Downtown College Prep Students Organize Know-Your-Rights Workshop for Immigrant Families

Students at an East Side San Jose high school will lead a workshop later this week to educate immigrant families about their rights. The bilingual class Thursday will review paths to legalizing undocumented residents, basic rights to remember when contacted by federal immigration agents and how non-citizens can pursue a college education.

“Because most of our students are immigrants or children of immigrants, they were terrified of Donald Trump being elected and his anti-immigrant politics being put into place,” said Cesar Juarez Ruiz, a social studies teacher at Downtown College Prep. “The students said, ‘We have to do something, let’s educate the community.’”

The morning after Trump’s presidential election victory, Ruiz said, his students got up from their desks in the middle of class and walked out in protest. Thousands of young people throughout the nation did the same, leaving their campuses to march against a leader who vowed to ramp up deportations.

For students at Downtown College Prep, however, that protest continued beyond Nov. 9. They formed a Social Justice Club and surveyed fellow students to find out how they could effectively resist policies by a president who has promised to put immigrant communities in the crosshairs. The results of that survey inspired the students to host a know-your-rights workshop.

“If we had just walked out the first day after we received news and if we hadn’t done anything after that, we wouldn’t get people’s attention and we really wouldn’t be helping the community,” said Isai Gallegos, a 16-year-old Downtown College Prep student.“But by continuing our agenda of doing things, we’re trying to actually make something happen and express how we feel and make a difference.”

To prepare for this week’s session, the students attended a training led by immigrant rights coalition SIREN (Services Immigrant Rights and Education Network). They now want to share what they learned with their peers and families.

An immigration lawyer will be on hand during the workshop, but the event is student-led. The public is invited to attend, especially parents of East Side students. The know-your-rights training runs from 6 to 7:30pm Thursday in Room C at Independence High School, 1776 Educational Park Drive in San Jose. Snacks will be provided.

Students will also use the event to promote the upcoming May Day march, which is organized by a broad coalition of community groups and expected to draw its biggest turnout in years. The international May 1 holiday celebrates workers and immigrants. In 2006, the march drew about 100,000 to the South Bay.

Organizers of the May Day march unveiled the following list of demands for the annual event, a San Jose tradition for more than half a century.

  1. We demand international peace and justice
  2. We demand a true representative democracy
  3. We demand transparent and accurate media
  4. We Demand full and fair employment
  5. We demand respect and dignity
  6. We demand equal access to education
  7. We demand healthcare and reproductive justice
  8. We demand safe, affordable housing
  9. We demand a healthy planet
  10. We demand criminal justice reform
  11. We demand immigration reform

For more information about May Day, here’s a link to the Facebook event page.

Jennifer Wadsworth is the News Editor for San Jose Inside and Metro Newspaper. Email tips to [email protected] or follow her on Twitter at @jennwadsworth.

58 Comments

  1. Thats a lot of demands for for people that might not be here legally.
    I think we should make May 1st “Snowflake Day” as a matter of fact I demand it!

  2. Sometimes I think Jennifer writes these things just to pull our chains. She’s the ultimate troll.

  3. All of the “demands” made by the children are more or less just statements of the ethos and practices of tribalism. Except maybe for this:

    > We Demand full and fair employment

    If the idea of “employment” for a tribalist means a “job”, well, tribalists don’t have jobs. “Jobs” are a financial arrangement with capitalists to foster “division of labor” toward the end of “creating wealth”.

    Also, if the tribalist children are intent on foraging for “safe, and affordable housing”, I don’t see how they are going to make this happen unless they seize some housing currently occupied by other tribalists, or harpoon some wealthy capitalists, and loot their businesses to pay other capitalists to build some housing on their traditional tribal lands be be seized for the tribe.

    The whole idea of “demanding” things to be put in their supper dish is just fostering infantilism. Cesar Juarez Ruiz is arguably perpetrating child abuse.

      • Mr Juarez,

        The community appreciates the sacrifice and effort that you and your fellow teachers invest in educating our children. However, I must concur with the other commenters on this post, that the path you are leading these children down is dangerous. Disregarding the demands that are ambiguous or are simple platitudes, please permit me to focus my criticism on the demands that are quantifiable or can be addressed directly.

