Passover/immigration update

My dad, at the head of the Seder table, just did an eloquent little riff on immigration as it relates to the Jewish people.  (Lest you assume that he’s a lefty me like me, know that he voted for George Bush in 2004.) 

He’s also older than you’d expect, given my age, and grew up hoping that his mom’s brothers and sisters would make it out of Poland alive.  They didn’t.*  Though if we (and others) had had more just immigration laws at the time — hadn’t been refusing entry to boats of Eastern Europeans, for instance — they might have.

Jews – having spent centuries fleeing countries, and (legally and illegally) hopping borders, just to survive – seem to have a particular empathy with the plight of today’s immigrants.

*This might come as a shock to many of the anti-immigrant folks out there, but: People tend to immigrate (leave their homes, loved ones, etc, to go to places where they know they’ll be derided and discriminated against…) not for shits and giggles, but because they are being compelled by dire circumstances, beyond their control.

And that brings me to today’s top anti-immigration/anti-me email:

You are a trader and should be voted out.Illegals don’t have the rights of citizens.  They are law breakers. You hurt the work of ICE,the police and Home Security.Please reconcider and help the people you are suppose to represent.Mark

5 thoughts on “Passover/immigration update”

  1. JOE BERNSTEIN

    “People are not illegal”-you don’t know shit about me and won’t even use your name-your comments are worthless if you have to hide behind an alias -you sound like an internationalist one worlder-glad you’re happy with your child rep Sheri

  2. David –

    You are totally representing my views, and I am in your district and voted for you and everything. Rock on.

  3. People are not illegal

    You can cast your xenophobia in any matter you choose. You are free to proclaim that you “aren’t against Latinos/Asians/Eastern Europeans/Italians, you’re opposed to lawbreakers”.

    But I challenge you to look deep in your soul and then ask yourself this question: “If I were in the same position that these people are in, would I apply for a green card (or asylum) and wait for years while my request is processed, or would I just go?”

    If you answer “yes” to that question, if you think for some reason that you’re better and don’t deserve to wait, then you’re just a bigot. If you answer “no”, you’re lying to yourself.

  4. JOE BERNSTEIN

    Oh David,almost forgot-people fleeing truly dire circumstances of a non-economic nature are entitled to apply for asylum-they receive a fair evaluation by asylum officers who are not attached to ICE.
    I arrested an individual named Predrag Stevic in 1980 in Chicago-he later tried to obtain political asylum-his case ,Stevic vs.INS,was decided 9-0 in favor of the government by the US Supreme Court-the equivalent of a no-hitter.It was precedent law on asylum until it was mooted by a legislative overhaul of the asylum laws.
    But of course,I don’t know what I’m talking about with regard to immigration,do I?

  5. JOE BERNSTEIN

    David-I don’t observe Jewish holidays because I don’t like organized religion.That being said,it is sad that you would choose a significant holiday to use deceptive tactics to back up your ill-conceived stance on immigration.
    You picked out an e mail that was obviously written by someone who can’t spell and you used it to somehow”represent”those who oppose your point of view.
    I have written numerous responses to your blog entries on immigration here-I don’t post on RIF-I am not a poor speller,although I have made some typos,and I certainly use the correct words to convey my ideas.You haven’t answered one post because you don’t have the facts to back up your position.
    I testified against your bill and I was in the room when you testified.I am not trying to be nasty here,but you didn’t seem to be able to answer the questions from the committee very effectively.I will say you were not the only legislator that night who had a similar problem-there was apparently an outbreak of strange testimony from people regarding their own bills.
    I don’t believe the e mail you reprinted is all that typical of the criticism you receive.
    Your father voted for Bush?I sure didn’t-either time.He impressed me as a clusterfuck right off the bat.The only good thing he did in 8 years was to appoint Roberts and Alito to the Supreme Court to counterbalance that miserable little Ginsburg creature that Clinton appointed.
    And he appointed Alito only after trying to foist his in house counsel,Myers on the nation.

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