Roundup of news about immigration and faith:
Supporters of Utah’s guest-worker immigration law on Monday launched the first substantive effort in its defense with a website laying out a case for supporting the law to delegates considering the issue at the upcoming Republican state convention.
Last week, supporters of HB116 — including the Salt Lake Chamber of Commerce, the Sutherland Institute, lawmakers and several immigration lawyers — met at the chamber’s downtown offices to coordinate the public relations push.
Scott Trotter, spokesman for the LDS Church, issued a statement saying it wasn’t involved in the effort, but also allowed for some wiggle room as to whether a statement might be issued by the church soon.
“We believe the package of bills passed by the Utah Legislature, including House Bill 116, is a responsible approach to the complex question of immigration reform, and reserve the right to make our position clear and set the record straight now and in the future if it is necessary,” Trotter’s statement read.
The Chicago Tribune reports that the Supreme Court has ruled that in-state tuition can be offered to kids who attend and graduate from California High Schools regardless of document status:
The Supreme Court on Monday rejected a challenge to California’s policy of granting reduced, in-state tuition at its colleges and universities to graduates of its high schools who are illegal immigrants.
The justices turned down an appeal from lawyers for a conservative immigration-law group that contended “preferential treatment” for illegal immigrants violated federal immigration law. They cited a little-known provision in a 1986 law that barred states from giving “any postsecondary benefit” to an “alien who is not lawfully present in the United States ? on the basis of residence within a state.”
And a letter in the Denver Post from a student to President Obama:
Dear President Obama:
My name is Isaias Vasquez. Last month I graduated with honors from the Bruce Randolph School in Denver. I was the student body president and a leader with Metropolitan Organizations for People.
While I’m very proud of how far I’ve come, I face an uncertain future.
A few months ago, you lauded my school in the State of the Union address: “Three years ago, [Bruce Randolph] was rated one of the worst schools in Colorado, located on turf between two rival gangs. But last May, 97 percent of the seniors received their diploma.”
I felt as though your words were directed toward me, and was so thankful you had recognized the hard work of everyone at my school. What you forgot to mention was that at Bruce Randolph, between 40 and 50 percent of the students are undocumented immigrants. My school may graduate 97 percent of its students, but only about half of them have any real hope of attending college.
I am one of those undocumented students. Ten years ago, when I was only 8, I came to Colorado from Mexico. My family migrated to the U.S in search of a better tomorrow when our life as farmers in Zacatecas worsened. I thank God for having such a hard-working family and such strong family values.
Arriving in Colorado, I felt as if there was nothing I couldn’t do, from winning first place in the science fair in third grade to the Young Authors award in fourth grade. I grew up believing that in the U.S, with hard work, my dreams would come true.
But as I got older, I began to realize I was considered inferior and to sense the fear in my community, that my family and I could be deported at any moment. Now, as an undocumented student ready to graduate, I am paying the price for a decision I had no part in making. (read the rest here)
What are the stories in you diocese? What are your thoughts on solving the issues surrounding immigration?