Opinion: County Must Keep Fighting Trump Administration on Immigration

Santa Clara County government has a wide range of responsibilities: roads and transportation, parks and libraries, housing and public health, public safety and disaster preparedness. With the Trump administration running the federal government, we must recognize another critical core service: fighting to protect our residents. We must stand with those resisting the daily wrongs inflicted by Washington.

The Trump administration is quite plainly resolved to use the power of the federal government to deport, demonize, and deny the rights of immigrants in our country — and with more than 700,300 immigrants in Santa Clara County, or 38 percent of our population, we must ask ourselves “What can county government do to protect our immigrant neighbors?”

Some would define the role of Santa Clara County narrowly, and claim that immigrants’ rights are irrelevant. Others advocate for a focused and more active role providing service and support for immigrants. I am proud to be among those who believe our county has a duty to protect and serve all our residents, not just some: Protecting rights, including immigrant rights, absolutely must be a core service of the county.

The federal government is wreaking havoc in Santa Clara County, targeting immigrants, tearing families apart, preventing families from re-uniting, and making our communities less safe in the process. Immigrants are afraid to report crime and abuse, afraid to testify as witnesses, or even drop their kids off at school. Trump is desperate to crush the hopes of Dreamers and incite fear, racism, and violence. We have a moral responsibility to fight back, individually, as a community, and as a local government.

Fortunately, groups like SIREN (Services Immigrant Rights & Education Network, www.siren-bayarea.org), CAIR (Council on American-Islamic Relations, ca.cair.com/sfba), PACT (People Acting in Community Together, www.pactsj.org), and others are leading the fight, effectively and tirelessly. They should get superhero capes, and they deserve our support.

By Jason Baker for THE MERCURY NEWS
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