Children at the border…

are refugees.

WASHINGTON – From the head of the U.S. agency in charge of the welfare of more than 50,000 Central American children who have been apprehended at the Mexican border, to the Honduran cardinal who heads the international Catholic relief agency, Caritas, the message was clear, those minors are as much refugees as the people fleeing upheaval in Syria or South Sudan.

“How are these children different from refugees from Sudan” or other wartorn countries, asked Eskinder Negash, director of the Office of Refugee Resettlement, known as ORR, in the Department of Health and Human Services. “Regardless of whether they have family here, they are refugees.”

By virtue of his position, Negash personally is legally responsible for the welfare of approximately 50,000 minors in ORR custody as arrangements are sought for them to be placed with relatives or in foster care while deportation is pursued.

Speakers at the 2014 National Migration Conference and in interviews with Catholic News Service said broad discussions about migration issues worldwide inevitably led to the recent surge of children from Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador across the U.S. border.

From an average of 6,000 or 7,000 such minors a year as recently as a few years ago, by mid-June, Homeland Security had apprehended more than 52,000 such children in this fiscal year. That has created a crisis for the Border Patrol, which first encounters them, and for ORR, which must find places to safely care for them.

Negash drew gasps from the audience when he explained that his responsibility for ORR’s charges includes personally approving health care decisions, such as how to treat an 11-year-old girl who’s pregnant, or another pregnant teen, who was recently diagnosed with terminal cancer.

The unaccompanied minors and other refugees for whom his office is responsible come with myriad horrible stories, he said.

“There is rape, human trafficking, a lot of abuse and a lot of them are sick,” he said. “I’m not telling you this to depress you more, but so you’ll talk about it more.”

This is a prolife issue, not an occasion for theorizing that Obama/Soros/A Vast Liberal Conspiracy are conscripting thousands of Central American children to make conservatives look like ice cold, hard-hearted skinflints and jingos eager to turn away desperate children in profound crisis.  As many conservatives are abundantly demonstrating, they do not need a government handout to do what they are perfectly capable of doing all on their own.  But as George W. Bush demonstrates, not all conservatives behave this way toward obvious human need.

There is no conspiracy.  There are just children (also known as “Jesus Christ”) in desperate need.  The only thing Catholics need concern themselves with is that fact, not “who wins” and “who loses” in some Beltway power struggle.

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  • Dave G.

    “There are just children (also known as “Jesus Christ”) in desperate need. The only thing Catholics need concern themselves with is that fact, not “who wins” and “who loses” in some Beltway power struggle.”

    How true.

  • neoconned

    I don’t know, maybe this will help those struggling with this issue. I decided a while ago to just adopt the mindset “You need, I give”. I stopped worrying about where it goes, what someone is doing with it, what party, whose behind it…all that stuff. When the call goes out, I give what I can. If the person who asks doesn’t really need it, they will have to answer for it. My role is to trust the Lord and follow his commandments to the best of my ability. I’m not the gatekeeper, that job is taken.

    • Francisco J Castellanos

      Well said my brother. God bless you!

    • Eve Fisher

      Amen. Jesus doesn’t ask if I was taken for a sucker, or if I gave to the wrong person, but if I fed the poor, housed the homeless, clothed the naked, and visited the sick and those in prison – with no judgment calls.

    • The Deuce

      But to do that effectively, you have to know what a person’s ACTUAL needs are, so that you are not inadvertently making the need worse for them and others.

      • neoconned

        And if a man will contend with thee in judgment, and take away thy coat, let go thy cloak also unto him. 41And whosoever will force thee one mile, go with him other two,42Give to him that asketh of thee and from him that would borrow of thee turn not away. Matthew 5: 40-42

  • bob cratchit

    I work at a gov’t run facility that is being considered as a place to house several hundred of these children for a few months. This will be in facilities that will provide beds, medical care, food, etc. While at a staff meeting yesterday, someone asked if these kids will be appropriatley vaccinated and isolated for comminicable diseases and the senior leader affirmed it so. Stating that besides, most of us are probably already inocculated for anything these children lack. Good point. I would consider it an honour to serve these kids.

    • chezami

      God love you!

  • Andy

    I have all but given up on the “Christianity” of America. So often the very people who claim to be “Christians” forget among many the following. I think of
    Paul in 2 Corinthians 3:3 – “You show that you are a letter from Christ … written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts” or Proverbs “Whoever oppresses a poor man insults
    his Maker, but he who is generous to the needy honors him.” Or Leviticus 19:33-34 –“When a stranger sojourns with you in your land, you shall not do him wrong. You shall treat the stranger (Alien) who sojourns with you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself, for you were strangers (Aliens) in the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God.”

    I see instead – we need to secure our borders,these folks are trying to come here to live off of our largess. I see comments that speak to those who are coming whether children are adults are not worthy because of lack of education, lack of social standing or the ability to immediately contribute to our economic system. I see cries of protest that we cannot afford to help these folks – kids and adults. I read comments that point out that it is not our responsibility to meet their needs.
    And these comments are seen on Catholic sites.

    Jesus came for us without reservation. God offers us His grace even when we are undeserving. Jesus died for us, even as we turned our back on Him. How dare we then question what we should do? From Matthew 25 ‘Come, O blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a
    stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick
    and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see thee hungry and feed thee, or thirsty and give thee drink? And when did we see thee a stranger and welcome thee, or naked and clothe thee? And when did we see thee sick or in prison and visit thee?’ And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me.’ Then he will say to those
    at his left hand, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared
    for the devil and his angels; for I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was
    thirsty and you gave me no drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.’ Then they also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see thee hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to thee?’ Then he will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it not to one of the least of these, you
    did it not to me.’ And they will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”
    Forgive the lengthy comment – I am truly troubled by our country and those, including me who live here. We give lip-service to Christian principles and then devolve into a “me first attitude”. I am troubled by our leaders – they
    care more about making political statements, then attempting to solve problems
    – this refugee issue the most current. I wrestle on a personal level on how to respond – my wife and I give about 25% of income to groups who try to do good – we give our time to local organizations (Food Bank and Clothing bank for me, Crisis Pregnancy for my wife). Yet is that enough? Luke springs to mind ‘to whom much is given, much will be required’ (Luke 12:48). If indeed America has been blessed, as many believe then have we given enough? Have I given enough? Has America given enough? I fear that the answer is no.

    • HornOrSilk

      What I find interesting is that when Obama wants to help deal with the causes which bring the children here, that is, when he sees the beliefs people have about what happens to children who come to the US and tries to counter it with education in the countries they are coming from, the same people yell at Obama for wasting our money!

      http://chicksontheright.com/posts/item/26082-you-gotta-be-kidding-me-this-is-obama-s-answer-to-the-illegal-immigration-crisis-this is an example of this. Seriously, they don’t want the children here, but they don’t want to fix the causes which bring them here. Evil.

      • Mike Blackadder

        OK, you chose a really bad example to illustrate your point. This article is mostly just mocking the Obama administration for having publicly showcased illegals as ‘Dreamers’, for having perpetuated the message that there is a path to citizenship for these children throughout his presidency and that now he’s desperately trying to pull a 180 on that messaging.

        The article doesn’t even say that they disagree only that Obama is incredibly incompetent. There is nowhere in this article where it is suggested that they ‘don’t want to fix the causes’. I don’t think that you should call people evil without at least a basic attempt to read and comprehend what people are saying. So HornOrSilk do you now agree with all of these conservatives that one of the causes of this humanitarian disaster is messaging that’s been coming from the White House?

      • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

        What I find interesting is that the Obama Administration has outright refused religious communities that have offered sanctuary to these children.

        • Mike Blackadder

          Did he really? I heard that he was collaborating with the Catholic church to help with this crisis. Which religious communities are being refused?

          • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

            Several Protestant megachurches have offered their buildings for sanctuary. So have a few individual Catholic Parishes. They are working with Catholic Charities however, as long as no actual contact with the refugees is allowed.

            There’s something fishy in all of this, and I’m not sure what it is.

  • ck

    I don’t know about the the Beltway politics in all this, but there is very much a Common Good argument against the perverse policy that has been going on right now with the border crisis.

    John Zmirak has very good arguments along these lines:

    “In a previous piece,I parsed what the Catechism has to say, line by line. Let me sum it up here: People have a genuine right to switch countries when they are
    unsafe or cannot find “means of livelihood.” The Catechism says nothing
    about mere economic betterment; I would live better in Switzerland, but
    that does not mean that the Swiss owe me citizenship. Only the prospect
    of grave physical danger or the inability to live and raise children
    grants a right of immigration. Even then, this right is not absolute,
    but is subject to the ‘common good’ of the receiving countries. Part of
    that common good which immigrants must respect, as a condition of
    exercising the right to enter a country, is to “respect with
    gratitude the material and spiritual heritage of the country that
    receives them, to obey its laws and to assist in carrying civic
    burdens.”

