Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Jumping on - and off - the bandwagon

In a now unimaginative move, Bridgeport, PA - a little town of less than 5,000 residents (just under 90% white) next to Norristown in Montgomery County - recently passed a Hazleton-style anti-immigrant ordinance. It is ordained that English is the official common language within the .66 square mile area of the borough. And, as a business owner, you could be penalized for "aiding and abetting" undocumented immigrants through the sale of goods or services. Is this appealing to folks who are busy running businesses - playing the immigration cop of the community?

A few business folks a few miles to the north have suggested a different plan. With a proposed anti-immigrant ordinance rearing its head in Allentown, the local Hispanic Chamber of Commerce has suggested an ordinance that would declare the City of Allentown a "sanctuary city" that, among other things, "affirms the basic human rights and dignity of every human being." While sanctuary laws have seen some hot debate, it was refreshing to see a proposed alternative to the recent rash of anti-immigrant municipal activity.

Jess in Philly


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