        The demand for a truly representative democracy. We do not live in a democracy, we live in a Constitutional Republic. By not challenging this demand, it is the first place you are letting your students down. There are very good reasons why a democracy is less than desirable, as you likely know. DCP should be teaching their students the critical thinking skills necessary to understand the difference and assess why mob rule is a dangerous path. And before the students dismiss the US Constitution out of hand, please remind them that the place they are so strenuously trying to becoming a part of was shaped, by more than anything else, by that Constitution.

        The demand for full and fair employment. We do not live in communism, no one owes anyone gainful employment or meaningful work. We freely exchange our labor and its fruits in the marketplace, and by the grace and forethought of the founders, we are granted agency to know what is best for ourselves. History has been a quick and decisive judge on the pitfalls of revoking that agency. If there is one thing a high school should teach, it is this. By demanding, and not freely exchanging, you are advocating the coercion of one party by the other, which is either theft or slavery. The students of DCP will be far better off if they are guided to excel in valuable skills that they can exchange for more than fair employment with the goal of one day, perhaps, being the employer, investor, etc. The question you must ask yourself when you guide your students to demand employment, what if the demand is not met? What else can they do but resort or violence, theft, or enslavement?

        The demand for safe, affordable housing. There is no need to demand affordable housing in the United States. There is plenty of safe, affordable housing in Utah, Missouri, Arizona, South Carolina. Rents in newer apartments run $500-$600, apartments cost $50,000-$$70,000 each unit. You can buy a house in many medium sized cities for less than $100,000. However, apartments in San Jose run $300,000 to $400,000 a unit for old ones, and $600,000-$700,000 range for new ones. Given the acquisition costs and related expenses, rents in San Jose should run $2500-$4500 a month, only by the good graces of the property owner does someone pay less. If you demand something, which means you are coercing someone into an agreement instead of a equal trade of value, you are stealing or advocating government expropriation.

        By guiding these students toward an orientation of demands, you are taking off the table the challenging but rewarding path of fair and equitable exchange, which to me, is the basis of justice, peace, mutual respect, and dignity, but more so to true success and equality.

        Is coercion justice?

        Is theft dignified?

        Or is free and fair exchange more consistent with mutual respect?

        What we ask is that you challenge these students on the consequences of these types of demands, not just pat them on the back for repeating dangerous slogans of failed ideologies.

        • The U.S. is very much both a republic and a democracy, it simply isn’t a direct democracy. The principle of 1 person 1 vote and of electing representatives based on this system is both republican (ruling as a public matter) and democratic (power of the people to rule).

          • The U.S. is a republic, but NOT a democracy.

            The electoral college is NOT “democratic”. It is a constitutionally specified leadership succession process which precludes democratic majoritarianism.

            “Democracy” is two wolves and a sheep voting on what’s for lunch. Or, if you prefer, “democracy” is “mob-ocracy”.

            The founders knew this VERY well.

          • The U.S. is both a republic and a democracy:

            > The United States is the world’s oldest surviving federation. It is a constitutional republic and representative democracy, “in which majority rule is tempered by minority rights protected by law”.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States#Government_and_politics

            Just because it’s not a direct democracy doesn’t mean it’s not a democracy. There are a number of types of democracies. There are also oligarchic republics where (for example) only landowners make state decisions.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Democratic_republic

          • Max,

            Thank you for your response. I do not disagree with either point you make. But please consider two things, given we agree the US is a Constitutional Republic. One, the US Constitution outlines the manner in which representation is manifested, both from a legislative perspective and electoral college. The history of the compromises are easily researched, so I won’t waste keystrokes on it unless you’d like to discuss it. Second, it is my interpretation that the framers did not relish the idea that the President was a popular figure and by having indirect election, it would be less likely a populist would inhabit the office, as it could lead to demagoguery.

            My error was to assume a conflation of the article’s discussion on the reaction of the students to the recent Presidential election and the use of the modifier “true” in front of representative democracy. I extrapolated that the demand was that the President be elected by a “truly” representative democracy, which in the limit, I understood as reflecting the popular vote. So in essence direct democracy. I am at a loss to see what the “true” means without more commentary around the demand; I did notice the demands are all quite curt.

            It sounds as if you know the history of the Constitutional Convention so you understand that it would have been unlikely for less populated states to agree to sign the Constitution without some protection from more populated states crowding out their interests. A dynamic that played itself out last fall and will so in the future. And as all long term Californians know, “The federal government did not create the states; the states created the federal government.”

