Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Immigrant Rights Struggle Continues!

David Bacon, the author of The Children of NAFTA: Labor Wars on the 
U.S./Mexico Border, wrote Friday that "a groundswell of community groups now
argue that Congress would do better to
pass no bill than a bill that reconciles the
proposal just passed by the
Senate and that passed last December in the House of
Representatives." -- Such a bill "would create deep divisions within the immigrant
community and leave millions of undocumented immigrants in the shadows," according
to a national group of immigrant rights advocates convened by the National Network

for Immigrant and Refugee Rights. Read David Bacon's article here, and
check out his amazing website of photography as well.

For a good background article on the recent rise of the migrant labor movement, check
out an article that James Petras
recently wrote, outlining what should be obvious to most
US citizens: immigrants come here, because we are there. The "we" meaning of course the
US government. A combination of US backed
death squads (the Contras being one of
the more well known examples)
throughout the 20th century, specifically in Central America,
led to the mass
migration of hundreds of thousands. This was followed by the Neoliberal
offensive, formally ushered in by the Reagan administration
in the 1980s but which was fully
supported and accelerated during
the Bill Clinton years in the 90s (remember NAFTA?).
On top of this
of course we are living in a time where the US military has nearly 900 bases
throughout the world, including all over the Americas. In this light it is hard to swallow the
myth of the "illegal alien" trying to undermine the US working class by taking their jobs
and living off of government hand-outs. Either way, the struggle over immigration "reform"
is far from over.

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