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Posts Tagged ‘immigration’

I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest speech mankind has ever heard. And I will tell you this: THERE WAS NO COLLUSION.

Two years ago, a truly great American who now stands before you took office as President of the United States. This momentous event, witnessed by the largest audience ever assembled for anything, anywhere, came as a great beacon of light for millions of Americans who had lived through terrible carnage during previous administrations. It came as a joyous dawn to end the long nightmare that had caused blood to run in our veins, rapists to mow our lawns, and child traffickers to clean our hotel rooms.

But two years later, we find that the government is shut down. For almost a month, I have been crippled by the binding tentacles of Cryin’ Chuck and Nancy, and unable to fulfill the promises I made to my base. Seven-hundred-and-thirty days (and counting) after becoming president, too many white citizens still find themselves exiles in their own land.

In a sense, we’ve come to our nation’s capital, within a few short blocks of the Trump International Hotel Washington D.C., to ask for a loan. When I was looking for money for various real estate projects before I became president, it was only Russian mobsters and money launderers (very fine people, I might add) who were all too happy to bankroll me. Their loans were a promise to all grifters that no matter how many bankruptcies one had in the past, or legal judgments filed against them, they would still be guaranteed the unalienable right to get rich by stiffing contractors or through other dubious schemes — even while holding elective positions.

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A government shutdown. Is there a more fitting way to end the first year in office of a man who is manifestly unfit for the presidency?

Some dealmaker! Even though he presides over a government fully controlled by his own party, the Negotiator-in-Chief couldn’t even cut a deal on either the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), or Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), two programs he supposedly wants saved, and which enjoy large bipartisan support in Congress and throughout the country.

The only deals he seems to excel at are divorce settlements, paying hush money to one or more mistresses, and selling apartments in Trump Tower to despots, drug dealers, and accused mobsters and money launderers, most of whom are card-carrying Russian oligarchs.

This is the great businessman who was going to fix things in Washington. (Who knew he really meant someone who intervenes to circumvent the law or arrange for favors.) Never mind his three Atlantic City casino bankruptcies, defrauding Trump University students, stiffing contractors, American banks refusing to lend him money, and other notable business failures, (e.g., Trump Airlines, Trump Steaks, Trump Vodka, and the United States Football League).

Is it any wonder that the Genius-in-Chief wants to tear up every significant international agreement to which the United States is a signatory? When you’re so busy making it about you and your demagoguery, ignoring the majority of citizens who voted for your opponent(s), picking fights on Twitter, and driving people away with vulgar epithets and name calling, you reveal yourself as someone who is constitutionally incapable of respecting the legitimate interests of those opposite you at the negotiating table. You haven’t a clue as to how to forge a fair and enduring accord when complex national or international issues are at stake.

In fact you don’t have a clue — period — when it comes to occupying the Oval Office.

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The recent deportation of Jorge Garcia, a man who was brought to this country illegally at the age of 10 thirty years ago, and has since lived here lawfully while raising two children with his wife who is an American citizen, is yet another example of Homeland Security’s cruel and morally indefensible enforcement of immigration policy. This video of Mr. Garcia’s leave-taking shows the human cost of what Trump and his rabid cronies are doing in our name. What national purpose is possibly served — how are we made more safe from terrorism — by breaking apart a family whose American roots formed decades earlier?

More evidence can be found in a New Yorker article entitled “When Deportation Is a Death Sentence.”

If anything sums up the current administration, it is its utter indifference to pain that it causes. An insecure, ignorant, narcissist has been given free reign to indulge his most base inclinations. It’s easy to think that this country is still an advanced democratic society but that’s what Germany was in the late 1920’s. Day by day, executive order by executive order, expletive by expletive, we are being pulled against our better natures to a dark abyss.

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I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, easily divisible, with liberty and justice for some.

 

Every now and then, InSanity is inspired to create a new American flag that better represents the reality that has overtaken the country. Our most recent entry commemorated the fealty that administration department heads pledged to Donald Trump at a famously laughable cabinet meeting. Eight years ago, we proposed this alternative, little realizing that such a flag would be back in fashion in less than a decade.

Just when we think that things can’t get any worse or lower, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) can always be counted on to prove us wrong. For months now, the agency has been deporting mothers and fathers — the parents of children born in this country and therefore United States citizens — whose only crime was to enter this country illegally to escape horrendous violence or unending poverty. The fact that they’ve been leading productive, responsible lives ever since — working, paying taxes, raising families, and contributing to their communities — apparently counts for nothing when it comes to the draconian enforcement of Trump’s January executive order. (See this October 24 account by a Yale senior whose father is now in the process of being deported.)

One has to ask what possible public interest is served by breaking up an intact family that has taken root in America and caused no harm. Whatever happened to the use of prosecutorial discretion, to common decency and compassion, to common sense? Has ICE gotten rid of all “the bad hombres” already and now has nothing better to do with its limited funds and resources than go after the hard-working parents of American children — even kids themselves, sick ones no less?

Reports surfaced this week about the arrest of a 10-year-old girl with cerebral palsy who has lived in this country illegally since infancy. Rosamaria Hernandez was taken into custody at a Texas hospital where she underwent emergency gall bladder surgery. Border Patrol agents had stopped the ambulance she was riding in, followed it to the hospital, then waited outside her room until she recovered from surgery. Most patients would usually go home at that point but Rosamaria wasn’t able to: Agents arrested her and brought her to an immigrant detention center 150 miles away from where her parents live. (Update here.)