    “How many illegal immigrants to the U.S. faced death or starvation in
    their home countries? (Those who did deserve “refugee” status.) How many
    immigrants — especially uneducated people, entering a country with
    shrinking opportunities for its own less-skilled citizens — ought to be
    admitted to America, in accord with the “common good?” This is a subject
    for debate about what is prudent, with a special attention to the
    effect of immigration on the poorest Americans.”

    This is a reasonable argument made by all nations, including countries like Spain, Mexico, and other Latin American nations. Why is America precluded from making such determinations permitted by the Catechism?

    Read more: http://www.ncregister.com/daily-news/immigration-patriotism-and-the-common-good#ixzz37jEezlVE

    • HornOrSilk

      Unsafe and lack of means of livelihood means seeking economic betterment. And, like usual, John ignores the Church beyond the catechism, when it suits him. Suggestion: ignore him. He doesn’t speak for the Church, and indeed, distorts the Church’s teaching to fit his political ideology.

      • Mike Blackadder

        So we should ‘ignore’ John because you say he ignores the catechism when it suits him, even though you are disregarding this argument and telling everyone to do the same which is based on the catechism?

        • HornOrSilk

          No, the Church’s teaching is what interprets the catechism, and John has a history of disregarding it (and saints which promoted Social Justice). He is actually abusing the catechism the same way sola scriptura protestants do the bible. He also reduces the other in the process, which is how he justifies his abuse of the other.

          • Mike Blackadder

            That’s a lot of you-say-so to disregard an argument that seems to be a reasonable interpretation of the catechism.
            It’s simpler maybe just to form an actual counterargument.

    • Mike Blackadder

      I agree with John’s main point. The fact that there are advantages of emigrating to the US is not a reason that people have a RIGHT to be American citizens. The Catechism provides advice on principles of governance, but always within the context of abiding by the law and that policy-makers take into account real world circumstances. If you’re interpretation is the Catechism tells us what the law should be then you’re seriously misguided.

      Ideally we could have open borders to permit deserving people the ability to readily escape desperate circumstances. Though we don’t really have the ability to do that when our system is characterized by illegal immigration! We also have to worry about realities of criminal history, disease, incomplete documentation and corruption. No wonder it is so difficult to have an effective and ethical immigration system.

      This is all kind of irrelevant to the post though. I agree with the sentiment about an objective immigration policy and that we aren’t obligated as Catholics to support citizenship for all, but the question here is what policy should we support to handle these many children who are arriving who are alone, fearful and sick.

      Yes maybe their parents have been negligent, maybe there are unintended consequences of some of this legislation from both Bush and Obama with regard to ‘unaccompanied children’, and even if the causes of the problem were (or are) nefarious we are called to respond to their need according to their level of desperation. Besides, as Mark correctly points, it is the law, and probably a good law that ensures protection for vulnerable unaccompanied children who arrive here. We can’t let the politics be a distraction to answering a call to help those in need.

      • ck

        ” Besides, as Mark correctly points, it is the law, and probably a good
        law that ensures protection for vulnerable unaccompanied children who
        arrive here. We can’t let the politics be a distraction to answering a
        call to help those in need.”

        Ah, but politics rightly understood is necessary – especially under the Catholic St. Thomas Aristotle view – to help us answer the call to help those in need. Yes the churches should be doing everything they can. As to whether dwindling resources of an increasingly bankrupt government can just throw more money at a serious problem, that’s necessarily a question for politics.

        • Mike Blackadder

          Yes, you’re correct that the politics is necessary, that responsible governance is necessary to serve the poor and it’s somewhat flippant of me to refer to the politics as a ‘distraction’. I take for granted that I’m speaking within the context of an understanding of Christianity, of a nation guided by Christianity, and a nation that is relatively rich (even if the books tell us we are bankrupt).

          You look at this in the context of a nation of entitlements, where we imagine it is a right for citizens to have free contraceptives, abortions, sex changes, that tolerates huge waste in education, green energy spending and government corruption. I don’t care which political stripe it’s coming from or whose fault it is, I don’t want to hear that we can’t afford to feed and shelter and treat these kids because we don’t have enough money.

          Yes, lets tighten our belts, lets recognize the real perils of socialism and maybe adopt those socialist aspects that are appropriate and beneficial and use resources wisely.

    • jroberts548

      1. It’s hard to take Zmirak seriously on the issue. He also believes that allowing immigration is the same as promoting abortion.

      2. After a century of United Fruit, US-backed coups, indirectly US-backed drug cartels, and directly backed paramilitaries that fight them, it’s insane to claim that the US doesn’t owe the people of Central America economic betterment. We’ve spent a hundred years turning Central America into a war zone, and now we’re whining when people try to leave it? Boo-hoo. We should have thought about that a hundred years ago. This doesn’t mean we have to have completely open borders. It does mean we should at least stop actively ruining Central America, and we should be compassionate to the people that come here to escape what we’ve done to their countries.

    • Adolfo

      Zmirak is a partisan hack who holds everything the Church teaches (as long as it fits the current Republican Party platform).

  • ck

    “This is a prolife issue, not an occasion for theorizing that
    Obama/Soros/A Vast Liberal Conspiracy are conscripting thousands of
    Central American children to make conservatives look like ice cold,
    hard-hearted skinflints and jingos eager to turn away desperate children
    in profound crisis.”

    I agree we need to do what we can to help these children, including returning them to their parents. Further, we need to think about the common good of the communities that these children – some of whom are teenagers, not exactly toddlers – are being dumped on. If you’ve ever lived along the border (i.e. San Diego, El Paso, Rio Grande Valley) you’ll know quite well that it’s not all quaint to have unemployed teenagers hanging around with nothing to do often entering gangs. I could just as easily argue that those in the Northern regions who haven’t faced the scourge of random violence along the border are being “hard-hearted skinflints” when it comes to the common good of these communities. I’m more of an open borders guy myself, but a little more caritas is due those who’ve seen first hand just how violent these areas are. [In just my family’s little ole anecdotal experience alone, my dad has been held up in an armed robbery in an El Paso KFC, my pregnant wife and 5-year old son sat 5 feet from a murder-suicide in her doctor’s office in AZ. A good friend was held up in a Church parking lot only saved by her saying a Hail Mary. These violent acts were all done by illegal immigrants from somewhere south of the border.]

    I say let’s send these children – especially the teens – in concentrated amounts to Seattle, to Bethesda, to Portland. But in reality, I shouldn’t argue for such a thing, because it would be detrimental to those town’s common good. That said, it would be interesting to see how SWPL Seattle would handle a mass influx of Santa Muerte.

    • JM1001

      Further, we need to think about the common good of the communities that
      these children – some of whom are teenagers, not exactly toddlers – are
      being dumped on. If you’ve ever lived along the border (i.e. San
      Diego, El Paso, Rio Grande Valley) you’ll know quite well that it’s not
      all quaint to have unemployed teenagers hanging around with nothing to
      do often entering gangs.

      Indeed.

      Which makes me wonder what it would be like if these communities, rather than protesting that these kids not be dumped in “our backyard,” instead all got together to give them something to do (community projects, programs, training etc.).

      We could all do that, if we wanted to.

      But that would probably get in the way of the precious time we use watching NBC’s The Voice and following Kim Kardashian’s Twitter feed.

      If these kids are a “threat” to our common good, it’s because we don’t want to lift a finger to help them to be members of the community. A few heroic souls in various organizations may try. But the wider community and society doesn’t really try. We’re too absorbed in our little trivial pursuits.

      • ck

        “If these kids are a “threat” to our common good, it’s because we don’t want to lift a finger to help them to be members of the community.”

        That would be great, but in practice this is more difficult to do than you think. The gangs still have the greater cultural advantage of influencing these kids than SWPL white-bread “gringos.”

        • freddy

          So because something is difficult it shouldn’t be attempted? I don’t see that as the path either of charity or of wisdom.

          • ck

            Didn’t say it shouldn’t be tried. Just pointing out the reason that it is not likely to succeed. These are reasons why it might not be a good idea to allow for such mass immigration. Perhaps we should just send these kids home, I’d support doing so with first-class air fare. But we’re deluding ourselves if we think that this Federal government induced crisis is not detrimental to the common good, not a serious problem that could be destructive of some American communities.

        • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

          I hate to say it, but I have my doubts about the assimilation of other ethnicity into our culture. It NEVER seems to go well. The hatred of gringos is so deeply ingrained.

  • ppeter

    I’m all for doing all we can to help refugees. These poor foreigners are not the enemy, but those who would abuse them to increase their own wealth and power.
    The Church has spoken out repeatedly against mass migration for economic advantage as being destructive to communities and cultures (I don’t have references, but they’d be easy to find.) And the Church clearly recognizes the right of states to a level of self-determination in the matter of migration.
    We should solve the Central American humanitarian crisis as close to Central America as possible, so as to avoid these extreme displacements.
    The majority of Americans oppose open borders, but not just because of Mammon-worship. This is especially true of the working poor, including those of color and those issued from legal immigration. Cesar Chavez hated how big business and governments used illegal alien labor to depress wages etc.
    I’ve lived in a border town. I know how many Mexican-Americans, especially those on the border, are disgusted over the Administration’s handling of this crisis. I also know that Mexico has draconian laws against illegal aliens, so I can’t be gullible enough to believe that the recent wave of illegals flowing unimpeded through Mexico is spontaneous. Poverty and instability are nothing new to Central America, obviously, and the US has contributed to them, no doubt, but we should be able to find a solution to them that doesn’t involve subversion of the rule of law and popular sovereignty by the ruling elite.

