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Vigil held after ICE agents apprehend father as he was taking kids to school in Highland Park and Lincoln Heights [updated]

ICE agents picked up father as he was headed to Academia Avance Charter to drop off his kids.

A candlelight vigil was held Thursday night in support of Romulo Avelica-Gonzalez, who was apprehended by ICE agents as he was taking his daughters to schools in Lincoln Heights and Highland Park. The family watched and recorded the incident on video.

Avelica-Gonzalez, an undocumented immigrant who is in the country illegally, had already dropped off one daughter on Tuesday morning and was headed to Highland Park to drop off another at Academia Avance Charter when he was picked up by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency. One person was heard sobbing through the video recorded by one of the daughters as ICE agents put Avelica into their vehicle and drove away.

An ICE spokeswoman told NBC 4 that Avelica-Gonzalez had been arrested because he has been convicted multiple times for previous criminal offenses, including a DUI. An order to remove him from the country was issued in 2014.

Family members told LAist that Avelica-Gonzalez, 48, a native of Nayarit, Mexico, has been in the U.S. for  about 20 years.  They said his criminal offenses had been minor and did not warrant deportation. They are working with an attorney to obtain a visa that would allow Avelica-Gonzalez to remain in the country.

A message posted on the school’s Facebook page notified staff and families that Avelica-Gonzalez had not been deported but was being detained. “With the help of elected officials, community advocacy groups, clergy, attorneys, and the support of our Avance family, we mobilized to assist in delaying the process,” the school said on Facebook.

Update:  The family of Avelica-Gonzalez had been quoted by several media outlets as saying  that they were one or two blocks away from the Highland Park school when  the ICE arrest took place.  However, ICE told the L.A. Times that the Avelica-Gonzalez was arrested in the 3200 block of Pasadena Avenue in Lincoln Heights.

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74 comments

  1. So he has been “arrested multiple times for previous criminal offenses, including a DUI.”

    There is nothing minor about MULTIPLE arrests. Glad that ICE is detaining and deporting him!

  2. the DUI was a decade ago. We should deport the gangsters but this was a family man.

    • You missed the MULTIPLE arrests part! If the DUI was a one time thing and he didn’t injury anybody, I could chalk it up to a bad decision. But, MULTIPLE arrests clearly shows he can’t follow the laws! Time to deport him and keep him out!!

    • This “family man” and his wife had four children while living here in the U.S., making those children citizens by birthright. Just by living in California the children would have been entitled to free K-12 schooling; as birthright citizens they are also eligible for benefits such as welfare provides. I have no idea whether the family took advantage of these options, but K-12 education alone, for four children, costs legal citizens a lot of money in taxes.

      According to the 2017 California Budget Estimate we will be spending an average of $15,216/child in K-12. We have over 1 million children from illegal alien families here in California. That is over $15B for the children of illegal aliens in California alone. Apparently this does NOT include the US Federal Education funds.

      http://www.ebudget.ca.gov/2016-17/pdf/BudgetSummary/Kthru12Education.pdf

      • To be fair, undocumented immigrants do contribute to our economy. It isn’t accurate to list the costs unless we also calculate the benefits to the economy. (That said, I’d imagine that an undocumented immigrant with four kids is probably taking more than he’s contributing.)

        • The figures are approximately $20 billion in cost to Cali and $120 billion in a variety of fees and taxes that they don’t directly benefit from because the undocumented are not eligible for anything more than emergency assistance. Btw MINFRAN, my sisters and brothers became citizens in the exact same manner, are all gainfully employed (I’ve never so much as even collected unemployment benefits), and I am confident that we are all contributing much more to this country and economy than bigoted and frightened shut-ins like You. Moreover, my parents were able to purchase several properties in N.E.L.A., never even collected a parking ticket, and (for better or worse) were too proud to every apply for public assistance of any kind. You know, the typical profile of immigrants in this country, documented and otherwise. Please consider the sustained success of our American families a direct kick to your soft and putrid gut.

          • Get a Grip and address your comments to the appropriate people. Your last sentence is quite unbelievable, nasty and bitter. Why it is addressed at me I don’t know.

