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angelosfrog

There's a first time for everything

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For the first time in my life I have actually written to my congressman (or woman actually).  Trump's family separation policy at the border has gotten me so pissed off that I just shot off an e-mail to Kay Granger expressing my extreme disappointment with her silence and inaction on this issue.  I have voted for her probably a dozen times but I won't be doing it again if she doesn't get off her ass and try to do something about this.  My e-mail was polite but pointed because really and truly she has been a great disappointment to me over the last year and half.  I expected better from her and I told her that.  Laura Bush is right, the policy is cruel and immoral and it needs to end immediately.  Sen. Ben Sasse released a statement on his Facebook page calling the policy "wicked" and pledging to work toward ending it immediately.  I expect nothing less of my representative.  If you are as outraged about this as I am, I urge you to take 10 minutes out of your day and e-mail your representative as well.  If you're not outraged, read Sasse's statement.  There are problems with current laws that have led up to this but neither the Bush nor Obama administration chose to impose this draconian, immoral and cruel policy.  Trump did so, at least in part, to obtain leverage to get his damn wall built.  As Sasse recognizes, that is hostage taking. 

 

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Many Nebraskans this weekend asked me about the kids at the border. Here’s a short version of what I told them. This is a bit over-simplified, but these are broad brushstrokes of how I understand the situation at present:

1) Family separation is wicked. It is harmful to kids and absolutely should NOT be the default U.S. policy. Americans are better than this.

2) This bad new policy is a reaction against a bad old policy. The old policy was “catch-and-release.” Under catch-and-release, if someone made it to the border and claimed asylum (whether true or not, and most of the time it wasn’t true), they were released into the U.S. until a future hearing date. Many folks obviously don’t show up at these hearings, so this became a new pathway into the U.S.

3) Catch-and-release – combined with inefficient deportation and other ineffective policies – created a magnet whereby lots of people came to the border who were not actually asylum-seekers. This magnet not only attracted illegal immigrants generally, but also produced an uptick in human trafficking across our border. (We now also have some limited evidence of jihadi recruiters spreading word about how to exploit the southwestern border.)

4) Human trafficking organizations are not just evil; they’re also often smart. Many quickly learned the “magic words” they needed to say under catch-and-release to guarantee admission into the U.S. Because of this, some of the folks showing up at the border claiming to be families are not actually families. Some are a trafficker with one or more trafficked children. Sometimes border agents can identify this, but many times they aren’t sure.

5) Any policy that incentivizes illegal immigration is terrible governance. But even more troubling is that catch-and-release rewarded traffickers, who knew they could easily get their victims to market in the U.S.

6) This foolish catch-and-release policy had to be changed. But changing from catch-and-release does not require adopting the wicked family separation policy. The choice before the American people does not have to be “wicked versus foolish.”

7) The administration’s decision to separate families is a new, discretionary choice. Anyone saying that their hands are tied or that the only conceivable way to fix the problem of catch-and-release is to rip families apart is flat wrong. There are other options available to them. The other options are all messy (given that some overly prescriptive judges have limited their administrative options), but there are ways to address this that are less bad than the policy of family separation they’ve chosen.

😎 There are many senior folks in the administration who hate this policy, and who want to do something better.

9) But some in the administration have decided that this cruel policy increases their legislative leverage. This is wrong. Americans do not take children hostage, period.

So what happens next? Obviously the Congress is broken and clearly bears much of the blame for a broken immigration system. We have many different problems clustered together: The border is too porous. Our asylum and refugee polices are too subject to executive branch whim, rather than clear legislative debate before the American people. We don’t have any coherent policy for dealing with kids who were brought here as minors but who have never known any home but the U.S. And more broadly, we have no long-term agreement about what levels of legal immigration we should want, or what kinds of workers we should prioritize. The Congress clearly bears much of the blame.

But neither the horrors of family separation nor the stupidity of catch-and-release should be about leverage for a broader debate. We should start by tackling the specific problem before us in the narrowest way possible.

The President should immediately end this family separation policy. And he should announce to the Congress the narrowest possible way problems like the FIores consent decree and related decisions (which bias policy toward release into the U.S. within three weeks after capture) can be resolved.

I am also working on a possible solution with James Lankford of Oklahoma, a man of integrity who has been pouring great energy into addressing this human tragedy at the border.

 

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Well done, @angelosfrog. Thank you for speaking up for these children who can't do so themselves. Several of our congresspeople were in South Texas yesterday and one of them had this to say: "The zero-tolerance policy means zero humanity and makes zero sense," said Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Oregon." I couldn't agree more.

