Protests sprout over plans to house child migrants

A social services organization's proposal to house child immigrants from Central America in a small Michigan community has prompted protests.
AP Wire
Jul 11, 2014


Grosse Pointe Park-based Wolverine Human Services Senior Vice President Derrick McCree told a community-organized informational meeting Wednesday that it wants to enter into a contract allowing its 145-bed facility in Vassar to house children who fled violence in their home country.

"If we are allowed, our intentions are to move forward with this, but not without the support of local community and leadership," McCree said.

Protesters gathered outside Vassar High School before the meeting. State police, Tuscola County Sheriff's deputies and police from Vassar were parked outside and provided security during the meeting, which reportedly drew about 200 people.

Tamyra Murray, an organizer for Michiganders for Immigration Control and Enforcement, described the children entering the U.S. border as an "invasion." She said bringing children to the U.S. and Vassar would be in violation of federal law.

"If this program is allowed to proceed, it will never end," she said.

The plans come as pressure continues to mount on the federal government to treat as refugees the thousands of children traveling alone from Central America and crossing the border into the U.S. Many of the 57,000 young people who have arrived unaccompanied since last fall fled violence in El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras.

Wolverine Human Services' plans for the Pioneer Work and Learn Center facility, about 70 miles northwest of Detroit. The organization is reviewing a contract to maintain a shelter for male unaccompanied minors ages 12-17. That could increase to 120 after an initial 60 arrive, McCree said.

"We'll do anything in our power to help children,” McCree said. “I understand it's controversial, and many people might not agree with that. We can't make everyone happy."

Under the plans, the children would stay at the facility for up to four weeks, receiving vaccinations and medical care, counseling, life skills development and etiquette training. Vassar Public Schools would offer English as a second language programs.

Federal funds would pay for the children to stay at the facility, McCree said.


papa bear

We absolutely cannot allow this to happen its not our problem


You can say that again.

papa bear

We absolutely cannot allow this to happen its not our problem




it's the Obama way just ignore the laws and do what ever


"I, Barrack Hussein Obama, pledge to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States of America, unless we're being invaded by hundreds of thousands of job-taking, wage-lowering, welfare-leeching future-democratic voters, at which time I will do nothing and pretend that it's the fault of congress".

Mystic Michael

Interestingly enough, Republicans already have a way of countering perceived Democratic electoral dominance among various demographic groups. It's called "competing for their votes."

Republicans should give it a try sometime - instead of continually gaming the system, i.e. by illicitly messing with the voter rolls; gratuitously constricting voter access to the polls; with widespread, brazen gerrymandering - and all the rest of their many repugnant tactics.


"As part of an effort to stem the flood of children caught trying to cross the nation's southwest border, President Obama is trying to change a 2008 law that dictates how the federal government handles those immigrant children in order to speed up their deportations.

Under that law, most of the unaccompanied minors being caught by Border Patrol agents must be handed over to the Department of Health and Human Services, which coordinates care for them, finds them safe housing and helps advise them on their legal rights as their immigration cases are decided. The president is now asking Congress to amend the law in a way that would allow Border Patrol agents to render a deportation decision themselves and quickly deport the children back to their home country."

USA Today.

President Barack Obama will not wait any longer for House Republicans to pass an immigration bill, after Speaker John A. Boehner told him he will not allow a vote this year, the president said Monday.

“Last week he informed me that Republicans will continue to block immigration reform at least for the remainder of this year,” Obama said Monday in a Rose Garden statement where he announced he would go it alone on immigration, “without Congress,” as far as he can.

Obama said he believes Boehner when he says he wants to pass an immigration bill, but he hasn’t been able to pass anything despite a year and a half of trying.

“America cannot wait forever for them to act,” Obama said.

If you choose to hate Obama, knock yourself out. Just don't express your hate by being totally ignorant of what's actually happening.

Mystic Michael

Too late. In an environment of this much ignorance and this much right-wing political enmity, reality doesn't stand a chance.

Tri-cities realist

I wonder how these "unaccompied" children travel hundreds of miles through Mexico from Central and South America? It is called human trafficking and it is illegal. If the border were secure we wouldn't have this mess. And yes I blame both parties, especially the republicans who by and large (no pun intended) don't have the balls to stand up to the democrats and demand and fund a secure border. When will we stop kicking the can down the road. Reagan was duped by the democrats into amnesty in exchange for a secure border, and still it is not secure. I've had enough, no amnesty just secure the border. And if in fact the law needs to be changed as you suggest, then a simple bill to do ONLY that should be easy to pass through the house. But I'm sure there is more to the story, or Boner could have gotten the votes.

Tri-cities realist

And as Vlad linked to in his 10 things post: this law was enacted in 2003, and reauthorized several times since, including 2013, hmm who was president last year? So quit your blame Bush rants, I don't really care who signed it, if the law needs to be fixed and the majority agree, then it should be fixed.


