Mass arrests of Muslims in LA
December 19, 2002 6:13 AM   Subscribe

Mass arrests of Muslims in LA. The BBC is reporting US immigration officials in Southern California have detained hundreds of Iranians and other Muslim men who turned up to register under residence laws brought in as part of the anti-terror drive.

CNN, FOX News, and the like have extensive coverage.....sort of.
posted by CrazyJub (64 comments total)

 
Best quote...

"Terrorists most likely wouldn't come to the INS to register"
posted by CrazyJub at 6:14 AM on December 19, 2002


This will surely prevent domestic support of the terrorists that seek to destroy our way of life...[/sarcasm]

Not that we need help doing that...
posted by thewittyname at 6:18 AM on December 19, 2002


This was amusing to see at the top of the FOX News website:

Look for muslim INS at eBay - The World's Online Marketplace - Find it at eBay - Over 5 million items for sale! The most fun buying and selling on the web! Try it, you'll love it!

Try it, you'll love it!
posted by valval22 at 6:22 AM on December 19, 2002


Now, I don't condone using any set of stupid generalizations in order to make mass arrests of people we feel twitchy about because their ancestors may or may not have lived within 1500km of some other people who participated in a single terrorist attack against us over a year ago, but doesn't it seem especially ignorant that they're not rounding up women at all? Yes, yes, oppression and all that, but it seems that if conservative Christian women can fight vehemently for the curtailment of their own rights based on sex, then conservative Muslim women might have a penchant for doing so as well.

I mean, come on. If you're going to piss on the First, Fourth, and Sixth Amendments, do it right!
posted by Vetinari at 6:28 AM on December 19, 2002


One mopment, please: a family of 4 got yanked out of bed and flown back to Poland--they were not Muslims. They wee though in violation of rules. They came here 12 years ago legally but failed to follow up on paperwork to make them legally here. The point: if you are totally illegal, you are not in the INS computer. If you are here but are in arrears on what you were supposed to do you are in the computer. Now 400 people seems a lot but the fact is they are not here legally at this point and I have no problem with grabbing the, be they Jews, Christians, or Muslems, and be they from Middle East or Scandanavian countries. Legal is legal and if you care enough to be here, then do what most immigrants do: follow procedure.
posted by Postroad at 6:38 AM on December 19, 2002


The article is not clear as to whether every single person who turned up was arrested or only those who (according to the article) "were being held for suspected visa violations and other offences. "

What percentage of those who turned up were arrested? Anyone got any figures?
posted by PenDevil at 6:45 AM on December 19, 2002


Under the new US immigration rules, all male immigrants aged 16 and over from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Sudan and Syria had to register with authorities by Monday unless they had been naturalised as citizens.

15 of the 19 9/11 hijackers were Saudi citizens. If you're going to revisit Japanese internment and piss off the entire Arab community, you might as well be effective in your ham-handedness.
posted by machaus at 6:51 AM on December 19, 2002


Scary time to live in the US. A huge, powerful people, scared, pissed and with nothing rational to do about it.

First they came for the Jews and I did not speak out because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for the Communists and I did not speak out because I was not a Communist.
Then they came for the trade unionists and I did not speak out because I was not a trade unionist.
Then they came for me and there was no one left to speak out for me.

Pastor Martin Niemöller

posted by signal at 6:52 AM on December 19, 2002


machaus: Saudi Arabia has now been added to the list and all residents from there will also have to register, but the fact remains that they were initially left off... And this list will registration will, I think, by 2005 be covering immigrants from all countries not just Muslim ones.
posted by PenDevil at 6:54 AM on December 19, 2002


Signal- I agree.
It is a scary and sad time for the US. Words cannot even describe my frustration with the current administration and the American people's willingness to blindly follow and agree with whatever they say/do.
posted by culpable at 7:03 AM on December 19, 2002


I'd have no problem with a government expecting all immigrants to register and to its insistence that people follow the immigration procedures or get shipped back home - but it should be done across the board. Such rules should apply to all immigrants from all countries, of all ages, to both genders. Otherwise, it's both racist and sexist AND a half-assed terrorist prevention measure.
posted by orange swan at 7:07 AM on December 19, 2002


Legal is legal and if you care enough to be here, then do what most immigrants do: follow procedure.

Exactly what immigrants are you talking about? The link says MILLIONS of illegal immigrants, MILLIONS, yeah, sounds like most do follow procedure. [/sarcasm]
posted by Pollomacho at 7:09 AM on December 19, 2002


Someone please continue to post anything they can find on these arrests (detainments?). These people are not american citizens, although I guess even that doesn't mean anything in terms of civil rights anymore.

orange swan: agreed.
posted by joecacti at 7:14 AM on December 19, 2002


It's not a total whitewash in the US press: Here are the CNN and FOX News stories, if you should be interested.

The LA Times has some more substantial local coverage.
posted by eatitlive at 7:23 AM on December 19, 2002


A Google search turned up the following:
Muslim immigrants rounded up, arrested
Protests after arrests of Iranians in US
Hundreds decry INS arrests
After arrests, thousands protest new immigration policy
posted by acridrabbit at 7:28 AM on December 19, 2002


According to the LA Times, about a quarter of those who showed up to register were arrested.

Key bits from the L.A. Times article:

  • Many of those arrested, according to their lawyers, had already applied for green cards and, in some instances, had interviews scheduled in the near future.

  • Similar arrests took place throughout the country, but the number of people arrested in Southern California appears to have been considerably larger than elsewhere in the country, due to the region's large Iranian population.

  • Lawyers reported crowded cells with some clients forced to rest standing up, some shackled and moved to other locations in the night, frigid conditions in jail cells -- all for men with no known criminal histories. Some were reportedly hosed down with cold water before finding places to sleep on the concrete floors of cells.

  • posted by insomnia_lj at 8:15 AM on December 19, 2002


    The arrests sparked angry protests in Los Angeles by thousands of Iranian-Americans waving banners which read "What's next? Concentration camps?"

    Yes.
    posted by four panels at 8:27 AM on December 19, 2002


    Well, I think the Syrians, etc., have every right to be pissed off. Most of these people were manifestly not trying to hide from the system. It will only complicate anti-terrorism efforts if basically law-abiding and harmless people view the INS as a terrifying menace. But, especially, it is no surprise the Iranian-American community is outraged. I mean, I doubt the known cases (if any) of Iranian terrorists in this country could possibly add up to 5% of "domestic" terrorists hatching spectacular plots.
    posted by Zurishaddai at 8:28 AM on December 19, 2002


    It occurs to me as I read these articles that a former co-worker of mine will have been required to register under this law. He told me he never naturalized because even though US relations with Iran are theoretically stable, these things can change suddenly, and he did not want to be a citizen of a nation that might be attacking his family home. I'm sure he's fine, and has his paperwork in order (he was always the guy who had purchase requests and the like prepared even before I asked for it), but it's important to realize that the people affected here aren't "potential terrorists", they're people.
    posted by Karmakaze at 8:32 AM on December 19, 2002


    According to this article at the ACLU website, perfectly legal immigrants are at risk, due to the failure of the INS to process more than 200,000 change of address forms.

    These forms are piling up in an abandoned limestone mine outside Kansas City, MO that doubles as the largest underground records facility in the world.
    posted by insomnia_lj at 8:33 AM on December 19, 2002


    Keep your constitutional comments out of the thread. The Bill of Rights applies to US citizens, not illegal immigrants.

    Say what you will about the awful situation in LA, but keep that jerking of the knee to a bare minimum.
    posted by xmutex at 8:36 AM on December 19, 2002


    Does anyone have a userid/password for the LATimes? I had set up Metafilter99/Metafilter99 a while back, but that one no longer seems to work.
    posted by Irontom at 8:41 AM on December 19, 2002


    "The Bill of Rights applies to US citizens, not illegal immigrants."
    That statement is not entirely correct, and sets up a false dichotomy between citizens and illegal immigrants. There are more categories than those two.
    posted by Outlawyr at 8:54 AM on December 19, 2002


    If you're going to revisit Japanese internment

    News flash: Illegal immigrants detained. Film at 11.

    What kind of an idiot would live in the US on a lapsed visa from Syria and not expect trouble? Why do we have to continually treat Arabs and Muslims like they are children?

    Is it fair to single people out who are from Arab or Muslim countries that have exported terrorists(Egypt, Pakistan, for example), or who host the press offices of terrorist organizations (Syria)?

    Well, I did notice that there were no Mexicans among the Sep 11 hijackers. When we start getting Guatemalan suicide bombers, maybe it would make sense to expend resources registering legal Guatemalan immigrants.

