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Latest crack in our broken immigration system verde
In a bustling room at the Third Presbyterian Church in Albuquerque, New Mexico a group of white and Latino parishioners gathered for a workshop on immigration. They wanted to learn more about the issue. Julio Alvarez, a Mexican immigrant, was there to answer their questions. “Why can’t immigrants....
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Reclaiming ‘USA!’ from bigots in Murrieta
However you feel about the immigration issue, the sight of angry protesters in Murrieta, California screaming “go back to where you come from” and shouting other invectives to a busload of children and their moms has to make you queasy. It sickened me. But what also made me angry was that the prot....
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No humanitarianism in $3.7 billion
When President Obama announced recently that he was going to take executive action on immigration because immigration reform in Congress was dead and because of the tens of thousands of Central American unaccompanied minors just then arriving at our border, many non-profits heard something differe....
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Humanitarian challenge at the border
What is our obligation as a country to the unaccompanied child migrants at our border? This seemingly straightforward question is frequently lost among the political debate surrounding the humanitarian challenge at our southern border. In a recent Senate homeland security committee hearing, severa....
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Rep. Gutiérrez addresses migrant child crisis
A leading advocate of comprehensive immigration reform accused Republicans of disparaging the unaccompanied children crossing America’s Southwest border and called on the federal government to prioritize the interests of immigrant children in addressing with the current crisis. During an appeara....
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Earning an immigration red card
Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-IL) recently used a World Cup analogy to castigate his Republican colleagues for blocking immigration reform. “Leave the field, too many flagrant offenses and unfair attacks. You’re out,” Gutierrez said. “Hit the showers. It’s the red card.” (In case you’re not into soccer:....
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Chickens coming home to roost
James Russell Lowell wrote in 1870, “All our mistakes sooner or later surely come home to roost.” The older fuller form was curses are like chickens; they always come home to roost, meaning that your offensive words or actions are likely at some point to rebound on you. And, the offensive actions ....
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A riveting personal journey
I was invited recently to attend the premiere of José Antonio Vargas’s documentary “Documented,” which aired on June 29th, on CNN. Along with the rest of the audience, I was moved to tears by this beautifully crafted and extraordinarily honest film. In Vargas’s own words, his primary goals in maki....
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Protect children and keep families together
President Obama understands that to leave the immigration system the way it is, puts millions of people and the future of this country in a humanitarian crisis. Record numbers of immigrants continue to be deported every day by the Administration, and the absence of legal pathways for people to ent....
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Confronting the Central American refugee crisis
They can’t stay and they have nowhere to go. Forced out by poverty and the threat of imminent death in their countries, extorted by organized crime, kidnapped and executed in the transit countries and deported if they make it to their destination. We must urgently apply international protocols th....
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We are all fighting for the same thing
Thirteen years ago my parents brought me to Colorado from Chihuahua, México. When I first moved here and all throughout high school I was discriminated against on a daily basis because I was an immigrant and I had a really thick accent. I was laughed at every time I tried to speak English, simply ....
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Timing is key for DACA renewal process
Last week, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced the renewal process for hundreds of thousands of young noncitizens who received a grant of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). Renewal of DACA ensures current DACA holders will continue to be safe from deportatio....
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