by Bev Llorente, ABS-CBN North America Bureau

LAS VEGAS, Nevada – “America is made up of immigrants.” This is what President Barack Obama had to say during his 30-minute speech in Las Vegas on the comprehensive immigration reform that is now his top priority.

President Obama’s message is very clear to Filipino Pulitzer Prize winner Jose Antonio Vargas who unmasked himself as undocumented and is now an advocate of the Dream Act.

“I’m as Filipino as I come. I’m doing this to not just to tell the Americans but tell the Filipinos that the time to be ashamed and time to be scared is over. You cannot solve something you cannot face, that’s the bottom line and we as a community we need to support each other,” Vargas said.

“What (Obama) has proposed is solid. What he has proposed is thinking about everybody, the big picture, that’s what we all need to look at the big pictures and see that this is change and this was voted on this year. No more debates, no more delays. It’s so important that we take care of our immigrants,” Rozita Lee, White House adviser, said.

Meanwhile, Nevada’s Congressman Steven Horsford says that Congress will intimately be involved in crafting a bill that is fair and humane in the pathway to citizenship.

“As far as the timeline, it should be done this year. The President said that unless Congress acts quickly that he will put forward his own bill for an up or down vote. We are working together and I am a member of the House Homeland Security committee, which is one of the two committees that has jurisdiction over this. We deal with ICE, we deal with customs, we deal with border security and the over side of the Homeland Security Department which overseas many of this functions,” Nevada Rep. Steven Horsford said.

17 Comments on this post.

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  • Delia
    31 January 2013 at 7:08 am - Reply

    One wrong does not make it right.

    Fight ???? what a disgustinbg atittude , a crime is a crime , invading a country is never a right ..

    Try this attiutde in china , arab land and Muslims country or in russia and see what you get , death and or Jailed .

  • av
    31 January 2013 at 9:50 am - Reply

    ahmm Delia.. what do you mean invading a country?? People from around the globe came and continues to come in this country to have better opportunities just like you and I and the rest of pack did sometime ago. I’m sure your reason of immigrating into this country falls into just that .. better opportunities. Facts– in the next 5-20 years, whites will no longer be the majority in US.. now how would you and rest of the anti-immigration reform deal with this issue? Would you want to reincarnate the KKK and rule this country??? I bet you do not want that to happen right?

  • Delia
    31 January 2013 at 1:09 pm - Reply

    @Av. Theres a right way and wrong way to approach to come here . Yes thats true , theres a lot of people wanted to come here , which has been done in a correct manners.

    People whos been in line to come here for years and years could never get here because they are bumped off the line because with this millions of Illegals . Av did you know that in the Philippines alone there has been tens of thousand people waiting to get approved to come here , some of them are losing hope because its 10 years up to 15 years before they hear something ?

    Most of this people are parang dumadaan sa butas nang karayom para makuha ang mga pangarap nila. Tapos yong mga walang hirap at pawis sa mga pag process nang malinis eh andito na . That to me is so wrong period .

    Its not because i dont want them here , its because those people on line are being punished without their knowledge , kasi nga itong mga Law breakers eh inaagaw na nila ang space noong mga naghihintay.

    Ano naman ang pinagsasabi mo tungkol sa KKK , na walang kinalaman dito sa panbubuly nang mga Law breakers . Once na nakalusot ang mga ivaders , theres more to come , kasi nakuha nila sa wrong way ang gusto nila , ibig sabihin noon they can do anything illegally regardless . When push come to shove lahat nang kabaluktutan , yan ang ipapairal nila , after all thats how they got here .

  • noz
    31 January 2013 at 4:17 pm - Reply

    every time the word dream act is mentioned, like the article above is a disgust. i have to say this over and over, the dream act is a lefty agenda to spend the income taxes and borrowed monies for college education of illegal aliens. this is wrong. if there are people, who need to be supported for higher education first are the american born and legal residents. illegal aliens must not receive public revenues period.