    I would note that foreigners resident in much of the Middle East are required to register with local authorities, but I don't remember the BBC featuring any stories on my plight.
    posted by ednopantz at 9:02 AM on December 19, 2002


    Does anyone have a userid/password for the LATimes?

    trentlott666/trentlott

    And here's the same story from BruneiDirect.com.
    posted by y2karl at 9:06 AM on December 19, 2002


    xmutex: You are entirely incorrect. Not just a little bit, not even partially correct-- no, you're wrong. Wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong.

    The Bill of Rights applies to everyone within the borders of the United States. Read it sometime: the word "citizen" does not appear-- it refers to the rights of the people. "People" is a superset of "citizens" in case you're still unclear.

    Of course, this is a common misconception. Similarly, many people believe that the Constitution and its ammendments grant rights, when in actuality the Constitution guarantees the rights you already have by dint of being a human being. A fine point, but an important one: my rights are not the government's to enact or suspend at will; they are mine and while they can be infringed by a government they cannot be taken away.

    "... that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable Rights ..." and all that.
    posted by Cerebus at 9:25 AM on December 19, 2002


    For all of you blowhards talking about "legal is legal" you have obviously never come within 100 feet of an INS office. Imagine the DMV, except 10,000 times more complicated and nasty. Being caught in legal limbo because of INS screw-ups, incompetency, or just confusing paperwork or being told 10 different things by 10 different people is probably more common than going through the procedure smoothly. Ask any immigration lawyer for a horror story and you'll be hard-pressed to get them to shut up.

    Personally I don't think you will find any terrorists doing this, but if they are going to do it, at the very least they should give people who come to register the benefit of the doubt and allow those who are quasi-legal (as opposed to completely illegal, which are unlikely to show up for registration) a chance to solidify their status.

    Furthermore, Ednopantz, 99.9% of all middle-eastern immigrants have absolutely nothing to do with terrorism, and if you wanted to add up total crimes and murders you would probably find much higher numbers among other immigrant groups, as Middle Eastern immigrants tend to be better educated and wealthier as a group. This is all about making it look like something is being done, and not about actually doing something, and infringing on the constitution, one of the greatest document in human history, in the process. It's not worth it.
    posted by cell divide at 9:31 AM on December 19, 2002


    I think some confusion arises because the INS rules that surround permanent residency applications are complex and convoluted.

    The term "illegal alien" covers a such a vast multitude of circumstances that its use alone becomes next to meaningless. It can be argued that following the INS's own procedures can result in illegal alien status.

    There are many rules based on the time-period from when an immigrant first arrives in the US to when they apply for adjustment of status, the type of visa in use when they originally arrived, their personal status at the time they apply for permanent residency, delays by the INS in processing applications (years, in many cases), etc.

    Suffice to say that many (most?) change of status applicants technically go through a period of quasi-illegal residency, during the period when their original visa has expired but the INS has not yet processed their application for residency. The laws are not simple (and I am not a lawyer), which makes it possible to argue that the INS (or those who control it) are capable of using the complexity of their own procedures, in selected cases, for politically motivated ends.
    posted by normy at 9:35 AM on December 19, 2002


    Postroad - As always, your compassion for your fellow human beings shines through.

    How can you rail against immigrants from other countries when Jewish Americans have been given every benefit and every opportunity in this country?

    After all, not only has the US made tons of special provisions for Jewish immigrants over the years, it is has also helped make Israel a possibility in the first place, and has helped develop and defend it. We even allow Jewish Americans to hold Israeli citizenship without having to renounce their U.S. citizenship first.

    Because of this, U.S. citizens have held political office in Israel, have fought in Israel's armed forces, and have carried out activities specifically against stated U.S. and U.N. policy. They have also abused their status as U.S. citizens to spy for Israel, and even steal nuclear secrets from us.

    ...and yet, we are accusing Arab Americans of serving two masters.
    posted by insomnia_lj at 9:39 AM on December 19, 2002


    We even allow Jewish Americans to hold Israeli citizenship without having to renounce their U.S. citizenship first.