        • James, Here are some examples of costs of illegal immigration and the amount that illegal immigrants contribute.

          The 2014 Federation for American Immigration Reform’s (FAIR) report, The Fiscal Burden of Illegal Immigration on California Taxpayers, states that 3 million illegal aliens and their 1.1 million U.S.–born children cost the average California household — headed by a U.S. citizen — $2,370 annually.

          In addition to the Education figures noted above,

          Justice and law enforcement costs — policing, court and incarceration — associated with illegal aliens cost more than $4.4 billion.

          Medical services cost taxpayers approximately $4 billion, including $388 million associated with 68,000 births to illegal alien mothers.

          Public assistance — low-cost meal programs, free immunizations, etc. — are available to residents regardless of legal status. The $792 million price tag for these services is borne by California taxpayers.

          The report finds that taxes collected from illegal aliens amounts to about $3.5 billion annually.

          http://www.fairus.org/publications/the-fiscal-burden-of-illegal-immigration-on-california-taxpayers

          • The figures are approximately $20 billion in costs to Cali and mostly for educating kids in public schools and $120 billion in revenue from a variety of fees and taxes that the undocumented don’t directly benefit from because they are NOT eligible for anything more than emergency assistance. Immigrants are a cash cow for Cali. Why do you think there’s a consensus for defending these people and providing them with a path to citizenship? It’s certainly not due to sympathy or understanding from bigots like yourself.

  3. So in 20 years, he never attempted to legalize his situation? His kids are American, I’m guessing his wife is legal, so?

  4. An order to remove him from the country was issued in 2014. So under Obama, he was allowed to stay. Under Trump, ICE is allowed do to their job. GOOD!

  5. Going after people like this seems like an easy way for ICE to just boost their numbers at the expense of people who are here trying to contribute and raise families. How the hell does diverting resources to split up families like this make ANYONE safer?!

  6. Why a “vigil”? He wasn’t killed. He’s just going home. Do they have a vigil for every person that moves to Mexico?

    • Deportation isn’t merely “moving to Mexico” or “going home.” In this case, it would be taking a father away from his family. Hence the vigil.

  7. Lol at having a candlelight vigil for a criminal.

  8. I’m glad. I had my car destroyed by an illegal alien who was high when he tried to run me off the road. He of course fled on foot. By the time I tried to recoup my losses he was already in prison. Multiple offender, illegal and broke. What’s a working class Latino American like me supposed to do? Nothing. No one gives a damn. I bought my car outright took care of it for 10 years. Just like that boom gone. DUI ? That’s a serious crime buddy. Pack a sweater. Those busses are cold.

  9. No heart whatsoever. I understand going after illegal immigrants that are gang members or felons that are undocumented, but a father taking his children to school? Really, they had no one better to deport. They pick on the poor and easy ones to target. How long did they stake him out? They need to stop this at once leave innocent families alone!!! And for anyone that says otherwise we all shit the same aint nothing different whether you are american or illegal.

    • “… we all shit the same …”
      I have ulcerative colitis, so I don’t think that’s true.

    • Please make an attempt to voice your opinions without resorting to disgusting expressions.

      • One doesn’t to be profane to be disgusting, e.g., your bigoted rants directed at our city’s most vulnerable. Utterly vulgar, ignorant, and disgusting.

  10. Unfortunate. I feel bad for his daughters, but a DUI is serious whether you are illegal or not. What if he would’ve killed someone?

  11. Sad story but we live in a country that is (or at least should be) governed by rule of law not rule of man (or emotions). This man violated law by illegally entering and working in the country along with the other infractions including the DUI. He made poor choices and now had to suffer the consequences. I live abroad and have to jump through significant hoops to stay here, not to mention avoid violating my host country’s laws. My friends here have to apply for visas in order to visit the US not to mention immigrate and work. Why should this man be allowed to cut the line and violate US law without suffering the consequences? If you don’t like the law, lobby to change it, but selectively enforcing the law is a dangerous precedent.

  12. If you are an American and travel to another country and commit multiple crimes, would you expect to be allowed to stay? Just wondering.