  • Ltm
    31 January 2013 at 6:40 pm - Reply

    Anung gusto mo hayaan n lng n ang problemaat wag gawan ng paraan,,matagal ng ginagawa ang ganitong solusyun di lng s amerika kundi s iba png lugar.kung ppa alisin ang mga illegal immigrants s hindi makataong paraan s palagay mo b ikk unlad ng amerika un mas malaking gastos at hindi maka tao ang pag iisip mo.

  • Ava
    31 January 2013 at 10:29 pm - Reply

    Illegals are a burden on our society. My mother waited 20 years to come here legally. Here she is on her own, she works and EARNS a living, from that living she earns monies are taken in the form of taxes which are burdened to support the illegals that come here. If you want to come here do it legally, don’t come here and go T&T, and become a burden on society trying to collect monies from the American people and the people that immigrated here legally! If you come here and you are undocumented you are no better than the common criminal, in fact that is what you are, you come here illegally, breaking the laws of the country and are no better than a common street criminal.

    Singapore arrests illegals, canes them and sends them home, America unfortunately is rather weak in that respect. However they have been known to deport people easily which is right. Singapore has a rather low level of problems unlike America, however they enforce the law with an iron hand. Which is what America should do.

  • Delia
    1 February 2013 at 7:57 am - Reply

    @LTM , anong gusto mo na pabayaan na lang sila dito ? Mga Legals ay hirap na hirap na sa pagtratrabaho tapos ibabayad lang sa sky racketed Taxes , each time na dinodumog nang mga illegals ang USA kami na mga legal residence ang nahihirapan , Kasi ang mga taxes tumataas nang tumataas .

    Tama si Ava , kami na legals ang nahihirapan , kasi we have to work our ass off that we have no control off …. our hard earn money is like being compiscated by government through taxes . That is the burden we have on our shoulder. Masyado nang mabigat yan para sa mga dumaan sa butas nang karayom makarating dito . Besides the sweat and blood , halos ginastos nang lahat nang mga parents ang kanilang savings including some property , just to reach our dreams …Tapos mga illegals will just jump in here without hardship.

  • JT
    2 February 2013 at 1:28 am - Reply

    The Roman Empire was destroyed because the politicians legalize the migration of the Pagans and the Barbarians..In US the actual count of illegals are 30 million, not 11 million as reported by the extreme media. America is finished… onced all of them get an amnesty. The hard working citizen will pay for their foods, housing, Obama care health insurance.. etc.. Others will find a job and ready to accept $ 4.00/ hr. Employer will place the old timers on 4 days a week , because of high supply of low wage workers.

  • Delia
    2 February 2013 at 10:41 am - Reply

    @JT that is true and sad reality . Undocumented are a beast destroying this country. Never realize the mess they are creating , but what can we say , we dont have a President that knows how to govern .

    All he does is out campaignning , lying ,demonizing , blaming and using his executive orders. vacations trips , golfing , mingling with Hollywoods celebtrities with our hard earn money.


  • jr(catholic counter capitalist)
    2 February 2013 at 3:52 pm - Reply

    testing…. my comments are being blocked for some reason…

  • jr(catholic counter capitalist)
    2 February 2013 at 3:55 pm - Reply

    The reason why we don’t just ship them or deport them like they do in China, Russia or in the Middle East is simply because this country is AMERICA and we don’t want to become like them. Delia, if you want the immigration policy of those countries, why not move there and propagate and advocate your anti immigrant / anti people / arrogance sentiments?

  • Delia
    2 February 2013 at 4:13 pm - Reply

    @JR I told you a million times , never to address me , i have no appetite talking to devils like you . Your sicko mental evil.

    I am not surprise if your post gets deleted or blocked .

  • rod
    3 February 2013 at 3:03 am - Reply

    @av…immigration in the u.s. is different now than before. there’s a rules and regulations set and we must follow the rules.

  • rod
    3 February 2013 at 3:09 am - Reply

    @JR…i’m sure delia is not an anti-immigrant. only to those illegals who breaks the law and i totally support her stand.