    "In this regard, Israel is really treated no differently than Canada, the UK, France, or other countries which permit people to become citizens without giving up their old status. "
    posted by normy at 9:52 AM on December 19, 2002


    Great! When can we start on the Catholics? Damn dangerous people, the Catholics...made a real mess of Ireland. Round 'em up!
    posted by rushmc at 10:15 AM on December 19, 2002


    y2karl: now that's funny!
    posted by Slithy_Tove at 10:42 AM on December 19, 2002


    y2karl, you're now on the Homland Security Official Fecal Roster.
    posted by alumshubby at 11:29 AM on December 19, 2002


    There hasn't been much of a change in the law. The law already required all non-LPR immigrants and nonimmigrant residents of all ages of all sexes from all countries to register with the INS on entry and notify the INS when they move, but enforcement was lax.

    orange swan: the plan is to ``register'' everyone by IIRC 2004/2005 and require fingerprints or other biometrics on all entry docs (for immigrant/nonimmigrant-resident visas anyway), but they're starting with the mideast.

    Karmakaze: not if he had a green card (which isn't green). Permanent legal residents are exempt.

    The really irritating part is that the INS makes it terrifyingly easy to become "out of status," or illegal, so it's very easy for someone to think they're doing everything right and yet get deported.

    My assumption is that this is:
    (1) Just another law that Congress told the INS to enforce, so they are, or maybe
    (2) A way to get the people who do show up and find themselves out of status to rat out ``suspicious'' people in their communities.
    posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 11:44 AM on December 19, 2002


    Suffice to say that many (most?) change of status applicants technically go through a period of quasi-illegal residency, during the period when their original visa has expired but the INS has not yet processed their application for residency.

    No, you have a legal status. It's called ``pending adjustment,'' and you can apply for work papers and everything under that provision.
    posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 11:47 AM on December 19, 2002


    Searching on CNN.COM and FoxNews.com only turned up pseudo-articles about the "success" of the registration program (I know some people linked to them directly and they do exist, but a search on their sites didn't find it).

    I find it scary that an American has to go to a news source abroad to get the full story these days.

    I live in Canada and we get more news about the US than you do.
    posted by sebastard at 12:50 PM on December 19, 2002


    For all of you blowhards talking about "legal is legal" you have obviously never come within 100 feet of an INS office. Imagine the DMV, except 10,000 times more complicated and nasty. Being caught in legal limbo because of INS screw-ups, incompetency, or just confusing paperwork or being told 10 different things by 10 different people is probably more common than going through the procedure smoothly. Ask any immigration lawyer for a horror story and you'll be hard-pressed to get them to shut up.



    This is correct. The INS is underfunded, mismanaged and if it were a private business, it would have gone bankrupt a long time ago. EVERY immigrant that I have ever met, legal or not, HATES the INS because the INS makes life a living hell for immigrants to this country. A legal immigrant friend tells me that virtually every time he has to fart, he must send the INS a $100 processing fee! Applications can take a year or more to process, fees are extreme, and service is shoddy. Compared to any Department of Motor Vehicles, the INS is 100 times worse.


    The words "reasonable", "efficient", "helpful", "fair", and "well-managed" do not belong in the same sentence as the INS.


    I realize that just like at Enron, there are kind, reasonable people working at the INS. But as an institution, it sucks ass.
    posted by 4midori at 1:01 PM on December 19, 2002


    I've been on the phone with 6 different offices at the INS to get one INS trial attorney's number for the ENTIRE afternoon, I finally got through and got a number for the guy, of course, its a fax machine number and not even his. This is typical of my vast experience with these people. It took me an hour to get a simple date from a clerk this morning, and I'm dealing with the top echelons, not the snake pit of the processing center. I can't imagine working there would be the least bit fun, the other side of the fence sure as hell isn't!
    posted by Pollomacho at 2:06 PM on December 19, 2002


    My time on hold can at least be spent in here!
    posted by Pollomacho at 2:06 PM on December 19, 2002


    Some thought experiments:

    1. Imagine if this happened to you visiting a foreign country. You are arrested and thrown in a cell with 50 people. How would you feel?

    2. Consider: if 700 US citizens in a foreign country (say, Venezuela) were arrested for incorrect paperwork. How would the press coverage in the US differ? How would people on this site react?

    3. One of the people arrested is 16. If you were arrested at 16 how would that impact your view of the world?
    posted by metaforth at 2:42 PM on December 19, 2002


    ednopantz writes: Is it fair to single people out who are from Arab or Muslim countries that have exported terrorists (Egypt, Pakistan, for example), or who host the press offices of terrorist organizations (Syria)?

