Last Thursday, religious and labor leaders gathered outside the Sacramento County Sheriff’s office to announce a new 24-hour hotline, but not to report violent criminals such as Luis Bracamontes, who gunned down deputies Danny Oliver and Michael Davis in 2014. Neither was the purpose of the hotline to field tips on terrorists such as Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik, who murdered 14 in San Bernardino in 2015.
The purpose of the new hotline is to report federal immigration agents conducting enforcement sweeps. According to Sacramento Area Congregations Together (ACT), dispatchers will send a team of volunteers to homes and businesses where ICE agents are believed to be arresting suspected undocumented immigrants. The volunteers will then connect those in custom with attorneys, and the ACT-ivists are not alone in their efforts.
California’s capital city of Sacramento recently approved $300,000 to “fund a network of legal, educational and faith-based nonprofit groups” servicing “city residents with immediate immigration problems.” Public finds for “faith-based” groups raised no church-state issues. It was not clear whether ACT was one of the groups receiving the money, nor which part of the city budget would be the source.
Sacramento mayor Darrel Steinberg, a Democrat and former state senate boss, said violent criminals would not be eligible for public aid, but those with “minor offenses” such as DUIs would qualify. The mayor said his concern was with those who posed a “threat,” which is true of drunk drivers.
In California, drunk driving is a felony if someone is injured or killed in the infraction and if the offender has more than three DUIs or a previous DUI conviction. Last year drunk drivers caused 914 deaths in California, 29 percent of all traffic deaths and an increase of 4.3 percent from last year. From 2003 to 2012, according to the Centers for Disease Control, drunk drivers killed 10,327 people in California, hardly a minor matter.
Last year in Oceanside, in San Diego County, drunken illegal Esteysi Sanchez, driving without a license, ran over 69-year-old homeless man Jack Tenhulzen and dragged his body for more than a mile. Police saw fit to add a second-degree murder charge to gross vehicular manslaughter.
Mayor Steinberg, an attorney who swore to uphold the law, believes drunk drivers are not a threat, and the ones he wants to shelter are not supposed to be in the country. This is hardly Steinberg’s first lapse in judgment.
On Steinberg’s watch, three senators were busted on corruption charges and nepotism flourished. In 2012, voters faced four tax measures but shortly before the election Steinberg pulled the plug on a California Channel broadcast of a hearing on the measures. He then claimed “I pride myself on being open and transparent.” Senator Steinberg also sponsored a mental health measure that wasted billions, but he is not the only politician who wants to spend public funds to defend foreign nationals in the United States illegally.
MEChA veteran Xavier Becerra was once considered a running mate for Hillary Clinton. Jerry Brown tapped him for attorney general and Becerra now spearheads the reaction against President Trump. The tireless champion for sanctuary cities now finds that the state has not exactly budgeted for this battle.
The supply of money from the state department of justice discretionary is shrinking and fees fail to cover the state’s legal efforts to protect violators of U.S. immigration laws. Senate Bill 54, the sanctuary state measure, could also jeopardize the federal money Becerra’s office receives from the federal government. Overall, hundreds of millions of dollars could be at stake, but that reality has not cooled the forces of reaction.
Tani Cantil-Sakauye, Chief Justice of the California Supreme Court, recently wrote U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Homeland Security’s John Kelly. She complained that ICE agents are “appear to be stalking undocumented immigrants in our courthouses to make arrests,” and using courthouses as “bait.” And this tactic was “neither safe nor fair.”
And so on, the sort of thing Californians would expect from a partisan politician or somebody in a bar, not the chief justice of their highest court. And now the mayor of Sacramento wants to pick taxpayers’ pockets to help drunk drivers in the country illegally.
California freeways bear signs reading REPORT DRUNK DRIVERS and the California Highway Patrol recommends a 911 call. ACT, on the other hand, runs a hotline to report law enforcement officials in the course lawful duties. And as it happens, ACT is not new to the sanctuary trade.
ACT is a division of PICO, People Improving Communities Through Organizing. PICO, in turn, is part of a religious left network in solidarity with the Communist surge in Central America.
“The sanctuary movement of the 1980s,” notes Hilary Goodfriend, “was but one component of a broad-based, cross-border, anti-imperialist liberation struggle. This is the radical heritage that our organized responses to mass deportations, refugee bans, and imperialist wars must claim today.” The 80s activists were “radicalized by the growing Liberation Theology movement, which brought together Marxist and Christian doctrines to advance a ‘preferential option for the poor’… ”
In reality, it was a preferential option for the murderous guerrillas of the FMLN and the Stalinist FSLN dictatorship in Nicaragua. The resistance to the Communist surge prevailed, with help from the United States. The new sanctuary movement is all about trashing the USA, protecting criminals and pillaging taxpayers.
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