            Being Mr Juarez is a Social Studies teacher at DCP, I also assumed that this was part of the discussion in class and that the students are aware of this history, the Federalist Papers, the transition from AoC to the Constitution, etc. Armed with this knowledge and probably an average of 16 years each on this planet, perhaps the students where speaking out of school in making such a demand, if I understood it correctly. Perhaps it would have been more educational to challenge the students on justify such a demand in terms of the history of the US and what it is they expect the country to offer them, instead of calling in the press to witness the public reading of said demands.

          • Mr. Ruiz seems to be teaching the progressive view of the Constitution, living breathing version and not what the dead white men intended.
            Max has it about 90% correct, but misses the points about the popular vote versus the electoral vote which is always up for criticism when the majority of state wins and not the popular vote. What people don’t understand is without the rigidity and wisdom of the Constitution and the rule of law, we would quickly fall into the condition known as “tyranny of the majority”. With a living Constitution changing at the whim of the people in charge, they would no doubt create a bloodbath of the opposition. This is a very hard concept for for the losers of an election to grasp and why we need to be vigilant with the idea of arbitrarily changing the concepts set forth by the founders.

          • There is a paradox about “democracy” that progressives don’t seem to recognize: “democracy” DOESN”T protect minorities.

            In a pure majoritarian democracy the majority rules. If the majority wants you to forfeit your life, liberty, or property, you lose.

            As the revolutionists put it during the French Revolution: “The voice of the people is the voice of God.”

            If the majority wants you evicted from your home for what the majority regards as a “just cause”, you get evicted. In the aftermath of the communist coup that took power in Nicaragua, people were evicted from their houses for the “just cause” that dictator Daniel Ortega wanted a nicer, bigger house.

            It is RULE OF LAW, i.e. the Constitution, that protects minorities. Without constitutional protections, there would be NO “minority rights”.

            And this is the fundamental division in American politics:

            Republicans believe in the rule of law;
            Democrats believe in the rule of voters.

            If you are a “minority” in America, which type of society would you like to live in?

  4. I hadn’t realized we could get so many things if just got together and demanded it.
    Let us all demand 7 and a half more years of Trump! I demand 4 layer chocolate cake for dessert
    I demand drug test for all politicians 4 times a year. I demand a new Corvette. There I feel better already!
    I demand you explain what a true representative democracy is, verse an ordinary representative democracy.
    I demand you explain a transparent and accurate media, don’t you belive the NY times?
    Full and fair employment, the Donald is all for that! Equal access to education, don’t we teach English and history in public schools any more? Health care and reproductive justice, someone is mad at Planned Parenthood for cutting out there baby? Safe affordable housing, Criminal justice reform, a healthy planet, immigration reform, International peace and justice.
    How about we demand you put on the uniform, serve your country, pay your taxes, work for 45 years and pay for all those rights you demand.

      • Our views are not the things that need changing.

        It is a simple statement that “illegal aliens or illegal criminal aliens” are here illegally. That means that their very first action in coming to the US was an illegal one. That does not show that they have any respect or good intentions to strengthen or support our culture. “Illegal” means that it was against our laws. They are criminal invaders. No matter how you try to sugar coat it or refuse to mention the word “illegal”, these people are here without legal permission and have committed a crime.

        As for “Sanctuary” towns, cities and states, they are harboring criminals, many of them who have already committed crimes and convicted of crimes and will continue to commit crimes. It is all being done because idiotic legislators have decided that they need the votes and if you continue to protect these criminals they will pay you back with their illegal votes just to get more free stuff.

        It is plain disgusting that our representatives are putting the our safety and security at the bottom of the pile while allowing, and protecting criminal illegal aliens to propagate their quiet invasion. What is even more outrageous is that now they are trying to brainwash our school children to buy into their warped manifesto.

        Common sense outweighs blind compassion.

        • Charlie,

          Undocumented immigrants are definitely here illegally, and they have broken the law. They are most definitely not inherently criminals, since only unlawful entry is a crime (and not unlawful presence). It’s surprising you have such a strong opinion on the matter yet you seem ignorant of some basic legal facts.