    1. Pakistan hasn't exported terrorists.

    2. Based on this logic should you also persecute yourself? I am assuming you are American and thus share citizenship with several Al-Qaeda members.
    posted by metaforth at 2:47 PM on December 19, 2002


    My point in posting was...

    1. CNN, FOX or any other national news service failed to cover this story.

    2. I had to visit a British website to read it.

    I think that's the real story, not the fact it happend at all.
    posted by CrazyJub at 3:12 PM on December 19, 2002


    PenDevil writes: "And this list will registration will, I think, by 2005 be covering immigrants from all countries not just Muslim ones."

    Your information (and your grammar) is incorrect. The list contains only 20 countries.

    For more details take a look at the Federal Register where the addition of Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Armenia to the original list of 18 was announced last week. Armenia was dropped after "Armenian-American activists jammed the White House's fax line with thousands of letters of complaint."

    According to the government's notice on the Federal Register: "This Notice is applicable to any alien who is a national or citizen of a designated country, notwithstanding any dual nationality or citizenship." It is signed: "Dated: December 12, 2002. John Ashcroft, Attorney General."
    posted by metaforth at 3:28 PM on December 19, 2002


    According to the government's notice on the Federal Register: "This Notice is applicable to any alien who is a national or citizen of a designated country, notwithstanding any dual nationality or citizenship."

    So it also applies to US citizens who happen to be dual citizens of the countries involved.
    posted by metaforth at 3:35 PM on December 19, 2002


    The earliest news about this could be found in the all-news stations of Los Angeles: KNX 1070 and KFWB 980.
    posted by linux at 3:51 PM on December 19, 2002


    Still it is not getting the national coverage in the US as it is on BBC. For example the news of the arrests or the ensuing demonstration did not make it to the front pages of CNN (or even the US section), or the front pages of USA Today, or other US mainstream media sources.
    posted by metaforth at 4:00 PM on December 19, 2002


    Your information (and your grammar) is incorrect. The list contains only 20 countries.

    From the INS FAQ:

    The INS is required, within three years, to track all of the estimated 35 million foreign visitors, students, business travelers, and tourists who enter and leave the United States each year...

    and it goes on to state that this is a first step along those lines.

    According to the government's notice on the Federal Register: "This Notice is applicable to any alien who is a national or citizen of a designated country, notwithstanding any dual nationality or citizenship."

    So it also applies to US citizens who happen to be dual citizens of the countries involved.


    No, because naturalized citizens, oddly enough, aren't aliens.

    This would apply, though, to a Canadian or Brit or French citizen who is a dual-national with one of the relevant countries, even if they don't know it.

    And it doesn't really affect immigrants. Immigrants, mostly, have green cards and are exempt. This new thing here affects nonimmigrant residents -- students, foreign dependents of LPR's admitted as such, etc.

    And it's been on the CNN crawl line all day.
    posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 4:39 PM on December 19, 2002


    ROU_Xenophobe writes: From the INS FAQ: The INS is required, within three years, to track all of the estimated 35 million foreign visitors, students, business travelers, and tourists who enter and leave the United States each year

    Do you have a URL? I couldn't find this in the INS FAQ.

    According to the INS FAQ entry on special registration: "Special Registration is a system that will let the government keep track of nonimmigrants that come to the U.S. every year. Some of the approximately 35 million nonimmigrants who enter the U.S. and some nonimmigrants already in the U.S. -- will be required to register with INS either at a port of entry or a designated INS office in accordance with the special registration procedures."

    The key words are, "some of the [...] nonimmigrants". The FAQ adds that the current registration process only applies to citizens of these countries that are "male [and] born on or before December 2, 1986." Female nonimmigrants as well as male nonimmigrants born after December 2, 1986 are exempt.
    posted by metaforth at 5:23 PM on December 19, 2002


    I've dealt with the LA offices of the INS over the past 3 years for my wife's green card. Almost done with it now and haven't had any problems. Yes, have had to pay fees many times. No, the INS doesn't run on air. No, they are not any worse than the california dmv.
    posted by shoos at 5:23 PM on December 19, 2002


    Yay! Illegal immigrants are getting arrested for breaking the law! Outstanding!

    Islam is not tolerant of other religions. Tolerance of an intolerant Islam is not consistent with the Constitution of the United States.

