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rene moon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-28-05 02:02 PM
Original message
'Immigrant hunt' riles some at UNT
First Prop 200 in AZ, now this... :mad:

'Immigrant hunt' riles some at UNT

Group stages mock roundup to call for more enforcement

08:44 AM CST on Thursday, January 27, 2005

By MATTHEW ZABEL / Denton Record-Chronicle

A University of North Texas conservative group's demonstration, in which students who captured people posing as illegal immigrants received a candy bar reward, angered some on campus and amused others Wednesday.

The university's chapter of Young Conservatives of Texas held "Capture an Illegal Immigrant Day" on campus to call for tougher enforcement of federal immigration laws.

Some members of the group wore orange shirts that said "Illegal Immigrant" on the front and "Catch me if U can" on the back.

Also Online

En espaol: Grupo celebra "Da de capturar a un inmigrante indocumentado"

Anyone could check in, receive a badge, search for "illegal immigrants" and receive literature and a reward a 100 Grand candy bar.

Chris Brown, the group's president, said illegal immigration hurts the economy and threatens national security.

"If they're going to be here, they need to become legal citizens," Mr. Brown said. "If the law is wrong, then it needs to be changed, but until that happens, we need to follow the law."

Some Latino students said they felt attacked by the display, despite the assurances from the conservative group that its message was not about race or ethnicity.

"They don't realize how the Latino culture has touched everyone's lives," Rene Garcia said. "The Latino population has a bit of angst about this."

The Young Conservatives cited some cases in which people linked with al-Qaeda have been found illegally in the United States.

Group members also argued that illegal immigrants take jobs from Americans, don't pay taxes and hurt the economy.

As many as 40 students gathered around the group's display at one time, arguing with the group Tuesday afternoon.

Michele Connole, the group's publicity coordinator, said that the event was a success and that it was not intended to be offensive.

"If it offends you, and you don't want to talk about it, just walk by," she said. "We're not going to stop just because somebody was offended. Personally, breaking the law is offensive to me."

No altercations

Police patrolled the area, but no altercations were reported.

The UNT dean of students office schedules the events for the university's designated free-speech areas.

Ken Ballom, dean of students, said his office received one call about the event from someone who commended it.

The group's adviser, political science professor Steve Forde, said the group did not consult him before the event and had no reason to.

He said he would have been out of line to tell students not to do it.

The group used a bullhorn to invite passers-by to "capture an illegal immigrant, get a candy bar."

One student retorted: "No, thanks. My grandfather was one, and yours probably was, too."

Another simply shouted: "Awesome."

Trevor Graham, a UNT student who stood at a distance to watch the event and media coverage of it, said he didn't agree with the Young Conservatives.

"They've definitely got the wrong idea, but I can still laugh at it," he said.

Aaron Feldsteen, another student, stopped by the table and discussed the issues with the group.

Some members of the student group said they agreed with the political stance, but they didn't like the event.

"Many of us on the campus realize that immigration is a huge problem," Megan Svajda said. "But a handful of us disagree with how the organization went about discussing the issues. We felt the strategy behind it was a little distasteful."

SMU incident

This isn't the first time a Young Conservatives group on a North Texas college campus has caused controversy.

In September 2003, Southern Methodist University officials closed a Young Conservatives bake sale. The sale, designed to protest affirmative action, priced cookies according to the buyer's race. For example, white males were charged $1 for a cookie, and black customers were charged a quarter. Officials said they halted the sale because it created a potentially unsafe situation for students.

Emma Guzman Ramon, the president of the Denton League of United Latin American Citizens, said the Young Conservatives of Texas event Wednesday stemmed from ignorance about illegal immigrants.

"If there wasn't a demand for them, they wouldn't be risking their lives to come across," said Ms. Ramon, an immigration attorney in Denton.
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UdoKier Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-28-05 02:10 PM
Response to Original message
1. As a person who favors strict enforcement of immigration laws...
As a person who favors strict enforcement of immigration laws and deportation of illegals, I find that stunt to be pretty offensive.

I'm of two minds on the subject. I have the highest respect for the fine people who have come here to work for peanuts and do not blame them for their predicament. However< I'm also aware that their presence and their willingness to work for peanuts enables businesses to PAY peanuts. If the borders were enforced, there would be more pressure on these businesses to pay a decent wage.

I don't have a problem with granting amnesty to people who have been here many years, and who have had children born here, though....

Anyway, the kids doing this are just straight-up racist little punks and should be ashamed for setting up any class of people as an "other" to be mocked. Despicable.
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UdoKier Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-28-05 02:17 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. Also pretty stupid, considering...
... that it is the GOP that have been pushing an open border policy for decades now, and it was Bush 1 who increased the rate of LEGAL immigration to over 1 million per year.

The democrats are not much better on this issue. It's one of the few areas where the majority of Americans, including Hispanics, agree with Pat Buchanan.
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Moderator DU Moderator Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-28-05 06:46 PM
Response to Original message
3. rene moon
Per DU copyright rules
please post only four
paragraphs from the
copyrighted news source.

Thank you.

DU Moderator
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Blue_Tires Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-28-05 06:48 PM
Response to Original message
4. UNT is a freep colony
so says my friend in dallas...she said it's the most RW school in the state (and my friend is an SMU grad)
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