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In the news: between July 5 - 19, 2015

Monday, July 20, 2015

College of Liberal Arts & Sciences in the media between July 5 - 19, 2015

San Francisco shooting: a game-changer for immigration policy? - Christian Science Monitor

After a seven-time felon and five-time deportee from Mexico apparently shot and killed a California woman at random last week, the nation’s long-standing partisan divides over immigration and deportation policies took a sudden and unexpected twist.

Before the shooting, liberal-leaning states and cities had been moving to take the reins of immigration reform, legal experts say, even as such efforts stalled in a rancorously divided Congress.

But the case of Francisco Lopez-Sanchez is promising to bring this momentum of progressive immigration reform, at the local level, to a dramatic halt.

Indeed, many Republicans have begun to pounce on the logic of sanctuary laws, saying the case illustrates the dangers posed by such resistance to deportations. And many this week are calling for these jurisdictions to be stripped of federal funds.

Progressives, however, contend that such hard-line policies against undocumented immigrants only force them underground, thwarting necessary cooperation with law enforcement and directing time and resources away from fighting crime.

While the Sanchez case has, for now, put a negative spotlight on progressive reforms, such radically polarized, partisan approaches to undocumented immigration again promise to be a major campaign issue in 2016, political experts say.

“The case highlights the need to address the lack of coordination and adequate communication among local and federal law enforcement,” says Christina Bejarano, professor of political science at the University of Kansas.

“However, it is risky to rush to deport more undocumented people in the country ... and it is not fair to rush to extreme action, since that can endanger people, as well as foster more racist and xenophobic commentary toward immigrants without actually thinking through how to best solve our immigration problems.”


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