Chanting "We are students, not criminals," nearly 600 students and their supporters marched on Jan. 8 toward the University of Phoenix stadium in Glendale, Arizona, to protest a recently passed state law denying in-state tuition to out-of-status immigrants. Arizona voters approved the Proposition 300 ballot initiative last November; it requires students who cannot prove their legal immigration status to pay out-of-state tuition at state colleges and universities.
Predictable but depressing. Given the current popularity of "dual loyalty" insinuations against American Jews (even in supposedly progressive cricles), you'd think there'd be a little Jewish outrage over essentially identical arguments being used against American Muslims. This Dec. 28 column by Jonathan Tobin from Pennsylvania's Jewish Exponent (barely) pays lip service to such concerns, but ultimately (and idiotically) cannot contain its glee that the loyalty of a Muslim congressman is being questioned:
On Dec. 8, Haitian and Jamaican detainees at Krome Service Processing Center outside Miami in Dade County, Florida, refused to leave their dormitory to protest delays in obtaining travel papers from their consulates, immigration officials said; these delays have delayed their stay in detention awaiting deportation. The protest led Michael Rozos, field office director for the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Florida office of detention and removal, to visit the Krome dormitory and speak to the detainees there on Dec. 8, accompanied by a "disturbance control team," said ICE spokesperson Barbara Gonzalez. She said team members were "dressed appropriately."
Around it goes. One Jamal Miftah, a Pakistani immigrant in Tulsa, OK, to his great credit, sent a letter to the Tulsa World Oct. 29 entitled "Message of Islam is not jihad, fatwahs," taking Ayman al-Zawahri and other al-Qaeda leaders to task for hijacking his religion. For this (as he related to Tulsa's News 9 in a video interview) he was expelled from his local mosque, the Tulsa Islamic Center, for publicly condemning Islam (which, of course, he didn't do). The affair was picked up, with predictable glee, by the right-wing Islamophobic blog Western Resistance (yuck!)—which, of course, will only fuel the ultra-defensiveness of folks like the Tulsa Islamic Center. So a plague on all their houses. Except Jamal Miftah.
We have noted a growing number of cases in which immigrants are targeted for deportation by the Islamophobic policies of the US immigration authorities, only to face oppression by Islamist thugs who rule in the countries they fled. The Homeland Security Department's Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) has even been attempting to affect deportations to Somalia—even as the CIA is busily trying to overthrow the Islamic Courts Union which has usurped power there. Now, they have just succeeded, in a case which fortunately made page 2 of New York Times Metro Section Nov. 22—albeit after the fact, and too late to help the unfortunate Mohamad Rasheed Jama...
A civil jury ruled Nov. 22 that rancher and vigilante Roger Barnett must pay $98,000 in damages to a Mexican-American family that he illegally held and threatened at gunpoint. The family were legal residents hunting on lands near his ranch, but Barnett apparently assumed they were "illegals" coming across the border (Douglas Dispatch, Nov. 24)
It is a real sign of hope that there is more to be lost than gained from overt racism (at least) in American politics, even in Dixieland. Former senator George Allen's foot-in-mouth routine brought to light a particularly anachronistic epithet. India's IBN shed some light, Nov. 9—although we caught a small inaccuracy:
How ironic. We noted in August that ex-Israeli security chief Uza Dayan was warning the US against emulating Israeli strategies in securing the Mexican border. Now it appears that Elbit Systems, an Israeli firm which is building the "Aparthied Wall" in occupied Palestine, has been awarded a contract, along with Boeing, to build the wall on the Mexican border. From Israel21C, Oct. 15: