Thursday, April 18, 2013

Rights chief says Greece can ban anti-immigrant party

The support for Golden Dawn is almost entirely because of its anti-illegal-immigrant stance.  Given their big economic problems, lots of Greeks don't feel like hosting a parasitical minority.  Calling them Nazis is just abuse

A TOP Europe rights official has warned of a surge in racist hate crimes in Greece, urging the country to ban extremist neo-Nazi party Golden Dawn, implicated in many of the attacks.

The Council of Europe's human rights commissioner Nils Muiznieks wrote in a report published on Tuesday after a recent visit to Greece that government had failed to take proper action over a rise in hate crimes, particularly targeting migrants.

The report hones in on the Golden Dawn political party, reminding government that it was "possible to impose effective penalties, and even prohibition if necessary" against the extreme far-right group.

"A number of the attacks have been linked to members or supporters, including parliamentarians, of the neo-Nazi political party 'Golden Dawn'", read the report.

Once a secretive group on the fringes of Greek politics, Golden Dawn picked up over 400,000 votes in a June election dominated by anti-austerity anger, winning 18 spots in a 300-seat parliament.
Digital Pass $1 for first 28 Days

Members of the party, including MPs, have been implicated in 17 violent attacks against immigrants between June and October 2012, the report says.

A few days before Muiznieks' visit to Greece, a Pakistani migrant worker in Athens was stabbed to death by two people, one of whom was later proved to be linked to Golden Dawn.

Muiznieks said it was clear that from its ideological documents that "Golden Dawn is a party that is against parliamentary democracy, and treats it with contempt".

The report also raises extensive concerns about reports of ill-treatment and torture of migrants and Roma, and the "disregard for human rights standards" by the Greek police.

He said reports of police colluding with the neo-Nazi party "have dealt an extremely damaging blow to public confidence not only in the police, but in the Greek state as a whole".

Muiznieks said it was "regrettable that the Greek parliament's reaction to hate speech has been weak".

In one example given, there was no strong reaction by parliament to "extreme hate speech" when Golden Dawn MP Eleni Zaroulia last year referred to migrants in Greece as "sub-humans who have invaded our country, with all kinds of diseases".


My shattering experience with America's immigration system

The system is as tough on highly skilled legal immigrants as it is easy on illegal unskilled laborers

By Sophie Cole

It’s been my dream for years to immigrate to the United States. Originally from the United Kingdom, I was attracted to America’s embrace of freedom, capitalism, and proud traditions of liberty sorely lacking in my native country. I wanted to defend those liberties in America. Like other immigrants, I do a job that most Americans don’t want to – defend the Constitution.

Recently, however, I found out that my American Dream is over. I will shortly have to leave the land I love and return to the United Kingdom.

What happened that put me in this position?

The Department of Labor (DOL) ruled that the American non-profit that wanted to hire me cannot.

I was offered a staff attorney position at a Washington, D.C. non-profit committed to advancing right to work laws. I went to university here and then law school at William and Mary and have called Virginia home for years.

As part of the application for the visa, the non-profit had to show that no American was available to do my job and that I was being paid wage similar to other attorneys in the city.

The DOL compared my anticipated wage at a non-profit to what lawyers make in private practice. Of course I would have made less at a non-profit, that’s how they work, but the government did not adjust its one-size fits all way of measuring wages.

Despite proof that my salary was going to be in line with other non-profit lawyer salaries in the city, the DOL rejected the paperwork and me along with it.

The DOL gave me no reason for why the visa application was denied. By law, they do not have to provide one.

I have no opportunity to appeal. There is no possibility to re-file for the visa because the government grants so few every year that they ran out weeks ago.

But my experience is just a microcosm of America’s disastrous immigration system. There is no immigration line. There is no Ellis Island. I can’t go down to the local post office and apply for a green card. I have lived here legally—studying and working hard—but under the law there is no way for me to stay .

An overly complex, tortuously slow, and arbitrary immigration system at the whim of unaccountable bureaucrats rules the day.

The laws that so many of my fellow Americans want to be enforced make it impossible for me – and many others like me – from living the American Dream. These laws also hurt our country in the process, burdening employers with expensive regulations for no conceivable end, and leaving positions unfilled.

I don’t want a hand out. I’ll gladly sign a piece of paper saying that I am ineligible for welfare, Social Security, and Medicare. I’ve always paid taxes, bought insurance, and played by all of the rules. I’ve never committed a crime nor do I intend to. All I want is a chance to legally live, work, and defend the Constitution of my country.

Highly-skilled immigrants have been voiceless in the debate over immigration reform. Illegal immigrants wanting legalization, immigration enforcement hawks, and guest workers have sucked all of the air out of the room.

I understand the concerns of all those groups and share many of them myself, but please do not forget the millions of highly skilled immigrants and potential immigrants who are trying to follow the laws.

My dearest friends have started a White House petition called “Let Sophie Stay.” I implore you, please visit it.

I will not commit fraud to get a green card through a sham marriage nor will I stay here illegally. I will not break the law no matter how unjust I think it is.

I feel American in every way that counts but the federal government and its laws think otherwise. In our knowledge economy, we need to attract the most talented and hard-working people as high-skilled immigrants.

This is crucial to our competitiveness and growth since it creates more jobs and provides a better quality of life for everyone. As a plea from one would-be American to the citizens of this great country, please change these immigration laws to include highly-skilled workers.


1 comment:

  1. President Not SureApril 19, 2013 at 4:58 AM

    "The system is as tough on highly skilled legal immigrants as it is easy on illegal unskilled laborers."

    The laws are actually much tougher on illegals than legals. Unfortunately the way the system works, just like with the current gun issues, they dont care about the illegals and spend all their time making it difficult for those that follow the law.