  • Peggy

    The US received not one “refugee” from these countries prior to 2014. What is different this year? Obama’s push for amnesty and his exec orders granting amnesty to many illegals in the US. They and their families are opportunistic interlopers. Why are their countries encouraging the mass emigration from their homes? Because those govts don’t want to reform and provide for their own peoples.

    Tend to their basic needs and ship them back home. This will not stop until we do.

    It may be “our problem” as in our CHristian duty as people to care for them, but it is not and should not be our govt’s problem to care for these people and take them in.

    • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

      “What is different this year?”

      The Mexican Drug Cartels are fighting over smuggling routes from South America. That is what is different.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P0HsE7MFhd8&feature=youtu.be

    • ivan_the_mad

      “The US received not one ‘refugee’ from these countries prior to 2014. What is different this year?” False, false, false.

      “Since 2011, the United States has seen an unprecedented increase in the number of unaccompanied migrating children arriving to the country, predominately at the U.S./Mexico border. Whereas the number of children apprehended averaged 6,800 between federal fiscal years (FY) (October 1-September 30) 2004 and 2011, the total jumped to over 13,000 children in FY2012 and over 24,000 children in FY 2013.” — The USCCB’s report on the matter, published in November 2013.

      If you’re that wrong with your facts, you should really reconsider your position on the matter.

      • Peggy
        • ivan_the_mad

          Wow, I see now, it all hinges on how you meant the scare quotes around “refugee”. I don’t have time for that sort of bullshit.

          • Peggy

            “Refugee” is a legal status that some are trying to apply to these people in common language to facilitate the legal benefits of that status. We are being played. Why can’t reporters and Congressoids see these faciliites and people and interview them etc?

            Why are Latin Am nations so willing to allow their citizens to leave? Why are Mexico and Guatemala conspiring to ensure that these people get to our nation?

            • Eve Fisher

              Boy, those little children are master manipulators, aren’t they? Really… THERE IS NO CONSPIRACY. Parents in Guatemala are trying to keep their children alive. Just as parents in Ireland shipped their children over to the US back in the mid-1800’s. And their children were treated like disease-bearing vermin, too. And where were your ancestors from?

              • The Deuce

                ***Parents in Guatemala are trying to keep their children alive.***

                Yeah, sending your kid across Mexico alone, via the tender loving care of the drug cartels, is a GREAT way to do that.

                • freddy

                  Exactly! Can you even imagine how bad things must be for a parent do that? Can we do less than care for these children to the best of our ability in that case?

                  • ck

                    When is there going to be a condemnation of the parents who are sending these kids on a dangerous route to America?

                    • Peggy

                      And I don’t even know what to say about this.

                      http://washington.cbslocal.com/2014/07/17/homeland-secretary-parents-give-immigrant-children-birth-control-in-case-theyre-raped-along-the-way/

                      So, these Latino families have access to birth control? And give it to their girls in case they get raped along the way? “Honey, you might get raped. Here’s a pill to prevent a baby. Have fun on your trip to the US!” Sandra Fluke must be jealous.

                      For the safety of the young women on the trail and any little ones etc, this flow of people must stop.

                    • chezami

                      There’s already plenty of it from ice-cold conservatives bent on spitting in these kids faces.

                    • Peggy

                      How about also a condemnation of the governments of Latin America not caring for their native peoples? Why is the US to blame for the legacy of Spanish feudal colonialism? Why are the wealthy of those nations so uncaring? Why do they not give to the poor, employ them at “just wages”? Give them rights to property and access to legal system? What have Latin Am bishops been doing? This should be where Francis tells off the Latin Am govts and the wealthy citizens there.

                • Eve Fisher

                  Yep, so was sending your kid on a 3 month voyage to a strange country on a literally lousy wooden boat with crap food, the possibilities of cholera, typhus, and dysentery, and the average was for 1 in 7 to die on the way. But the Irish did it anyway.

                  • Peggy

                    As families or young men or fathers on their own to prepare a place for the rest of the family. It was an emptier nation to populate. Unemployment and wages for Am citizens are terrible now. We can’t absorb this without great problems if at all.

                • jroberts548

                  Which means that either, (a) it’s so bad there that taking that risk makes sense, or (b) they’re immune to incentives, in which case a US policy change won’t matter. Assuming it’s (a) our options are to either improve conditions in Central America, raise the cost of trying to get in (e.g., by making sure all the kids die), or just deal with it and let the kids in.

                  • Mike Blackadder

                    These parents are also responding to a false promise. Get your kids across the border and their futures are assured (as per Obama and Pelosi). We don’t know what these parents might decide if they knew the truth of the immigration outcome? Even the Obama administration is now hoping to correct the messaging to help rectify the problem.

                    If given all of our resources, border intelligence, etc we are only now grasping the magnitude of the crisis and dangers involved then what possible justification is there to assume that these parents have any realistic idea of the perils involved? Somebody is selling them on the decision to try to send their kids to America; a combination of Dream Act optimism and conmen who are making big bucks in the process.

              • Peggy

                The govts of Guatemala and Mex have officially agreed to help get these people to the US border.

                [I don’t agree w/headline, but content is what is key here in this article]

                http://www.examiner.com/article/mexico-commits-act-of-war-against-usa

                Je suis francaise et allemange. They came over lawfully as did the Irish. We had different policies and an empty nation to fill.

                It is Barry’s conspiracy along w/Latin Am govts’s. They refuse to address their economic, race and crime problems. They are happy to dump them off on the US. The people (not all kids, don’t be fooled) were not coming in such numbers until O’s exec orders and promises of amnesty and such. Their govts and coyotes etc are happy to help out.

          • The Deuce

            You’re the ones trying to redefine the word “refugee,” to try and justify you unconscionable refusal to try to stop the humanitarian crisis caused by the sudden influx of immigration.

            • ivan_the_mad

              False. Might I suggest a chill pill?

          • ck

            “Refugee” is a concept that can, and has been abused by those claiming it. There’s the woman in New Hampshire who lied about her involvement in the Rawandan Genocide who claimed to be a refugee. There are the Boston Bombers, “refugees.” I think serious people concerned about the common good have all sorts of time for this “bullshit.” Tell that to the victims of these “refugees.”

            How many refugees in the current situation work for the Cartels? How many of these people are actually children?

            These are very, very important questions that need answering, that need political discussion in order to ensure the common good. Ignoring them and dismissing concerns in an ad hominem fashion is plainly wrong.

            • ivan_the_mad

              The bullshit in question is Peggy’s use of scare quotes. In the context of this post and in the popular discourse, the term refugee means one thing, i.e. people seeking refuge from a very bad situtation; Peggy uses it in another, more narrow, legal meaning without clarifying, i.e. as defined in the Immigration and Nationality Act. It should be fairly obvious that one may indeed be a refugee without official status as a refugee granted by the USCIS.

              That’s the bullshit I don’t have time for – lack of precision in terms. Scare quotes contribute nothing to clarity on important issues.

              • ck

                “That’s the bullshit I don’t have time for – lack of precision in terms.
                Scare quotes contribute nothing to clarity on important issues.”

                Yeah, a lack of precision in terms was a problem for the Boston Bombers too.

              • Mike Blackadder

                Ivan that’s ridiculous. You’re the one who is using the term ‘refugee’ in a you-know-what-I-mean undefined way and saying that others are talking ‘bullshit’ for establishing the legal definition as grounds for a policy decision.

                • ivan_the_mad

                  The legal definition of refugee applies only to people outside the USA, so the children and others on US soil aren’t refugees in that sense to begin with.

                  I could only assume, given the context of the post, that she meant refugee in the more common sense of the word, since she clearly cannot be referring to someone categorized as a refugee under the INA.

                  • Mike Blackadder

                    Not really Ivan. You’ve taken that particular bullet point out of context. If you are applying for refugee status then by definition you are someone outside the United States. Since these individuals came here illegally they obviously didn’t go through the process of claiming refugee status before coming here and we’re talking about whether they ought to be given refugee status now.

                  • Mike Blackadder

                    My last reply doesn’t appear right now, so sorry if I repeat myself.

                    The outside the USA condition is something that you’re taking out of context. To apply to be a refugee you are by definition someone outside the United States. You can’t be living in the United States and apply to be a refugee to be relocated in the United States.

                    Did you read: ” After you arrive, you will be eligible for medical and cash assistance. For more information on benefits available to refugees, please see the Health and Human Services, Office of Refugee Resettlement page.”
                    So ‘benefits available to refugees’ ‘after you arrive’ kind of completely discredits your fake assertion that you thought the legal definition of a refugee only applies to people ‘Outside the USA’. Try again.

