Jun 10, 2014

'Not Since Slavery' Has U.S. Treated People Worse than Undocumented (La Jornada, Mexico)

La Jornada – Original Article (Spanish)
Translated By Florizul Acosta Perez
June 9, 2014

According to Princeton University Professor Douglas Massey, the millions of undocumented migrants living in the United States with no respect for their civil, social or political liberties, constitute the largest population living under such conditions since the formal end of slavery in the neighboring country, in 1863.

The comparison is a painful one, but an accurate one to characterize the abuse and mistreatment our brothers and sisters are subjected to every day in the neighboring country, and in general, foreign nationals who reside there without the corresponding immigration documents.

Indeed, migration is a phenomenon as old as our species and inherent to human societies, but in the 21st century, the phenomenon is driven by poverty, lack of employment, and an absence of social mobility or positive horizons in countries like ours, where one can throw in police brutality, which is not at all ameliorated by guarantees of individual or human rights, and is dedicated to criminalizing and persecuting people who are overwhelmingly innocents.

Thus, the unacceptable policy of persecution launched over a decade ago by the U.S. government, that self-styled global advocate of human rights and justice, confirms its role as the main violator of individual rights both in and out of its territory. At the same time, this demonstrates its stubborn ignorance of a phenomenon inherent to human societies, which is now accentuated by the very global economy that Washington promotes: one that generates great economic imbalances which encourage the mobility of capital and employment. The inevitable consequence is a flow of people from one country to another, in search of conditions of minimal decency denied in their own hometowns.
Posted By Worldmeets.US

At this stage, the Barack Obama Administration's attempt to blame the country's lawmakers for the plight of the undocumented, after the failure of Congress to pass immigration reform, is unseemly. Even if passed on the terms of the White House, it would be merely a palliative measure. It is significant in this respect that, under the same immigration laws that held sway under previous administrations, Obama’s government has imposed more deportations than any of its predecessors. During Obama's tenure, more families have been separated as a result of these practices than ever before. Another element to consider is that, within the context of current law, the U.S. government could grant permanent residency to about two million immigrants without requiring any action from Congress.

Finally, Obama’s supposed commitment opposing discrimination and the criminalization of migrants has been discredited by decisions like the one taken by his government May 31, in essence halting litigation against racist law SB1070 in Arizona.

It is clear that to correct the unwillingness of Washington to straighten out the situation for migrants living in the United States, the pressure must come largely from organizations of civil society both in and out of the United States.

In the case of Mexico, an absolute necessity is an end to the unacceptable abuses suffered at the hands of national police when Central American immigrants arrive in our country. Ultimately, when it comes to humane treatment, respect for individual rights, and state recognition of contemporary global reality, it is best to lead by example.

See Original English Translation 

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