Tuesday, June 28, 2011

6 Undocumented Youth Arrested at Georgia Capitol. Civil rights summer for immigration?

Felipe Baeza. Twitter photo: Likeafox23
(Atlanta, GA) - Six undocumented students have been arrested for an act of civil disobedience near the state capitol building this afternoon. The youth risk deportation for their protest of HB 87, a recent Georgia law modeled after Arizona’s SB 1070. Its restrictions will negatively affect and severely isolate the state's immigrant community. Some call the law "draconian" and consider it far worse than the Arizona predecessor.


“It is time for undocumented youth across the South to come out and fight against injustice,” said Dulce Guerrero, one of the students participating in the action. “My dreams and my family are under attack.”


Dulce Guerrero, 18; Jessica Vasquez, 18; Rolando Zenteno, 16; Nataly Ibarra, 16; Felipe Baeza, 24; and Leeidy Solis, 16 were arrested by capitol police. All are current high school students except for Guerrero, who graduated earlier this month, and Baeza, who received his Bachelor’s degree from The Cooper Union in New York in 2009. All are Georgia residents except for Baeza, a college graduate who lives in New York.



Baeza immigrated from Mexico at the age of 7. His participation is in solidarity with the undocumented youth from Georgia. Felipe states, “I am tired of waiting, I am tired of living in the shadows of hate and ignorance, I am tired of people deciding and having the power over my future. I can no longer allow myself to be fooled and placated with smiles, promises and handshakes. I want actions, I want to be free!” [read Felipe's story here]

The protest is the second of its kind in Atlanta in 2011. A similar action occurred on the campus of Georgia State University in April. Students who attempted to block an intersection near the State Capitol were arrested in that incident. Protest organizers vow to continue taking action until states stop attempting to persecute undocumented immigrants and the federal government lays out a pathway to legal status.


A statement from The DREAM is Coming project advises the public to anticipate more civil unrest: 
"Acts of resistance like the one today are part of a rising trend in undocumented youth using direct action to advocate for themselves and their families. As undocumented youth grow impatient with Washington games and increased criminalization, we will continue to step out of the shadows and into the streets."
Source: The DREAM is Coming; New York State Youth Leadership Council

1 comment:

Vicente Duque said...

Houston homebuilder Bob Perry and grocery chain magnate Charles E. Butt ( HEB ) hired one of Austin's most powerful lobbyists to oppose the "Sanctuary Cities". Bob Perry is Texas top Republican donor. Last year, he gave some $7 million, $2.5 million to Rick Perry.


Lawmakers said business interests worried that the law would allow police to harass their workers. The construction and retail industries employ thousands of immigrants in Texas and across the nation.

The testimony of high level law enforcement officials throughout the state and opposition by key Republican frunders such as the Butt family of HEB convinced key Repulicans in the house to block the bill in the house.


REUTERS.COM
Business lobby helps scuttle immigration curbs in Texas
Business interests and law enforcement opposed bill
Texas legislation less restrictive than Arizona's
By Karen Brooks


http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/06/30/immigration-texas-idUSN1E75S29320110630



Some excerpts :

BUSINESS CONCERNS

Two powerful Texas businessmen joined the lobbying against the bill, legislative sources told Reuters.

Houston homebuilder Bob Perry and grocery chain magnate Charles E. Butt hired one of Austin's most powerful lobbyists to oppose the legislation.

Bob Perry has long been known as the top Republican donor in Texas. Last year alone, he gave some $7 million to political candidates, mainly Republicans, according to the Texas Ethics Commission. Some $2.5 million of that went to Governor Rick Perry. Bob Perry is not related to the governor.

Butt, who owns the H-E-B grocery store chain, donated close to $1 million to political candidates on both sides of the aisle last year, according to the commission.

"They had real reservations about it," Bill Miller, the lobbyist hired by the influential businessmen, told Reuters. "They wanted some changes made, and we expressed the reservations they had about it to members, which kind of slowed it down,"

Miller would not say what those concerns were, and calls to homebuilder Perry for comment were not returned late Wednesday. But lawmakers said business interests worried that the law would allow police to harass their workers. The construction and retail industries employ thousands of immigrants in Texas and across the nation.

Another factor in the bill's demise may have been opposition from Texas law enforcement groups.
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