                    • ivan_the_mad

                      Mike, I was replying to Peggy’s original comment above, in which she specified nothing relating to the INA, which is why I took her meaning in a context already established by Mark’s post.

                      You’ve moved on to a whole other topic now.

                      EDIT: To be very clear, I never enjoined a discussion concerning benefits, but about the numbers of people crossing the border prior to 2014. The veracity of her assertion hinged on her definition of refugees, which she did not in that original post clearly specify as the meaning narrowly constrained by the INA.

                    • Peggy

                      The point is that there has been no historical reason for citizens of those nations to assert some refugee status to remain in the US. This is not about the immediate needs of the people (I don’t concede they are only “children”. There are mostly young men in the images I’ve seen), but about whether they are entitled to stay beyond getting immediate needs met. I say no. It fosters additional lawslessness. While many of these people may not be national security threats, their mass entrance into our country enables dangerous people to sneak on in as well.

            • chezami

              In the face of overwhelming need and desperate children, it is *so* important to hyper-focus on pettifogging semantics.

  • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

    We need to start treating this situation like a refugee situation. That calls for the following four responses:
    1. A 2000 mile, 1 mile deep (2000 square mile) refugee camp on the border, and resettlement in any sanctuary available, including churches.
    2. UN, but US Led, refugee camps in the Yucatan so people don’t have to walk 1400 miles to find help.
    3. Immediate suspension of the quota system and processing people at higher numbers.
    4. Deportation of unaccompanied minors should include a platoon of marines to find the child’s parents, secure the home and neighborhood. Even if this means invasion to do it.

    The cause is not important, it’s time for solutions.

    • The Deuce

      They’re refugees from the dangers of the border trek itself, not from their home countries, which are not at war or anything.

      If we really believe that the situation in their countries is so bad that they can be considered refugees, then we have to set up refugee camps IN THEIR HOME COUNTRIES, regardless of what their home countries have to say about it, to pick their families up there and transport them to the USA. Anyone who claims to believe they are refugees, but is not in favor of doing that, is just blowing smoke, and doesn’t really believe it.

      • Eve Fisher

        No. Their home countries are among those with the highest murder rates in the world. Sending them back is sending them back to be killed.

        • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

          Sending them back *without protection* is indeed sending them back to be killed. Using the deportation as a pretext to install peacekeeping forces, on the other hand, might just work.

          • The Deuce

            I’d actually Mark and his left-wing toadies some respect if they’d have the balls to come out and call for the American military occupation of Central America and Mexico, which is the solution implied by the reckless rhetoric being bandied about here. I’d disagree with that, but at least I could respect people standing behind what they claim to believe.

            • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

              I’ve been calling for that for at least the past 5 years, ever since I talked to the cousin of a Latino family I grew up with. He was even far north- Nuevo Laredo- and the violence was so bad there that the Mexican law enforcement and military was completely overwhelmed. The family still owns a house there- sitting empty for the most part of the last two generations because nobody dares live in the neighborhood.

              And that’s Mexico. Now the violence is spreading, because we wanted to take care of the Middle East instead of the problems in our own back yard.

            • chezami

              I believe all that the holy Catholic Church believes, teaches, and proclaims is revealed by God. I accept completely the Church’s teaching on abortion, gay ‘marriage’, contraception, the all male priesthood, and all the rest of the pelvic issues. I support just war teaching, capitalism (within the Church’s moral parameters), and traditional marriage. You keep using that word “left wing”. I don’t think it means what you think it means. And I think the idea of invading Central America is insane. It is the Thing that used to Be Conservatism, not Catholic teaching, that always leaps to war as the first solution for every problem.

              • freddy

                I guess I must be one of your toadies, Mark, because I agree wholeheartedly with what you just wrote. Try not to let it go to your head!

              • Marthe Lépine

                Yes, and the solutions in Iraq and Afghanistan were so obvious and easy that they worked like a charm…

        • The Deuce

          Then our government should be setting up military refugee camps INSIDE THEIR COUNTRIES to get them out and transport them here, yes? That’s what we do in actual emergency refugee situations.

          The ACTUAL problem is that we’re not bringing ENOUGH Central American “refugees” into this country, and that they’re having to cross Mexico to get here, yes? C’mon, if this really rises to the level of a refugee situation, then have the courage of your convictions and be consistent.

          • Marthe Lépine

            Well, our Church certainly believe that it is a refugee situation. Why are you fighting so hard? Could it be xenophobia?

        • jaybird1951

          That claim of certain death is a HUGE leap, sir. The small children are being sent by irresponsible parents who allow/push their children to trek nearly 2,000 miles to the American border either unaccompanied or led by coyotes, gang members or human traffickers/rapists.

          • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber
          • Marthe Lépine

            So many irresponsible parents! Maybe the best solution would be to sent Planned Parenthood to these countries in order to straighten out those parents…

          • chezami

            Ah! Well as long as it ‘s not *certain* death, what could possibly be wrong with sending defenseless children back to conditions so horrible that their parents were willing to risk a dangerous journey to our border in the hope of saving them. I think I’ll let my granddaughter play in traffic. It’s not a 100% chance of death or injury.

          • Peggy

            I think “Eve” is usually a female’s name!

            Cheers.

      • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

        “They’re refugees from the dangers of the border trek itself, not from their home countries, which are not at war or anything.”

        Their home countries have been at war for three years now, just not a declared war. It’s illegal criminal gangs trying to get territory to establish smuggling routes, while denying the government and OTHER GANGS access to those same routes.

        Editing to add this testimony that was just posted to Youtube after I wrote the initial post:
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P0HsE7MFhd8&feature=youtu.be

        “If we really believe that the situation in their countries is so bad that they can be considered refugees, then we have to set up refugee camps IN THEIR HOME COUNTRIES, regardless of what their home countries have to say about it, to pick their families up there and transport them to the USA. ”

        Almost agreed, but the reverse. We’ve let the situation go too long for that. What we need to do is establish refugee camps in the United States, then in the Yucatan (eliminate the 1400 mile walk), and finally, we need to use deportation as a reason for invasion. We need to keep the people we deport safe, so we should send 5 American soldiers with every deportee, to establish little zones of peace THERE.

        Once those zones have been established, there will be no need to bring the parents back to the USA- because we will have solved the problem.

        • The Deuce

          What we need to do is establish refugee camps in the United States, then
          in the Yucatan (eliminate the 1400 mile walk), and finally, we need to
          use deportation as a reason for invasion.

          Well, at least one person is willing to follow Mark’s rhetoric to its logical conclusion. Bravo.

          • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

            Possibly because I’m seriously pro-life, and seriously worried about what drug addiction in the United States has done to Latin America (especially the damage done to the Church).

      • Marthe Lépine

        Not true if you read the linked article. For the rest, refer to my earlier comment. And what about Pope Francis? Seems he does think they are refugees.

  • Pete the Greek

    http://fredoneverything.net/TacImmigration.shtml

    “We say to impoverished Mexicans, “See this river? Don’t cross it. If you do, we’ll give you good jobs, a drivers license, citizenship for your kids born here and eventually for you, school for said kids, public assistance, governmental documents in Spanish for your convenience, and a much better future. There is no penalty for getting caught. Now, don’t cross this river, hear?”

    How smart is that? We’re baiting them. It’s like putting out a salt lick and then complaining when deer come. As parents, the immigrants would be irresponsible not to cross.”

    • Eve Fisher

      Darn that George W. Bush. He signed that stupid law that says we can’t just deport everyone if they come from a country that isn’t directly on our borders, but they have to go through processing. Salt licks abound.

      • Pete the Greek

        Nah, it’s not really George Bush. It’s not really anybody that I can see. When you have a country that has lots of opportunity, even for the poor, better future, better living, etc… people who live next door who DON’T have that (or in the case of even further south) will want to come and get some of it.

        It’s totally natural. Having a little income from a job you can actually get, healthcare, etc. matter a LOT, particularly if you’re someone who has lived a lot of their life NOT being able to get it.

        • Eve Fisher

          I totally agree: I think that almost every person in this country would do whatever it takes to improve the lives of their children, including go to where there’s a much better chance of getting a job, some health care, and basic survival. The immigrants – illegal or legal – are doing what it takes to survive. How can I denigrate them for that?

          • Peggy

            I want the bigger house down the street with a built-in pool. Can I just go and occupy and claim it for my family? We want to be better off too.

            Can I just take the job of the CEO of Goldman Sachs or Nabisco to get the good bennies and cash flow? We could afford private schooling and tutoring and more medical services for our special education kids…does that make it okay?

            We just want a better life for our family in these terrible economic times (and terrible they are for many families).

      • jaybird1951

        The law signed by Bush dealt with the issue of human trafficking of children. Only that.

        • chezami

          And above all, in situations involving children in desperate human need, the #1 most important consideration is the strict letter of the law.