  13. Amazing how many bigots live on the eastside.

    • I don’t think anyone has made comments here that are bigoted. The video is sad, and I feel sorry for the girl, but her father knew this day was coming. Shame on him for putting his family through that.

      • He put his family through that? The guy works at a restaurant,they could of arrested him at work or on his way there.why do it infront of his family?

        • Yes, that would have been a lot better than arresting him in front of his daughter. Maybe the restaurant was more logistically difficult.

        • Apparently to spare the restaurant and its customers any discomfort. After all, they’re “legal”.

    • So true. Shameful.

    • “Bigot”: a person who is intolerant toward those holding different opinions.” It would seem that you are the bigot for simply labelling anyone a “bigot” for agreeing with the deportation. It’s so easy to play the race or bigot card when people don’t agree with you, isn’t it?

      • BIGOT: a person who is obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices; especially : one who regards or treats the members of a group (as a racial or ethnic group) with hatred and intolerance.

        If the shoe fits . . .

  14. Trump is so weak on illegal immigration! He’s giving a pass to almost everyone who came here after 1492. Sad!

  15. One day they will come after you for your believes and your actions. Fascism and dictatorship rules by division and misinformation and all of YOU supporters are taking the bait.

  16. Alt-right idiots

    Can’t believe the East side has so many Stephen Miller alt-right morons. Go spread your daily breitbart hate somewhere else.

    • There you go again: Labelling everyone who believes in a border and enforcing the rule of law.

    • I am against open borders, voted for Hillary and grew up n Berkeley so keep your labels to yourself!

      • IF the shoe fits, YOU’ve earned the label. Moreover, the discriminator doesn’t decide whether their actions are bigoted. That’s the role of the person being discriminated against. Otherwise, who other than the most blatant racist is going to concede their bigotry. Btw, I’ve never given liberals credit for not harboring ignorant, bigoted, or racist attitudes towards others. Liberals are neither saints or saviors only the occasional ally and at their convenience so your Berkeley “badge” means next to nothing to us, i.e., Wtf has Berkeley(or Hilary) ever actually contributed to our progress?!?

  17. While this is a sad story and unbelievable, the hyperbolic comments from right and left kind of blow the mundane details of this into the stratosphere.
    Yes the immigration policy is fucked and has been under ALL administrations, Obama deported more illegals than any president before him. President Cheeto is going to probably do more but in this case this guy should have taken care of his past convictions under Obama while it was still understanding of peoples situation.
    The real problem is the US does not have simple labor visas , they have these silly visas for exceptional talents or unique abilities which is just code for “RICH”. We would go a long way in ending all this crap if they just made it easier for workers to be like “hey I got a job in Ventura picking strawberries, I just want to be on the up and up and support my family”….boom, done stamp ID keep track , next.
    Now what cultural warriors on the left and right like to do is play “you’re the devil” game and neither is true. A lot of La Raza does not talk about Mexicos immigration policy towards Central American asylum seekers or people who want to work in Mexico so Mexico just becomes a treacherous path to the US where now since they entered Mexico illegally kinda have to go through with flat out illegal immigration.
    The alt right are just scared jack asses, but as much as I hate to admit it they are right that we are a nation of laws and making exceptions is very dangerous.
    My feeling is ICE just saw a number with a name and saw a felony conviction ,which the DUI most likely was, which can be serious. That is not a victimless crime.

    • The problem I see with providing labor visas, in your example picking strawberries, is when families join the laborer. Picking strawberries will not support a family, therefore the benefits California and Los Angeles provide to illegal immigrants will be accessed. Their children will be in our schools contributing to vast overcrowding and taxpayer support, their cars will be on our roads contributing to structural damage and again, overcrowded freeways and roads. Emergency departments will be overextended and if a woman has a child while here she will be afforded maternity care and treatment for her infant.

      Also, if CNN’s report is accurate, Mr. Avelica-Gonzalez originally came to the U.S. on a short-term visa 20-25 years ago and simply stayed. He was given an order of deportation in 2014, but for whatever reason it was not enforced. Visa enforcement has not been carried out efficiently in the past and would definitely need updating if your idea were carried out.

