WHAT is Comprehensive Immigration Reform or more commonly known: CIR?
First, let’s understand the basics:
Dictionary definition of immigration reform is:
a way to increase legal immigration while decreasing illegal immigration.
So a politician pushing for immigration reform could either be helping immigrants or NOT…right?
Right. Because general immigration reform fails to outline any particular way of how exactly it will attain less illegal immigration and increase legal immigration, immigration reform leaves it up to the individual political parties or politicians to determine how exactly this will happen. In other words, if an anti-immigrant politician like Florida Senator Marco Rubio said he was in favour of immigration reform because he wished to see an increase in legal immigration…he really wouldn’t be lying. HOW he planned on doing that would be solely up to his own discretion.
But is pushing for general immigration reform or comprehensive immigration reform bad?
Let’s look at who pushed it:
In 2006, Comprehensive Immigration Reform was drafted and voted on for the first time by what some would think, a very odd crowd:
1. Pennsylvania Senator Arlen Specter – Republican position for 44 years
(In addition, Specter was also responsible for introducing the CIR bill)
2. Nebraska Senator Chuck Hagel – Republican position for 12 years
3. Florida Senator Mel Martinez – Republican position for 2 years
4. Arizona Senator John McCain – Republican position for 4 years
5. Massachusetts Senator Ted Kennedy – Republican position for 12 years
6. South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham – Republican position for 8 years
7. Kansas Governor Sam Brownback – Republican position for 15 years
Why would so many Republicans be in such favor of Comprehensive Immigration Reform? Why would they, of all people, be interested in pushing for a way to regulate essentially THE FATE of immigrants?
What was found within the small CIR print:
1. It proposed an increase of security along the southern United States border with Mexico.
This is expensive. And when we say expensive, we mean it costs billions. But not only is it expensive it is also deadly. Immigrants will continue attempting to cross, and if there is an increase in security– imagine what the increase in security will do to our immigrant families. This is a modern genocide that CIR or not, is already happening. However, increasing security along the border would by default cause a drastic rise in immigrant murders along that very border.
2. CIR proposed an increase in the guest-worker program.
What is a guest-worker program? It is a fancy way of saying if an immigrant is here illegaly, then let us put them to work. Generally speaking, guest-worker programs range from 3 years, to 5 years and some to infinity. The thing is, this guest-worker status means after an immigrant’s “services” for a big money making corporation are up, they are then forcefully deported. Translation: you work hard for your permitted 3 years, then you go back to where you came from. Not only is a guest-worker program enslavement, it completely ruins the chances of an immigrant one day becoming a citizen. A deportation added to an immigrant’s record would mean that as soon as he/she applied for residency or citizenship, a deportation record would NEVER allow citizenship or residency status.
3. The “Blue card” visa program.
This card is only available for “highly skilled” immigrants. How many of our mothers and fathers actually had an education? My father and mother in particular had only a sixth-grade education under their belt! They do not even fully know how to read in Spanish! The Blue Card System wants nothing but those who are way beyond just a few college courses obtained in their native country. This is what Comprehensive Immigration Reform actually pushes for. May we also remind you: Blue Cards would only be extended for as long as permitted. And they too, would force an immigrant to be deported as soon as it expires.
What happened to the 2006 CIR Bill?
It was introduced on April 7, 2006 by the sponsor of the Bill, Senator Arlen Specter, It was passed on May 25, 2006, by a vote of 62-36. January 3, 2007, the 2006 CIR Bill died. Currently there are various movements attempting to bring CIR back and to push for it harder than ever before. The idea is that it will be a pathway to citizenship. However because there is such a large amount of room for anyone to come in and take complete advantage of the immigration reform situation, we are taking a different approach to immigration. And we, Tampa Dream Defenders have embarked on the mission to fight for ALL-inclusive legalization.
I want to help push for ALL-inclusive legalization…but how?
Tampa Dream Defenders has recently endorsed the national-wide call-to-action called: Legalization for All.
Legalization for All includes ALL undocumented immigrants, because no human being is illegal. If you click the link, you’ll be taken to the longer explanation of the call-to-action and it also shows you the growing list of endorsing organizations as well as individuals. If you are not sure how to endorse, just send them an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or email us at email@example.com
Never than ever has it been a perfect time to fight back. Never than ever have Mexicano, Xicano, Centro Americanos and various other immigrants felt more empowered to demand:
LEGALIZATION FOR ALL.