I'm not blaming Bush, by the way (not this time). It was an important and necessary law. I do believe it is important to understand, in part, the historical context of what is happening now, and why. It is all to easy to just blame Obama, which is Vlad's primary response as well as others, obviously, and although Obama is not entirely blameless, it's absolutely false to claim this problem stems from his not obeying the law. He is following the law, the law needs to be changed, and he is asking Congress to do so.

Tri-cities realist

Well if you weren't intending to blame Bush then why didn't you note that the title includes "re authorization" meaning that it was not a new piece of legislation? And that it was reauthorized again in 2013? We can see through your attempt to once again blame Bush. Nice try though.


It is a very complicated and politically toxic situation. George Bush signed into a law that addressed the human trafficking of children from Central America across the Mexican/American border. The law needs to be tweaked soon. Meanwhile, for 5 years serious, bipartisan immigration reform has been hammered out, but the House will not allow discussion or a vote. It is dead in the water. (NYTimes-NPR links)

Also, please note that there is much greater border patrol and border security under Obama than any previous president.

This has been an ongoing political fight that has been repeatedly knocked down the road until it now has become a humanitarian crisis involving refugee children. It's a mess, and there is lots of blame to go around.

But make no mistake - illegal immigration is very much supported (subtly) by corporate America.....or let's say, it is not discouraged.


"But make no mistake - illegal immigration is very much supported (subtly) by corporate America.....or let's say, it is not discouraged."

Absolutely correct. It is modern day slavery where a relatively few profit off cheap labor and the rest of the country is made to pay.

This time it could cost us our language, culture and middle class prosperity.

Mystic Michael

Oh sure. Deep down, House Republicans are really wise & reasonable statesmen whose only motive is what's best for the country. I'm sure they'd be delighted to cooperate with the President - if only he'd stop being so...Kenyan.

All the ignorant, bigoted, backward-looking obstructionism is just part of their schtick...


Here's one way - have countries form treaties with Mexico (our alleged ally and recipient of huge Yanqui Dollars) to make it easier to send their citizens here to be enveloped in the warmth of Obama's embrace while ignoring the law and spending our money.

In that regard, O'Bumbler demands $3.8 billion at the same time he belittles House Republicans, the money not to be used to secure the border and unaccompanied by a demand to close the Biden loophole that keeps the kids here.

Cloward-Piven RULES!


I've been waiting for the right wing fringe cry of "Cloward-Piven" twaddle.

One would assume from this rhetoric that those dirt-poor refugee children from impoverished and violence-permeated Central American countries will be the catalyst crisis the brings about the downfall of America. The fact is that 2013 was declared the first year that the global population of refugees, fleeing from war and persecution, exceeded the number of refugees since WWII, requiring a global humanitarian effort. As smart and powerful as he is, this is well out of the scope of Obama's control.

The burden of caring for these 50 million+ refugees is mostly falling on developing countries that have few resources to handle the onslaught.

Our own refugee crisis pales in comparison. The real crisis is that the border patrol has been overwhelmed by the spike in detainees. The response from Congress? More obstruction, more refusal to discuss or problem-solve, blame Obama for not "following the law" - now, which law are they referring to? They refuse to pass or amend any laws, forcing the president to execute executive orders which can then be vilified, reject any urgent need appropriations, even though Obama's request for $3.7 billion represents 1/10th of 1 percent of the federal budget, and next on the docket will be calls for impeachment and resolution to sue the president.

Looks to me that the GOP has hijacked Cloward-Piven, is force-feeding it steroids, and using it as the cornerstone of their disastrous strategy of massive resistance to create a crisis and bring about the downfall of America.


Twaddle? This is "twaddle":

"The fact is that 2013 was declared the first year that the global population of refugees, fleeing from war and persecution, exceeded the number of refugees since WWII, requiring a global humanitarian effort." This has exactly what to do with Obama refusing to enforce immigration laws in AMERICA, encouraging untold thousands to flaunt our laws and come to the UNITED STATES illegally? Absolutely nothing, but another Lanivan/Progressive talking point.

Nice try to hijack the language - these people, regardless of their age, are not refugees, they are lawbreakers illegally invading the UNITED STATES of AMERICA - what part of sovereignty don't you understand? If you insist they are "refugees" let the UN set up camps for them in countries contiguous to their own, which is what the UN does.

Congress, or at least those who are not batspit crazy like Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi, are referring to our Immigration Laws - since you clearly believe it is appropriate for Obama to disregard laws, he can also disregard the law that attempts to save children from sex trafficking but is now being used to invade our country.