  18. People get your facts correct. Reported Avelica-Gonzalez was convicted of misdemeanor DUI and misdemeanor driving without a license in 2008. Another misdemeanor conviction, in 1998, was for receipt of stolen property when he bought a non-DMV-issued vehicle registration tag.

    • The facts are correct, unless you use a different dictionary for the word multiple!

      1. Entered the country illegally!
      2. DUI
      3. Driving without a license.
      4. Receiving stolen property!

      Very clear that he can’t follow the laws! Deport him and keep him out!

      • Alt-right idiots

        None of these are violent, caused harm to people or felonies with narcotics or weapons as what the orange cheeto man said he would target. Go back to Springfield aka the midwest or the south where you are more appreciated.

        • Plenty of Latinos are against illegal immigration, and plenty of progressives, of all ethnicities, also oppose illegal immigration. I think Cesar Chavez also made statements against illegal immigration. Your ad hominem, borderline-racist attacks don’t help your argument.

        • Exactly how many chances should this man get? What if his next arrest is robbery and he beats the person badly? What if his next arrest is a rape? And don’t give me this BS that he is a family man. Men with families have commented terrible crimes!

    • Personally, I can’t stand Orange Julius Caesar… but DUI is hardly a victimless crime. Thousands of pedestrians, cyclists and motorists are killed every year by drunk drivers in the US. Totally blows for his family, and it breaks my heart watching his daughters on that news clip… but dude really should’ve been more careful given his immigration status.

  19. It is a miracle that no ne was killed or injured by this man’s multiple offenses. DUI, receiving stolen property, IDENTITY Theft are crimes that do cause harm to others. My question to Alt-right idiots, 900665er et al. why the name calling and suggestions that “we go back to Springfield aka the Midwest or south where we would be more appreciated “. How would you fix this problem?
    These deportation orders were in effect since 2008 how would address that? Would you say no to deportations of all illegals including European, Asians, South Americans? Or is it just illegal Mexicans that would stay? Would appreciate a civil answer without the faux histrionics.

    • Alt-right idiots

      I’d be happy to. First ‘Springfield was a direct relation to the poster’s name as Homer Simpson (the cartoon character who is from the town of Springfield which is rumored to be either the midwest or south) So it was just a play on words. Sorry if you missed that. As to DUI charge. It’s reported as a misdemeanor meaning no property, accident or injury to any person. Sure it’s a crime and not a good thing to drink then drive. We should all realize that. Even our former President George W. Bush was arrested and charged for a DUI. Driving without a license is either charged as a misdemeanor or infraction. In fact First-time offenders are frequently charged with infractions, which are not considered criminal violations. As to receiving stolen property it was a purchase bought a non-DMV-issued vehicle registration tag. Most likely he got scammed. As reported 2013 this person filled paperwork and spent money to correct or begin his immigration status. He was scammed and the organization he paid money to ran off with his money and never filed the paperwork. I don’t know this person, all I have is my own research and looking into the actual facts that are reported. I am the least person effected by these immigration informant simply because I’m a 45 year old white male. In my onion their are many other violent individuals that are more worthy to be looked at than a father of American children who is working and supporting a family. At some point people need to realize that “First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—Because I was not a Socialist. Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—Because I was not a Trade Unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
      Because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.” If you even google research you will see now that undocumented people who served in the US armed forces, deployed over seas in combat are now being deported. That’s people fighting for your freedom as well as mine. In fact active service members in the military who are undocumented can have their spouse or child deported now under the Trump administration. I don’t offer that I have answers. I just know when I see injustice, someone should stand up and say thats not who we should be. Have a good night.

      • Well, Springfield is actually Oregon, but it was a bit of a joke on the show for years that they wouldn’t reveal where the town was. http://www.smithsonianmag.com/arts-culture/matt-groening-reveals-the-location-of-the-real-springfield-60583379/

        I don’t like Trump and disagree with many of his policies. Furthermore, it certainly is sad to see a man taken from his family at a school. However, the simple fact is that he violated immigration law when overstaying his visa. (We’ll leave the DUI and other misdemeanors aside for now.) True there are probably worse people here illegally and they too should be jailed or deported. However, I would say that comparing this situation to Nazi Germany and the Holocaust is inaccurate. He broke the law and now suffers the consequences. All immigrant whether they be from Switzerland or Mexico should abide by our laws. We can’t selectively enforce laws based on what feels good or fits our personal racial or political prisms.