  • Delia
    3 February 2013 at 10:53 am - Reply

    @Rod , I dont know how else i can make people understand . Time and again i never display or said i am anti Immigrant but they are trying as if they knew whats in my mind and for that matters my feelings.

    Heres my example for those people who have a short minded or cant undestand what i’m trying to imply. Supposed , a person owns a house and has many valuables in that house , would they open the door to everyone ? Since the door is open , people will invade the home and take everything they want . I’m sure they wont like that right ?

    I’m sure theres a right way and wrong way to approach how one can acquire stuff they want for themself . by invading entering and taking things that dont belong is highway robbery , stealing , invafding etc etc .

    Immigrants are always welcome in the USA as long as they follow through the right way , nothing wrong with finding a comfortable life for individual or for their family. Now , if that is not clear yet and still they judge me for being what i’m not then thats their problem and they can not demonize nor change my mind. It is’nt hard to be honest or clean , but being dishonest is harder because once a person start lying , then again next time they want something else it will be lies on top of lies.

    When does it stop ? what more lies will they propagate kung may gusto uli sila . Lahat na lang ba sa buhay kukunin nila sa ganitong paraan ? Is that justice in the eyes of people or is it forcefully pambubully at idadaan lang sa satanic way ?

    As far as all the Law breakers concern , sana liwanagin ninyo ang mga pag-iisip ninyo , this is your guilt you carrying all your life . Breaking a Law once will be more to come . trust me as long as someone can get away with this dispicable atittude it wont end here.

    I am concern with those people falling on line for a decade , tinitiis nila lahat nang paghihintay , dahil ito nga ang matuwid na paraan. Pero yong kanilang leniency eh hinde nabibigyan nang katarungan dahil nga sa mga swapang na mga taong illegals kinukuha ang kanilang mga spaces na makarating dito.

    Kahit pa anong sabihin ninyo na mga illegals , walang katarungan at hinde acceptable yan sa akin at sa God Lord Almighty . Thou shalt not steal. Huwag ninyong nakawan yong mga Tao sa kanilang space .

  • jr(catholic counter capitalist)
    4 February 2013 at 11:57 am - Reply

    Three Basic Principles of Catholic Social Teaching on Immigration

    Although Catholic theology has always promoted human rights rooted in natural law and God’s revelation, it was the encyclical Rerum Novarum (On the Condition of Labor) in 1891 that developed a systematic presentation of principles of the rights and responsibilities of people. Rerum Novarum commented on the situation of immigrants; in later documents, popes and bishops’ conferences have synthesized the Catholic theological tradition to articulate three basic principles on immigration.

    First Principle: People have the right to migrate to sustain their lives and the lives of their families.

    At the end of World War II, with the fall of the Nazi empire and the subsequent creation of the Soviet “Iron Curtain,” Europe faced an unprecedented migration of millions of people seeking safety, food, and freedom. At that time, Pope Pius XII wrote Exsul Familia (The Emigre Family), placing the Church squarely on the side of those seeking a better life by fleeing their homes.

    When there is a massive movement of people such as during a war, natural disaster, or famine, the lands that receive these displaced people may be threatened. The influx may make it impossible for the native population to live securely, as the land may not have enough resources to support both. Even in more orderly migrations, such as in the United States, citizens and residents of the land may fear that newcomers will take jobs, land, and resources, impoverishing the people already present.

    Because of the belief that newcomers compete for scarce resources, immigrants and refugees are at times driven away, resented, or despised. Nevertheless, the first principle of Catholic social teaching regarding immigrants is that people have the right to migrate to sustain their lives and the lives of their families. This is based on biblical and ancient Christian teaching that the goods of the earth belong to all people. While the right to private property is defended in Catholic social teaching, individuals do not have the right to use private property without regard for the common good.