          As for “sanctuary” cities (really a misnomer, since the feds can and do arrest undocumented immigrants in all jurisdictions), they are statistically safer than non-“sanctuary” cities. Immigrants overall commit fewer crimes than native born citizens. Again, please educate yourself before publishing your opinions on a public forum.

  5. The legal immigrants are mostly fine, upstanding people. The illegal ones and their apologists are mostly demanding little sh*ts.

    • They mostly aren’t. They are positively contributing and deserve recognition and legal status. You’re dirt on Earth.

      • So what happens during their oath of citizenship when it comes time for these “deservers of legal status” to swear they will obey our laws? Will they just lie under oath? They’ve already demonstrated they have no respect for our laws. Will they be tax cheats? Will they fraudulently take disability payments? I see no reason why we shouldn’t expect it. Our “screening” process practically guarantees it.

        • Thankfully the native born citizens that are in favor of unconstitutional detention of undocumented immigrants without due process never have to take an Oath to defend the Constitution! Unfortunately I did, so I can’t just go along trampling on basic rights afforded to people under the jurisdiction of the US.

          • Question Max,
            Does everyone on the planet have a right to due process under the US Constitution that is a living breathing document
            or is it just the people that have managed to steal home plate after jumping the fence. If so shouldn’t they be automatically citizens with guaranteed rights any time they cross the border? Would this not necessitate the building of a border wall to keep those people from instantly becoming citizens with rights. Stopping everyone at airports and having the sign an order of deportation before they are allowed to enter the US for a certain amount of time.
            If the US constitution is a living breathing document then should the current government be allowed to change it to whatever congress and the president at that time deside it should be?

          • Empty Gun,

            Everyone under U.S. Jurisdiction has a right to due process under the US Constitution. That has nothing to do with it being a “living document”.

            I am not opposed to enforcing the law. If someone is in this country illegally, ICE has every right to arrest them, have them appear in front of an immigration judge, and deport them. Of course I believe the law as it stands is crappy, to say the least, but it is the law. The law does not allow people to be deported without due process nor does it shield people from deportation.

          • I appreciate that you’ve stuck around Max and defended your position.
            It seems to me though that we’re arguing about different things.
            Thanks for sticking around and defending your position Max.
            I can’t speak for other anti illegal immigrant commenters, only for myself, and to me detaining and deporting residents, especially without due process is, as it is to you, an unattractive prospect. But, unlike you, it pisses me off that we have needlessly put ourselves in this position. I’m willing to accept the people who are here now. We’ve screwed up our immigration enforcement for the past three decades and that’s on us and this is the price. But starting now let’s quit it so that 20 years from now we’re not having the same stupid f***ing problems and these ridiculous arguments.
            I mean, bottom line Max answer me this. Should we the people of the United States have any say about who is allowed to live in our country?

          • John,

            The citizens of the United States should have a right to determine who lives here (although I believe they also have a duty to welcome others in some limited circumstances related to persecution or war-torn countries).

            I think those people that have been here for longest and now have roots in the US should be given green cards. Those that are recent arrivals should be sent back after appearing in front of an immigration judge with a court-appointed attorney to represent them.

            Going forward, I think a wall is completely pointless. We need to start punishing employers that hire undocumented immigrants so they can pay below-the-market wages. Until we do that, every other measure will be pointless. Once we do that the problem (which is really not a national priority in my opinion even as-is) will evaporate.

            Thanks for the civil discussion John.

          • Hello Max,
            I’ve been following your exchange with frustrated finfan and it’s very interesting but I’m troubled by indications that you reject the whole idea of nationhood in general. If so, there’s really no common ground for a starting point for discussion with you.
            But setting that aside, I’ve just got to ask if it doesn’t rub you the wrong way when you hear immigrants, whether legal or illegal but especially the illegal variety, making demands- not just for constitutional protection against unwarranted detention without due process- with which you are in agreement and maybe I am too, but also for “affordable housing” and “full and fair employment”. Does this not bother you Max? Is this the sort of immigrant that we want to attract? The newly arrived marching, protesting, demanding immigrant? Really?
            I’m often admonished that “we’re a nation of immigrants”. And that’s impossible to deny. So the smug asserter generally struts away proudly confident that he’s settled the argument once and for all with this robotic recitation of a vapid phrase.
            Yes, we’re a nation of immigrants and I’m proud of our immigrant heritage. Until lately. In the past, all we offered immigrants was an opportunity to make it on their own. So that’s the sort of immigrant we attracted- the self sufficient, independent ones. And I’m proud of those ones. But now we’re offering immigrants freebies. So of course, through natural selection, we’re attracting the sort of people who would rather be given something than work for it. And this is causing resentment and mistrust of ALL the immigrants- good and bad, because we have no confidence that our government is doing anything to make sure we get good ones.

