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Illegals: Will MUSD be a safe haven?
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Editor, Manteca Bulletin,
It was stated in Dennis Wyatt’s Jan. 28 column (“Sanctuary cities: You can’t have your smoothie and eat it too”) that the presidential executive order on interior immigration “… is focused on violent crimes and such”. The article also suggested that one read the order before one “… started howling”.
I read the order then and would like to start howling now. The order contains the following premise: “Many aliens who illegally enter the United States … present a significant threat to national security and public safety.” It proclaims the following solutions: “… prioritize for removal … aliens who: … Have been convicted of any criminal offense; … Have committed acts that constitute a chargeable criminal offense, … In the judgment of an immigration officer, otherwise pose a risk to public safety or national security.” The order’s premise is false and its solutions are not the pathway to solving the challenges resulting from our country hiring millions of undocumented immigrants.
 The removal of Guadalupe García de Rayos – a 22 year resident of Arizona — from her US citizen daughters to Mexico on Thursday requires a howl of protest. Like the mayors of San Francisco, San Jose and Oakland; Mayor Stanton of Phoenix is not amused: “President Trump is tearing families apart, undermining public safety and will ultimately hurt our economy.” The “such” referred to in the Bulletin covers about 8 million of our neighbors according to the LA Times.
 The presidential order is a “rotten banana”. It disrespects subsidiarity and undermines local order: “We know that cooperative relationships between law enforcement and immigrant communities are vital. I fear that this Executive Order may be injurious to that vital necessity. (Bishop Joe S. Vasquez of Austin, Texas, U.S. Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Migration.)
 Our immigrant neighbors include many “DREAMERS” who represent substantial public investments through their education. For this reason school districts are following the lead of Tom Torlakson (State Superintendent of Public Education): “Some California districts, such as the Los Angeles Unified School District and Sacramento Unified School District, have declared themselves to be “safe havens” to let their communities know they will maintain a welcoming environment for all students and parents. I support this message.”
 SUSD’s message includes: “Designating school sites, facilities, and equipment as safe havens for students, families and the community;  Allocating adequate resources necessary to support diversity, inclusion, and the values of a multicultural society; Hosting a day of understanding across the District.” Tracy and Stockton have passed similar resolutions. Will Manteca Unified also commit to being a safe haven?
 This “smoothie” is a toxic drink for any Democrat: “For the community of conservative thinkers and experts, and more importantly, conservative politicians, this is a testing time. … it will be a split between those obsessed with anxiety, hatred, and resentment, and those who can hear Lincoln’s call to the better angels of our nature, whose America is not replete with carnage, but a city on a hill.” Eliot Cohen (Counselor to President Bush).
 My maternal grandparents emigrated from Europe to Mexico and then to California to escape the ravages of wars. My father was also an immigrant and together with my mother sponsored many maternal relatives from Mexico. Though grateful to California, these relatives remembered the historical loss of this land to conquest by the USA. From a long enough perspective we are all foreigners. Still, contrary to the Bulletin’s conclusion, perhaps there is way to “have your smoothie and eat it too”. The recipe is found in the shared text of the Abrahamic religions: “The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born.” (Leviticus 19:32. NIV)

 Léo Bennett-Cauchon
Editor’s note: Wyatt’s column stated, “The move against sanctuary cities is focused on violent crimes and such.” It did not imply that was what President Trump’s executive order said. The reference to not howling — “anyone bothered to listen or read (what)  is being pursued before they started howling — simply is withholding federal funds from jurisdictions that refuse to comply with federal immigration laws.” Again, it referred to sanctuary cities and not the travel ban.