        • Eve Fisher

          “The Homeland Security Act of the Homeland Security Act of 2002, Section 462, transferred responsibilities for the care and placement of unaccompanied alien children (UAC) from the Commissioner of the Immigration and Naturalization Service to the Director of the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR)…Unaccompanied alien children (UAC) apprehended by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) immigration officials, are transferred to the care and custody of ORR. ORR makes and implements placement decisions in the best interests of the UAC to ensure placement in the least restrictive setting possible while in federal custody. ORR takes into consideration the unique nature of each UAC’s situation and incorporates child welfare principles when making placement, clinical, case management, and release decisions that are in the best interest of the child. ”
          That was indeed under the Bush administration, and is not dependent on the issue of human trafficking. There is more information at this site:
          http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/orr/programs/ucs/about

    • jroberts548

      Just curious, but how many people are deported every year? Aren’t all these people at the overcrowded immigration detention centers just being held pending either asylum or deportation?

      And which public assistance programs are available for illegal immigrants?

      • Pete the Greek

        Officially? I don’t know. There are organizations in my area, private, that do some of this.

        Locally, there are several large church groups (Catholic and Methodist) that offer general support. The Catholic programs seem more aimed at general subsistence, while the local Methodist charity aims more for offering some babysitting, English second language, remedial schooling, job placement assistance, etc.

        I deal in C and D class apartments. We get a lot of Hispanics, many of whom can’t speak English. There’s no requirement to check legal status, so we really don’t care. Many are probably illegal, who knows?

        We have very few problems with them. They work like fiends at their jobs (most usually have more than one. For an economy that supposedly ‘doesn’t have any jobs for the poor’ like some claim, these people seem to have little trouble finding them, even if it takes a while sometimes. ) and they end up wiring some of what they get out of the country usually. (stop by places that do western union and the like on paydays and see who is standing in line). What few problems we do have involve either trying to sublet their apartments, or being way too loud. Unlike the low income ‘real Americans’ we have, whites and blacks, we don’t have problems with our Hispanic tenants selling crack, getting the cops called on the building due to violence, severe damage to apartments or just out and out murdering each other as happened last year. They also try to run off anyone they suspect of possibly selling drugs or prostitution, or at least informing us. They also keep the building picked up and clean and watch out for each others kids.

        This situation may not be universal, i don’t know. I just see how it works out in my area. To be honest, if I could legally get away with it, I’d evict every other person from our buildings and fill them with Hispanics.

  • The Deuce

    “There is rape, human trafficking, a lot of abuse and a lot of them are
    sick,” he said. “I’m not telling you this to depress you more, but so
    you’ll talk about it more.”

    Yes, those things are happening to them because they are crossing the border, which is extremely dangerous, even for adults, and leaves them at the mercy of the drug cartels. The only way to stop it is to stop more from coming over the border. If you claim to be pro-life, but are not insisting that we enforce our border laws to put an end to this madness immediately, and that the people stoking it be held responsible, then you are a fraud and a hypocrite. Period.

    • freddy

      Oh, I get it. All the drug runners, human traffickers, and rapists are conveniently lined up at the border. The other central American countries are perfectly safe, and opportunistic adults are selfishly sending their kids into harm’s way so they can all become rich doctors, drive cadillacs, and give their selfish parents a cozy retirement in Fort Lauderdale.
      .
      You are sounding more and more xenophobic with each hysterical rant.

      • The Deuce

        Yes, as a matter of fact, a big concentration of drug runners, human traffickers, and rapists ARE lined up at the border, you dolt. A lot of illegal immigration is actually facilitated by the cartels who operate there, and even those who try to cross on their own are at their mercy. They’re also in a no-man’s land in that area, which is far more dangerous than their actual homes.

        If their homes are actually the practical warzones you folks are describing them as, then we have a responsibility to go and get them, and possibly send our military to their countries to install martial law and keep peace, rather than encourage them to cross the Mexican and American borders alone.

        • freddy

          “They’re also in a no-man’s land in that area, which is far more dangerous than their actual homes.”
          .
          …and you know this how, exactly? Do you seriously think all these parents are so venal or stupid that they are sending their kids here unaware or uncaring of the risks? And yeah, I’m aware of the situation at the border, but I also believe that most parents love their children and that things are much worse at home.
          .
          Plus, kudos for “dolt.” If you’re going to devolve into name-calling, at least it’s such a lovely old-fashioned insult.

          • The Deuce

            Plus, kudos for “dolt.” If you’re going to devolve into name-calling, at least it’s such a lovely old-fashioned insult.</i

            Interesting, you had nothing to say about the spurious accusation of "xenophobia." So you're both a dolt and a hypocrite.

          • The Deuce

            Plus, kudos for “dolt.” If you’re going to devolve into name-calling, at least it’s such a lovely old-fashioned insult.

            Interesting. You had nothing to say about the spurious accusation of xenophobia to which I was replying, so you are both a dolt and a hypocrite.

            • freddy

              Patience, dear. I hadn’t seen that reply.

          • The Deuce

            Do you seriously think all these parents are so venal or stupid that
            they are sending their kids here unaware or uncaring of the risks?

            Yes, I do think that. The world does not lack for bad parents. Sending their children out by themselves on this kind of journey, where they’re practically guaranteed to deal with the hyper-violent drug cartels, with only the mere hope that they’ll make it here alive and unmolested, is absolutely unconscionable, even if things are dangerous at home. Even if they have to abandon their own jobs or local obligations, they should come with their children or not send them at all.

            But this whole thing is crazy. Central America has high crime to be sure, but it’s not a warzone. It’s a pretty unprecedented “refugee” situation where the entire population of a country is potentially a “refugee” from the entire population of the country, just by virtue of leaving it.

            And if their population really is so incredibly violent that it qualifies the whole country as a warzone and everyone leaving it as a refugee, then it’s unconscionable to inflict that on unsuspecting citizens of the USA, by simply dropping these folks on them without scrutiny.

            If it’s really that bad, and if we really must take on all “refugees” indefinitely, then the only possible answer is a military invasion and occupation of Central America, so that our citizens are protected and the refugees don’t have to make the trip.

            And btw, the drug cartels have also been running rampant lately, since Border Patrol is tied up changing diapers and trying to keep TB outbreaks contained. This simply *cannot* continue.

            • Marthe Lépine

              Kudos for your promoting “military invasion and occupation of Central America” – That kind of action has certainly proven its value in Iraq! in addition, some of your inflammatory language does sound very strange coming from a Catholic as a comment on what the Catholic Church has to say about this situation. Are you really Catholic?

              • The Deuce

                No s***. I’m not promoting it. I’m pointing out the implications of those of you claiming that all the people leaving Central America are refugees in their own countries.

                But you all aren’t calling for treating this as a REAL refugee situation, because you don’t really believe your own rhetoric.

                It’s just a rationalization to let you justify continuing to subject these kids to extreme danger of the journey, and continuing to subject unsuspecting American citizens to the fallout, without lifting a finger to try to resolve it or hold anyone responsible, all while telling yourselves that you’re morally superior for it, and that everyone attempting to do the *actual* right and compassionate thing is a ungoodthinking racist.

                • Marthe Lépine

                  Some of the claiming is being done by representatives of the Vatican, but of course when it comes to American issues, the Vatican can safely be ignored… The US know best..

            • chezami

              Wow. This is ice-cold stuff. I’m ashamed for you.

              • The Deuce

                I’m ashamed of you. If you had anything more that faux compassion for these kids and a political ax to grind, you’d be trying to look for ways to put an end to this mess, and reduce the extreme danger it poses to everyone involved, not thoughtlessly agitating and stoking it, with no regard to the consequences and the fallout.

                • chezami

                  Horseshit. Unmitigated horseshit. The first order of business (bitterly opposed by the troglodytes) is to help the children in desperate need, not waste time blaming their families for being desperate, or labeling them disease-bearing invaders, or spewing bullshit about “compassionately sending them back”. Help them. Of *course* conditions at home that forced their parent to take this desperate gamble have to be addressed. But not, as you stupidly suggest, with war. But, in the present hour, help, not your filthy excuses for neglect is what is necessary.

                  • The Deuce

                    Who said anything about neglect? They need to be taken care of for as long as they’re here AND this tide needs to be stemmed rather than worsened. That means parents need to stop sending their kids here unaccompanied in the first place, which is dead wrong anyhow, even for poor people.

                    But, in the present hour, help, not your filthy excuses for neglect is what is necessary.

                    No, trying to actually resolve this problem is not “neglect.” It is the opposite of neglect, your condemnations of any attempt to end this emergency or deal with reality notwithstanding.

                    At some point, we *have* to stop this from happening, which means we *have* to get the parents to stop sending them and to repatriate many of them. Otherwise, this will just continue.

                    But, of course, this has nothing to do with “the present hour.” It will always be the present hour, and no matter when we try to stop this, your hypocritical ilk will be there to shriek about how it’s “neglect” and blaming parents who are “forced” to do it.

                    Meanwhile, you will offer no suggestions on how to stop it yourself. You’ll just continue to smear anyone who does.

                    • Marthe Lépine

                      Would you actually talk to Mark that way if you were sitting in his living room? You sound increasingly out of line, but I am leaving the judgement to Mark.