          • John,

            Let me allay your fears, I absolutely believe in nations and nation-states. I believe nations are founded upon a shared culture, a shared set of beliefs, and often for other nations, on a shared ethnicity. What the U.S. decided not to have in homogeneity of origin, skin color and religion, it more than makes up in a strong identity shaped by the Constitution and the freedom it represents. That is the country I chose to join and that I am willing to fight for.

            I think the discussion about what the government ought to provide to its citizen (or put an other way, what we citizens owe to each other) is a different discussion. I am not sure about who exactly made these demands, but if it is indeed the students there is a high likelihood these are American-born citizens, not immigrants. Whatever the case may be, immigrants to this country are all-in-all a strong economic asset: undocumented immigrants cannot get the overwhelming majority of government benefits afforded to citizens and legal residents; documented immigrants have to prove they can sustain themselves before they are admitted.

            As you can see in this data [1], for every 1 Hispanic under the poverty line there were 2.25 White and Blacks under the poverty line (and of course this assumes that every single Hispanic is an immigrant, which is clearly incorrect). Similarly, 2/3rd of food stamps go to Whites and Blacks, historically native born Americans, and only 1/10th goes to Hispanics [2]

            To conclude John, I believe we broadly believe in the same driving principles: deserving, talented people who want to join our nation because they believe in its ideals should be able to join. Those that do not should be arrested, detained, tried with representation and deported while their Constitutional rights are protected. Debates about government involvement in welfare or guaranteed programs (health care, education, employment) are separate from the immigration issue and many different political beliefs have their place within our marketplace of ideas.

            Thanks again for the civil discussion.

            [1] http://kff.org/other/state-indicator/poverty-rate-by-raceethnicity/?dataView=1&currentTimeframe=0&sortModel=%7B%22colId%22:%22Location%22,%22sort%22:%22asc%22%7D
            [2] http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/02/28/food-stamp-demographics_n_6771938.html

          • As you know Max, there are 3 kinds of lies. Lies. Damned lies. And statistics.
            I tend to be pretty skeptical of statistics that are collected and compiled by politically motivated organizations with the goal of using them to steer public policy. However, there’s no question that there are plenty of lazy, entitled, work-the-system types among our native born citizenry. I’d be happy if I could snap my fingers and have them all swapped out for self reliant, hard working Mexicans, Chinese, Indians, Filipinos, Belgians, Kiwis, Tralfamadorians, or any other foreigners.
            I think though that it’s time we recognized that the world we live in today, and from which we draw immigrants, is entirely different than the world of our forebears and it is different in ways that are likely to make our immigrant experience profoundly different than what we have historically come to expect. Technology, the ease of communication, connectedness, and the ability and means for so many to easily travel the globe will surely have the effect of steadily, inexorably ratcheting up the pressure to emigrate, causing immigration to increase at an exponential rate if we continue to be so casual about our borders, our visa overstayers, our shipping containers, magnets such as our government programs that bend over backwards to make sure they don’t “discriminate”, and as you pointed out, our employers who hire illegals. Do we want our country to have a billion people? Two billion? That’s a question that surely we are allowed to entertain and are stupid if we don’t. We Americans absolutely have the right, both legally and morally, to limit immigration (and not because we’re racist bigots) if we so choose. When setting policies that we hope will make the United States of the future a great place, there ARE other considerations besides economic ones. There’s the natural environment, open space, preservation of habitat. Despite the wonders of diversity, there are advantages to a having things in common with your neighbors, including the ability to speak to them.
            Anyway Max. Thanks for the good informative feedback even if it does leave me shaking my head and reaffirming my misgivings about the type of immigrant we’re attracting.

    • I’m undocumented and all I ask is to get a job at the career that took me 10 years to get a degree on. And if you are wondering why it took me 10 years it is because since undocumented students cannot apply for financial aid I had to earn cash working at a flea market so I can pay for my education!!!

