By Tom Cohen, CNN
Washington (CNN) – Gaby Pacheco calls herself an aspiring U.S. citizen who is compiling the paperwork and trying to get the $465 needed to apply for a two-year reprieve from getting deported.
James D. Doebler says his superiors at U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement are threatening to suspend him for putting an arrested illegal immigrant into the hearing process that could lead to deportation.
The two are on opposite sides of a lawsuit filed this week by Doebler and nine other ICE agents that challenges a new Obama administration policy intended to remove the threat of deportation faced by young illegal immigrants who arrived in America as children and have good student or military records.
Doebler and his fellow complainants argue the new policy on immigration law enforcement exceeds the administration's authority and puts ICE agents in the position of facing disciplinary action for doing their jobs.
"They're in a position now that's just untenable," argued Roy Beck of NumbersUSA, an advocacy group for more restrictive immigration that is bankrolling the lawsuit.
The goal of the lawsuit is to force a court ruling on whether the new administration policy is legal, Beck told CNN on Friday. If so, then the ICE agents are protected; and if not, the case would halt what the former journalist called a harmful influx of illegal workers at a time when young Americans are struggling to find jobs.
Editor's note: Valarie Kaur is the founding director of Groundswell, an initiative at Auburn Seminary that combines storytelling and advocacy to mobilize faith communities in social action. Her documentary "Divided We Fall" examines hate crimes against Sikh Americans after September 11. Kaur studied religion and law at Stanford University, Harvard Divinity School and Yale Law School, where she now directs the Yale Visual Law Project. Follow her on Twitter: @valariekaur.
By Valarie Kaur, Special to CNN
I have spent the past two weeks documenting the aftermath of what could be one of the deadliest racially motivated mass shootings in recent U.S. history. Through a camera lens, I’ve witnessed courage in the face of profound grief: families in Oak Creek, Wisconsin, mourning the dead, praying through tears and rebuilding their community in the Sikh spirit of chardi kala, a rising resilience even in darkness. But when family members walked out of a private meeting with first lady Michelle Obama on Thursday afternoon, I saw something entirely new in their faces.
For the first time, I saw them smile.
The first lady met privately with the families at Oak Creek High School, a few blocks from the Sikh gurdwara (house of worship) where a gunman opened fire August 5, killing six people and hospitalizing three more. The visit was more than symbolic; it was exemplary.
Obama did not arrive with prepared speeches or prescriptions. Rather, she drew close to Sikh American families and listened to what is at stake: their ability to live, work and worship without fear. For Sikh Americans who have felt somewhat abandoned when the national attention dissipated a few days after the tragedy – and disappointed that President Obama did not immediately come to Oak Creek – the meeting has generated a wellspring of hope and healing. FULL POST
Editor's note: Ruben Navarrette Jr. is a CNN contributor and a nationally syndicated columnist with the Washington Post Writers Group. Follow him on Twitter: @rubennavarrette.
By Ruben Navarrette Jr., CNN Contributor
San Diego (CNN) – Immigration groups, Obama surrogates, the media and the Democratic Party have a message for Latino voters, who some say could swing the election because they are heavily represented in four battleground states - Colorado, Nevada, Florida and New Mexico.
Here's the message: Vice presidential hopeful Paul Ryan is anti-Latino, and his immigration views are simplistic, intolerant and punitive.
Really? Someone should tell that to the anti-immigrant group NumbersUSA, which advocates not only an end to illegal immigration (and there is nothing wrong with that) but also a dramatic reduction in legal immigration to pre-1965 levels (there is a lot wrong with that). It is the views of groups such as this - which sadly have a lot of influence on the Republican Party - that can genuinely be called simplistic, intolerant and punitive.
So why does NumbersUSA list Ryan's "career grade" in Congress as a "C"? Ryan's grade puts him in the bottom 10% of all current Republican members of Congress, according to Roy Beck, the group's founder and CEO.
The nicest thing that Beck could find to say about Ryan after the congressman from Wisconsin joined the GOP ticket was that Ryan "doesn't seem to have put a lot of thought into immigration policy and doesn't seem to have deep ideological reasons for his poor immigration record."
Wow. That's a ringing endorsement, isn't it? If someone like Beck thinks you have a "poor" record on immigration, it means you have both a heart and a brain.
By Gavin Godfrey, CNN
(CNN) – Last year William Turner lost his job with a religious non-profit organization. That was the impetus for him to pursue a longheld dream: owning his own restaurant. Turner's research led him to the creation of his food truck (and alter ego), The Blaxican, which serves up what he calls, "Mexican soul food."
Turner says he's aware that some people have strong reactions to his name and concept.
[2:33] "We live in a politically incorrect or correct society where we're so hypersensitive that even if we're not offended by something we think we should be offended by something. The Blaxican, it evokes an emotion, especially here in the south where race relationships for years have always been a hot-button for our society."
The son of a cook, Turner says that soul food is universal and in every culture there is cuisine that comes from the struggle to survive.