Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Immigrant Raids

I found an interesting article explaining how 1,000 illegal immigrants were recently arrested from multiple locations in several different states. The article also explains that 9 individuals from the firm employing the immigrants were charged. The 9 individuals knowingly employed the illegal immigrants, asking them to doctor their W-2 tax forms or telling them they did not need to fill out any forms. It's one thing to be unaware of employing illegal immigrants if they seem to have a legitimate social security number, but it is another thing to actually be aware of their status and agree to employ them. It will be interesting to see how increasing penalties for the employers of illegal immigrants will impact illegal immigrantion in the US overall. Will it help? Will it just put more people on the street? It seems like it is too early to tell, but maybe it is best for those Americans enabling illegal immigrants to live in our country to face some consequences.

White House Puts Face on North Korean Human Rights

The article calls to mind Schulz' book "In Our Own Best Interest" and how human rights and politics can get complicated. In anticipation of the Chinese presidents visit to the White House, many groups have been putting pressure on President Bush to take a stand for human rights. Christian groups and other politicians are urging Bush to discuss China's actions in deporting an asylum seeker from N.Korea. A N.Korean woman managed to escape from N. Korea and enter into China. Instead of granting her asylum China sent her back. N.Korea is a well-known abuser of human rights and Bush has previously denounced them for their actions. But, as the article mentions, the U.S. has been too concerned with the nuclear threat posed by N.Korea to bother with "human rights." Since arriving here on Tuesday, Hu Jintao, the Chinese president, has been visiting with important buisness leaders such as Bill Gates and the chairmen of Starbucks. His trip is very much focused around economics, since China is growing in both political and economic power. This presents a tricky situation for President Bush. Will Bush speak out about China's actions or ignore it for fear of disrupting a political relationship?

Monday, April 17, 2006

High Court annuls asylum for white S.Africans

This article discusses "kinship ties" and persecution within the family. The Thomas family has already faced threats (car vandalized, dog poisoned) against their family by blacks in South Africa, but is that enough to constitute persecution? The courts do not think so. The California appeals court ruled that the Thomas family was eligible for asylum or refugee status, but the Supreme Court ruled that this case should have been sent back to the Board of Immigration Appeals. Should "kinship ties" be considered a social group under asylum law? For now, kinship ties are not considered to be a social group and the Thomas family will probably have to pack up and leave America.