Connecting the Attacks

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Photos and text by Sarah Phelan.

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Unjust immigration laws destroy families and harm workplaces, said protesters at today's anti ICE rally at City Hall.

If you are part of San Francisco’s immigrant and/or transgendered community, chances are you’ve figured out that a three-pronged attack on the protections that this City offers is in full swing.

If you are not, then today’s rally at City Hall helped people connect the dots.

1. ICE raids have intensified. (On average, San Francisco has one a year, but there have already been two in 2008. The first was May 2 at El Balazo Taquerias. The second was September 11 at a residential residence.

2. The City’s Sanctuary Ordinance is under attack following a series of embarrassing leaks ( under investigation by the Public Defender’s Office) about how San Francisco has been handling undocumented juveniles felons.

3. Mayor Gavin Newsom says implementing the municipal ID legislation, which the Board of Supervisors has already approved, isn’t a priority.

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Claire Bohman, co-chair of the San Francisco chapter of Pride at Work, told the Guardian, that many within San Francisco’s immigrant and transgendered community came to this city precisely because they saw it as a sanctuary.

“So we understand the importance of the City’s Sanctuary Ordinance for all marginalized people,” Bohman said, who was also concerned that there is no definite time frame for the municipal ID program to begin.

“Transgendered folk are going to benefit tremendously from this program,” Bohman said. ‘It’s a bureaucratic nightmare when you are born one gender and live it another. Even getting your name changed is a problem. So, this is going to open a lot of doors for us.”

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SEUI Local 1021's Robert Haaland talked about the hell he went through trying to get such paperwork sorted out.

Transgender hero Cecilia Chung worried that, “if San Francisco revokes its Sanctuary ordinance, just because of a couple of attacks, it will undo the hard work of the past two decades.”

Municipal ID author Sup. Tom Ammiano told the crowd, “ We’ve got to make people see the connections. We are under attack by U.S. Attorney Joseph Russoniello and some of the Mayor’s advisers. The Sanctuary ordinance is not to be used as a weapon against immigrant communities.”

(Russoniello, who was U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of California from 1982-1990, began his second term as U.S. Attorney last winter. One of the mayor’s current advisers is fired former U.S. Attorney Kevin Ryan, who Newsom tapped to head the Mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice last winter. Ryan and Russoniello's hiring coincided with the time that federal authorities first stopped a San Francisco probation officer at Houston airport who was helping the city to fly home juvenile Hondurans, rather than see them be deported. In late June these activities, along with the sending of undocumented juveniles to group homes, was leaked to the media, even though juvenile court records are confidential. The Public Defender’s Office has launched an investigation into the leaks.)

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Ammiano told the rally that stronger, not weaker, policies were needed, and he called upon the business community to be vocal.

“It’s not right to use the labor, then say nothing when they are subjected to Stasi-like raids,” Ammiano said.

“We’re not fodder for the Fox News network or incendiary headlines in the local media,” he added, referring to what locals feel has been racist coverage of the issue in the Chronicle.

“As long as I am here, the municipal ID program is going to go forward, strong and pure,” Ammiano concluded.

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(The Immigration Reform Law Institute is seeking to block enforcement of the ordinance, by alleging that is was adopted in violation of the California Environmental Quality Act, constitutes an illegal expenditure of funds, and is preempted by federal immigration law.
The City Attorney has filed a counter suit, claiming the ordinance was thoroughly vetted.
Kris Kobach, who is currently suing San Francisco on behalf of the family of Tony Bologna, has been described as “a one-man legal army for IRLI.” Bologna and his two sons were murdered as they were returning home from a picnic. Kobach is going after San Francisco’s sanctuary ordinance in this case, because the alleged killer, Edwin Ramos, is accused of going through the City’s juvenile system as an undocumented juvenile felon and of never having been referred to federal immigration authorities. The City Attorney, claiming the municipal.)

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Ben Lunine of the Transgender Law Center told the crowd that he deplored, “Acts of abuse used by ICE against the people in the raids.”