      • You’re not merely “undocumented” Eduardo, the current euphemism of choice by our snowflake politicians. You are here ILLEGALLY, pendejo; which is a slap in the face to every person who has come here legally. And if you’re lucky, after you get your degree you’ll take a job away from a college graduate who came here legally. Bad luck for that unlucky person. You and Cesar Juarez just don’t get it. If you are in the USA illegally, you deserve nothing more than a trip back to your country of origin, at your expense.

        • I came to this country legally and I am a naturalized citizen. I have nothing but the hope for the best to give to Eduardo. Your response only highlights how underserving you are of the immense privilege of citizenship and why our arbitrary immigration system is completely broken. I hope you one day think about the incredible luck (and that’s all it is!) you were dealt by being born here (I assume) and that you stop wishing ill-will on our neighbors.

          • Can it be that Max immigrated here so he could one day deny to native-born Americans the right to demand their laws be enforced? He boasts that, as a naturalized citizen, he took an oath to defend the Constitution, but he apparently doesn’t understand that that great document allows no exceptions to the law, not even when so grateful a citizen as himself declares one of them unfair.

            I’m not sure how much American history Max has digested, but his conviction that luck is the overriding factor in whether a person is born in America or elsewhere suggests he thinks the people of the world are divided into two classes: Americans and the unlucky. This is, of course, ridiculous, but credit Max with assimilating so well here in the progressive Bay Area that he’s learned to let his passions get the best of him.

            I wonder if Max can answer this question: who was the first person to become an American solely by luck? Looking back at my own family tree, I don’t think my ancestors who fought in the French and Indian War were lucky, nor were those who fought in the Revolutionary War, the War of 1812, the Mexican-American War, the Civil War, or any of the many wars since. These people, along with their contemporaries, created America, they didn’t luck into it. Without their efforts and sacrifice, and without the continuing commitment of their descendants, the freedoms, opportunities, and relative safety we enjoy would not exist, and foreign-born people like Max would’ve had no interest in coming here.

            Max, count yourself lucky that you wound up in a country that tolerates arrogance and stupidity.

          • > I hope you one day think about the incredible luck (and that’s all it is!) you were dealt by being born here (I assume) and that you stop wishing ill-will on our neighbors.

            MAX:

            I’m not completely clear what you’re trying to say.

            Are you suggesting that “luck” is the wrong way to deal out American citizenship, and that a better way would be based on “fairness”?

            So, how would you “fairly” deal out U.S. citizenships? Hold a lottery? But what if people cheated on the lottery? Oh wait. Isn’t that what they do now?

            How about if we just dealt out U.S. citizenships to everyone who wanted one, along with welfare checks, food stamps, section eight housing vouchers, “earned income” tax credits, etc.? Wouldn’t that be fair?

            We could throw in free hunting licenses for buffaloes, spotted owls, and elephants, too. No bag limit! And every new citizen gets a free whale oil lamp!

            I feel good about myself.

          • Finfan,

            If you are going to use the obnoxious third person when trying to disagree with me, at least keep it up throughout.

            Your ancestors might have done everything you’ve said, I don’t see how that should in any way reflect positively on you. You are the one that had the utmost luck to be born here. And I was lucky enough to qualify to become an American citizen after I was born abroad. If you don’t see that as something great yet arbitrarily given out, I can’t help you.

            SJOutsideTheBubble,

            I think there will always be an element of luck, of course, and no one should feel bad for being lucky. What one shouldn’t do is fail to realize their luck and look down on those that try to share in it.

          • Max,

            You accused native-born Americans of being nothing other than lucky (your quote, “that’s all it is!”), ignoring the fact that America is simply the sum total of the personal contributions and sacrifices of each and every generation of Americans, including those still living. How sad that a foreign-born person such as yourself, welcomed into this country by a magnanimous people, is incapable of understanding that the source of that magnanimity is the product, and has been the possession, of the American people themselves — just as has been courage, boldness, and a most fearsome commitment to liberty.

            In your world, there is no pride in being an American, only luck. Too bad for you.

          • America is absolutely the sum total of the efforts of our ancestors on this land: native Americans, the first immigrants that founded our country or toiled under slavery, all the subsequent immigrants as well as the many foreigners that worked in this great country. I am extremely proud of the United States’ history, and most importantly the values it represents and defends.