1/10 of 1 percent of the federal budget - that is absolutely irrelevant to the issue of whether the President is required to faithfully enforce laws duly passed by the Congress of the United States pursuant to the Constitution; it is completely irrelevant to the issue of protecting our borders.

Of late, Twaddle is your stock in trade, and the overwhelming of our laws and norms is what Cloward-Piven is all about - you might read their philosophy some time in between spouting your talking points.


Cloward-Piven is a strategy whereby a manufactured crisis creates disruption in some institutional sphere, overwhelming the system and allowing new norms to take hold. This is precisely the goal of 5.5 years of right wing GOP massive resistance within government.

Paint Obama as the "manchurian candidate".

Develop a sustained strategy of attack, with the purpose of eroding every proposal and goal set forth from the president through obstruction and propaganda. It is a strategy of massive, sustained resistance to governance.

Utilize extreme, violent political rhetoric when referring to the president and the government. "Liberal, gag, shove, lawless, lying, crosshairs, encouraging supporters to become "armed and dangerous", bankrupt, drown government, on and on.

For example, here is a quote from one of your right wing colleagues. Sound familiar?.....Tea party favorite Chris McDaniel spent the final weekend before Tuesday's Mississippi Republican senatorial run-off campaigning with a conspiracy theorist who has alleged that President Barack Obama is a "Manchurian candidate" working as part of a secret plan to "destroy the country."

"It's a purposeful plan to wipe out America, capitalism, the middle class, and destroy American exceptionalism and Judeo-Christian values. How do I know? Listen to this, folks. Because I'm Barack Obama's college classmate, Columbia University class of '83. And when I was there at Columbia, we all studied a plan called Cloward–Piven—if you've ever watched Glenn Beck—Cloward–Piven. And we studied Saul Alinsky. And the plan was get someone elected president, who looks fantastic, who has a beautiful wife, a beautiful children. A family man. Get him to cut his afro or his long hair, his ponytail. Put on a suit, and then lie to everybody. Make sure they know he's a moderate, not a communist...and then destroy the country by overwhelming the system with spending, with taxes, with regulations, with debt, with entitlements, with food stamps. Overwhelm it until it collapses."

The problem is that the record shows that Obama has done none of those things. In fact, the record shows that Republican presidents such as Nixon, Reagan, Bush I, Bush II - all have "overwhelmed" the system with debt, entitlement, regulations, and taxes to a far greater degree than at any time during the Obama era.

You should be very proud that your side has embraced Cloward-Piven so tightly, with such expediency. You have overwhelmed the system with this extreme and dangerous rhetoric and massive resistance.

The problem is this: Cloward-Piven failed in the 60's for the liberals, and it will fail now for the right wing extremists. It's been teetering on the edge for a while now, but now that the GOP has shown itself capable of governing only by government shut-down, being the party of no, getting paid to do nothing, and by resolutions to sue and threats of impeachment, the tremors are increasing in strength and duration. It won't be long now.


This is so unhinged that it almost left me speechless, until I divined the truth.

You accurately describe Cloward-Piven (except for the end game which is the creation of a Socialist/Communist Paradise) but fail to see the obvious - that this is exactly what Obama is engaged in -- from overwhelming the health care and health insurance system with expanded free Medicaid and hugely subsidized Obamacare, delaying or discarding the payment mechanisms without taking any steps to ensure the system can handle the added stress; to overwhelming our social safety nets by pursuing policies designed to destroy jobs and greatly increase unemployment and food stamps; to undermining our financial system by running up huge and unpayable debt that will be passed on to our children and grandchildren; and now to overwhelming our resources to control the border and handle a huge influx of uneducated migrants which will further harm unemployed Americans, and African-Americans in particular.

Instead, in reasoning worthy of Alice in Wonderland where up is down and down is up, you make the ludicrous claim that because Republicans are refusing to go along with this purposeful destruction of our way of life and refusing to pay for it, THEY are pursuing a Cloward-Piven strategy!

Then common sense prevailed - I have always underestimated and misunderstood you Lanivan, which is a credit to your wiles. I had simply considered you to be an intelligent but naive idealist who so believed in the Idea of Obama rather than the Reality of Obama that you closed your mind to what was happening and needed to defend all things Obama rather than admit the truth.

With this convoluted and irrational comment I see what I should have seen all along - that you are a committed Socialist or worse, dedicated to the undermining of our system of laws and government in order to replace it with a Socialist/Liberal Fascist system where all rights flow from the government and speech and actions are judged through the prism of what liberals and progressives believe.

The bloom is off that rose now, and hopefully I and others will judge your comments in light of the newly emerged reality. No more underestimation of your true purpose.

Harry Kovaire

I am sorry Vlad. I would have said something sooner, but I thought you already knew.