(Sheila Chung Hagen of the City Adminsitrator’s Office told us that ICE appears to have entered the Visitacion Valley residence during its September 11 raid, without a warrant. They arrested 4 women and two men, leaving behind a 15-year old girl, who had applied to be in the country legally, but whose mother was among those detained. During the raid, one of the men was beaten up with a baton by ICE agents, Chung Hagen says. ICE agents said the man brandished some kind of kitchen utensil, but all the witnesses say he didn’t, Chung Hagen adds. Though local law enforcement was seen at the premises, Chung Hagen said they were reportedly responding to a call from a neighbor, who reported an altercation at the residence. ICE says at least one SFPD officer stayed with the girl after her family was taken away, until her aunt showed up. City officials learned of the raid, when the girl, who was freaked out, went to Mission High School, the next day, and told her teacher. Three of those detained are now out of ICE detention, but wearing ankle bracelets, the other three, including the girl’s mother and the man who was beaten up, and has his hand in a sling, have already been transferred to a federal facility in Phoenix, Arizona. ICE agents say the man didn’t want to go to the hospital, but they took him there. Witnesses say it was the man who requested to go to SF General. So far, ICE has not provided the City with a medical report.)

“The Sanctuary ordinance does not stop ICE raids from happening, Chung Hagen told us. “But it does give us the opportunity to denounce them and to not share information that is not required by federal or state law.”

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(Chung Hagen also told us that recently a young boy broke into his brother’s car. He was borrowing it and left the keys inside, she said. The police apprehended him and charged him with a felony. But even though the judge threw out his case, unfortunately the Juvenile Probation Department had to turn him over to ICE, because of the Mayor’s recent shift in direction around the sanctuary ordinance, which now says the City must notify ICE when they book suspected juvenile felons who are suspected undocumented.)

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This new reporting requirement has immigrant rights attorneys and community advocates up in arms, since they fear it will lead to wrongful arrests and deportations. As Angela Chan of the Asian Law Caucus recently pointed out, using Juvenile Probation Department’s data, in 2006, there were 1215 petitions filed, but only 854 were sustained.
288 petitions were filed against Latin American juveniles, but only 211 were sustained. In other words, under the new policy direction, 77 juveniles who weren’t actually found to have committed a felon in San Francisco, would, however, have been reported to ICE, on being booked, and therefore might have been wrongly deported.

Renee Saucedo of the La Razo Centro Legal Community Law Center talked at today's rally of “a community under siege.”

Sup. Chris Daly noted that San Francisco is a city of immigrants.
"An injustice against one of us is an injustice against us all," Daly said.

Sup. Geraldo Sandoval pointed out that many people come to San Francisco from all over Central America because of City reputation as being a bastion of civil liberties, including its acceptance of people who have a different sexual orientation.
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“And guess what, they happen to be undocumented,” Sandoval told the crowd.
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Josue Arguelles of the Queer Youth Organizing Project recalled how six years ago, he wouldn’t have imagined, as a gay Latino, that the very reason he sought out San Francisco would be threatened:
That reason? "The feeling of acceptance, integration and the sense of freedom that comes from being yourself," Arguelles said.

Also at the rally was Sup. Ross Mirkarimi, who had not spoken by the time we left. But last week, Mirkariimi told us that the Board of Supervisors, “shouldn’t be shy about calling out the hypocrisy and contradictions of pretending to have a sanctuary ordinance, when we do don’t.”
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He also suggested that the community demand assistance from their federal representatives and criticized the Mayor’s Office for having largely crafted the policy shift alone.

“A wiser mayor would have would have enabled assistance and required the cooperation of congressional representatives and senators,” Mirkarimi said.
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Comments

THE Federal SAVE ACT (H.R 4088) will terminate for good Sanctuary city and state laws. It has killed thousands of innocent victims in Los Angeles, San Francisco and accross America.

According to the (1986) Immigration Control act. Section 274 felonies under the federal Immigration and Nationality Act, INA 274A(a)(1)(A): they broke Federal law. It states, "..a person (including a group of persons, business, organization, or local government) Then Mayor Newsom, Mayor Villigrossa who must be held accountable for the deaths of 3 Bolgna family members, Jamiel Shaw under the obnoxious 'Sanctuary City' laws by illegal gang member filth.