        Also for those calling names, I’m confused. Why is being in favor of enforcing immigration law (that Obama used for deporting 2.75 million people between 2009-2016) exclusive to the alt-right? I’d be curious as to why this man, or anyone else should be allowed to simply violate the terms of their visa without consequence while millions of other foreigners go through lengthy and expensive processes to immigrate legally.

  20. THANK YOU @Alt-right idiots!

    So many (“I don’t think anyone has made comments here that are bigoted” — now that’s rich) comments are disappointing and frankly, cold.

    Your comments are consistently reasonable, what I would expect from more NELA neighbors. So thanks for speaking fact and heart.

  21. I’m disgusted with the presence of so many bigoted neighbors but if I witness a single instance of any immigrant — documented or otherwise — being treated with anything but the utmost courtesy and respect this citizen personally intervene to rectify that situation, i.e., Mind Your F’n Manners in Cali. Btw, your sacred “borders” were imposed at GUNPOINT and NOT legally. Good luck with pulling off the role-reversal that suddenly transforms the likes of YOU actual aliens into natives and the actual natives into “aliens.” We know our history and it isN’T your history but you will learn to respect it just the same.

  22. The irony is that the majority of you intolerant bigots are probably the descendants of previous immigrant crime-waves the likes of which are unfathomable in a modern-day U.S., e.g.,

    55% of those arrested NYC in the 1850′s were Irish-born.
    85% of foreign-born admissions to Bellevue Hospital (NYC’s public hospital) in the 1850s were Irish.
    63% of foreign-born admissions to the NYC Alms House (Poor House) 1849-1858 were Irish.
    56% of all NYC Prison commitments in 1858 were Irish-born.
    74% of foreign-born NYC Prison commitments in 1858 were Irish-born.

    And we’re not even covering the Italian and Jewish crime waves of the subsequent century. Not to mention the severe ignorance regarding the true threat to domestic security, e.g., presumably law-abiding but suddenly unhinged mass-murderers like Dylan Keybold Eric Haris, Adam Lanza, Dylan Roof, and Micah Johnson committing mayhem on the rest of society in public schools, in theaters, in churches, and on public streets. Btw, not a single illegal immigrant has chosen to become an active shooter eager to exercise their 2nd Amendment rights. In fact, L.A. has never been safer and cleaner now that it’s 50% “Mexican” than when it was only 20% “Mexican”. Piss and moan all you want but you’ll never convince us that your “patriotic concern” is anything more than xenophobic bigotry that doesN’T intimidate hardened and native Angelenos and Americans like Me. In fact, it’s only sensitized me to its presence in OUR community.

    • Again, were talking about ILLEGAL aliens. Stop mixing the two as you won’t be taken seriously. the guy didn’t want to be a citizen during his 25’years here?

      • Oh of course, as IF immigrants from across the Atlantic had much of a choice, i.e., it’s not as if millions were going to swim across the ocean to illegally arrive at our shores. Also, there was explicit legislation facilitating entry of european immigrants while simultaneously restricting or prohibiting entry of non-white immigrants. Moreover, when previous non-white immigrants arrived at Ellis Island, for instance, they were subjected to a rudimentary background check, deloused, given a green card, and as long as they didn’t commit any crimes for five years, granted an automatic path to citizenship. Would you support the same process for today’s “illegals”? Btw, the aliens are those who violated existing tribal boundaries and sovereign borders with impunity to unilaterally impose their own “sovereign borders” at GUNPOINT but we’re supposed to disregard that Documented History to facilitate anglo entitlement and supremacy? BullShit. If there is one nation that can not claim the moral high-ground when it comes to the “sanctity” of their borders it’s the U.S.

  23. One reason that so many immigrants want to come to the U.S. is because we’re a country of laws. We don’t suffer from the same levels of corruption as Mexico – and many other countries in the global south – because we strive to apply the law evenly to all Americans, unlike other countries where criminals can buy off corrupt politicians. It’s ironic that people who come here illegally, in part because of our system of laws, would resent the government when it enforces its own laws.