            Again, that has nothing to do with how one gets to obtain the US citizenship: that is a process that is arbitrary and unfair. Did you have to prove anything about your pride, ideals, or talents to become an American citizen? I assume not.

          • “Did you have to prove anything about your pride, ideals, or talents to become an American citizen? I assume not.” — Max

            I did not become an American citizen any more than I became a human being, and I have never been obligated to prove either. Your complaint seems to be about the subjectivity of the immigration process, while your disrespect seems to be directed at native-born persons spared the inherent imperfection of a subjective human undertaking. That qualifies your grievance as a personal problem and nothing more. Enjoy it.

          • Finfan,

            I expressed no disrespect to native-born Americans. I only highlighted that their possession of the American citizenship and all the privileges it entails was simply thanks to the luck they were dealt. For the record, I consider my situation equally lucky: I was able to obtain the American citizenship simply due to blood relations to an American citizen (through a number of hops).

            My problem is simply with those who seem to believe they have done something to earn their citizenship and that immigrants that are not able to obtain it are de facto lesser and undeserving. Eduardo seems to believe in American ideals, speaks fluent English, is trying to improve his skills and give back and he is met with unjustified hatred. He seems at least as deserving as you and I.

      • Eduardo Juarez Jr. writes, “… all I ask is to get a job at the career that took me 10 years to get a degree on,” thus proving himself capable of using accurate language when describing what he wants but not when describing what he is or why he has a right to ask for anything. First off, it is doubtful he is in fact an “undocumented” person; rather, it is very likely he is a documented citizen of a foreign state. But he doesn’t acknowledge his foreign documentation because he’s been brainwashed into believing he’s something he is not: a person with every right to be here who simply lacks some paperwork.

        So thorough has been his indoctrination that Señor Juarez reveals with his words (and three exclamation points) that he feels frustration and, perhaps, resentment, over his personal economic plight and inability to qualify for financial aid (is there is a Spanish word for chutzpah?). Señor Juarez seems to think we Americans have wronged him. He also seems to think that working one’s way through school is an experience unique to illegal aliens. He is so wrong on both counts that it brings into question the value of his education.

        Expressions such as these, whether by ignorant words, repugnant street demonstrations, or the offensive display of foreign flags, should put every American on notice of what to expect should these politicized intruders ever be allowed full rights as citizens. They have been educated to see themselves not as individuals or families hopeful of assimilating, but as a people who’ve been wronged and members of a political mob, one with the right to expect, take, and demand.

      • > I’m undocumented and all I ask is to get a job at the career that took me 10 years to get a degree on.

        A serious question for Eduardo, Jr.:

        What is your country of origin where you DO hold citizenship?

        Why are you unable to pursue your education and your career in your home country? After all, we supposedly live in a “global economy”.

        Here’s where I’m going with this: there are countries in the world where outsiders are desperate to get IN: Switzerland, Sweden, the U.S. and others. There are countries in the world were insiders (and outsiders) are desperate to get OUT: Syria, Mexico, El Salvador, Somalia, etc. etc.

        Which category does your home country fall into? Why?

        What would it take to make your home country into an immigration MAGNET like Switzerland, where people are clamoring to get in and get citizenship?

        Should U.S. foreign policy take steps (“foreign aid”, “nation building”, “imperialism”) to make your country of origin into an “immigration magnet”, so you and people like you CHOOSE your home country over the U.S.?

        My underlying question is, if you could choose, would you choose to be in the U.S. rather than your home country, or did U.S. politicians choose to make your home country so awful and unlivable that your only real choice was to come to the U.S. — AND VOTE FOR DEMOCRAT POLITICIANS?

        • All good questions Mr Bubble, as I have said in the past if things are so bad elsewhere in the world, that all the world wants to come here why are we not exporting our revolution! Kind of like that better mouse trap. Makes me wonder what the snowflakes think is so much better out there?

    • Our “representatives” refuse to acknowledge any difference between legal and illegal immigrants. So maybe it’s time we get with the program. There’s no difference. They’re ALL demanding little sh*its.

      • JG,

        Perhaps the only way to convince our representatives and educators such as Cesar Juarez Ruiz (who intentionally mislead our youth) that pertinent adjectives matter is for “taxpayers” to erase the difference between themselves and “delinquent taxpayers.” Once “tax revenues” become “unpaid tax revenues,” and publicly “funded institutions” (such as the Downtown College Prep) are rendered into “unfunded institutions,” then I suspect these smug anti-Semantics will develop a newfound respect for truth and accuracy.