        • Marthe Lépine

          Did you read all of the linked story, or just the title? Because if you did read it, Your 2nd paragraph here, by using the words “the practical warzones you folks are describing”, sounds as you are claiming that even “Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga, archbishop of Tegucigalpa, Honduras,
          and president of Caritas Internationalis, the Church’s global relief
          agency” is a liar. And, your country has already meddled so much over the years with Latin American countries that any military intervention would be likely to make things much much worse, since much of that early meddling (such as encouraging coups to get rid of leaders that your country does not approve of because of “socialism”, is one of the major roots of those countries’ current problems. There was another link on this post about Nicaragua, one of the only 2 Latin countries that has managed to reduce the gap between rich and poor, and that, for some strange reason, is not losing its children; that article stated among other things that the US has been trying to destabilize that country by getting rid of its so-called “socialist” leader ever since 1979…

        • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber
          • The Deuce

            She did the right thing at least, and came together with her kids, rather than just sending them off alone into the dangers she describes.

            As I said, I give you credit compared to the others here, since you at least have taken this “refugee” talk to its logical conclusion, of having our military set up refugee camps in the area so that the “refugees” aren’t encouraged to make the dangerous trek our non-enforcement encourages them to make, particularly alone without parents.

            • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

              And more specifically, getting to the point where the dangerous trek isn’t necessary at all by stabilizing those countries politically and actually, gasp, enforcing the law and stopping the drug trade instead of turning a blind eye to those who “use drugs to cope”.

              • The Deuce

                Dangerous talk there, Theo, suggesting that we hold those people who “use drugs to cope” morally responsible for their actions. Seems that the sentiment round these parts is that expecting any kind of moral agency from anybody we can reasonably call “desperate” is just pure uncompassionate hate. And, you know, the Holy Father didn’t reeeeeally oppose the legalization of drugs when he opposed it.

                • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

                  I didn’t see him opposing the legalization of drugs at all. I saw him opposing the abuse of drugs to get high, replacing God and causing immeasurable harm to the cultures where drugs are grown and harvested.

                  There is no human action which does not cause harm, but some cause a lot more harm than others.

      • The Deuce

        You are sounding more and more xenophobic with each hysterical rant.

        And notice how you’re the only one bringing race into this discussion. It’s very revealing. It all comes back to identity politics for you, not about what actually happens to these immigrants, not whether they live or die, not about what happens to those living in places dealing with this, not about actually solving this crisis.

        • ivan_the_mad

          He didn’t mention race. Xenophobia is not necessarily based on race. Your clue is that they’re two different words 😉

          • The Deuce

            Oh, ok, technically he was spuriously bringing ethnicity into it when nobody had brought it up, rather than race specifically.

            Sorry that I said it all comes down to identity politics for him, rather than whether these children live or die.

            What I meant to say was, it all comes down to identity politics for him, rather than whether these children live or die.

            • freddy

              “…he was spuriously bringing ethnicity into it when nobody had brought it up….”
              .
              Your (Peggy’s) reply to JM1001 below included, “The gangs still have the greater cultural advantage of influencing these kids than SWPL white-bread ‘gringos.'”
              .
              Which, spurious or not, sounds like bringing “ethnicity” into it as well as identity politics.

              • The Deuce

                WTF are you talking about? I’m not Peggy. Though, I suppose I can’t blame you for thinking that you all have created such a left-wing echo chamber at CAEI in here that any dissent must be from the lone occasional sockpuppet wandering in. It’s almost true.

                • freddy

                  That is so weird. On my computer everything you wrote was coming up as “Peggy” until I refreshed the page. Now it’s all coming up as “The Deuce.” Truly apologize to you and to Peggy for the confusion. I’ve never had that happen before and have no idea what’s going on. Sorry.

                  • The Deuce

                    Apology accepted. Sorry for my heated response.

                    But before you go accusing people of xenophobia, maybe consider that both Peggy and I have immigrants in our own families.

                    • freddy

                      So do I. And I expect to have more; and I see it as a positive thing.

                • ivan_the_mad

                  It’s a glitch with Disqus’ asynchronous comment loading service. Chill out.

              • Peggy

                I am Peggy and Did not say that.

                • freddy

                  Peggy I am so sorry. For whatever reason, my computer got you and “The Deuce” conflated and I saw everything you each wrote as coming from “Peggy.” I can only imagine the confusion. Forgive me.

                  • Peggy

                    Ok. No worries.

                  • Pete the Greek

                    It’s not just you. Just now I am scrolling through this whole comment tree and EVERY SINGLE comment as flagged as being from “ck”. EVERY single one. It must be a problem with Disque

                    • ivan_the_mad

                      It’s better to reload the page than to click “Show new comments”.

            • Marthe Lépine

              Actually, it seems to me that whenever someone discusses “immigrants”, it is usually about people with different ethnicities. If they were US citizens or residents, of course they would not be immigrants, don’t you know?

        • freddy

          Wow, name calling *and* psychoanalyzing! I feel special.
          .
          And I happen to think that this country is big enough and generous enough to give a home to a goodly number of people, with good results. May I recommend this website?
          http://www.rescue.org/refugees

          • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

            You do? Have you TRIED to get a job in the last 10 years?

            Honestly, the opportunity in the United States has dried up- the generosity that used to be common is extremely rare, and the wealth is all tied up in a few cites, leaving the rest of us with the dregs.

        • Peggy

          So, I guess I am the xenophobe?

      • freddy

        “You are sounding more and more xenophobic with each hysterical rant.”
        .
        I apologize for that line. For some reason my computer decided that a few commenters were all “Peggy” and until I hit “refresh” I thought the various comments were all coming from one person. I was beginning to think I was conversing with a schizophrenic! My sincerest apologies to the real Peggy, “The Deuce,” and anybody else my weird computer decided was also “Peggy.”

  • jroberts548

    This is the real class warfare. A group of investment banks wreck the economy, and at whom do middle and working class white people get mad? Marginally poorer, marginally darker people. When the poor hate the slightly poorer, the only people who benefit are the rich.

    • Peggy

      Much of the middle class work in those areas. The anger has been at the govt for bailing them out (and govt policies pushing bad loans, frankly.) TARP really was the tipping point which started the tea party movement.

      • jroberts548

        But even then, the tea party was sparked by some guy on CNBC whining about the government bailing out loser’s mortgages. It was HAMP, not TARP that struck a match.

        Which is bizarre. If there’s a category of people who are parasites on the dole, it’s the investment bankers and the financial press.

        • The Deuce

          It’s both. The government bailout of mortgages came by way of government bailout of the banks holding them. Bad mortgages tend to involve irresponsibility and misrepresentation on both sides of the deal. What’s infuriating is that the government is rewarding the corrupt and reckless lawbreakers at both the top *and* bottom, while squeezing the people in the middle who are just trying to obey the law and be productive citizens. What kind of “law” is it that you are punished for *not* breaking? This is why socialism (and bank bailouts are a form of socialism) always ends up destroying the middle class.

          • jroberts548

            On the one hand, rewarding bad mortgagors isn’t something the government should do. On the other hand, when economically unsophisticated mortgagors get calls from unscrupulous mortgagees offering the mortgagor free money, my moral sympathies do not lie with the mortgagee.

            (At any rate, HAMP wasn’t really about protecting irresponsible mortgagors, though it looked like that politically. It was about slowing the rate of foreclosures, in order to prevent a rapid glut of foreclosed homes which would depress home prices and protect the mortgagees from taking an even bigger hit when they sell the houses and are unable to collect the deficiency. Without HAMP, we would have a bigger short term shock, but the recession likely wouldn’t have been as drawn out).

            • Marthe Lépine

              I have seen, through another movie, a TV ad telling people who had fully or partially paid for homes that they could consolidate their debts by re-mortgaging that home at a rate of interest that appeared really good. However, in many cases, the catch, as I remember, was in the small print that said that that favourable rate would only apply for a short period, and that after that short period, something like 2 years, the rates would jump to such an extent that people would lose their property. The way the ad was made, it is clear that unsophisticated people could catch the “bait”. However in my opinion it is the companies offering such trick mortgages that should bear the heavier load of guilt. But as usual, it is easier to blame the victims! And, from past experience with insistent sales people, I would not be surprised if some unsophisticated people were quick-talked into getting into such arrangements – you must know them, the salesmen who do not give you a second to think and say you must commit yourself immediately because such a good offer would not be available if you dare to wait. I remember one of those at my door one day (trying to sell me something else than a mortgage, though): I told him that I would check first into the Internet, and he could contact me in a few days. He did not like it… But not everyone is able to resist such a verbal assault.

              • jroberts548

                It was even much worse than that at the height of the bubble. Mortgagees (lenders) would solicit people that were in no way creditworthy, offer mortgages way above the inflated market price of the house and the mortgagor’s ability to pay, and then resell the mortgage on the secondary market, where it get bundled. The initial mortgagee bore none of the risk, and the downstream purchasers didn’t exercise any diligence, on the assumptions that (1) bundled mortgages are safe; even if some mortgagors (borrowers) default, most won’t and (2) even if too many mortgagors default, the federal government will bail them out.

