The following is from an Angelus article by Isaac Cuevas, associate director of immigration affairs for Los Angeles archdiocese:
Recently, I found myself in a car with two DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) program recipients driving from central L.A. to Camarillo to speak to seminarians about our country’s broken immigration system. We each shared our immigration stories, but more interesting to me was the conversation about our place in this movement.
First there was Carlos, a filmmaker in his 20s using his creative talent to tell stories about immigration and the emotional impact politics is having on the undocumented community. He’s incredibly smart, an entrepreneur and has found an impressive way to channel his frustration with the system through his art.
The other passenger was Paulina, a young woman in her early 20s who decided to “come out of the shadows” as a DACA recipient. She also decided to use her voice as an advocate to turn her fear into empowerment.
While both of these amazing people have a different way of expressing their stories, they both agreed with the use of escalating tactics to bring about social change, even if it meant being disruptive to garner attention for this movement. This is where I disagreed.
While disruptive tactics aren’t always ineffective, I don’t agree that they would bring about meaningful immigration reform. Let me explain.
When disruptive tactics were used during the civil rights movement, they were a tool used to help amplify a message. People put their lives on the line while cameras recorded the unrest caused by civil rights demonstrations, helping bring awareness of the situation to the rest of the country.
Emmett Till’s mother had an open casket funeral for her brutally beaten son so that cameras could show the ugly consequences of hate. People could empathize with the pain of others, and those disruptive examples helped change hearts.
The tactics being used by many DACA protestors today make it harder to feel that same empathy. These protestors have drowned out elected representatives (many of whom support their cause) while speaking with chants demanding their legal status. They’ve interrupted the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade, forcing police to physically remove them. Recently, they blocked the entrance to Disneyland in Anaheim, California.
This behavior is exactly why a negative perception of the undocumented community exists. People with settled opinions on the immigration debate are not going to have a change of heart watching this kind of disruption.
As Paulina and Carlos heard me explain my point of view, they understood the problem that such negative press poses to their cause. So what else can be done? My answer is simple: Instead of changing minds, let’s change hearts.
It’s difficult for two people arguing about the facts of a topic to ever concede to the other’s argument. With immigration, the letter of the law — whether we agree with it or not — is where the facts reside.
The Christian thing to do is to try to understand the human dignity that all people deserve. In the case of the DACA debate, that human dignity is apparent in the life of every immigrant who has risked so much to form a better, honest life.
These are human beings who are willing to work hard, pay taxes, raise families and be productive parts of this country. These are people who feel American because they, too, have ideas, dreams and goals — and are not afraid to put in the sweat equity to obtain them.
Our best and brightest undocumented immigrants have an opportunity to rise to the occasion, dialing down the rhetoric and instead showcasing the talent they can offer our country. Use your stories to change hearts, not minds.
Full story at Angelus.
First, they are illegal aliens. If you want to change hearts respect people’s intelligence, be honest and use the correct terms.
Second, the immigration system isn’t broken. Illegal aliens have broken our country’s immigration laws, causing problems.
Third, why weren’t any MS-13 “immigrants” brought to speak to the seminarians? You know why not. Bad hombres don’t fit the narrative that immigration is always a net positive for the receiving nation. “Immigrants” are ALWAYS smart, creative, honest, hard-working; never criminals, drunk drivers nor murderers who return multiple times after being deported.
Fourth, stop the leftist indoctrination of priests.
Should anyone DREAM of taking what isn’t his?
Should anyone show how taking what isn’t his it helped his family?
Should he then have a parade and depict himself as a “DREAMER”?
Some are very poor, but they have a DREAM.
And that DREAM is called “coveting thy neighbor’s goods”.
What if a man also likes his neighbor’s wife. Should he DREAM of stealing her too?
Include in the discussion how to stop terrorists.
When, Dreamers, do you intend to cease abusing our patience?