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I am more outraged at Congress' lack of action on taking care of our vets, you know, actual United States citizens...so if I ever get around to writing to a politician, it will likely be on that topic.

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And, as for this topic, bear in mind it was the parent's choice to cross into the US illegally.  It is also the parent's choice to reunite with their child quickly and leave the country.

 

https://www.nationalreview.com/2018/05/illegal-immigration-enforcement-separating-kids-at-border/


 

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When a migrant is prosecuted for illegal entry, he or she is taken into custody by the U.S. Marshals. In no circumstance anywhere in the U.S. do the marshals care for the children of people they take into custody. The child is taken into the custody of HHS, who cares for them at temporary shelters.

 

The criminal proceedings are exceptionally short, assuming there is no aggravating factor such as a prior illegal entity or another crime. The migrants generally plead guilty, and they are then sentenced to time served, typically all in the same day, although practices vary along the border. After this, they are returned to the custody of ICE.

 

If the adult then wants to go home, in keeping with the expedited order of removal that is issued as a matter of course, it’s relatively simple. The adult should be reunited quickly with his or her child, and the family returned home as a unit. In this scenario, there’s only a very brief separation.

 

 

 

 

 

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2 minutes ago, Army Frog Fan said:

And, as for this topic, bear in mind it was the parent's choice to cross into the US illegally.  It is also the parent's choice to reunite with their child quickly and leave the country.

 

https://www.nationalreview.com/2018/05/illegal-immigration-enforcement-separating-kids-at-border/


 

 

 

 

So, the deal is "give up your claim to asylum and you can have your kid back?"  Seems a little unfair to the people who really need asylum doesn't it? 

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50 minutes ago, angelosfrog said:

 

So, the deal is "give up your claim to asylum and you can have your kid back?"  Seems a little unfair to the people who really need asylum doesn't it? 

 

How many are actually seeking asylum?  That's something not often mentioned on the nightly news, but would have a major impact on how big of an issue this really is.  Also, the denial rate was over 61% in FY2017 (I know, I know, Trum was president in 2017 and probably decided each one himself...but 2017 was the fifth year in a row that denial rates have risen).  Also, note that children being separated from illegal immigrant parents is not some new issue.  Here is an article from 2012 from the American Immigration Council highlighting the issue: https://www.americanimmigrationcouncil.org/research/falling-through-cracks

 

So yeah, I think this issue is being blown out of proportion based on who is in the office. With all of the faux-outrage, what is the solution?  Spend a bunch of tax dollars to reward the illegal immigrant families with a house, job, healthcare, school, 3-squares a day until their asylum claims finally get adjudicated (and likely denied)?  

 

If only there were some way to legally migrate to the US...Hmmmm...oh wait... https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/immigrate/the-immigrant-visa-process.html

 

Edit: and for those legitimately in need of asylum, they would likely be willing to be separated from their children for a few weeks rather than head back to teh country where they are being persecuted.  But also, what happens if they drop their asylum claim at the US Mexico border?  Does the US ship them back to El Salvador, or are they free to go in Mexico, where they are also illegal immigrants?  I don't know, but assume it is the latter.

 

 

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3 hours ago, Army Frog Fan said:

 

How many are actually seeking asylum?  That's something not often mentioned on the nightly news, but would have a major impact on how big of an issue this really is.  Also, the denial rate was over 61% in FY2017 (I know, I know, Trum was president in 2017 and probably decided each one himself...but 2017 was the fifth year in a row that denial rates have risen).  Also, note that children being separated from illegal immigrant parents is not some new issue.  Here is an article from 2012 from the American Immigration Council highlighting the issue: https://www.americanimmigrationcouncil.org/research/falling-through-cracks

 

So yeah, I think this issue is being blown out of proportion based on who is in the office. With all of the faux-outrage, what is the solution?  Spend a bunch of tax dollars to reward the illegal immigrant families with a house, job, healthcare, school, 3-squares a day until their asylum claims finally get adjudicated (and likely denied)?  

 

If only there were some way to legally migrate to the US...Hmmmm...oh wait... https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/immigrate/the-immigrant-visa-process.html

 

Edit: and for those legitimately in need of asylum, they would likely be willing to be separated from their children for a few weeks rather than head back to teh country where they are being persecuted.  But also, what happens if they drop their asylum claim at the US Mexico border?  Does the US ship them back to El Salvador, or are they free to go in Mexico, where they are also illegal immigrants?  I don't know, but assume it is the latter.

 

 

 

A 39% acceptance rate seems like what I would expect.  That's not an insignificant number.  Anyway, we'll have to disagree on it being blown out of proportion.  In fact, I think the media is going far too light on Trump. 

