I was just having this conversation with Igwe the other day about how every time they talk about Immigrants and Immigration, the focus is on the Hispanics/Latinos. Naturally, as an African Immigrant, this bothers me. For example, during every election, everybody wants the Latino votes. What about the African votes? I know people like to bundle us up as African Americans, but it is not that easy. I look at it more as there being Black Americans and then African Americans (us).
As you know, Immigration is currently a hot button issue on the President’s desk, and I, like most Immigrants, want this issue to be resolved quickly. That said, I want you to read the post below. U.S. Rep Yvette D. Clarke is challenging President Obama to include the African Diaspora in the Immigration debate. It was culled from Hello Gambia.
WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Representative Yvette D. Clarke issued the following statement calling on the Obama Administration and her colleagues in Congress to expand the face of immigration beyond the Latino community, and recognize the African Diaspora that exists in the U.S.
“We must embrace the diversity of those who are impacted by reform and understand that this debate cannot solely rest on the shoulders of our Latino brothers and sisters. Our nation’s fixation on Latinos as the target immigrant group has resulted in a skewed depiction of the diversity of our immigrant population,” stated Representative Yvette D. Clarke.
There are approximately three million immigrants from the African Diaspora in the U.S., many of whom entered the country with legal documentation as students or asylum seekers. Additionally, there are approximately four-hundred thousand undocumented or ‘out of status’ immigrants who are negatively affected by our broken system.
“African immigrants, like so many other groups from around the world, are dealing with backlogged immigration processing; ageing out of the legal immigration system and falling ‘out of status’; racial and status discrimination; aggregated felony laws sans judicial review; deportation; an insecure student visa program and much, much more.
“If we turn our backs on those law-abiding contributors to our civil society that come to our shores embracing the American Dream, labor in rebuilding our great nation, strengthen our economy, and serve honorably in our military, we turn our back on ourselves. It is time for people of good will to stand for those who fear or are unable to stand for themselves,” concluded Representative Yvette D. Clarke.
U.S. Representative Yvette D. Clarke is a member of the House Committee on Small Business, Ethics, and Homeland Security, where she is the Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection, and Security Technologies. She represents several neighborhoods in central and southern Brooklyn, NY which includes Brownsville, Crown Heights, East Flatbush, Flatbush, Gerritsen Beach, Madison, Midwood, Ocean Hill, parts of Park Slope and Flatlands, Prospect Heights, Prospect-Lefferts Gardens, Sheepshead Bay, and Windsor Terrace.