                This is going to sound paternalistic, but a banker – someone whose job is to deal in negotiable instruments and to evaluate creditworthiness – is in a better position than most consumer level mortgagors to know the mortgagor’s ability to pay. I don’t know how the government could bail out mortgagors without creating a moral hazard, but we definitely should have sided with them over the mortgagees who are in the best position to avoid the risk.

        • Peggy

          The CNBC guy gave voice to the TARP anger.

          I have posited that, had McCain spoken out against TARP he would have won in 08. But he bungled the thing badly. (No, I don’t like him, but I like O less.)

          • jroberts548

            TARP was directed to financial institutions. HAMP was directed to mortgagors (home-owner borrowers). The guy was upset about Obama’s proposal to bail out mortgagors. He ranted about not wanting to pay “losers'” mortgages and his neighbor’s mortgage. The spark that started the Tea Party was about a program that ostensibly bailed out borrowers. (With the caveat that a lot of the Tea Party anger about HAMP is mixed together with anger about TARP, and that Santelli was just a small, highly visible part of the Tea Party catalyst.)

  • Peggy

    Here is why the hoards are coming now…in advance of O’s planned Exec Order on DREAMers. How could any one tell they’ve been here one year or 10?

    http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/382981/ted-cruz-bill-would-ban-obamas-next-executive-action-immigration-joel-gehrke

    My children were legal immigrants and we provide for them. We had to go through quite a bit to get them in. We had to naG INS (at the time) to have our paperwork ready. Calls to Congressoids got the job done. Immigration should be orderly and just. Legal immigrants wait in backlogs to have their cases heard. Sometimes for years they wait. They’re usually able to provide for themselves and their families. They must to qualify.

    • The Deuce

      My children were legal immigrants and we provide for them.

      Which is more than any of the smug jackasses accusing you of being a xenophobe for having some respect for reality and the law can say, I reckon. Incidentally, my wife is an immigrant too.

      • Peggy

        Thanks! Good on you for your commentary here. I’ve come to think of this blog as Occupy Shea.

      • freddy

        What a delightfully un-self-aware comment!

  • The Deuce

    I see my own state’s governor, Martin O’ Malley, is taking the standard “compassionate liberal” stance here, namely “Compassion demands that these kids need to be allowed to stay here in America forever, and given welfare! Oh, but not in MY state. It’s your problem, and if you balk at the burden I’m shifting to you, you’re racist!”

    Oh, and his excuse is that Maryland is too full of xenophobic conservatives who will be mean to the kids. Yes, Maryland. Maryland the wholly owned subsidiary of the Democratic party. Because we’ll “harass” the children. Which is apparently worse than the “certain death” he claims they face back home. Unbelievable.

    • Mike Blackadder

      Yup, I’m sure that Mark would agree that O’Malley should come and help or shut his mouth.

      • The Deuce

        No, because Mark wouldn’t even notice it without me pointing it out, since it would never filter into his echo chamber of conservative-bashing slander.

        • Mike Blackadder

          Yes, he does do a bit of the conservative-bashing. In my case that’s the pot calling the kettle black though.

    • Dan C

      The Politico article affirms the denial of a Western Maryland site but also indicates that O’Malley and his aides are sorting through an alternate site.

      Did you see that?

      • The Deuce

        Oh yeah, it’s in the “preliminary” stages, where it will stay. Gotta get the “buy-in” of the locals and everything – when dealing with his own liberal constituents (who will say no).

  • Elmwood

    Imagine a United States where all Catholics would practice humility and obedience to their bishops in matters of faith and morals rather than their political ideologies or favorite talk radio host.

    Imagine Peggy not seeing every ethical issue through the lens of an Obama conspiracy.

    • Peggy

      Caring for the needs of the poor doesn’t mean allowing them to stay and erasing our borders for the wellbeing of our citizens.

      • http://outsidetheautisticasylum.blogspot.com/ Theodore Seeber

        And it might mean taking massive amounts of undocumented immigrants means that the home country is a *failed government* that needs to be corrected.

    • Dave G.

      Imagine a world in which people can disagree without being accused of not caring about children and being racists. I think your scenario is more likely.

      • Elmwood

        Imagine a world where Dave G. and the rest of the thin skinned Catholics would stop being so sensitive like little girls.

        • Dave G.

          Imagine a world where some Catholics didn’t make Jack Chick look tolerant and reasonable by comparison and remembered Jesus was talking about them, too, when he spoke about thing like judging others. Though some, from the looks of things, might have a tough time believing that. Far better to stake our righteousness on topical debates on the Internet as opposed to behaviors we ourselves might have to account for. But I dream. Your imaginings are far more likely from what I can tell.

          • Marthe Lépine

            There is a great difference between judging people’s comments and behaviour and judging the people themselves, don’t you know? Disagreement against a comment that looks particularly wrong to the eyes of the reader can be expressed in strong terms, but is not necessarily an attack on the author of the comment.

            • Dave G.

              Yes it can. You can go after opinions all you want. You can let fly at the substance of an argument all you want. But it’s a tired, and spiritually dangerous, tendency to read racism, or xenophobia, or the lack of care about children, or the desire to throw old people off cliffs into those who hold the opinions. Those pass beyond commentary and go to the old tendency of judgement, as well as trying to marginalize the people themselves, rather than deal with the subject at hand.

              You know Marthe, I remember growing up when liberals screamed about those who questioned the patriotism of anyone who criticized our country. Fair point. But if that was wrong (calling people unpatriotic because they criticize the country), it stands to reason it’s just as wrong to accuse people of being racist, sexist, bigots, xenophobes, or whatever just because of where they stand or what they argue. Unless, of course, it was quite appropriate after all to point out that people who question a country are likely unpatriotic, and all that fussing back then was just whining for no reason. It can’t be both.

              • Marthe Lépine

                All right, then. But I am afraid that if I said that someone’s comments were tainted with racism, sexism etc… I would still be accused of judging the person’s thought processes. Same thing if I dared to say that the comments in question “were” racist, sexist, etc. If i said that the comments were simply wrong without giving a reason, I would be accused of making a rash judgement of all that the person has said without giving any reason, or even to condemn everything that that person has to say. If I said that the comments were wrong because – they expressed racism, sexism etc. I would still be accused of judging the person. So you would prefer me to not give any opinion if I did not agree, letting the person believe that their comment was ok as far as I was concerned? Did not Jesus say that nothing a person eats can make that person unclean, but what comes out of the person’s mouth could be sinful? Or something to that effect…

                • Dave G.

                  It depends. Racism is one of the most often used accusations in our day. And of course, some criticisms of the country are not anything other than country bashing, hating, or whatever. Certainly, racism is there, and racist comments can happen. Heck, there may be a ‘taint’ (a easily applied term) of racism in some things, and it depends on how you define racism. Some, as my boy pointed out, say that you can always tell a racist by the color of his skin. Get that? It’s the latest, vogue racism. If you say someone is pointing to Hispanics in all this because they are racist, well no. Because this is a particular issue dealing with a particular people from a particular ethnic group and culture. They could be racist of course. But not automatically.

                  No, racism is too loosely tossed about today. So is sexism, homophobia, bigotry. These are the terms tossed out far too often today. Unless you support gay marriage, then you know the frustration of having any discussion of anything to do with the subject condensed to a simple ‘you’re a homophobe!’ Then the same for other issues as well. Or, for that matter, remember the days when people were called unpatriotic for questioning the country. It can happen, but like anything, we should *know* and be able to *prove* the charge before we make it. Anything less, and we’re just doing what we hate when it’s done to us. And that violates that age old Golden Rule principle we Catholics should aspire to live by.

    • Mike Blackadder

      If you want to FLING that argument Elmwood, then lets point out that if Catholics practiced humility and obedience to the faith there is 0% chance any Catholic could in good conscience be a Democrat or vote for Barack Obama.

      Obama’s position, Nancy Pelosi’s position and the official position of the Democrat party is to defend the most extreme forms of abortion, of experimentation on human embryos and they are completely unapologetic. Church dogma teaches that we can disagree about systems of government, that there is no one right economic model that must be pursued, it does not tell us what tax rates on wealthy Americans ought to be, but dogma is very clear that the Democrat party’s anti-life platform is inherently evil. His violation of religious liberty is inherently evil. The lies that he lives by to survive politically are morally depraved.

      There are many reasons why this particular catastrophe is upon us, and many things that we could do to alleviate the suffering and correct what has gone wrong. Among these causes is public messaging from this administration that illegal immigration (particularly for children) is a path to citizenship, and his administration has conspicuously taken the position of undermining border security. Does that amount to a conspiracy? I don’t know and at this point it’s a meaningless distinction. His entire presidency is characterized by lying according to political expediency, quelling dissent by being a political thug and by alarming scandal in every area of his governance.
      Maybe Elmwood, if you weren’t so offended by people criticizing Obama and your own poor decisions in supporting his election you wouldn’t feel compelled to defend indefensible immoral positions. Maybe that’s a lower priority than practicing charity and getting to the bottom of these problems.