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37 minutes ago, angelosfrog said:

 

A 39% acceptance rate seems like what I would expect.  That's not an insignificant number.  Anyway, we'll have to disagree on it being blown out of proportion.  In fact, I think the media is going far too light on Trump. 

 

So do you have any issue with the detention centers being used, so long as families are allowed to stay together at those detention centers instead of just released with a court date that 80% will ignore? That seems to be an easy solution. 

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32 minutes ago, Army Frog Fan said:

 

So do you have any issue with the detention centers being used, so long as families are allowed to stay together at those detention centers instead of just released with a court date that 80% will ignore? That seems to be an easy solution. 

 

That would be better and if there is no option such as a person or organization that agrees to be responsible for them with some sort of guarantee of their return (I'm thinking of something like bail or the threat of a felony conviction with real jail time for a no show) then keeping them together in some sort of facility would be an acceptable option.  Not chain link cages in  a former big box store though.  In fact, you might not even have to fence it if you used electronic ankle bracelets for the adults. 

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Chamber of Commerce wants cheap labor.  Democrats want election issues.  Normal Americans just want the border to actually mean something. 

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1 hour ago, AlohaFrog said:

Both parties want election issues.  

 

 

FIFY.  Sure it was just an oversight...

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I just cannot fathom how the left cannot fully support an impenetrable border.  I am happy to debate about the laws regarding the amount of visas we give out, the ease of access for crossing into our country through access points, and the volume of legal immigrants we allow to enter our country.  But to just openly support people who sneak into our country and hide, often for decades, just blows my mind.  It is not as if we prevent anyone from legally migrating here.  But I will give them credit for framing the issue as the Rebublicans attacking all immigration.  That riles up the masses pretty well.

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14 minutes ago, Army Frog Fan said:

I just cannot fathom how the left cannot fully support an impenetrable border.  I am happy to debate about the laws regarding the amount of visas we give out, the ease of access for crossing into our country through access points, and the volume of legal immigrants we allow to enter our country.  But to just openly support people who sneak into our country and hide, often for decades, just blows my mind.  It is not as if we prevent anyone from legally migrating here.  But I will give them credit for framing the issue as the Rebublicans attacking all immigration.  That riles up the masses pretty well.

 

 

Actually the US limits immigration pretty much compared to much of the world. 

 

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_net_migration_rate

 

Not saying we should or shouldn't but immigration rates just aren't that high. For example it is a third of Swiss and half of Canada.

 

 

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47 minutes ago, NewfoundlandFreeFrog said:

 

 

Actually the US limits immigration pretty much compared to much of the world. 

 

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_net_migration_rate

 

Not saying we should or shouldn't but immigration rates just aren't that high. For example it is a third of Swiss and half of Canada.

 

 

 

And that is what the debate should focus on.  Instead, some want to reward those who just ignore the process all together. But this topic will die down once the media's next hot-button "faux-outrage" topic pops up.  A week ago, it was North Korea. It was the Russia investigation the week before that, the tariffs the week before that, etc., etc., etc.

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No such thing as an impenetrable 2000 mile border. 

 

 

 

The current imbroglio is actually very simple to solve, and it doesnt involve Congress.  And it doesnt require a backing off of 'zero tolerance' (whatever that really means).  All the Administration has to do is send the cases to civil, rather than criminal, courts.  Just like multiple previous administrations did pretty successfully.  Problem solved.  But that wont happen because it doesnt play to the base.

 

 

Yes, we need immigration reform, and that involves Congress.  But with regards to the current issue, it is simply a political volleyball both sides are using to their advantage.  Also worth noting that the current furor has been pretty bi-partisan.  But that hurts the narrative that its a left vs right issue.....

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26 minutes ago, Radio Shack Killa said:

No such thing as an impenetrable 2000 mile border. 

 

 

 

The current imbroglio is actually very simple to solve, and it doesnt involve Congress.  And it doesnt require a backing off of 'zero tolerance' (whatever that really means).  All the Administration has to do is send the cases to civil, rather than criminal, courts.  Just like multiple previous administrations did pretty successfully.  Problem solved.  But that wont happen because it doesnt play to the base.

 

 

Yes, we need immigration reform, and that involves Congress.  But with regards to the current issue, it is simply a political volleyball both sides are using to their advantage.  Also worth noting that the current furor has been pretty bi-partisan.  But that hurts the narrative that its a left vs right issue.....

 

Problem solved? Seriously?  We have millions of people in this country illegally, but lets just stay the course.  Good plan.

