imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
Features
latest news
best of news
syndication
commentary


KILLRADIO

VozMob

ABCF LA

A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List

LAAMN List




IMC Network:

Original Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

Valley Park, PA enacts Joe Turner's/SOS law

by The Fed Sunday, Aug. 20, 2006 at 12:26 PM

Valley Park, Pensylvannia follows lead on illegal alien law; same law close to passage in several California cities

Valley Park, Pensylvannia follows lead on illegal alien law

By Stephen Deere

ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH

08/19/2006

From the beginning, this is how Joseph Turner envisioned his idea to target illegal immigrants would play out:

Local communities taking up his cause and moving the issue from the halls of Congress into the chambers of city council.

Today, the 29-year-old activist from California is watching cities across the country enact or consider laws to crack down on illegal immigration. They are working off a blueprint he wrote. And some, including Valley Park, have already made it law.

"I knew it would be a big story," said the activist based in San Bernardino.

Back in October, Turner proposed that San Bernardino fine landlords for renting to illegal immigrants, deny business permits and city contracts to the businesses that hire them and conduct all city business in English.

Turner, founder of the anti-illegal immigration group Save Our State and an aide to a state legislator, touted his plan on the radio and sent out hundreds of e-mails to city officials throughout the nation.

He failed to get enough signatures to force a vote on the law in San Bernardino. But word of his cause spread. And eventually, a handful of municipalities adopted ordinances nearly identical to the one he championed.

Immigrant rights' advocates say the law has serious flaws. It has resulted in one lawsuit in Hazleton, Pa., the first municipality to adopt it.

In the end, critics say, the ordinances won't withstand legal challenges and will leave the municipalities with nothing but hefty legal bills and racial tension. The seven communities that have passed the laws have small populations - ranging from 2,000 to 22,000 residents - and five are in Pennsylvania.

Turner, who believes state and federal leaders have moved too slowly on immigration reform, describes himself as a "proud nationalist."

"I believe this country is superior and I believe our culture is superior to all others," he declared.

He sees illegal immigrants as the pre-eminent threat to that culture.

Burdens upon cities

Most cities that have considered a law targeting undocumented workers have just begun to experience the effects of illegal immigration, said Ira Mehlman, spokesman for the Federation for American Immigration Reform in Washington. The group is calling for more stringent immigration policy.

"The burdens fall mainly on local communities and they are forced to act on their own," he said. "People see their lives being disrupted in many ways. People want to feel that they have a sense of control of their communities."

Those burdens, said Mehlman, are just what the enacted laws state: increased crime, overcrowded schools, blighted neighborhoods and a diminished quality of life.

City officials, frustrated by the federal government's slow pace on reform, are not apologetic about the possible impact of the new laws - illegal immigrants, some of whom have lived in their communities for years, suddenly feeling threatened or fleeing.

In Hazleton - population 22,100 - concern grew after a spate of high-profile crimes that involved illegal immigrants, said Joseph Yannuzzi, the City Council president. During one, a teenager fired a gun at a local playground, he said.

"Every illegal is going to have to suffer," he said. "We can't just go after the criminals because we don't know who they are."

Hazleton Mayor Lou Barletta has established a Web site soliciting donations for the city's fees as it fights a suit seeking to overturn the law.

Unlike Valley Park, which has already put some landlords on notice about renting to illegal immigrants, Hazleton has yet to enforce its new law. The city, though, is establishing a system where all renters must pay for a permit. That way, the burden for determining who is lawfully in the country falls on the city, not landlords, who say they don't have the expertise to verify someone's legal status.

Still, the Hazleton ordinance is already having an effect.

"Hispanic store owners are saying their business has dropped," Yannuzzi said. "A great portion of them (illegal immigrants) are out of here."

The 2000 census estimated that about 5 percent of the city's population is Hispanic. But it's unclear how widespread a problem illegal immigration is in the city, Yannuzzi argues. He discounts the census numbers, saying they don't capture all illegals in the city.

"Preventive maintenance"

Valley Park is in a similar situation. The census pegged the city's population at 6,500, most of whom are white. But Mayor Jeffery Whitteaker has described his city's new ordinance as "preventive maintenance."

The law has had an impact. The Archdiocese of St. Louis said last week that it has helped more than 20 families relocate from the city.

Landlords say the law puts them in an impossible position. They have no expertise in verifying immigration documents and if they ask too many questions, they risk being sued for discrimination.

Critics see other problems.

In Avon Park, Fla., City Council member Brenda Gray couldn't see evidence behind the premise that illegal immigrants damage society.

"Has anybody proven this?" Gray asked. "I said, 'Stop. Think about this.'"

More than three weeks ago, the Avon Park council voted 3-2 to reject a proposed law targeting illegal immigration. Gray's was the swing vote that killed the proposal.

Others point to possible legal problems with the laws. Cities copied sections verbatim from Turner's initiative, which he wrote himself. Some of the laws use, but never define, the term "illegal alien."

"There is no legal definition to that term at all," said Suzanne Brown, a St. Louis immigration attorney.

There are numerous situations where a person might be in the country unlawfully but still have permission from the government to live here, Brown said, such as those seeking asylum or cases where the "government recognizes someone is deportable but for humanitarian reasons allows them to stay."

The Hazleton lawsuit, filed in federal court by the Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund and the ACLU, argues that the ordinance violates the U.S. Constitution's supremacy clause. The power to regulate immigration belongs exclusively to the federal government, it says, and the ordinance usurps that power.