My bad - I had to figure it out sooner or later by my lonesome. I was actually the naive one - believing that an intelligent person with a good sense of humor was simply Blinded by the Light of Obama, rather than the sinister alternative. Note she is still at it - Eisenhower weeps.

What will give me many sleepless nights is the accusation that I am responsible for the creation of the Bride of Frankenstein. Had I known I had such powers, I would have taken the opposite tack and created the Sarah Palin of Grand Haven, an intelligent woman with a great sense of humor who has a firm grasp on reality - live and learn.


"What did Hoover, Truman, and Eisenhower have in common?

Here is something that should be of great interest for you to pass around. I didn't know of this until it was pointed out to me.

Back during The Great Depression, President Herbert Hoover ordered the deportation of ALL illegal aliens in order to make jobs available to American citizens that desperately needed work. Including a few that were here 'legally' which I do not advocate.

Harry Truman deported over two million Illegal's after WWII to create jobs for returning veterans.

And then again in 1954, President Dwight Eisenhower deported 13 million Mexican Nationals! The program was called 'Operation Wetback'. It was done so WWII and Korean Veterans would have a better chance at jobs. It took 2 Years, but they deported them!


Thanks for your reply. Frankly, I didn't actually expect one, but if so, figured it would have an ad hominem tone, adopting this tactic to distract from the truth of my comment. I admit I had a little fantasy that you would surprise me and actually debate item by item, defending your position and showing that the extremism as expressed by your colleague, quoted by the link, was not accurate. But, in fact, you agree with the totality of that mindset, and you support it verbatim.

This is why even, and especially, when faced with the facts, you recoil from them, and thus can not or will not see that the right wing extreme response is in fact Cloward-Piven-driven.

In some ways, you have been instrumental in creating Lanivan, circa July 2014. Sure, I voted for Obama twice, and I identify with his decisions more than not because I recognize him to be not the liberal socialist he must be in order to conform to the "manchurian candidate" meme of the right wing, but as a more pragmatic, moderate, Eisenhower-style Republican, like me. But as you have challenged me to learn more about current and past politics, (being something of an outlier, I enjoy this) I have come to get a more focused picture of the broader political strategies that are employed, by both sides of the fence. I argue less for Obama, either the idea or reality of him, as I defend against the carefully crafted, deceitful lies and dangerous and destructive Cloward-Piven strategies employed to distract people from right wing conservative intransigence, expediency, and control. In that respect, the bloom is indeed off the rose.

If it is easier for you to pigeon-hole me, and others that think like me, as Cloward-Piven zombies, determined to march across the continent leaving a wasted landscape in our wake, have at it. But the fact is that you couldn't be more wrong about me personally, your summation of my "true purpose" couldn't be more ridiculous and self-serving, and, with your response, your recognition that I am indeed correct couldn't be more obvious.

Mystic Michael

How can people be so small? So petty? These are innocent children! They risked being raped and murdered to get here (and some of the girls have in fact been raped) - because they are desperate; more desperate than any of us will ever know, or can even imagine. Is there no compassion, no mercy among any of you? Or is your xenophobia and your hate just too strong?

They are NOT "a threat to national security". They are NOT carrying a host of "exotic tropical diseases". And they most assuredly are NOT here to take our jobs away from us - unless your dream is to become a gardener or a migrant laborer.

Now is the point at which the real Christians are separated from the cultural Christians...or should I say, the Christian dominionists. The difference is not hard to see.


You play the 'christian card' as well as some do the race card. "They tie up heavy, cumbersome loads and put them on other people’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to lift a finger to move them."
No one is stopping you from giving everything you have to help these innocents. Why do you implore others to carry the burden?
Toil in silence, give all and let the rest of us choose our own mission.

Mystic Michael

Well, if you're not comfortable with the POV that I just expressed, maybe that should tell you something about yourself. Maybe you should examine your own conscience - if you can.

I'm perfectly happy to help them in any way that I can, and fully intend to donate some cash to the cause in the very near future. And if there is anything else I can do, I will do that as well. (Did I state in my previous remarks that I refuse to get involved personally? Did I?)

In the meantime, one of the chief ways I can help them is to appeal to the consciences of my fellow American citizens - at least those who are capable of caring about the plight of our fellow beings.

Now perhaps you can explain how feeding, housing and educating a few dozen young refugees for a few weeks - on the other side of the state - inconveniences you, or threatens your "way of life" (unless that way of life happens to be unbridled selfishness and hardheartedness).


How about taking one or two of them in to live with you,and assuring that you will be responsible for all of their financial needs, like sponsors of legal immigrants are required to do? Would this not ensure the children will not fall into the hands of gang bangers or sexual predators? Cash and appealing to consciences is just a little too easy, especially since you are berating those on the other side who desire to ensure that the law is enforced - sort of like thinking you are solving problems by giving a speech or attending fund raisers.



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