    I seriously do not believe that the United States should admit followers of a religion whose precepts are antithetical to the founding and operating principles of this country.
    posted by paleocon at 5:36 PM on December 19, 2002


    I mean, come on. If you're going to piss on the First, Fourth, and Sixth Amendments, do it right!

    Like this?
    posted by homunculus at 6:39 PM on December 19, 2002


    paleocon wrote: Islam is not tolerant of other religions. Tolerance of an intolerant Islam is not consistent with the Constitution of the United States. I seriously do not believe that the United States should admit followers of a religion whose precepts are antithetical to the founding and operating principles of this country.

    "Special registration" is also required for atheist, agnostic and Wiccans from the list of "special" countries. INS is insensitive to these subtleties of faith and belief.
    posted by metaforth at 6:44 PM on December 19, 2002


    I seriously do not believe that the United States should admit followers of a religion whose precepts are antithetical to the founding and operating principles of this country.
    I agree, paleocon. Keep out all the Jews! Let's keep out all the Christians too, for that matter. All this "Thou shalt not worship any gods but Me" and "Thou shalt not take the Lord's name in vain" is counter to the principles upon which this country was founded (i.e. freedom of religion, freedom of speech). </sarcasm>

    Maybe you didn't catch it the first two hundred times George W. Bush said it, but America is not in a war against Islam. This is not about theology. This is about xenophobia and bureaucracy coming together to crush the freedom of several hundred people. A quote from the first story I read on this:
    Many protesters claimed their husbands, sons and brothers were victims of government entrapment, that they were forced to register with immigration officials and then were arrested for not having their papers in order, which in some cases were caused by government backlog.
    Arresting people who are trying to comply with the law - the very definition of law-abiding people - is not going to help to catch terrorists, who are extremely unlikely to tell the government who they are and where they can be found.

    Not only that, but how many Iranians were among the 9/11 hijackers? In fact, how many Iranians living in the United States have been involved in any terrorist acts against the United States? Meanwhile, Saudi nationals have another two months to register - even though that's where over 3/4 of the hijackers came from! - because their equally undemocratic, and arguably more despotic, home government sells a lot of oil to the U.S. of A. Do they still have that fast-track visa office in Riyadh? The Iranian government does not see eye to eye with Washington, so people who happen to have been born in Iran, but have chosen to live in what is supposed to be the bastion of freedom, must suffer. Are you starting to see a little injustice yet?
    posted by skoosh at 6:54 PM on December 19, 2002


    What's particularly sleazy is that the INS took out all sorts of friendly, patriotic ads, TV, and radio spots on Arab media sources to inform people, saying that if they didn't come, they *could* face difficulties with their immigration status.

    Instead, they showed up and did the right (and patriotic) thing, only to get arrested... nor were they advised (as it recommended on the ACLU website) that they could have legal counsel with them at the time of any INS meeting.
    posted by insomnia_lj at 8:29 PM on December 19, 2002


    Ramona Ripston, executive director of the ACLU of Southern California, called the detentions doubly disturbing because "a lot of the Iranians are Jews who fled Iran because of persecution, and now they are undergoing similar persecution here.... This is just terrible."
    posted by insomnia_lj at 5:21 AM on December 20, 2002


    I guess the Bush administration will be spinning this as a free first class trip to fabulous camp X-Ray!

    It shouldn't be much surprise that the U.S. mainstream news media is paying little attention to this.

    You'd have to round up white Protestants to get any attention from them, especially from CNN and Fox.
    posted by mark13 at 10:54 AM on December 20, 2002


    mark13 wrote: You'd have to round up white Protestants to get any attention from them, especially from CNN and Fox.

    In fact you have to give credit to the INS and the government for staggering these arrests. Notice that only the Iranians protested last week. In January when 700 Pakistanis are arrested the Iranians will stay home and skip the small Pakistani demonstration.

    So in this way the foreigners are more American than they realize: they too are self absorbed egotists.

    What is also interesting is that the concept of Muslims as a single entity only exists in the American psyche. Most so-called Muslims see themselves as Iranians and Pakistanis and Saudis. They have as much in common as Christians from Rwanda have with Christians from Italy.

    Muslim paranoia is basically a result of intellectual laziness. The Bush administration and the hoi polloi prefer to use broad sweeping categories to avoid thinking and learning about the variety of values and ethnicities and their differences. It's much easier to assume that a billion people form a homogeneous demographic and are exactly alike.

