Thursday, August 21, 2008

Immigration in Rhode Island

The bishop of Providence, Thomas J. Tobin and various members of the clergy of that diocese, have released a statement that urges "Stephen Farquharson, Immigration and Custom Enforcement (ICE), Boston Regional Office, to declare a moratorium on immigration raids in Rhode Island. The clergy also encouraged ICE to allow agents to excuse themselves from participating in raids if such actions are not in conformity with their faith and conscience."

It then goes on to say, "The bishop and pastors met at Blessed Sacrament Parish in Providence on Tuesday afternoon to: assess the current situation with the immigrants in various communities throughout the diocese; determine their needs; and discuss possible diocesan assistance."

Along with the statement are excerpts for the letters sent by His Excellency and the pastors to Mr. Farquharson which you may go and read yourself.

Of note is this quote from the letter in the release: “We the undersigned…urge you to declare a moratorium on immigration raids in the State of Rhode Island, until our nation can implement a comprehensive and just reform of our immigration laws,” wrote Bishop Tobin and Catholic priests. “It is our hope that such reform will make immigration raids obsolete. Until then, we believe that raids on the immigrant community are unjust, unnecessary, and counter-productive.”

Notice the lack of distinction between legal and illegal immigration except insofar as the bishop hopes that 'reform' will eventually render the raids unneeded. Very subtle.

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