    • What you conveniently disregard is that “illegal” is a status created by our laws. Our laws place people in that status. When applied to adults, it’s justified by the rhetoric of criminalization but that rhetoric doesn’t justify discrimination and persecution of our children as well.

  24. This sucks.

  25. Keep your nose clean and you’ll be just fine.

    • That was the simple criteria for european aliens who previously crossed an entire ocean to arrive at our shores illegally. What’s the difference today? Other than the majority of today’s “illegals” having established and arrived here first and foremost?

      • ICE isn’t going after illegal immigrants. They are going after illegal immigrants who have not followed the rules.
        Take out the fact that this bad Hombre (haha) had been arrested several times and he would still be eating tacos from Guisado’s.

        • By definition, EVERY “illegal” immigrant is guilty of not following the rules just not to the violent extent of european aliens during the first 200 years of this country’s history. Your law and order rhetoric isn’t fooling anybody and you’re just validating the prejudice among many that whites are inherently unfair and racist. A perception that I’ve routinely disputed but which has become an increasingly untenable position to defend since the election of Trumputin and the various xenophobic posts on this thread. You white-boys are on your own, from now on. I’m not standing up for anyone any more. After all, i can now confidently calculate that at least 50% of the time, the other side will be right. Time to toughen-up, marshmallows. I anticipate a spell of roasting to begin and unless it threatens the safety of a personal relative or friend, you’re on your own.

  26. Anti-immigrant racism has become a politically acceptable substitute for racism that is overtly based on skin color. Most white Americans today would hotly deny being “racist” – they would say that “skin color doesn’t matter.” But they have no trouble being “anti-immigrant” – because, they say, “immigrants broke the law!” It’s a new rationale for legal discrimination against people of color. What’s important to remember is that “illegal” is a status created by our laws. Our laws place people in that status. For adults, it’s justified by the rhetoric of criminalization but it’s harder to rely on that rhetoric to justify discrimination and persecution. Also, the private prison system – which has increasingly come to house immigrant detainees – has fought hard to keep the criminalization in place. But struggling localities and local officials have also lobbied for detention centers. It’s a growth industry, and it provides jobs. Immigrant detainees are considered to be desirable detainees (for people who are invested in the prison industry) because they tend to be young and in good health, and not violent – they’re cheaper to care for than the general prison population. That’s why the private prison companies make such a profit off of them. It’s time for citizens and policy makers to face up to how our history, our economy, our laws and our social structures created being “illegal” as a way of legitimatizing inequality. We need to decide once and for all that we do not want to sustain a society based on differences in status – that all people should be treated equally and only then can we have real immigration reform and actual justice that lives up to our own self-righteous rhetoric of law and order.

    • I feel sorry for you dude because it sounds like you really believe what you are saying. It is simply not true but of course any attempt to show you otherwise would fall on deaf ears. I just hope you are the exception in your community.

      • You weren’t able to refute a single one of my points. Unfortunately, that places you among the intentionally-ignorant xenophobes who cite “law and order” to justify what is nothing less than persecution and discrimination of “others”. Btw, my parents were “illegal” or as my father put it, “reclaiming stolen and occupied territory,” I was skeptical until I looked up the history that they don’t teach in school and guess what? He was 100% correct and accurate. The facts are hidden in plain sight and documented on both sides of the border if not the entire world. So are the facts regarding this country’s historical immigration laws favoring european whites and discrimination against non-whites. If you’re not interested in learning the truth then you only confirm my increasing awareness of the bigoted xenophobes among us.

        • Interesting. Stolen by whom? I assume this is a reference to the Mexican American war and the treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo in 1848? My concern with that line of rationale has always been that the land was only Mexico since 1821. That land has been the USA for 6 times longer than it was ever Mexico. Mexico took it by force from the Spaniards, who took it by force from the natives. Does Spain have rights to its former colony because it was ceded as part of a war? Should it revert to being ruled by the indigenous groups that lived there pre 15th century? How would you identify those groups? What percent of DNA does one need to have to qualify as a person who deserves a particular plot of land? These are honest questions that I think are very difficult to answer but simply stating that the land was stolen doesn’t give individuals the right to violate immigration law when it suits their purposes. The US took in hundreds of thousands of legal immigrants last year. Mostly from the Asia/Pacific region and the Latin American/Caribbean region. While in the past, US immigration policy certainly favored Europeans, I don’t understand what’s currently unfair about US immigration law. Unless you are arguing against nationalism in general or don’t believe that anyone should have borders, why is the US wrong to pass and enforce immigration laws like every other country on the planet? Why should people be able to illegally enter or overstay their visas for decades instead of going through the legal immigration process that exists?

