Friday, November 22, 2013
From Friends of the American Latino Museum:
Join us for our Final Town Hall of 2013 in Los Angeles, CA You are invited to join us on December 6th on the University of Southern California campus for our 2nd Informational Town Hall on the need to create a long overdue Smithsonian American Latino Museum in our nation’s capital.
We are gathering Latinos from across the spectrum of professions, art, academia, business, elected office and more to discuss the importance of an institution that would showcase U.S. Latino history and culture. We hope you will join us. If you can't join us in Los Angeles, we will livestream this conversation with the LA Latino community. More details to come on that. You can also join the conversation during the Town Hall on Twitter using #MuseoTownHall.
In the hullaballoo over the 50th annivesary of President John F. Kennedy's assasination, recall the late President's immigration legacy, with the Immigration Act of 1965 inspired in no small part by his book A Nation of Immigrants. The 1965 Act removed the discriminatory national origins quota system from the immigration laws.
Thursday, November 21, 2013
Here is the music video for the hit song “Wake Me Up.” A collaboration with singer Aloe Blacc, Director Alex Rivera, and some friends that star as actors, the video tells a story of one family whose dream to be together confronts the nightmare of US immigration policy.
More than 1 million people became lawful permanent residents (LPRs) of the United States in 2012, with family-sponsored immigrants accounting for two-thirds of those gaining a green card. This Migration Information Source Spotlight examines federal statistics on foreign nationals who gained LPR status during 2012.
Some interesting tidbits:
-- The number of new arrivals remained relatively stable at about 420,000 annually between 1986 and 2012.
-- In 2012, more than 1 million people were granted lawful permanent resident status.
-- Family reunification accounted for two-thirds of all lawful permanent immigration in 2012. Employment-preference immigrants made up 14 percent of all lawful permanent immigration in 2012.
-- In 2012, about 15 percent of all lawful permanent residents were status adjusters who entered as refugees or asylees.
-- Mexico, China, India, the Philippines, and the Dominican Republic were the top five countries of birth of new lawful permanent residents in 2012.
-- California, New York, Florida, Texas, and New Jersey were home to 58 percent of new LPRs in 2012.
-- In 2012, close to 8.8 million lawful permanent residents were eligible for naturalization, up from 8.1 million in 2010.
Facebook Chief Executive Brings undocumented immigrants to Silicon Valley to "hack" for immigration reform
A longtime supporter of comprehensive immigration reform, Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg brought undocumented immigrants to Silicon Valley to "hack" for immigration reform. The Los Angeles Times reports that twenty immigrants who came to the U.S. illegally as children began taking part in a 25-hour "hackathon" Wednesday at LinkedIn's Mountain View, Calif., headquarters. The young software programmers broke into small groups to spend all night coming up with new applications as part of an effort to put the spotlight back on the need for Congress to pass comprehensive immigration reform.
Henry Shackleford is a young slave living in the Kansas Territory in 1857, when the region is a battleground between anti- and pro-slavery forces. When John Brown, the legendary abolitionist, arrives in the area, an argument between Brown and Henry’s master quickly turns violent. Henry is forced to leave town—with Brown, who believes he’s a girl. Over the ensuing months, Henry—whom Brown nicknames Little Onion—conceals his true identity as he struggles to stay alive. Eventually Little Onion finds himself with Brown at the historic raid on Harpers Ferry in 1859—one of the great catalysts for the Civil War. An absorbing mixture of history and imagination, and told with McBride’s meticulous eye for detail and character, The Good Lord Bird is both a rousing adventure and a moving exploration of identity and survival.
Immigration Article of the Day: From Slave Patrols to Jim Crow Laws: Examining the Nexus of Racial Profiling in America by MaCherie Placide and Duchess Harris
Abstract: In the wake of the George Zimmerman trial, we examine the historical doctrines used to support the act of racial profiling of African Americans in the United States. Beginning with slave patrol laws of the South, black codes during Reconstruction and Jim Crow laws at the end of 19th century — we hypothesize that these historically longstanding racists policies fundamentally set a continued pattern of behaviors and attitudes toward African Americans and other groups of color. Further, we argue that these racists behaviors transcends profiling by law enforcement to regular citizens in the form “Stand Your Ground,” and "Conceal and Carry” laws.
Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Earlier this week on our blog, Timothy Dugdale made light of the facts in two cases involving individuals who face removal because federal courts have not recognized their citizenship claims. First, let’s not forget that if you represent removal clients or speak with attorneys who represent removal clients regularly, it’s very common to find that ICE institutes proceedings against U.S citizens in error. In fact, ICE has deported U.S. citizens and in those cases that have been unearthed, DHS has had to pay millions in damages—and that’s just on the cases that have been found out.
Second, Dugdale claims that in one case currently awaiting en banc proceedings at the Ninth Circuit, Mondaca-Vega (2013), the “evidenciary [sic] hearing in district court was damning.” But there are two sides to that story. In the 2-1 panel decision in that case, the majority failed to recognize that the exercise of independent review in citizenship cases plays a crucial role in assuring that the government's heavy burden of proof has been met. After the bench trial, the district court ruled that Petitioner had carried his initial burden of proving citizenship by a preponderance of the evidence, because the government had determined that his wife and foreign-born children were entitled to derivative adjustment of status and citizenship through him and because the Secretary of State had issued him a passport. Then the court shifted the burden to the government to rebut Petitioner's claim of citizenship by “clear and convincing” evidence that the foregoing determinations of citizenship were a product of fraud or error.
The majority gave short shrift to the policies that underlay the government's burden of proof and the Supreme Court's formulation of that burden for citizenship cases. Because of “grave consequences to the citizen,” to revoke his or her citizenship “the evidence must indeed be ‘clear, unequivocal, and convincing’ and not leave ‘the issue in doubt.’ ” Chaunt v. United States, 364 U.S. 350, 353, 81 S.Ct. 147, 5 L.Ed.2d 120 (1960). As the dissent by Judge Harry Pregerson aptly noted, the Ninth Circuit precedent accordingly holds that when citizenship is at stake, “[we] must make an independent determination as to whether the evidence introduced by the [government] was ‘clear, unequivocal, and convincing.’ ” Lim, 431 F.2d 197, 199 (9th Cir.1970). The majority failed to give due consideration to the over seventy years of unbroken precedents from the Supreme Court in citizenship cases. Time and time again, the Supreme Court has emphasized the preciousness and importance of citizenship and the crucial role of an appellate court's independent review.
Rather than “damning,” the facts were clearly on Petitioner’s side. Although born in California, Petitioner's parents took him back to Mexico, where he grew up in El Fuerte, Sinaloa, Mexico. Petitioner did not learn to speak English, only Spanish. In Mexico, Petitioner worked with his parents as a farmer. When Petitioner was around 20 years old, he came back to the United States for the first time. In the United States, Petitioner worked in the fields, primarily with people from Mexico. Petitioner then returned to Mexico. He learned that he was a U.S. citizen when he was given his birth certificate by his mother. Petitioner used his birth certificate to come back to the United States.
The district court speculated that when Petitioner was detained by INS decades earlier, Petitioner always had his birth certificate, and that Petitioner's failure to identify himself as Reynaldo Mondaca was “inexplicable.” The district court seemed to believe that this is contrary to how an American citizen would act. But Petitioner, who does not speak English, stated he used an alias when he did not have his birth certificate and U.S. passport with him to show his United States citizenship.
The district court speculated that Petitioner began using the name Reynaldo Mondaca because of his marriage and his desire to obtain benefits. Not only is this finding not supported by the record, but the evidence demonstrates that Petitioner used his name Reynaldo Mondaca in 1953, almost twenty years prior to his marriage, when he applied for a social security card.