How does “every immigrant . . .form a better, honest life” by disregarding the just laws for entering the nation they expect to assist them in doing so? Is not the life built on sand rather than the solid ground of legitimacy?
I find that it helps to think of two groups when speaking of illegal immigrants. First, these immigrants aren’t “undocumented.” They are illegal. Second, there is a sub set of illegal immigrants who are here, but not of their own doing. These are the children of illegal parents. They were brought here as babies or young people and know no other home. They are Americans in all manner except “documentation.” The go to school, attend college, serve in our armed forces and as first responders. Since they grew up American, let’s make them Americans. If we deport them, where do we send them? They have never been to the country of their birth since immigrating here. Now, it gets complicated.
Well their parents came here not knowing anyone. Perhaps if they returned to their countries of origin they could use the skills that they learned paid for by the generosity of the American people to better their compatriots back home. They could become teachers, shop keepers, etc. Or the question that I have not received an answer to – Why did they wait so long to apply for citizenship.
You can’t apply for citizenship if you are undocumented.
Great to see that ICE under Tump is doing its job:
This past week ICE arrested over 200 illegal aliens in L.A. for immigration violations during a five-day sweep. 88% of those were convicted criminals. More than half had prior felony convictions for serious or violent offenses, such as child sex crimes, weapons charges, and assault, or had past convictions for significant or multiple misdemeanors.
So much for the leftist narrative.
Thank God sanity, intelligent immigration policy and the rule of law are coming back to America. MAGA.
By the way Anon. check your facts. More illegal immigrants, mostly convicts were deported in the last Administration than in the current one. It’s nice to see that the current administration is continuing a program that shows results.
“More illegal immigrants, mostly convicts were deported in the last Administration than in the current one”
8 years of Obama allowing the repeated re-entry and non holds on illegals. Permissive anti law administration. Nice try, tho.
Yes, we always hear how wonderful they all are. Let them apply legally for citizenship. What about the people waiting on line patiently to come to this country?
Both of those would take immigration reform. Right now there is no line. And they cannot apply for citizenship.
DREAMERS should be given a second chance.
To obey the law. To stop respect justice. To stop “coveting thy neighbor’s goods.”
If you are poor and need help, ASK. Do not ROB. Do not DREAM of robbing.
Sometimes, it’s a matter of life and death, and there appear to be NO LEGAL OPTIONS.
To preserve your life, you may take only what you need to survive for the moment, e.g. a piece of bread.
Poverty, chastity, and obedience are good things, not bad. Why do we owe the Feds $20 trillion?
The elite want to bankrupt the USA + destroy patriotism. The DREAMERS + the Muslims are used for this.
I think, Dreamer, that you don’t have your facts straight. More crimes, percentage wise, are committed by white Americans that Hispanics and other immigrants. They serve in our armed forces, police departments, fire departments, EMT, etc. They go to college and get professional jobs. Don’t let the few rotten apples give you a bad view of the whole bushel.
They broke the law the moment they broke and entered into our country. They are all criminals. We should not put criminals ahead of those who followed the law.
There are terms to refer to people who pose as citizens when they are not, to obtain benefits they are not legally entitled to:
Liars and thieves
‘both of these amazing people – agreed with the use of escalating tactics to bring about social change, even if it meant being disruptive to garner attention for this movement
People with settled opinions on the immigration debate are not going to have a change of heart watching this kind of disruption”
Doubtless they will have to flush twice to send this to ‘SJW’ – HQ, as the pipes area already clogged with similar effluvia
How about a ‘Win /Win’ situation, where those CFN (citizens of foreign nations) who Hate Amerika, return to their native land and Make That Country Better – as opposed to trashing this one?
Two, possibly three illegals on their way to lecture seminarians on immigration. What’s wrong with This picture?
By the way, Emmett Till (SJW idol and chip off the old block) is no more a proper civil rights icon than is Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Freddie Grey, etc., etc.
The most disruptive groups get the most results. Homosexuals issue death threats to business owners and vandalize property and they end up getting what they want.