Politicians who play the race card for political gain and bash immigrants cannot be allowed to violate the rule of law. Immigration law specialists like Reeves & Hanlon, a Professional Law Corporation, stand between such politicians and the precious rights of all within our borders.
Since the founding of America, tens of millions of immigrants from every continent have settled here. Indeed, with the exception of Native Americans, everyone in our nation is either an immigrant, or the descendent of voluntary or involuntary immigrants. Yet every wave of immigration has faced fear and hostility — from both ordinary citizens and government — especially during times of economic hardship, political turmoil or war.
In the 1800’s, Congress passed the Chinese Exclusion Act, one of our first immigration laws, to keep out all people of Chinese origin.
More recently, California’s voters approved the mean-spirited Proposition 187. Concocted by hate-mongering politicians to fan the flames of racist discrimination based on skin color, accent, and last names, this measure would have created a sub-underclass of the diseased and uneducated by denying vital medical and educational benefits to undocumented workers and their families.
Fortunately, the rule of law prevailed and a courageous federal judge, Mariana Pfaelzer, ruled most of Proposition 187 unconstitutional. She stopped the racist politicians in their tracks.
But the threat is not over. The ongoing challenge must be faced by all members of the legal profession who respect immigrants’ rights.
Immigrants from all over the world come to our country. Measures like Proposition 187 are the last gasp of a segment of white politicians who are trying to preserve a universal Anglo and European culture and return national demographics to the 1950’s. These politicians are frightened and angry because they see their world and culture changing. They see restrictive immigration laws as a way to vent their anger.
Everybody yearns for a better life for themselves and their children. But by playing the race card for political gain and fostering a “them and us” mentality, these politicians are trying to ensure that those who got here first will not have to share with those who got here later.
Governor Wilson is a prime example of such a political opportunist. His support for Proposition 187 was based on the politics of fear and racism. Although he claimed to be protecting our borders, he forgot that America’s borders are meaningless if those who cross them have no rights.
Yet, as long as there are immigration attorneys willing to resist racially motivated “mobs with ballots” and stand up for the Constitution, the wave of politically fanned xenophobia that is sweeping the nation from the right side of the political spectrum can be contained. That is why I pledge to work with a coalition of the Philippine, Chinese and Hispanic communities to keep Wilson from being elected to office after his term as governor ends. Additionally, I pledge to keep you informed about all such hateful, un-American, racist and anti-immigrant politicians. This is merely the first in a series of articles that will expose those politicians who are anti-immigrant.
Together we can elect people who care about the quality of life for everyone and value the rich diversity of experience that immigration brings to America. I see America as a melting pot where all the world’s races and cultures are welcome, rather than as a fondue bowl restricted to rich white Anglo-Saxon Protestants. At Reeves & Hanlon, we strive to elevate decency over demagoguery and put people ahead of cheap political agendas. With this series of articles, we join with others to actively support and promote the civil and human rights of all immigrants and to use the ballot box to stand against racist attacks.