Trump’s Feared Immigration Plans About To Become Nightmare For Many

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Donald Trump during a visit to the Department of Homeland Security January 25, 2017 in Washington, DC signed two executive orders related to internal security and to begin the process of building a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

By Felicia J. Persaud

News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Thurs. Jan. 26, 2017: “Disappointing,” “hateful” and “draconian’ were just some of the terms immigration rights groups used yesterday to describe Donald Trump’s executive plans on immigration even as the US’ 45th President boasted on Twitter that the move was designed to take back control of the country’s borders.

Just five days after taking the oath of Office, Trump much to the glee of his alt-right supporters, wasted no time in making good on his much feared illegal immigration crack down campaign plan.

Trump on Wednesday issued two executive orders on immigration, one which moves to make his big beautiful wall plan a reality by redirecting existing Department of Homeland Security funds to be used erect a “very large” wall on the southern border with Mexico while adding detention facilities there.

Trump said construction on his wall could start in a matter of months to help keep out “illegal immigrants.”

It is unclear still how the wall will be fully paid for since Congress would have to approve additional funds. But Trump’s White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer still insisted Wednesday that Mexico will pay for the 2,000-mile wall. The cost could run up to more than 8 billion according to some rough estimates by construction experts.

The second executive order on immigration nixes federal funding to so-called “sanctuary cities” or cities and counties like New York City and Philadelphia that shield undocumented immigrants from deportation. It also calls for the hiring of 5,000 new border patrol agents and the tripling of Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents.

The Trump plans prompted an immediate outcry from immigrant advocates and others who said the new controversial President was jeopardizing the rights and freedoms of millions of people while treating Mexico as an enemy, not an ally.

Senator Bernie Sanders tweeted: “Our diversity is one of our great strengths. We don’t need a wall. We need an immigration policy designed to unite families not divide them.”

Anti-Trump-Jan212017-protest-nyc

A couple, among millions, protesting the inauguration of Donald Trump
with a “NOT MY PRESIDENT” sign in New York on January 21, 2017. {Roland Hyde Jr. photo}

Steven Choi, executive director of the New York Immigration Coalition, called Trump’s orders “an affront to America’s basic values of dignity, liberty and justice.” He said the move will have “deep repercussions for basic civil liberties and the rights afforded by our Constitution.”

“He has made a clear choice to turn the hateful rhetoric of his campaign into action, taking directives straight from the anti-immigrant playbook,” Choi added.

“These orders send a clear and disappointing signal that the Trump Administration will seek to enact unlawful, draconian immigration policies,”   the ACLU added yesterday. “This is a piece of dangerous political theater that will undermine civil liberties and turn border communities into military zones where heavily armed, poorly trained, and unaccountable agents will wield dangerous influence and authority.”

“Building a border wall sends the wrong message to an important economic trading partner,” LULAC National President Roger C. Rocha, Jr. “It is a message of mistrust and hostility. Mexican immigration to the United States is at net zero and the potential threat of the border serving as an entry point for terrorism is extremely low. Despite these facts, the Trump administration seems intent on wasting taxpayer money on a border wall. It would be better served by investing those dollars in cost-effective law enforcement methods and collaborating on enforcement with the Mexican government.”

“Rather than provide real solutions, President Trump has decided to trigger greater chaos and fear, set in motion a mass deportation force, bully cities that refuse to indiscriminately persecute immigrant communities, and waste billions on a wall,” said National Council of La Raza President and CEO Janet Murguía. “None of these actions will fix anything, but will devastate our economy and the social fabric of our country.”

“These orders will only deepen the wounds of division that Trump promised to heal,” Richard Cohen, President of the Southern Poverty Law Center added. “Like the skyscrapers that bear his name, a wall at the southern border will be nothing more than a monument to Trump’s vanity. And it will be a testament to Congress’s failure to enact meaningful immigration reform. It will waste billions of dollars at a time when the number of unauthorized immigrants from Mexico is actually declining.”

The Trump orders come as the US President and Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto is due to meet next week and as the former executive director of anti-immigrant group FAIR joined the Trump administration.

 

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