    This is indiscriminate discrimination. People are too lazy to even hate properly. There is almost a need for hate education. People need to learn to hate properly and stop using the intellectual crutch of simplifications like "Muslim".
    posted by metaforth at 11:40 AM on December 20, 2002


    Islam is not tolerant of other religions.

    Yeah, I guess that's why there were so many inquisitions while the Arabs ran Spain. Can a muslim get into Christian heaven? A Christian can get into Muslim heaven. Which religion is it that's intolerant of others exactly?

    I seriously do not believe that the United States should admit followers of a religion whose precepts are antithetical to the founding and operating principles of this country.

    Why not? We let you stay after all. My ancestors came on the Mayflower to get away from religious intolerance, 150 years later they fought and died for that freedom and so others could come to this country and live with it too, now some of you immigrants think you can come over here and fuck things up. These people can stay, you got a problem with that, go back where you came from.

    Pakistan hasn't exported terrorists.

    I'm sure all the folks in India will be relieved to find out that they really weren't attacked by Pakistani terrorists after all.
    posted by Pollomacho at 11:40 AM on December 20, 2002


    cell divide writes: For all of you blowhards talking about "legal is legal" you have obviously never come within 100 feet of an INS office. Imagine the DMV, except 10,000 times more complicated and nasty.

    Here are some examples of how easy it is to break the law from the INS FAQ on Special Registration. If you change your address and fail to notify the INS within 10 days using an AR-11 form you are considered out of status and may be arrested, detained and deported. Or if you fail to appear before the INS for an interview between 30 and 40 days after your arrival into the US you again are out of status and can be arrested, detained and deported.

    Note that these rules are not communicated to you at the border. It is your responsibility to stay up to date on the details of the laws as they evolve.

    A certain segment will say: Hey, if you don't like it don't come to the US. This is a valid point and I believe fewer people will visit and/or move to the US as a result of these new laws. There might even be a small exodus of foreigners.

    This will affect the economy in these ways:

    1. The exodus of the less desperate foreigners will reduce the capital in the economy. Foreigners will pull their money out of the US economy to set up businesses elsewhere. The US dollar will continue its precipitous drop against the Euro.

    2. As foreign owned businesses disappear unemployment will rise further. The ensuing poverty will lead to more xenophobia which will lead to more anti-foreigner legislation which will lead to more capital exodus which will lead to even higher unemployment. A vicious cycle.

    3. The cost of monitoring, arresting, detaining, and deporting the 35 million foreigners will create a burden on the budget. The total cost of the Department of Homeland Security will overrun early estimates. This coupled with $200 billion for the Iraq war will create large budget deficits and shrivel the private sector.

    4. One bright spot will be county revenues from INS detention centers.
    posted by metaforth at 12:54 PM on December 20, 2002


    The US dollar will continue its precipitous drop against the Euro.

    Yeah with the combination of the admission of economic powerhouses like Slovenia and Latvia and the fantastic tolerance records of nations like Germany and Austria, I see the EU doing real well in this area!
    posted by Pollomacho at 1:54 PM on December 20, 2002


    For those of you making the "legal is legal" comments- unless you've actually been through the process, and dealt with the year-long delays and crummy-looking "extensions," keep your goddamned mouths shut.
    posted by drstrangelove at 7:28 AM on December 21, 2002


    paleocon,

    I'm an American. I was born here. I am white. I am also a muslim. But, under your redneck assumptions, I guess I should be deported.

    Keep your narrow-minded, uninformed, and redneck opinions to yourself. Or, do us all a favor and read a little before making sweeping generalizations. Get out of your house, and away from your computer, and meet a few muslims.

    Otherwise, f*ck yourself.
    posted by drstrangelove at 7:35 AM on December 21, 2002


    CNN finally has an article on the INS roundups... the article went live today, but there are no active links to the story that I have seen.
    posted by insomnia_lj at 11:33 AM on December 21, 2002


    Islam is not tolerant of other religions. Tolerance of an intolerant Islam is not consistent with the Constitution of the United States.

    I seriously do not believe that the United States should admit followers of a religion whose precepts are antithetical to the founding and operating principles of this country.


    You, sir, are a jackass.
    posted by GrooveJedi at 4:09 AM on December 23, 2002


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