Amid the legal filings and staunch declarations, illegal immigrants suddenly feel threatened in places they've called home for years.

A 30-year-old man who asked not to be identified said he fled Valley Park within days of reading about the ordinance. He said he came to the U.S. from Mexico when he was 2. Like other undocumented workers in Valley Park, he feared being deported.

"What would my family do?" he said. "My wife doesn't speak English."

So he put his furniture in storage and took his wife and two daughters, ages 6 months and 6 years, to a hotel for more than a week. A few days ago, he found another rental in Ballwin, he said. Relocating has cost him more than ,000.

"I just wanted to get out of there," he said. "It's just not right."

Turner has heard such stories. They do not lessen his sense of accomplishment as more cities start to consider anti-illegal immigration laws.

"It's a very fulfilling experience," he said.

Report this post as:

LATEST COMMENTS ABOUT THIS ARTICLE
Listed below are the 10 latest comments of 4 posted about this article.
These comments are anonymously submitted by the website visitors.
TITLE AUTHOR DATE
S.O.S. Website Index Page Webmaster Wednesday, Aug. 23, 2006 at 6:18 AM
Web sites looks all the same Fredric L. Rice Wednesday, Aug. 23, 2006 at 8:55 AM
Oh, I should add... Fredric L. Rice Wednesday, Aug. 23, 2006 at 8:58 AM
oh Fred you are so completely full of yourself The Fed Thursday, Aug. 24, 2006 at 5:39 PM

Local News

GUIDE TO REBEL CITY LOS ANGELES AVAILABLE A12 5:39PM

lausd whistle blower A10 11:58PM

Website Upgrade A10 3:02AM

Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images A04 1:02PM

UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light A02 11:58AM

Change Links April 2018 A01 11:27AM

Nuclear Shutdown News March 2018 M31 6:57PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 7:00PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 6:38PM

Spring 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! M19 2:02PM

Anti-Eviction Mapping Project Shows Shocking Eviction Trends in L.A. M16 5:40PM

Steve Mnuchin video at UCLA released M15 12:34AM

Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Clean Ups M06 12:10PM

After Being Told He's 'Full of Sh*t' at School Event, Mnuchin Demands UCLA Suppress Video M02 11:44AM

Resolution of the Rent Strike in Boyle Heights M01 6:28PM

What Big Brother Knows About You and What You Can Do About It M01 3:30PM

Step Up As LAPD Chief Charlie Beck Steps Down F14 2:44PM

Our House Grief Support Center Hosts 9th Annual Run For Hope, April 29 F13 12:51PM

Don’t let this LA County Probation Department overhaul proposal sit on the shelf F13 11:04AM

Echo Park Residents Sue LA Over Controversial Development F12 8:51AM

Former Signal Hill police officer pleads guilty in road-rage incident in Irvine F09 10:25PM

Calif. Police Accused of 'Collusion' With Neo-Nazis After Release of Court Documents F09 7:14PM

Center for the Study of Political Graphics exhibit on Police Abuse posters F07 9:50AM

City Agrees to Settle Lawsuit Claiming Pasadena Police Officer Had His Sister Falsely Arre F04 3:17PM

Professor's Study Highlights Health Risks of Urban Oil Drilling F04 12:42PM

Claims paid involving Pasadena Police Department 2014 to present F04 10:52AM

Pasadenans - get your license plate reader records from police F03 11:11PM

LA Times Homicide Report F03 1:57PM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

Tech workers organize A24 6:24PM

Architect Stephen Francis Jones A24 3:01PM

UN Forum Wrestles with Economic Policies 10 Years After Financial Crisis Islands Call for A24 12:34PM

Xyloglossie attitudinale A23 8:07AM

Shadowgun Legends Hack and Cheats A23 7:24AM

What does the Quran Say About Islamic Dress?? A21 4:15PM

Biodiversité ou la nature privatisée A20 11:22AM

The Market is a Universal Totalitarian Religion A20 7:14AM

Book Available about Hispanics and US Civil War by National Park Service A19 5:52PM

The Shortwave Report 04/20/18 Listen Globally! A19 4:01PM

The Republican 'Prolife' Party Is the Party of War, Execution, and Bear Cub Murder A19 11:48AM

Neurogenèse involutive A18 9:21AM

Paraphysique de la dictature étatique A16 10:13AM

Book Review: "The New Bonapartists" A16 3:45AM

The West Must Take the First Steps to Russia A14 12:25PM

Théorie générale de la révolution ou hommage à feu Mikhaïl Bakounine A14 3:30AM

The Shortwave Report 04/13/18 Listen Globally! A12 3:50PM

“Lost in a Dream” Singing Competition Winner to Be Chosen on April 15 for ,000 Prize! A12 3:48PM

The World Dependent on Central Banks A12 4:43AM

Ohio Governor Race: Dennis Kucinich & Richard Cordray Run Against Mike DeWine A11 9:40PM

March 2018 Honduras Coup Again Update A10 10:52PM

Apologie du zadisme insurrectionnel A10 3:33PM

ICE contract with license plate reader company A10 1:14PM

Palimpseste sisyphéen A09 11:23PM

Black Portraiture(S) IV: The Color of Silence...Cuba No...Cambridge Yes A09 5:32AM

Prohibiting Micro-Second Betting on the Exchanges A09 4:18AM

Prosecutors treat Muslims harsher than non-Muslims for the same crimes A08 10:33PM

Amy Goodman interview on cell phone safety A08 10:29PM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy