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12-05-2012, 12:33 PM #1
New Amnesty Alert: From "Bibles, Badges and Business Brigade"!
Bibles, Badges, and Business: Forging Consensus on Immigration Reform - Jim Wallis | God's Politics Blog | Sojourners
I just read about this in the SunSentinel (a South FL newspaper) also. Jeb Bush Jr., conservatives seek immigration overhaul - Sun Sentinel The Southern Baptists, Soujourners, as well as other Christian churches and movements are joining hands with Big Business to lobby lawmakers today for the 'poor disenfranchised families seperated from their loved ones legally' -God really knows who the poor, disenfranchised people are!!! We need to get moving on this now!!! Christians, call and email your churches to let them know you do not stand for the unBiblical dismantling of your own nation and country-and everyone call your lawmakers!!!!
(below are the two articles)
12-05-2012, 12:34 PM #2
Jeb Bush Jr., conservatives seek immigration overhaul - Sun Sentinel
Jeb Bush Jr. and conservatives lead push for immigration overhaul
Dr. Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Convention's… (Douglas Graham, Roll Call/Getty…)
December 4, 2012|By William E. Gibson, Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON Jeb Bush Jr. and like-minded moderate-to-conservative activists from across the country say the time has finally come to transform the nation's immigration system and legalize millions of undocumented immigrants in Florida and around the nation.
Sensing a new opportunity in the wake of the Nov. 6 election, Bush and 250 would-be reformers descended on Washington on Tuesday to encourage Republicans in Congress to join a growing consensus for comprehensive reform.
They are preachers, prosecutors and employers — a loose coalition dubbed the "Bible, badge and business" brigade. They include the Bush family, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and many Republicans in Florida, who long have argued that the GOP should embrace rather than vilify recent immigrants struggling to improve their lot in life.
The broken immigration system "is just a huge problem for a business that wants to hire people and expand," Bush, a 28-year-old Miami businessman and the son of former Gov. Jeb Bush, told fellow activists at a strategy session.
"Hopefully," he added, "President Obama will provide the leadership to get this done, because our country needs it."
The activists plan to complete their strategy sessions Wednesday before fanning out to meet with members of Congress on Capitol Hill. Leaders, including some in Florida, plan to keep pressing for legislation next year.
While stressing moral and business imperatives to help poor immigrants and meet labor needs, leaders of this center-right faction think they now have politics on their side.
Republicans in Congress have signaled a new willingness to consider a broad immigration overhaul — and maybe even legalization of the current population — as the GOP reaches out to Hispanic voters after losing the presidential race and a string of close U.S. Senate races.
About 71 percent of Hispanics nationwide and 60 percent in Florida voted for President Barack Obama, and polls show that most of this huge and growing voting bloc expect him and Congress to legalize the undocumented.
"If they [Republicans] want to be a contender for national leadership in this country, they are going to have to change their ways on immigration reform," said Richard Land of the Southern Baptist Convention.
"There are those on the right who will continue to try to sabotage immigration reform, because in their regional locations fomenting anti-immigration sentiment continues to have short-term political advantage," Land said. "And there will be those of the left who will attempt to sabotage this effort because they want to continue to use the issue to inflame Hispanics to vote in overwhelming numbers for the Democratic Party."
Prospects for passage of a comprehensive bill next year have raised expectations among the 11.5 million people living the shadows of the law, including about 825,000 in Florida.
Opponents of legalization say foreign arrivals are competing for scarce jobs, while proponents contend that a more orderly system that clears up the legal status of a huge undocumented population would be a boon for business.
"We have major problems in Central Florida," said Peter Vivaldi of Orlando, Florida representative of the National Latino Evangelical Coalition, which includes 5,000 churches along the East Coast. "Just speaking to some of our citrus farmers, they are saying something needs to be done. These folks come in, humbly work for their money, and they need to be helped."
Most of these activists also seek a temporary foreign guest worker program to meet seasonal labor needs, tougher border controls and enforcement at U.S. workplaces. Unlike some reformers on the left, the moderate/conservative activists resist what they call ideological "fringe" groups as well as labor unions that oppose temporary guest worker programs.
