Killing of L.A. student prompts immigration enforcement push

Killing of L.A. student prompts immigration enforcement push – San Diego Union Tribune
City hands-off policy comes under fire amid gang-tied case

By Jennifer Steinhauer
NEW YORK TIMES NEWS SERVICE

May 15, 2008

LOS ANGELES – Jamiel Shaw never gave much thought to the immigration status of gang members in his South Los Angeles neighborhood. With his military wife deployed to Iraq and two sons to raise, there were football practices to manage, shoes to buy, college applications to consider.

But in the two months since his older son, Jamiel, was gunned down by a man the police say is a gang member who was here illegally from Mexico, Shaw has been able to think of little else.

“I don’t care about illegal people who are working here and taking care of themselves,” Shaw said. “I just feel I am obligated to target illegal aliens in gangs.”

This is the type of story that will end up on anti-migrant websites as an example of why we should push out hard working migrants. However, even the victim’s family member says this is not about hard working people that are here undocumented.

The problem here is that rather than going after ‘real’ criminals which are truly a threat to our homeland security, our government is going after hard working people. As I say, it’s easier to go after working people because you know where to find them. Since gang members and drug dealers are involved in clandestine operations you have to do a little more work. Seeing as how it takes ICE three months to plan a raid where they arrest everyone that can’t immediately prove they’re citizens I can’t imagine how much planning it would take for them to find gang members and get them in custody.

Now truly the issue with gangs is a terrible one because when you’re a career criminal that’s all you think about and, when speaking about undocumented migrants in gangs, sending them back to their native country will only allow them to drum up more recruits. This is the trend that’s been happening with gangs such as MS-13 which have been hyped up as the most violent of them all. This gang is held in high regard by anti-migrant groups as a way to stir fear into Americans in an effort to gain their support against immigration. It’s as if we can just deport terror and expect it to go away like sweeping dust under the rug.

The problem with gangs in general should be a major concern with our Homeland Security Department. Instead they seem to find success in apprehending hard working migrants to the chants of those that wish to vilify them. If it’s a safe country, and world, that we want then let’s stop the violent gangs. Let’s keep children from ending up in gangs and let’s work as a community to show these gangs they’re not welcome. It’s been done many times before and it works.

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