Don’t deport them
While I am a supporter of stronger enforcement of our immigration policies, particularly for undocumented immigrants, I cannot support this action to stop the temporary protected status for Salvadorans or those from other nations [“Hurting many, helping no one,” editorial, Jan. 10].
The key issue for me is that they are not here illegally. As a result of residency extensions, the Salvadorans at risk have been here for 17 years, working jobs, paying taxes, sending money to relatives in El Salvador, getting married and having children who are U.S. citizens. Should we tear apart families of people who have been here for 17 years? No, provided, of course, that they haven’t committed crimes. Any person who has been in this country for more than 10 years and has done nothing wrong should be given the opportunity to become a citizen of the United States.
It is time that Congress gets its act together and fixes the immigration laws. Let’s stop playing politics and considering what’s best for one party vs. the other party, and do what is best for this country.
Bob Moore, Purcellville
My good friend “Josue” is a Salvadoran man who has been living in Virginia for 14 years. He works in a poultry plant, paying taxes. He is a homeowner, active in his church and a community leader who helps organize the Harrisonburg International Festival and other events. The Trump administration has just terminated the legal temporary protected status of more than 200,000 Salvadorans.
Is the Trump administration really going to pay to round up and deport hundreds of thousands of Salvadorans, Haitians, Nicaraguans and others? There are 21,500 Salvadorans living under temporary protected status in Virginia. Salvadorans are not leaving to return to a country with one of the highest murder rates in the world. No one would. The result is that we will have 21,500 more people in Virginia paid under the table, driving without a license, living in fear, not cooperating with law enforcement for fear of being trapped themselves. And 19,200 U.S.-born children in Virginia would lose their parents. Is this what we want in Virginia and the country?
Sam Nickels, Harrisonburg, Va. The writer, a former case manager with New Bridges Immigrant Resource Center, is a lawyer who consults on legal cases of Salvadoran immigrants with mental illness facing deportation.
Given that the U.S. population is somewhere in excess of 320 million, the people here who are under temporary protected status represent less than 0.5 percent of our total population.
Their contributions to our economy are at least equal to that of the typical citizen.
Let’s have a rational discussion about making the best use of this pool of energy and talent instead of taking a divisive and inhumane action that would leave the refugees and their home countries worse off. John D. Barnes, Chevy Chase
First they came for the Haitians, then they came for the Salvadorans, then they came for me. Gail C. Weigl, Alexandria
With current news of problems with Salvadorans, “dreamers,” and Immigration and Customs Enforcement raids, we should perhaps see if France would take back the Statue of Liberty, as it is apparently no longer desired here. Raymond Meyer, Winchester, Va.