Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Makes my blood boil: Concentration camps in America

I received the most disgusting email today from people who should know better. It was little more than a rant against brown-skinned AMERICANS -- the students who protested this past year in Whittier and Pioneer CA against what was then pending immigration reform legislation. This email showed the students raising the Mexican national flag and an upside-down American flag and was meant to inflame the reader.

It was right-wing hate speech and racist propaganda. I cried reading it, cried more thinking about the people who forwarded it to me and the persons they received it from and those to whom they forwarded it again. Simply breaks my heart to think that persons very close to me are such bigoted and ignorant humans. I felt compelled to respond; I don't know that I could have looked myself in the mirror if I hadn't.

Here's my response to the email they sent me with the subject line, "This should make your blood boil":

Concentration camps on American soil.

That makes my blood boil.

One camp holds 400 brown-skinned persons, 200 of which are children, denied access to attorneys to help them navigate a legal path out of the camp.

The children at this camp are only given 1 hour of education a day -- English instruction -- and only 1 hour of play time. Even children in jail uniforms and babies wearing name tags, like the adults.

There was at least one woman put in a camp who had been nursing an infant; the infant was kept from the mother outside the camp, the mother denied access.

Because habeas corpus was suspended for persons detained in this manner, under the terms of the Torture Bill signed into law in December under the last Congress, some of these people are legal immigrants, some are citizens, some have visas -- but none of them can access people who can help them because they can be detained on suspicion alone, and can be denied due process.

Go on, Google it up: you can see that (6) Swift-brand meat processing plants were raided recently, and that persons were detained and put into custody. What a nice euphemism for concentrating them in a camp. What a nice, neat way to intern all those nasty brown-skinned people you don't care much for, sweep them up and get them out of sight. It's just like those 500 people in Guantanamo Bay you don't ever have to think about.

I'll even make it easy on you and give you links at the end of this missive for you to read. Wouldn't want you to have to trouble yourselves too much to learn what's going on in your name, with your tax dollars, because of your elected officials for who you voted.

So ask yourself: Why were these AMERICAN high school children in California protesting as they did this summer?

Because they knew this was coming, that persons of brown-skin would be treated this way. They already KNEW about the 385 million dollar contract awarded to Halliburton to build these "detention centers" -- another nice euphemism for concentration camp. There are more contracts and more camps under way or already in use; "privatized jails" is another nice euphemism for some of these places.

We've already seen what is tantamount to ethnic cleansing in New Orleans -- structurally safe homes being razed to make way for lower density housing that the original residents can't afford, with hefty contracts awarded to all kinds of political cronies for this effort. If ethnic cleansing of New Orleans to remove African-Americans from the city could happen, why not indefinite detention for other persons of brown-skin? These AMERICAN high school students of brown-skin, Hispanic-heritage understood this and knew it. Amazing, yes? They figured it out by reading the news, armed with only a public education that so many people disparage. They did the next best thing to throwing tea in Boston Harbor; they showed their pride in their ancestral heritage to push back at underlying racism, while protesting that their country is in distress.

If you're in Florida, take a drive around Lake Okechobee and watch for the little camps -- the places where slaves have been and are still being kept in this country, and where illegals who escaped horrible conditions in their home countries now live, to work for next to nothing for that tomato you had on your salad or the orange juice on your table. These are the same kind of people that ended up in that concentration camp in Texas or Utah or Minnesota; their only real sin is that it takes nearly 7 years to process immigration papers in this country, and in their home country of Honduras or some other comparable place they could only find work making a $1 a day. Should they simply let their children die? Is this part of the Culture of Life that we hear so much about?

Stop the demand for cheap labor by severely punishing employers, and by boycotting those corporations that hire illegals. Stop the need for immigrants to flee home countries by encouraging real economic growth there -- spend less on war, profiteers and more on foreign aid for economic development (it's a LOT cheaper and actually provides real national security). Stop the creation of future terrorists by treating families better, white or non-white alike, citizen, guest or illegal.

Most of the persons receiving this email will not have heard of or have forgotten the White Rose Society. German students organized dissent against the Nazis in the early 1940's, signing their works as the White Rose Society. Their motto was, "We will not be silent. We are your bad conscience. The White Rose will not leave you in peace!" These students knew what the leadership of their country would do, they had their wits about them, could think for themselves. And these students ultimately paid with their lives, executed by the Nazis, beheaded in some cases. The AMERICAN high school students of Whittier and Pioneer are doing nothing different with their protest. What do you think will happen next? There's more of you reading this kind of anti-brown skin propaganda against these AMERICAN high school students than there are students or parents in Whittier and Pioneer. What would you have done in Germany in the 1940's? Turned in those students in a fit of anger over their "disrespect" for the government or their annoying support for those Jews? Would you do the same to brown-skinned AMERICAN students with legitimate concerns?

Those of you who are reading this who are not WHITE Americans -- you know who you are, the ones with the dark hair and brown skin, no matter your ethnic background -- you are already at risk. When are you going to wake up? You're next in line, and we won't even be able to help you if you disappear into a camp "accidentally".

Those of you who are reading this who are friends of those non-white Americans -- is it going to be okay with you when your friends get picked up and taken away after a routine traffic stop (for Driving While Brown), or if a raid happens at a local restaurant while your friends are dining, or at the airport when they board their next flight, or wherever, whenever? When are you going to realize you are part of the problem, that you voted for this, that your blissful ignorance and willingness to swallow propaganda fed this?


When the Nazis came for the communists,
I remained silent;
I was not a communist.

When they locked up the social democrats,
I remained silent;
I was not a social democrat.

When they came for the trade unionists'
I did not speak out;
I was not a trade unionist.

When they came for me,
there was no one left to speak out.

--- Pastor Martin Niemoller

I will not be silent. I am your bad conscience. I will not leave you in peace.


Hundreds support detained Swift workers -- WCCO Worthington MN, 08-JAN-07

Families try to find hope in community's generosity (Hyrum UT) -- Salt Lake Tribune, 25-DEC-06

Groups highlight plight of jailed immigrant families 15-DEC-06

Putting children behind bars in Taylor -- Op-Ed, Austin American Statesman, 19-DEC-06

Detention center set to begin taking immigrants (Willacy center, TX) 02-AUG-06

Jail stops housing immigration detainees (Ramsey County, MN) 20-DEC-06

Homeland Security Contracts for Vast New Detention Camps (385 million dollars to Halliburton) 08-FEB-06

Euphemisms, journalist/author Dave Neiwert; discussion of concentration camps in relation to detention centers 03-JAN-07

Thousands of New Orleans Public Housing Units to be Destroyed; 200,000+ Low-Income Residents Remain Displaced 20-JUN-06

Internal memo raises concerns about DHS funds transfer; Immigration and Customs Enforcement bureau may have violated federal funding regulations when it transferred employees and funds to U.S. Customs and Border Protection, its sister agency in the Homeland Security Department, for a detainee transportation program -- 18-DEC-06

Wikipedia: White Rose Society


I'm with you.

Thanks, HotFlash. Still rattled to think family friends I've known most of my life and family are such bigots. extremely unacceptable when some of them aren't even white...
Thank you Rayne. I have written to congresscritters. This s**t has got to stop. No American gulags.

BTW, new plans for border crossing in Port Huron

There is an "outbound inspection" area - there never was any outbound inspection before!? What does this mean?

This will kill the town for sure. The north end will be cut off.

clavbar = hpschd
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