The district court's erroneous findings are numerous and central to its conclusion that the government proved its case. The government clearly did not satisfy its burden to prove by clear, unequivocal, and convincing evidence that Petitioner is Salvador Mondaca–Vega, a Mexican citizen. By not satisfying that burden, the obvious conclusion is that the Petitioner is who he claims to be, an American citizen, Reynaldo Mondaca. Hopefully, the en banc panel of the Ninth Circuit will agree.
From Detention Watch Network:
EXPOSE AND CLOSE: ONE YEAR LATER
The Absence of Accountability in Immigration Detention
While the debate over immigration reform rages in the halls of Congress, the moral and human rights crisis caused by the mas incarceration of immigrants has been largely ignored. In November of 2012, members of Detention Watch Network released the Expose and Close reports, highlighting the appalling conditions in ten of the worst immigration detention centers in the country. One year later, nothing has changed, and in some cases, conditions in detention have gotten worse. Expose and Close: One Year Later documents the current state of the immigration detention system which continues to be plagued by deaths and suicides, subpar medical and mental health care, inedible food, and arbitrary restrictions on visitation and access to legal resources.
Read Expose and Close: One Year Later and Share it with your Network
From Asian Americans Advancing Justice:
Asian Americans Advancing Justice and Asian American Federation to Present New Data on Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders in the Northeast
Presentation of findings will discuss population growth, economic diversity, and implications for policy makers
Asian Americans Advancing Justice and the Asian American Federation will present key findings from the New York section of a new report that documents the social and economic diversity of two of the fastest-growing racial groups in the region:
A Community of Contrasts: Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders in the Northeast, 2013
Members of the media are asked to RSVP to Dana Malone at DMalone@advancingjustice-aajc.org
Thursday, November 21, 2013
12:00pm - 2:00pm
Asia Society and Museum
725 Park Avenue
New York, NY 10021
The AANHPI community is experiencing explosive growth in the Northeast, which is fueling a host of policy concerns including economic access and language barriers. At the same time the growth is leading to unprecedented levels of civic participation, making the AANHPI community a key electorate in metropolitan New York. A Community of Contrasts profiles this incredibly diverse population.
A Community of Contrasts: Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders in the Northeast, 2013 compiles the latest data on growing Asian American and NHPI communities in New York, Boston, and Philadelphia. This is the fifth in a series of reports that strive to make disaggregated data more accessible in order to promote better understanding of our communities, and to help policy makers, government agencies, service providers, and other stakeholders better respond to and serve the needs of Asian American and NHPI communities.
The New York Times reports that Court of Appeals of the state of New York, building on teh Supreme Court decision in Padilla v. Kentucky (2009) has ruled that judges must warn immigrant defendants that they face deportation if they plead guilty to a felony. The Court of Appeals overturned its 1995 ruling that deportation is a “collateral consequence” of a guilty plea, and so judges need not warn noncitizen defendants it might happen.
Writing for the majority, Judge Sheila Abdus-Salaam said that times had changed since the mid-1990s, when about 37,000 noncitizens were deported after criminal convictions. That number stood at 188,000 in 2011, Judge Abdus-Salaam wrote, and, with stricter enforcement of immigration laws, deportation has become “an automatic consequence of a guilty plea for most noncitizen defendants.” She said defendants who took plea bargains often found themselves stripped of their jobs, cut off from their family in the United States and returned to a country they hardly remembered.
The opinion can be found here. Download Diaz
In “Living the DREAM: The Stories of Undocumented Latino Youth,” Professor Maria Chávez and her co-authors systematically examine the experiences faced by undocumented youth since President Obama’s 2012 implementation of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals process. Latinos are the largest ethno-racial minority group, projected to constitute 30 percent of the U.S. population by 2050, so through 101 in-depth interviews of Latino youth in California, Oregon, Texas and Washington—including Ana Sofia—we illustrate with real lives how the obstacles DREAMers face affect their ability to live the American dream.