      • Marthe Lépine

        Do you really mean that it is more Catholic to vote for the party that favored torture, war mongering and trickle-down economics, among other? Torture and war are life issues as much as abortion. From my observation point up North, I have always wondered why people, once born, become so much less important than the unborn… Are not all people equally important before God?

        • Mike Blackadder

          As I mentioned in the last comment, the policies that are emphatically and unapologetically asserted from Obama and Pelosi on the ‘right to abortion’ is inherently evil and church dogma asserts that is the case.

          The GOP platform does not say that they are pro-torture or pro-war and they actually endorse a more nuanced economic policy than trickle-down (not that this is inherently evil in any case). In fact, the GOP argument regarding enhanced interrogation was that they were NOT torturing people according to a definition of torture. The GOP argument regarding war was that it was necessary. In any case the objective of a war effort is invariably working toward peace. It is just that there is disagreement about how to obtain peace.

          The fact that you don’t agree with the GOP about how to ensure peace for Americans and others victimized by violence in the world, the fact that you don’t agree with the GOP about how far to go to prevent the success of terrorist attacks on innocent people (for the purpose of sparing human life), the fact that you don’t agree about how to improve economic conditions doesn’t make Republican policies inherently evil even if you like to imagine that Republicans are inherently evil! Because in all of these cases the reason for these policies is to correct injustice and bring peace, to protect innocent life, and to promote employment opportunity and overall economic success.

          This is not comparable to an objective that characterizes those opposed to medical murder as ‘haters of women’ and ‘religious fanatics imposing their beliefs on others’. This is not comparable to a platform based on the assertion that it is a woman’s ‘right’ to end the life of a baby for no reason but that it is in their body.

          A practice of obedience and humility would mean that superficial characteristics of likeability and approval from popular culture would give way to the recognition of inherently evil objectives.

    • Peggy

      I am so flattered by all this direct attention. It’s going to go to my head.

  • Willard

    We need to take care of these refugees but if we don’t do something about the capitalist hellholes these kids are coming from, it will only be a bandaid solution.

    These kids are coming from El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala. They are NOT coming from Nicaragua.

    http://www.nicanet.org/?page=blog&id=27148

    • The Deuce

      Heh, the only way to get a “compassionate” CAEI liberal to acknowledge that this is a band-aid, and that there is real a problem here that really needs to be solved, is if they can blame it on “capitalism” or something. LOL, I’ll take it.

      (Now observe the lack of outrage from those supposedly outraged at the politicization of the human crisis)

      • Willard

        I don’t see anyone denying that dealing with the refugee crisis is a band-aid solution.

        The Holy Father himself said, “These measures, however, will not be sufficient, unless they are accompanied by policies that inform people about the dangers of such a journey and, above all, that promote development in their countries of origin.

        But maybe he is just a CAEI liberal, huh?

        • The Deuce

          No, the Pope couldn’t possibly have said that. After all, you folks are all about what the Pope says at CAEI, and I’m reliably informed by CAEI that nobody is foolish or uncaring enough to send these children on the journey without full knowledge of the dangers already, and that they only do it because they’re forced to do it, and that to try to discourage it from happening or to consider them responsible for their choice in any way makes you a monster who doesn’t care about helping the desperate.

          And clearly when Pope Francis said “promote development in their countries of origin” he meant “get rid of capitalism.” Any talk of discouraging the dangerous journey by unaccompanied minors or repatriating them at some point is callously injecting politics into a desperate situation, but getting rid of their “capitalist hellholes”? That’s just non-political common sense there, which we can all agree on. Nope, CAEI’s residents aren’t hard-left ideologues at all; it’s just bonafide Catholicism through and through, straight outta the Catechism.

          • Willard

            Wow that might be the most straw men arguments in one post I’ve ever read.

            Would you be so kind to point out who at CAEI would disagree with even ONE word of the Pope’s letter?

            http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2014/07/15/pope_calls_for_protection_of_unaccompanied_child_migrants_/1102879

            • The Deuce

              The lunatic who misrepresents the Pope to support his contention that we need to “do something about the capitalist hellholes” in Central America is accusing me of straw-man misrepresentation? Now that is funny. I don’t even know where to begin.

              And, as predicted, no outrage from the people outraged that anyone would politicize this crisis, because by “politicize the crisis” they just meant “offer a non-left-wing solution to this crisis.”

    • Balin

      The Sandinistas are pro-life. This needs a bit more publicity than it is apparently getting. Thanks for the link. I hope people read it.

    • Peggy

      There is not “capitalism” in those countries. They are oligarchies, “crony capitalism” banana republic at best.

      Please read the work by Hernando de Soto who has worked to obtain legal rights and property rights for native peoples in a number of Latin Am nations. Those nations and its citizens at all levels do better than in these countries.

  • The Deuce

    TRIGGER WARNING: RITUALLY IMPURE SOURCE

    “The Obama administration reports a 92% surge
    in the detention of unaccompanied minors in the last fiscal year.
    Children traveling with their mothers are also overwhelming the U.S.
    Border Patrol. Most are Guatemalans, Hondurans and Salvadorans. Some say
    they are escaping gang violence—although getting through Mexico is
    usually more perilous for Central Americans than what they face back
    home. If they hail from rural areas, they are likely to have more
    problems with gangs in U.S. cities than where they come from….

    But migration itself produces victims, such
    as wives hoping for the deportation of their husbands, and they are far
    from the only ones. Where I work in Guatemala, remittances have inflated
    the price of land to astounding levels; most families are unable to buy
    property unless they can place at least one wage-earner in the U.S. So
    every family is under pressure to send someone north. Migrants must
    borrow at least $5,000 to pay human smugglers. Many pay 10% monthly
    interest and put up family land as collateral. So they’re betting the
    farm. When something goes wrong, they lose it.”

  • The Deuce

    I’ve seen a lot of insistence, here and elsewhere, that any talk of repatriating the unaccompanied minors to their homes, or stopping the influx and telling parents not to send them, or worrying about the consequences to American citizens, somehow distracts from giving the desperate the care they urgently need at this pressing moment and is incompatible with it.

    Because apparently we can’t walk and chew bubble gum at the same time.

    And yet, reforming and developing their home countries (to be accomplished by depopulating them and overthrowing capitalism, apparently) is ever FURTHER in the future of considerations, but somehow we can talk about that now, as Pope Francis did?

    Let’s blow this silly little ruse open and acknowledge the elephant in the room: The people making these arguments aren’t opposed to discussion of repatriation and border enforcement because the situation is just too urgent to even mention them right now. They’re opposed to it because they are ideologically opposed to the idea of American border enforcement and deportations at all, anytime, ever. The “urgency” bid is a cynical attempt exploit the emergency to push their long-term political goals under the auspices pure apolitical “compassion,” and to knock down objections using emotional blackmail. Whether they’re lying to themselves or just to others, I cannot say. Probably some of both, depending on the person doing it.

    • petey

      i’ll pray for you.

    • Mike Blackadder

      Hear hear. Well done!

  • Andy

    Maybe some time for a little reflection – or self introspection;

    From the dictionary – the
    policy of protecting the interests of native-born or established inhabitants
    against those of immigrants. As in a “a deep vein of xenophobia and
    nativism
    So many of the comments in this blog are in line with the nativist or no-nothing party –or the American Party – highly anti-immigrant. The only difference is that many of posters are not professing open hostility to the Catholic Church, but they do express deep concerns about the leader of the church and how he is not aware of the issues in America and has no business in telling Americans how to behave, other than with are the pelvic issues. This is similar to how the
    no-nothings of the mid-1800s viewed the church and the pope.

    What so many of the nativists did was erect a false idol – America and to a large degree mammon- that they lost sight of of who should be worshiped – God.

    • Marthe Lépine

      I find it extremely troubling that in this present instance, the reason that there is not as much open hostility to the Catholic Church… is that many or even most of the comments are made by people who claim to be Catholic. As a Canadian, I am a little nonplussed when I witness this attitude.

    • Mike Blackadder

      Andy, instead of saying ‘many of the comments in this blog are in line with…” why don’t you illustrate exactly who and what you are talking about.
      This vague blanket condemnation of other people’s arguments doesn’t serve any kind of useful purpose, unnecessarily bring on defensiveness from others while losing any opportunity to reach understanding.

      • Andy

        Calling out names leads to the very defensiveness you are talking about – in fact I received a rather defensive response that has been deleted. My goal was for people to think before they wrote – the whole idea of self-reflectgion and introspection.

        • Mike Blackadder

          It comes across as passive aggressive.

  • Benjamin2.0

    Blechh. Nope. I’m out. There’s too much argue-against-the-other-guy’s-presumed-motives-rather-than-his-arguments for me to catch up. Have fun, guys. You’re likely all wrong. Try to be satisfied with that general statement. I know I won’t be, but we’ll have to make due.


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