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  1. #1
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    crackdown could leave thousands of children stranded

    http://www.timesargus.com/apps/pbcs.dll ... 002/NEWS01
    Times Argus

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Article published Aug 17, 2006
    Illegal immigrant crackdown could leave thousands of children stranded

    WASHINGTON Last year, immigration officers raided a poultry plant near Arkadelphia, Ark. and arrested 119 illegal immigrants. Thirty children were left stranded without parents, many at daycare centers or in schools.

    After much confusion, some spent the night with relatives or friends, and nine others including a 1-month-old baby took shelter at La Primera Iglesia Bautista, a Baptist church that served as a refuge for the children while their parents were being deported.

    With many states passing bills to crack down on employers who hire illegal immigrants and the federal government considering a strong House-passed enforcement bill, thousands of children across the country could be facing a similar fate, immigrant advocates and legal experts say.

    "This is not a situation we want to be promoting, There are infants left without formula, without diapers," said Flavia Jimenez, immigration policy analyst at the National Council of La Raza, a Hispanic civil rights organization.

    "Enforcement only" legislation without a chance for illegal workers to gain legal residency will lead to more families being torn apart and children left without parents, she added.

    But critics of illegal immigration say that the parents made the decision to come to the United States illegally and endanger their own children and that the federal government should not be criticized for enforcing the law.

    John Keeley, spokesman for the Center for Immigration Studies, a think tank in Washington that advocates stronger immigration controls, said that in the United States, "we have the expectation that parents act in the best interest of minor children."

    "Illegal aliens who bring their children into the United States or have them here do the exact opposite, because under the law they are subject to potential deportation every day and that is clearly not in the best interest of the children," he said.

    In addition, Keeley said that the number of "sob stories" of children left behind will increase with more enforcement because the government has failed to stem the tide of illegal immigration for so long.

    In the Arkadelphia raid, about 100 children were left without at least one parent, and 30 had both parents deported. Most of the illegal immigrant parents told federal officials that they did not have children, fearing that the minors would be arrested, incarcerated or permanently taken away from their families, according to Jimenez, who studied the Arkadelphia raid.

    The Pew Hispanic Center, a non-partisan research group in Washington, estimates that about 12 million illegal immigrants live in the United States. Of those, 1.8 million are children, according to the center, which analyzes Census reports.

    In addition, the center estimates that an additional 3.1 million children born in the United States have illegal immigrant parents.

    These children pose a particular legal dilemma if their parents are held for deportation, said Noreen M. Sugrue, a professor at the Women and Gender in Global Perspectives program at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

    "Do we really want to put American citizens in detention camps? '' she asked.

    If children are not reunited with their parents and there is no one to care for them, states are obligated to put them in foster care, legal experts said.

    In some cases, deported parents leave their children in the United States with grandparents, other relatives or friends so they can have a good education and other opportunities.

    Kathleen Moccio, director of pro-bono development at the American Immigration Lawyers Association, said that immigrant parents might be returning to a dangerous or economically desperate situation in their home country. For example, in some areas in Central America, violent gangs prey on pre-teen and teenage children, and deported parents might prefer to keep their child in a safe community in the United States, she said.

    In other instances, children return to their parents' native country. Those who are U.S. citizens, however, have the option to return to the United States, which some do as adults, with less education and less understanding of the culture and language than they would have had growing up in this country, Sugrue said.

    The plight of children born to illegal immigrants in the United States has become a political issue.

    In recent appearances, Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez, a Cuban immigrant, has mentioned the children while pushing the Bush administration's plan for a large temporary worker program for foreign workers, including current illegal immigrants.

    Massive deportations "would require separating parents from their 3 million American-born children," he said, earlier this month at the Cato Institute, a libertarian think tank in Washington. "Some say the children could decide if they go with their parents or stay. Can you imagine that?"

    A group of Republican House members tried unsuccessfully last year to offer an amendment drafted by Rep. Nathan Deal, R-Ga. to repeal birthright citizenship for children of illegal immigrants. The children are sometimes referred to as "anchor babies" because once they turn 18, they can petition for relatives from abroad to come legally to the United States. In addition, U.S. citizen children are entitled to federal and state benefits that their illegal immigrant parents are not.

    Deal and other lawmakers argue that the children pose a heavy financial drain on schools and healthcare systems, including Medicaid. All sides agree on one thing the number of American born children of immigrants continues to increase.

    According to a study by the Center for Immigration Studies, 23 percent of all American births in 2002 were to immigrant mothers, both legal and illegal a record higher than during the peak of the previous great immigration wave in 1910.



    The House passed a strong enforcement bill in December that would make illegal presence in the United States a felony and require businesses to check an electronic database to determine if employees are in the United States legally. Penalties for hiring illegal workers would include fines as high as $20,000 for each worker and possible jail time.

    Democrats opposed to the bill said it would turn more than a million children into felons.

    The Senate passed a bill earlier this year which includes a temporary worker plan that would allow an additional 200,000 immigrants to work in the United States. But House Republican leaders have rejected that approach and are holding hearings across the country to support their enforcement measure.

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  2. #2
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    This is stupid. I am a parent. If I were deported there is absolutely NO WAY I would leave my child(ren) behind. My children would be with me where they belong.

    Let's take a survey....

    How many of you out there that are parents would leave your child(ren) behind?

  3. #3
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    How many of you out there that are parents would leave your child(ren) behind?

    We moved once while the kids were away at summer camp! Does that count?
    Join our efforts to Secure America's Borders and End Illegal Immigration by Joining ALIPAC's E-Mail Alerts network (CLICK HERE)

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    Senior Member WavTek's Avatar
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    John Keeley, spokesman for the Center for Immigration Studies, a think tank in Washington that advocates stronger immigration controls, said that in the United States, "we have the expectation that parents act in the best interest of minor children."

    "Illegal aliens who bring their children into the United States or have them here do the exact opposite, because under the law they are subject to potential deportation every day and that is clearly not in the best interest of the children," he said.
    He got it exactly right. If these so-called parents are going to endanger their children, they should at least have a plan for such an event. Have someone lined up, who will take their child and care for it, until they can be reunited in their home country.
    REMEMBER IN NOVEMBER!

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    Senior Member AlturaCt's Avatar
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    These criminals are endangering their own children. At the very least they should be publicly chastised, as they are deported, for child endangerment. They knowingly placed their children in harms way!
    [b]Civilizations die from suicide, not by murder.
    - Arnold J. Toynbee

  6. #6
    Senior Member Skippy's Avatar
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    No, I would never leave my children behind. I would never knowingly break a law that would place my children in this kind of situation to begin with.

  7. #7
    Senior Member JohnB2012's Avatar
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    Kathleen Moccio, director of pro-bono development at the American Immigration Lawyers Association, said that immigrant parents might be returning to a dangerous or economically desperate situation in their home country. For example, in some areas in Central America, violent gangs prey on pre-teen and teenage children, and deported parents might prefer to keep their child in a safe community in the United States, she said.
    Perhaps Kathleen needs to read up on some of our US gangs.

    deported parents might prefer to keep their child in a safe community in the United States
    Great....USA-World Police and now baby sitter for the world.

  8. #8
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    Anybody on here watch the "Cold case files" on TV?
    I saw one case where a guy had commited a crime some thirty five years ago, he was now married, had two kids, a good job and buying his own home but he was caught arrested and sent to jail.
    I would imagine this pretty much ruined his life as well as his family, they probably had to sell their home now that there was no income, the kids had no father, ect.....
    As they say "don't do the crime if you can't do the time"

    What makes anybody special about breaking our laws just because they are not a legal citizen?
    You broke the law and are now caught, time to pay for your crime!
    Join our efforts to Secure America's Borders and End Illegal Immigration by Joining ALIPAC's E-Mail Alerts network (CLICK HERE)

  9. #9
    Senior Member nittygritty's Avatar
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    dim1968 Quote,
    How many of you out there that are parents would leave your child(ren) behind?


    How many anchor babies are there? I guess that number of children would be left behind! Are these children born into families who really want and are able to take care of these children? I think they are born specifically to have a foot hold in the US, and to get entitlements they are "entitled" to because they are US citizens. Therefore I think it would be easy for these parents to leave them behind, they could not feed them in Mexico right? they would recieve no entitlements there so why take them, they would only be a burden there. You know what, there are milions of people here trying to adopt children, why not allow these children to be adopted to families who would love them and take care of them without welfare and food stamps. It is time to do something about a new amendment denying instant citizenship to illegals dropping their babies here, simply so the parents can get an illegal foot into our door!
    Build the dam fence post haste!

  10. #10
    Senior Member crazybird's Avatar
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    So many of these people left children behind in Mexico to begin with. I don't feel sorry for them one bit and I think it's terrible they USE these children for their own personal gain. IF they truely were selflessly doing this FOR their children......then I agree with nitty.......either make sure you have a citizen as a guardian if you are deported or else they are put up for adoption. Otherwise you take them with you.

    Everyday, countless children are left without a parent, through death or from breaking a law. There's no "special" consideration made for them. They are placed with a relative or put in foster care. Again the "for the sake of the children" has been used and abused to death. Card just doesn't play well anymore. They take children from law breakers here alot of the time. Their children AREN"T being TAKEN from them. They are free to go with them.
    Join our efforts to Secure America's Borders and End Illegal Immigration by Joining ALIPAC's E-Mail Alerts network (CLICK HERE)

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