May 1 and Jewish Immigrants

As tomorrow, May 1, marks the National Day of Action–“a day without immigrants”, a national boycott to demonstrate the economic impact of immigrants in this country, immigrant rights groups are calling for support through various methods, including boycotting work, school and shopping to show support for immigrant rights. In this call, it is important for us to take stock of Jewish immigrants who are directly impacted.
Mik Moore at jspot gives us a glimpse of the impact, or more so the lack of information on the impact on Russian Jewish immigrants:

    I have not seen any polling of the Russian Jewish community on the question of illegal immigration (my guess is that it is split on possible solutions), but I would hope that any future Russian Jewish elected would keep in mind these observations from 2004 by Natalie Shapiro, publisher and editor of Russian Bazaar newspaper.
    The problem of illegal immigrants is difficult and requires a solution, and it is good that President Bush has taken the first step. I support his project. It is wrong to distinguish people simply on the basis of how and in what way they arrived to America. In America there are now many illegal Russian-speaking Jews, including people from Israel. They want to work, but businesspeople cannot hire them. Even I had to turn away undocumented work applicants; it is very unpleasant to have to issue such a severe sentence, to take on the role of a judge. Newspapers always need specialists, as do many other business … I empathize with “undocumented people” and I am always glad if I can help them legalize their status.

In the past week, over 1,100 undocumented workers in at least 26 states have been arrested by police working under the direction of the Homeland Security Department in an attempt to intimidate immigrant communities and frighten folks from participating in the growing Immigrant’s Rights Movement. Some say it’s also tactic by the Bush administration to demonstrate that they are still “serious about enforcement” while pushing for “guest worker” programs to boost their economic profit.
Suffice to say, it’s time for us to take stock. Commemorate May 1 in honor of our ancestor’s past, and Jewish immigrants’ current day struggles and futures in this nation along with all immigrants.

5 thoughts on “May 1 and Jewish Immigrants

  1. The united states had laws it must enforce. No other country in the world would agree to what you want the US to agree to.
    As for the russian Jewish immigrants. I guess the fine mess of the Israeli wellfare state left them no choice. Create a problem, demand a solution.

  2. The united states had laws it must enforce.
    And when those laws are not practical, it will be impossible to enforce them. And when they are not just, it is unjust to enforce them. Both situations are true here. As the descendant of immigrants, some of whom fudged their documents to excape persecution (and would thus be considered “illelgal” today, I am proud to stand with immigrants on this May Day.

  3. People do not have an ‘inalienable’ right to move to any country they want. Every country has a right to decide who may enter and who may not. If someone has broken the law to enter the country, and they cannot claim refugee status because very few of them are refugees, the only ‘right’ they have is to be humanely deported to their country of origin without any physical harm being done to them.
    You are certainly right that some immigration laws are immoral, but requiring Mexicans and Russians (Jewish or not) who have no moral or other ‘right’ to immigrate to the US to go through the process (as obnoxious and grueling as it surely is) does not seem immoral to me. The US cannot maintain an utterly porous border, and security, and have control over the number of immigrants DESIRED by the country to supplement the workforce.

  4. There is no excuse for illegal immigration. I am a Russian Jewish immigrant, and my family worked hard to get to America. Letting people slide is not an option, be they Mexican, Russian, Aisan, etc.

  5. I must say, my wife is a French citizen and we have been fighting for her citizenship for a bit. We married here but planned on going to Israel right after the wedding. When our plans changed, we proceeded with applying for citizenship.
    It is a long and time consuming and sometimes money consuming proccess.
    If anyone deserves citizenship amnesty I think it is someone in our situation, we have a legal right and a moral right to request such.
    Would it make sense that those who don’t have such rights (ie. illegals) advance on our requests and recieve citizenship before us?
    Well that’s what may happen if these protestors get their way.

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