 

As for the furor, the problem is the 21 year old law limiting detention of minors for 20 days, so that families were just released with the hope that they would show up for their asylum hearing, which more than 80% (from what I read) didn't.  But here is a solution for those seeking asylum, while not wanting to be separated from their kids.  Hang out in Mexico with your family, until your hearing date.  I suspect the hearing attendance rates would skyrocket. There, these folks are free from oppression from the regimes they are fleeing. 

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I actually wrote mine on Father's Day.  Can't say it is my first time- but I can say it is the second. Sure the issue is complex, but not separating families is a simple concept.  Zero tolerance doesn't mean zero thinking.  Trump has the ability to stop this practice now and as bad as the "zero tolerance" policy is, letting this go on is a worse one.  

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3 hours ago, Army Frog Fan said:

I just cannot fathom how the left cannot fully support an impenetrable border.  I am happy to debate about the laws regarding the amount of visas we give out, the ease of access for crossing into our country through access points, and the volume of legal immigrants we allow to enter our country.  But to just openly support people who sneak into our country and hide, often for decades, just blows my mind.  It is not as if we prevent anyone from legally migrating here.  But I will give them credit for framing the issue as the Rebublicans attacking all immigration.  That riles up the masses pretty well.

 

I grew up in west Texas and my grandfather owned a ranch.  Back when I was growing up it was like the border was just a suggestion.  People crossed back and forth all the time and it was common practice to hire undocumented guys to work on ranches or in businesses. I guess that my experiences kind of inform my opinions on border issues.  I think the goal of an impenetrable border is unrealistic. I think we do need to make a reasonable effort to enforce the laws and keep people out or deport people who are here illegally and break the law but I'm not that bothered that the system isn't 100% effective at keeping undocumented immigrants out. It is what it is.  I also think that cheap undocumented labor has probably been very good for the Texas economy.  My personal opinion is that a lot of this immigration uproar is driven by the fact that brown Spanish speaking people (whether documented or not) are now showing up in the midwest and the southeast and that makes people uncomfortable.   

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2 hours ago, angelosfrog said:

 

I grew up in west Texas and my grandfather owned a ranch.  Back when I was growing up it was like the border was just a suggestion.  People crossed back and forth all the time and it was common practice to hire undocumented guys to work on ranches or in businesses. I guess that my experiences kind of inform my opinions on border issues.  I think the goal of an impenetrable border is unrealistic. I think we do need to make a reasonable effort to enforce the laws and keep people out or deport people who are here illegally and break the law but I'm not that bothered that the system isn't 100% effective at keeping undocumented immigrants out. It is what it is.  I also think that cheap undocumented labor has probably been very good for the Texas economy.  My personal opinion is that a lot of this immigration uproar is driven by the fact that brown Spanish speaking people (whether documented or not) are now showing up in the midwest and the southeast and that makes people uncomfortable.   

 

THIS^^^^^^

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McConnell just announced the reps are going to do something to stop separations. Cornyn and Cruz are apparently on board. Stivers the head of the National Republican Congressional Committee, the campaign arm for House Republicans, too.  We'll see what actually happens.

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Yeah I agree that 100% isn't reasonable.  There are many issues with a wall- appearance, upkeep, wildlife, private property rights, etc.  And it probably won't stop illegal immigration, anyway.  It will probably end up being a big expensive metaphor signifying "loving your solution, not the problem".

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1 minute ago, NeFrog in the Kitchen Sink said:

Yeah I agree that 100% isn't reasonable.  There are many issues with a wall- appearance, upkeep, wildlife, private property rights, etc.  And it probably won't stop illegal immigration, anyway.  It will probably end up being a big expensive metaphor signifying "loving your solution, not the problem".

 

 

I take a yearly trip down to Eagle Pass where the MIL lives.  One the Bush border fences goes thru town along the river.  The locals are mostly against it for those reasons.  But there's 2 things that just make you go WTF....one, the municipal golf course is right on the river.  So they built the fence around the course......on the wrong side.  So now the course is now between the fence and the river in a veritable no-man's land.  The solution?  Put in gates.  Except they never put doors on the gates.  So the fence designed to keep potential illegals to the outskirts of town and out of downtown leads right to.....downtown.

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34 minutes ago, NewfoundlandFreeFrog said:

McConnell just announced the reps are going to do something to stop separations. Cornyn and Cruz are apparently on board. Stivers the head of the National Republican Congressional Committee, the campaign arm for House Republicans, too.  We'll see what actually happens.

 My guess is tent cities.  We will no longer be releasing these folks into the US to disappear, but will keep families together. Then we can all move on to the next topic, probably about how tent cities are inhumane.

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