    Every person has an equal right to receive from the earth what is necessary for life—food, clothing, shelter. Moreover, every person has the right to education, medical care, religion, and the expression of one’s culture. In many places people live in fear, danger, or dehumanizing poverty. Clearly, it is not God’s will that some of his children live in luxury while others have nothing. In Luke’s Gospel, the rich man was condemned for living well while the poor man starved at his doorstep (Lk 16:19-31).

    The native does not have superior rights over the immigrant. Before God all are equal; the earth was given by God to all. When a person cannot achieve a meaningful life in his or her own land, that person has the right to move.

    Second Principle: A country has the right to regulate its borders and to control immigration.

    The overriding principle of all Catholic social teaching is that individuals must make economic, political, and social decisions not out of shortsighted self-interest, but with regard for the common good. That means that a moral person cannot consider only what is good for his or her own self and family, but must act with the good of all people as his or her guiding principle.

    While individuals have the right to move in search of a safe and humane life, no country is bound to accept all those who wish to resettle there. By this principle the Church recognizes that most immigration is ultimately not something to celebrate. Ordinarily, people do not leave the security of their own land and culture just to seek adventure in a new place or merely to enhance their standard of living. Instead, they migrate because they are desperate and the opportunity for a safe and secure life does not exist in their own land. Immigrants and refugees endure many hardships and often long for the homes they left behind. As Americans we should cherish and celebrate the contributions of immigrants and their cultures; however, we should work to make it unnecessary for people to leave their own land.

    Because there seems to be no end to poverty, war, and misery in the world, developed nations will continue to experience pressure from many peoples who desire to resettle in their lands. Catholic social teaching is realistic: While people have the right to move, no country has the duty to receive so many immigrants that its social and economic life are jeopardized.

    For this reason, Catholics should not view the work of the federal government and its immigration control as negative or evil. Those who work to enforce our nation’s immigration laws often do so out of a sense of loyalty to the common good and compassion for poor people seeking a better life. In an ideal world, there would be no need for immigration control. The Church recognizes that this ideal world has not yet been achieved.

    Third Principle: A country must regulate its borders with justice and mercy.

    The second principle of Catholic social teaching may seem to negate the first principle. However, principles one and two must be understood in the context of principle three. And all Catholic social teaching must be understood in light of the absolute equality of all people and the commitment to the common good.

    A country’s regulation of borders and control of immigration must be governed by concern for all people and by mercy and justice. A nation may not simply decide that it wants to provide for its own people and no others. A sincere commitment to the needs of all must prevail.

    In our modern world where communication and travel are much easier, the burden of emergencies cannot be placed solely on nations immediately adjacent to the crises. Justice dictates that the world community contribute resources toward shelter, food, med
    ical services, and basic welfare.

    Even in the case of less urgent migrations, a developed nation’s right to limit immigration must be based on justice, mercy, and the common good, not on self-interest. Moreover, immigration policy ought to take into account other important values such as the right of families to live together. A merciful immigration policy will not force married couples or children to live separated from their families for long periods.

    Undocumented immigrants present a special concern. Often their presence is considered criminal since they arrive without legal permission. Under the harshest view, undocumented people may be regarded as undeserving of rights or services. This is not the view of Catholic social teaching. The Catholic Church teaches that every person has basic human rights and is entitled to have basic human needs met—food, shelter, clothing, education, and health care. Undocumented persons are particularly vulnerable to exploitation by employers, and they are not able to complain because of the fear of discovery and deportation. Current immigration policy that criminalizes the mere attempt to immigrate and imprisons immigrants who have committed no crime or who have already served a just sentence for a crime is immoral. In the Bible, God promises that our judgment will be based on our treatment of the most vulnerable. Before God we cannot excuse inhumane treatment of certain persons by claiming that their lack of legal status deprives them of rights given by the Creator.

    Finally, immigration policy that allows people to live here and contribute to society for years but refuses to offer them the opportunity to achieve legal status does not serve the common good. The presence of millions of people living without easy access to basic human rights and necessities is a great injustice

  • Delia
    5 February 2013 at 9:39 am - Reply

    Copy and paste is never a discussion , pasting another peoples work is infringing lol.