It’s hard not to conclude that the insensitivity, heartlessness, and cruelty on display in this situation is nothing other than the character of Donald J. Trump manifested as immigration policy. Our hypocritical narcissist of a president rants against athletes who take a knee or sit while the national anthem is played. Do actions like this, though, show any respect for what this country stands for? Or are they a stain on our most cherished values, an affront to all in whose name this is being done? We are a much better country than this, but for now, this latest flag is a symbol of what we’ve become.

If you’d like to voice your concerns, here is the telephone number ICE’s Office of Policy: (202) 732-4292. The White House comment line is at: 202.456.1111.

For an overview of existing or proposed Homeland Security policies governing unaccompanied children entering our country, please see this October 27 NY Times opinion piece.

 

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Does the White House have any mirrors? I’m beginning to wonder.

Last week, the “Plutocrat-in-Chief” called several respected news organizations “the enemy of the American people.”

Maybe he should look in the mirror every once in a while — assuming he can see past his thin skin and narcissism — and ask who else might reasonably be considered a U.S. enemy.

How about someone who has:

  • Repeatedly lied to the American public
  • Attacked the judiciary, Muslims and other minorities, women, the disabled, war heroes, journalists, TV shows and performers, businesses, and intelligence agencies
  • Claimed that millions of people voted illegally in the last election despite all evidence to the contrary
  • Nominated unqualified/ethically challenged/ideologues (choose one or more) to head cabinet departments, and in some cases undermine their missions
  • Encouraged the rise of white nationalist hate groups
  • Carried on a bromance with Russia’s ruthless dictator Vladimir Putin
  • Refused to make public his tax returns
  • Created myriad conflicts of interest as president by retaining ownership of his far-flung business empire
  • Conducted sensitive diplomatic discussions in public at Mar-a-Lago
  • Demonstrated gross transition and governing ineptitude
  • Alienated trusted allies and large numbers of federal employees
  • Failed to reassure the majority of citizens who voted against him that he understands their concerns
  • Relied on senior advisors with zero experience in government
  • Presided over a White House staff marked by infighting and disarray
  • Struggled to fill key positions in his administration
  • Promoted a delusional dystopian vision of America
  • Slammed the door on refugees and immigrants escaping war, terrorism, economic hardship, and criminal violence
  • Called climate change a Chinese hoax
  • Dismissed Russian interference in the 2016 election as fake news

According to this column in the Washington Post, he wouldn’t even be granted a security clearance if he were applying for a White House position now.

If being a threat to American values and democracy were a crime, Donald Trump’s framed image in government offices would be replaced by a wanted poster — Public Enemy #1, hiding in plain sight. His ranting and ravings, insults and bullying, are nothing but the projections of a seriously unbalanced personality that is manifestly unfit for the presidency.

Projecting

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Last week, I spoke with the head of Mar-a-Lago’s Catering Department under the pretext of holding a wedding reception there. I began by telling her I was a big fan of the president, and was excited by the prospect of celebrating my daughter’s marriage at his famous club. Even though I wasn’t a member, I asked, would it still be possible to reserve the main ballroom? “That won’t be a problem,” she replied. “What date did you have in mind?” “We’re pretty flexible,” I explained. “You must be booked months in advance already, given all the Trump supporters who’d love for a special family occasion to be blessed by the president’s brand.”

Before diving into details, I asked if any Muslims were on staff. “Why do you want to know this,” she responded. “Terrorism, of course. But if you do have Muslim employees, I’m sure each was subjected to the extreme vetting President Trump says is necessary to keep Americans safe.” “Mar-a-Lago doesn’t discriminate,” she announced with considerable irritation before hanging up on me.

It was good to hear that Islamophobia isn’t running as rampant on Florida’s Gold Coast as it is in the current White House. My only hope is that the catering head went on to tell her friends and colleagues about the nutcase she spoke to earlier. Maybe she even mentioned it to her boss who was down for the weekend entertaining the Japanese prime minister.

One question I’m sorry I never got to ask though: Are guests allowed to carry guns at the reception?

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Friday’s newspapers reported that the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency had stepped up its “enforcement actions” (otherwise known as raids) in cities across the nation in order to arrest and deport illegal immigrants. Unlike previous dragnets during Obama’s presidency that focused only on violent criminals, these could potentially include anyone who fit the broad criteria outlined in Trump’s executive order of January 25th — basically any undocumented immigrant.

A spokesman for the Department of Homeland Security claimed that this week’s activity was a routine targeting of dangerous lawbreakers, and denied reports that checkpoints had been used. The administration’s ambivalent statements on the subject did nothing to assuage the panic and fear gripping at-risk minority communities. From the NY Times:

In Austin, Tex., undocumented women working in a laundromat cowered in the back of the room, petrified after seeing a video and a photograph of apprehensions outside a local grocery store and burger joint.

A day laborer and mechanic in Staten Island told his 17-year-old son where the list of emergency contacts were, including the name of the guardian who would take responsibility for him and his two younger siblings.

In Savannah, Ga., undocumented restaurant workers were asking for rides rather than walking home, afraid they might be stopped and questioned.

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