In What the Best Law Teachers Do, Michael Hunter Schwartz, Gerald F. Hess and Sophie M. Sparrow identify the methods, strategies, and personal traits of professors whose students achieve exceptional learning. Congratulations to Professor Hiroshi Motomura (UCLA School of Law), co-author of Immigration and Citizenship, Process and Policy, for having his teaching excellence highlighted in the book.
From the Bookshelves: Fire in the Canyon: Religion, Migration, and the Mexican Dream by Leah M. Sarat
The canyon in central Mexico was ablaze with torches as hundreds of people filed in. So palpable was their shared shock and grief, they later said, that neither pastor nor priest was needed. The event was a memorial service for one of their own who had died during an attempted border passage. Months later a survivor emerged from a coma to tell his story. The accident had provoked a near-death encounter with God that prompted his conversion to Pentecostalism. Today, over half of the local residents of El Alberto, a town in central Mexico, are Pentecostal. Submitting themselves to the authority of a God for whom there are no borders, these Pentecostals today both embrace migration as their right while also praying that their “Mexican Dream”—the dream of a Mexican future with ample employment for all—will one day become a reality.
Fire in the Canyon provides one of the first in‑depth looks at the dynamic relationship between religion, migration, and ethnicity across the U.S.-Mexican border. Faced with the choice between life‑threatening danger at the border and life‑sapping poverty in Mexico, residents of El Alberto are drawing on both their religion and their indigenous heritage to demand not only the right to migrate, but also the right to stay home. If we wish to understand people's migration decisions, Sarat argues, we must take religion seriously. It is through religion that people formulate their ideas about life, death, and the limits of government authority.
The UNLV law school's Immigration Clinic has published a report on conditions for immigration detainees at the Henderson Detention Center. The report provides evidence that conditions at the Henderson Detention Center violate many of Immigration and Customs Enforcement policies, including policies prohibiting abuse and discrimination and setting certain standards for medical care, attorney visits, law libraries, mail correspondence, and telephone access. The report also documents instances of coercion by ICE officers to sign legal documents that may result in deportation or prolong detention. Here is a story on the report.
The Immigration Clinic stands with other organizations in Nevada, including the ACLU of Nevada, Immigration Reform for Nevada, and the Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada, in demanding a closer look at detention conditions. A demonstration at the Henderson Detention Center was held late yesterday and the report was presented to the Henderson City Council. See here, here, here, here.
Tuesday, November 19, 2013
Photo courtesy of Wikipedia
NBC Latino reports that Eliseo Medina led about 30 immigration reform activists to House Speaker John Boehner’s district office in a protest today. Before making the short walk over from the National Mall to across the street from the Capitol, Medina and the activists were given a pep-talk by feminist Gloria Steinem. She is to be honored tomorrow with a Medal of Freedom.
Steinem "told the marchers immigration is a feminist issue because about three-fourths of immigrants in the U.S. illegally are women and children. `There is no such thing as a border that is proof against poverty, or against the natural migration of workers back and forth,'” she said.
Medina, former secretary-treasurer of Service Employees International Union, and a four others began fasting on November 12 to protest the GOP’s failure to bring up an immigration reform bill this year.
This is the 150th anniversary of the Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address. In The Colors of Courage: Gettysburg's Forgotten History: Immigrants, Women, and African Americans in the Civil War's Defining Battle, Margaret S. Creighton narrates the tale of this crucial battle from the viewpoint of three unsung groups--women, immigrants, and African Americans--and reveals how wide the conflict's dimensions were. A historian with a superb flair for storytelling, Creighton draws on memoirs, letters, diaries, and newspapers to bring to life the individuals at the heart of her narrative. The Colors of Courage is a stunningly fluid work of original history-one that redefines the Civil War's most remarkable battle.
In "Little-Known Immigration Mandate Keeps Detention Beds Full," NPR's Ted Robbins tells how the congressional detention bed mandate has contributed to the record number of immigrants held in immigration detention. Former Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano questioned the congressional mandate as "arbitrary."