They generally want to allow the undocumented to earn their way to citizenship but might settle for legal status without citizenship.
"Hispanic people want legalization; that's what we want," said the Rev. Luis Cortes Jr., president of Esperanza, a faith-based organization devoted to helping Mexican and Central American workers. He cited estimates that the Hispanic electorate will double by the year 2030.
"One of every five Latinos knows someone who has already been deported," Cortes said. "And those are members of our extended family."
Wgibson@Tribune.com or 202-824-8256
12-05-2012, 12:35 PM #3
- Bibles, Badges, and Business: Forging Consensus on Immigration Reform
by Jim Wallis 12-04-2012 | 9:42am
Editor's Note: The following is a statement by Jim Wallis given at the kickoff of the National Strategy Session — a gathering faith, law enforcement, and business leaders who are reaching consensus on common-sense immigration reform. Throughout the week, the group is calling on Congress to create a road to citizenship for immigrants contributing to our society. You can follow a live stream of the press conference and strategy sessions HERE.
It’s quite an accomplishment to get Bibles, Badges and Business together all in one room and agreeing on something this big. This reminds us all that Christmas and the holiday season really is a time for miracles. It’s enough to make you believe there is a God! The country is hungry to see our political leaders work together and find a bipartisan solution to an issue of this magnitude. I have faith that comprehensive immigration reform is that common ground. And if we do this, who knows what else it might lead to.
Things change when people recognize two things: the moral issues at stake AND what makes sense. Most social movements are based on both moral imperatives and solutions whose time has come.
There have been two invisible signs up at our Mexican border. One says “No Trespass” and the other one says “Help Wanted.” Eleven million vulnerable people have become trapped between those two signs — all across our country.
They live in fear and danger in the shadows, even though they are a potentially stable work force that we need. Our utterly broken immigration system enforces unfairness and injustice — and it literally is separating families from one another. Our safety, security, sanity, and, literally, our souls are all compromised by this broken and cruel system.
Those who hold the Bibles know this breaks God’s heart and disobeys God’s direct commandments on how we are to treat “the stranger.” For Christians, the further acceptance of our present immigration system is a direct violation of the teachings of Christ, who reminds us that how we treat the stranger is how we treat him. That has converted us. Plus, the immigrants, even undocumented immigrants have become part of “us” in the body of Christ. They indeed are the largest growing community in our churches. We have come to know them and to love them and when we see how the law breaks up families, especially, taking mothers, fathers, sons, and daughters away from each other; we can’t tolerate that anymore. We are here to stand for their families and to say they are now a part of our family.
Those who own business have seen these immigrants become central to their work, vocation, and success. They literally sustain businesses, start businesses, grow and harvest our food, service and strengthen our economy, and support our way of life. We are dependent on their labor and their lives; but we have not shown them the respect they have earned and deserve. They are vital parts of and participants in our communities. They help stabilize our work forces and our neighborhoods and it is time we made their presence among us legal and welcome.
Those who wear badges have better things to do than pursuing 11 million people who daily contribute to the nation. To pursue and capture law-abiding people, except for their legal status, makes no sense. And it is wrong not to protect their safety and security instead of making them afraid to ever call upon those with badges to protect them too. And we would all be safer and more secure if law-enforcement officials could focus on the real and dangerous law-breakers and criminals, and help forge safe and legal channels for people to come and work and contribute to America.
So the Bibles, Badges, and Businesses have come together today to make A Call.
We call upon the political leaders of this nation, Republicans and Democrats, members of the House and Senate, and the President of the United States and his White House — to all stop accepting this broken, dysfunctional, and, yes, morally corrupted system. It’s time to put old and ideological politics aside and do the right thing. Bring people out of the shadows, stabilize our workforces, support good work, reunite our families, make our communities safe for all, and create a path to legal status and citizenship. Do it because it makes good economic sense. Do it because it makes our political life inclusive of us all. Do it because this is what our God tells us to do, and our hearts tell us is right. Do it because the nation needs to see political leaders stop blaming each other for problems, but rather work together to solve them. Do it for the common good. This issue that has divided us now brings us together. Today we represent common ground for the common good.