Pope Francis To Tackle Donald Trump And Immigration On U.S. Trip

Their is no way not to see the xenophobia, bigotry, and hate from Donald Trump and his followers when it comes to the issue of immigration.  There is also no way to better sum up the world view of this matter, and put a moral context to it, than from Pope Francis who will be visiting the United States soon and speaking to the issue.

Vatican Ambassador Kenneth Hackett had some most interesting words in relation to the Pope’s immigration message that will be made on American soil.  There is no doubt that Donald Trump’s call for a border fence between Mexico and the United States and the deportation of millions of illegal immigrants will be dealt a severe blow from the one who talks with God more than mere presidential hopefuls ever do, according to the Associated Press.

“I think he’ll call us to continue to engage with it (the world), don’t throw any walls up around our nation, don’t revert to isolationism,” Hackett said. “We are a nation of welcoming people, so that’s where I think he will put his attention.”

Just to pile on the level of embarrassment for conservatives the Pope is also likely to discuss income inequality and the environment while he is in the country.  Ka-Ching.

It will be interesting to see how Catholics respond to the words of their Holy Father.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg Warns Of “National Suicide” Without More Welcoming Immigration Policy

This is a report and speech that America should be paying attention to as we strive to find a workable immigration policy.  The short-sighted and politically phrased speeches that too many politicians give plants the nation far short of the goal of making immigration fair and immersed with our other national goals leading to a better economic climate.  Often we find conservatives railing against immigrants, and by so doing not understanding the essential role that immigrants play in the economy, and the potential they have to succeed in America.  Often I think average Americans fear immigrants will succeed and that somehow makes the average couch potato in this country nervous.

So the speech today by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is one that merits national consideration.  His words concern a foundational issue facing America.  These ideas do not make for simple slogans on the campaign trial for presidential candidates in 2012.  But it will require some thought.

“We will not remain a global superpower if we continue to close our doors to people who want to come here to work hard, start businesses, and pursue

“The American dream cannot survive if we keep telling the dreamers to go elsewhere,” he says. “It’s what I call national suicide – and that’s not hyperbole.”

Bloomberg will deliver his speech on immigration reform ahead of the release of a report from the Partnership for a New American Economy, of which he is a co-chair, that looks at the role that immigrants play at Fortune 500 companies. A large percentage of Fortune 500 companies were founded by immigrants or the children of immigrants, the report notes.

“Every day that we fail to fix our broken immigration laws is a day that we inflict a wound on our economy,” Bloomberg will say.

Wisconsin Legislature Should Allow In-State Tutition Rates For Undocumented Immigrants

Once again the topic of  college tuition has come up in regards to undocumented immigrants.  State lawmakers are looking at removing a provision approved two years ago under Governor Doyle that allowed some immigrants, mainly those who grew up in Wisconsin, to enter college by paying in-state tuition rates.  This past week the University of Wisconsin System stated it would abide by the changed law if the legislature passed it.

The problem all the way around, from the legislature’s willingness to upend a worthwhile educational effort to the UW System’s calm demeanor at swallowing a dreadful change, is that it is all very shortsighted.

Why should a bright and capable young person, who has successfully completed high school, and possesses the ability to attend a state university be denied in-state tuition rates simply because they came to Wisconsin from another country with their parents, having no ability as a child to make life decisions? Why should anyone wish to force these capable young and keen minds into a permanent economic underclass that will be their fate unless they find the education to meet the requirements of the ever-changing economy?

Are we short-changing society a cancer researcher, novelist, civic leader, or teacher by keeping a young person out of college?  We will never know if these young minds are not allowed to reach their full potential.  This Republican policy change for the UW System is not wise and it is not moral.

This is just not the way we should be treating each other, regardless of where we were born.  Some higher purpose should drive policy decisions than the color of our skin, or the sound of our last name. 

It is not logical to deny young minds that are college ready the opportunity to meet the challenges of the early part of the 21st century by denying them access to the UW system.  Often money is the factor that denies certain demographics learning opportunities.  While some may look at the in-state and out-state rates and say it is still possible for these immigrants to attend misses the mark about fairness and decency.  This matter is not only about economic fairness, but about the way we treat each other as members of society.

For those that are always eager to botton-line every issue let me clear that up too as a non-starter.

The UW System reports that only a few dozen out of more than 100,000 students have requested in-state tuition through this program.  This program is not the huge wasteful spending spree that will make or break the state budget.  Still there will be those who complain about the fiscal impact of this program.

To those people I ask them to consider the positive impact of education.

To create a class of educated immigrants with the potential to be future business people, doctors, designers, and everything in between that will only add to the tax base through self-sufficiency should be applauded by everyone.

There is no good reason to be mean to those who want nothing more than paying the same college tuition rates as others who also grew up in Wisconsin.

To deny an education for an undocumented immigrant is not a political statement. It is a moral failing.