  6. The Donald is just an excuse to deman more “stuff” without earning it. Why is Trump a racist? Because he wants a secure border and proper vetting of muslim immigrants? The LEFT is so far out of whack that the silent majority of Trump supporters will soon come out of the closet, somewhat like they did for the elections. When was the last time you saw a Trump sticker on a vehicle driving down the road? If the LEFT keeps this nonsense up things will surely get ugly.

    • Muslim immigrants are already vetted appropriately. As for the border, both Democrats and Republicans have been in favor of spending on actually pertinent solutions (e.g. not a “wall”) and illegal crossings are at an all time low.

      Finally, the majority of voters (let alone citizens) voted against Donald Trump. His approval rating has only gone down since the election.

  7. > I think there will always be an element of luck, of course, and no one should feel bad for being lucky. What one shouldn’t do is fail to realize their luck and look down on those that try to share in it.

    MAX:

    Do you think there is any correlation between “luck” and “hard work” and “preparation”?

    Do you think it is FAIR when people who DIDN’T work hard and DIDN’t prepare try to share in my hard work and preparation?

    • SJOTB,

      Your hard work and preparation are all yours. Unless you had to obtain the US citizenship later in life, those two have nothing to do with your citizenship: both hard-working talented native born Americans and lazy criminal native born Americans share in its rewards equally. Even for those of us who obtained the citizenship after being born abroad, the level of effort and preparation required is extremely uneven (in a nutshell I had to fill 2 simple forms, wait 5 years, and prove nothing about my abilities, others can be the most deserving people and have no path to citizenship)

      • > others can be the most deserving people and have no path to citizenship.

        These “deserving people” who have no path to U.S. citizenship are the vast majority of the population of planet earth. Why is it “fair” to fret about the bad luck of the tiny sliver of planet earth’s population who seek and fail to achieve U.S. citizenship? Did God assign you the responsibility of obtaining U.S. citizenship for all of the “unlucky” people who “have no path to citizenship”?

      • So what’s your point Max, are you mad because you didn’t get here sooner, or because you’re here at all?
        I have made quite a few friends over the years that would gladly trade places with you, that would love to have gotten the chance to stay after they graduated college. Some were rich then and some are rich now, money and luck had nothing to do with their position in life, others have taken advantage of our soft borders and were lucky to be granted amnesty or assilem here. Some escaped with their lives and nothing more after seeing their families murdered by mobs controlled by fanatical dictators. That’s what luck and divine intervention looks like to me.

        • SJOTB,

          I don’t believe that the vast majority of the population of the Earth actually share our ideals and beliefs. Economic reasons are not why people should become citizens, instead they must show they are part of the fabric of this country. Many undocumented immigrants (especially DREAMers) clearly fit the bill.

          Empty Gun,

          I am very glad I came to this country, I obtained the citizenship, I pay my taxes and I am politically active and vocal. I’m sure many people would love to trade place with me, and many would be more than deserving of the privilege I was given. Thankfully citizenship is not a finite resource and all the people you mention could have become citizens, if they loved this country, were talented, and our immigration system were in any way rational.

  8. I often wonder – “if its so great having you here, why is the place you’re from so screwed up?” I mean if you are that wonderful – why not make the place you are from equally as great? Unless you are implying – “Yea, we screwed up that country pretty bad, so I’m going to sneak into a better place where I can bitch and moan about how bad these people act towards those like me that want to cheat the system.” And “I can talk all I want about rights and what’s fair to people unless its about people waiting to legally enter this country. then you won’t hear a peep out of me.”

  9. MAX says:

    ” undocumented immigrants cannot get the overwhelming majority of government benefits afforded to citizens and legal residents; documented immigrants have to prove they can sustain themselves before they are admitted.”

    I don’t believe this AT ALL.

    I think this is wildly overstated. The progressive deep state knows that immigrants — undocumented and otherwise — are future Democrat voters. It is the deep state of progressive political consultants, local government politicians (Cortese, Liccardo), government employee unions (SEIU), public education bureaucrats (CTA), and social workers who are making sure that the immigrants get “taken care of”.

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