          I love Mexico and much of Latin America for many reasons (and I’ve lived south of the border for years), however rule of law is not one of this region’s strong points. Laws here are selectively enforced based on how much money you have, what your last name is, which union or politician you’re connected to, etc. Certainly this is also a problem in the US, but there is far more rule of law in the US than anywhere in Latin America where I’ve lived or visited. I would agree that the US needs to provide an easier, cheaper, and more available option for people to come here, especially those who are willing to do labor that most Americans wont do. However, simply allowing people to violate immigration law is not the answer. The US has every right to determine who enters the country, for what purpose they are entering the country, and how long they plan on staying. Violation of US laws (even immigration laws) should result in consequences regardless of where the violator is from. The law should be blind.

          • If there is one country that can not assume the moral high-ground when it comes to the sanctity of its “sovereign borders” it’s the U.S. but that continues to be the only rationale that xenophobes continue to assert to target, persecute, and discriminate specific groups of non-white people. Btw, the Mexican is the product of the original Amerind inhabitants and the first european conquerors. Our DNA goes back millennia on this continent. Accordingly, the assertion of “Mexicans” being “alien” to this land is absurd. There is a rewriting of history going on that is attempting to establish a narrative that results in a cynical role-reversal between the actual “aliens” and “natives” of in this land, i.e., civilizationS rose and fell before any european set foot on this continent and the blood of those native peoples runs in the veins of virtually every “Mexican”. It’s a scientific and documented fact and until that fact is applied the tone of the discussion will continue to be antagonistic and adversarial. Just the way certain people want it.

        • Procipo, If you would like to have any sort of reasonable dialogue, you should consider dropping the name calling. You instantly loose credibility for your argument and yourself when you name-call people you have never met. I nor anyone else resistant to your trolling behavior should give you the respect of addressing your claims. It’s just a waist of time to do so with one who displays such a myopic view of a subject with such a lack of imagination. Hope you can take this message to heart and realize the world around you really isn’t as bad as you imagine nor how you’d have others believe. Peace.

      • Balding Eagle

        Exactly right. Procopio will not only be deaf to any words that do not agree with his position, he has resorted to threats in posts here on this board.

        In addition, he ended a tirade to me with the following:

        “Please consider the sustained success of our American families a direct kick to your soft and putrid gut.”

        What reasonable person would say those types of things?

        • The target of your disdain and contempt, that’s who and the stench emanating from your xenophobic posts strongly indicates that there is something rotten about You. We’re the result of everything you describe as wrong and “illegal” and I’m certain that we are much better examples of good American citizens than the likes of You.

          • Procopio is worried about getting deported.

          • Weird, I couldn’t respond to your comment above, Procopio. I don’t really see the problem with being adversarial. If we’re not challenged we don’t grow. You didn’t really answer my questions though. Am I correct in assuming that you believe those with a certain percentage of Amerindian DNA don’t need to be restrained by current national borders? Or that because the US can’t take the moral high ground in the drawing of its borders, the US government doesn’t have the right to enforce its laws within said borders? I’m sure both of us are being a bit self-serving in our interpretations of history here but I’d be curious as to what your solution would be. No borders? Free flow people across borders?

            To put my cards on the table I simply believe this. The US has the right to create and enforce its own immigration policy as a sovereign nation with universally recognized borders. While said immigration policy does not match the reality of what the US economy needs in its labor force (thereby creating an incentive for illegal immigration), rule of law should be the cornerstone of this nation. Laws can be changed, but should not selectively be enforced. Again, as someone who lives in Latin America, the USA really does not want to copy the practices of governments here.

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