"Any person who . . . encourages or induces an alien to . . . reside . . . knowing or in reckless disregard of the fact that such . . . residence is . . . in violation of law, shall be punished as provided . . . for each alien in respect to whom such a violation occurs . . . fined under title 18 . . . imprisoned not more than 5 years, or both."

Any form of Obama, McCain Amnesty, must first be voted on by the Congress and Senate? Then unless they secretly try to pass it behind closed doors, then it will never be enacted. Their will be such an uproar from 80 percent of THE PEOPLE. It will be the first time in history that our tainted politicians will be tarred and feathered in the Capitol.

For the facts of the destruction of our economies by millions of illegal aliens feeding at the public trough. Sanctioned crimes in SANCTUARY CITIES & STATES by Governors, Mayors and their pathetic city managers. California being a prime example where $11 billion dollars, in welfare benefits for illegal aliens.

Only elect hard-line anti-illegal immigrant politicians. Illegal Immigration is lowering wages and stealing jobs from legal Americans. This major issue is costing taxpayers too much. Higher property taxes, free health care, education and a multitude of government welfare programs Just take a look at 'Sanctuary City' California's financial demise. $ 11. billion dollars is attributed to the illegal immigrant welfare, who have drained the states funds.

Those who steal across our perforated fence, includes the criminal element that think they above above US law. Each day citizens are slain on the roads of America, by drunk illegal drivers. This is far from isolated case, because these accident reports are not necessary revealed by the biased press. Pedestrians have become 'road kill' daily, especially when the victims are innocent children. Do not expect to read about this carnage in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times. You need to dig deeper in rural newspapers or the e-media on the Internet, to find the unsuppressed facts.

Then we have the violent street gangs protected by 'Sanctuary cities' like Los Angeles. Although thousands have died under the masquerade of Sanctuary city policies. Mayor Villigrossa of Los Angeles, followed closely by Mayor Newsom of San Francisco have allowed the obscene police law to propagate. Even as a speak three lives were taken in Aurora, Colorado by another illegal alien thanks to Mayor John Hickenlooper’s. Then we have honest, pro-American Mayors like Lou Barletta of Hazleton fighting for his citizens, but demonized by anti-sovereignty groups like the ACLU, Southern Poverty League zealots.

The unsuppressed news reports will tell you about the child pedophiles, female assaults, murders, robbers and Social security theft that do not get wide press. Thousands of families are left to pick up the pieces of their shattered lives. The pro-immigrant zealots use the same mantra, that citizens and legal residents commit these crimes also...? But why when we have our own inmate crowding our prisons, should we need to support illegal foreign nationals criminals. Today we cannot even deport them and breathe a sigh of relief, because it seems like days before the return via the porous fence to violate our penal laws.

It seems like our 'Rule of Laws' are violated everyday, because the business empire demands cheap labor. Our corrupt politicians play games with American lives because they refuse to enforce immigration laws. All encompassing is the Federal SAVE ACT(H.R.4088) that Speaker Nancy Pelosi is trying to derail along with the original two-tier border fence.We need 'zero tolerance' enforcement, that will give maximum arrest and detainment of predator employers of illegal immigrants. South Carolina just joined other states with new employer sanction law,but needs the added teeth of the SAVE ACT, which will strengthen its enforcement power.

NO MORE JOBS, ILLEGAL FOREIGN NATIONALS WILL LEAVE & GO HOME. THIS IS CALLED ATTRITION! READ THIS POTENTIAL LAW at http://www.numbersusa.com/PDFs/SAVEActSBS.pdf

JOIN 756.000 other American patriots at www.numbersusa.com , to stop the travesty of our immigration laws. Learn about Immigration governmental corruption at www.judicialwatch.org DEMAND YOUR DEMOCRATS SENATORS & CONGRESSMAN VOTE FOR THE FEDERAL SAVE ACT!

Posted by Brittanicus on Sep. 16, 2008 @ 7:00 pm

I am curious to know how the Juvenile Court information which is confidential got leaked to the media.

Posted by Juvenile Lawyer on Sep. 17, 2008 @ 3:37 am