Homeland Theater

Bush proposes thousands of Guard troops for Mexican border; raids and protests continue

From AP, May 13:

WASHINGTON - President Bush, trying to build momentum for an overhaul of the nation's immigration laws, is considering plans to shore up the Mexican border with National Guard troops paid for by the federal government, the Associated Press reported Friday, citing unnamed administration officials.

World War I protesters win (posthumous) pardon

What an historical irony that this is happening now, eh? Talk about the paradoxical unity of opposites. And hooray for Montana! Even out in the heartland, not all Americans are brainless reactionaries, it seems. From AP, May 3:

HELENA, Montana — It was a black mark on dozens of family histories that lingered for nearly nine decades -- until a journalism professor and a group of law students examined what happened to citizens who spoke out against the government during World War I.

NYC: May Day mobilization report

Sarah Ferguson writes for the Village Voice, May 2:

A Day Without White People
On May Day, the masses rose up in New York. But where were the white peaceniks?

A bit of revolution hit the streets on May Day in New York. Folks will debate the size of the crowd that jammed Union Square and beyond yesterday afternoon. People filled sidewalks along side streets, searching for a way into the rally. By 3 p.m. the park was full; by 5 it was bursting--so much so that police pulled back the metal barricades blocking 14th Street and let the throngs spill down Broadway an hour before the rally inside the park was supposed to end.

4th Circuit remands case to lower court over NSA snooping claims

Another (very tentative) glimmer of hope in the battle for your privacy rights. From AP, April 25:

WASHINGTON -- An appeals court on Tuesday returned the criminal case against an Islamic scholar to a trial judge to determine whether the Bush administration's domestic spying program was used to gather evidence against him.

Ontario: Mohawk uprising spreads

From the AP, April 22:

CALEDONIA, Ontario — As an uneasy calm settled amid the barricades, fresh tensions erupted Friday as protesters shut down a vital Ontario rail corridor in solidarity with those occupying a disputed tract of southwestern Ontario land.

Immigration protests sweep US

An estimated two million people took part in coordinated demonstrations in more than 140 US cities on April 10, a National Day of Action for Immigrant Justice demanding legalization and other rights for out-of-status immigrants. Organizers scheduled the protests for a Monday during congressional recess so elected officials would be in their home districts to witness them. Hundreds of thousands more marched on the previous day, April 9. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Los Angeles Times, April 11)

Immigration update: ICE pulls kids off school buses, Senate compromise falters

US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents arrested 49 Mexicans and two Salvadorans on March 30 and 31 in Merced County in central California. ICE said all those arrested had prior deportation orders. In at least two cases, ICE seized US citizen children off school buses before or after arresting their parents. In Firebaugh, two unmarked ICE vans pulled up alongside a school bus on the morning of March 31, said Brian Walker, superintendent of the Dos Palos Oro Loma Joint Unified School District. One van drove in front of the bus, forcing the driver to stop. Armed ICE agents boarded the bus and took three children away in a van. The concerned bus driver followed the vans to a home where he saw agents handcuffing people who appeared to be the students' parents, said Walker. In Merced, agents took two students from Franklin Elementary School off a bus after arresting their parents.

Immigrant protests continue

More than 500,000 people marched in Los Angeles on March 25 to demand legalization for out-of-status immigrants and protest anti-immigrant legislation being considered by the Senate. Police estimated the crowd size using aerial photographs and other techniques, police commander Louis Gray Jr. said. (AP, March 26) The LA demonstration was the largest of a wave of protests sweeping cities across the US, starting with Feb. 14 rallies and strikes in Philadelphia and Georgetown, Delaware, and energized by a massive March 10 rally in Chicago. According to a March 25 article by New American Media, more than 50 demonstrations took place over the previous few weeks, including in Minneapolis, Knoxville, Seattle, St. Louis, Portland (OR), Staten Island (NY) and Grand Rapids (MI).

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