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5/2/2005 - If you're on U.S. soil - you get all the rights except voting and running for president...if you pay the taxes...then you get the rights...END OF STORY

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  • Al Soto
    ... rally, activists called yesterday for comprehensive immigration overhauls that include 1. fair wages, 2. respect in the workplace, 3. and
    Message 1 of 1 , May 4, 2005
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      >Boston Globe
      >Activists, opponents clash at immigration rally
      >By James Vaznis, Globe Staff  |  May 2, 2005
      >Clashing with opponents in a few heated exchanges at a Copley Square
      rally, activists called yesterday for comprehensive immigration overhauls
      that include
      1.     fair wages,
      2.     respect in the workplace,
      3.    and in-state college tuition
      4.    and driver's licenses for undocumented immigrants.
      >''There are so many cases of immigrant workers not being paid wages or
      >being paid under minimum wage," said Elena Letona, executive director
      of Centro Presente, an immigrants' rights organization based in Cambridge
      that works with the Latino community. ''They've been the most exploited
      >The rally included appearances by Councilor Felix Arroyo and Mayor
      Thomas M. Menino, who said that one in four city residents was born outside
      the  United States.
      >Gerthy Lahens, 53, who is studying urban planning on a fellowship at
      MIT, said coming to America has provided her children with greater
      opportunities than they would have had in Haiti. Her daughter recently graduated
      from  MIT, and her son is at Boston College.
      >''We will make America the best country it can be," she said. ''I came
      here to give myself and my children another chance in life, and that's the
      dream  of all immigrants. This is our home, and we will stay."
      >The event also drew about a dozen protesters.
      >Mark Sookop, 40, a financial planner from Lincoln, held a sign that
      read, ''Illegals steal jobs." Beside him stood his 5-year-old son with a
      sign that read, ''I don't want my college spot given away because I'm
      American," referring to a bill on Beacon Hill that would allow undocumented
      immigrants to pay in-state tuition at state colleges instead of out-of-state
      >''They have a lot of nerve to say they want the same rights as
      Americans when they are illegals," Sookop said.
      >The two sides occasionally exchanged views.
      >Ralph Filicchia, 69, a Watertown resident who was shopping in the city
      >yesterday, criticized the expansion of immigrant rights as he made his
      way through the crowd.
      >Spotting a sign written in Spanish, he asked the woman why she did not
      >write it in English. Later, he engaged in a heated debate with a small
      >group of Asian-Americans about undocumented immigrants gaining access
      to healthcare benefits.
      >''They are costing us millions of dollars," Filicchia said after the
      >exchange. ''It's a drain on the country."
      >Michael Liu, 56, an Asian-American researcher who debated Filicchia,
      said that immigrants contribute more to the economy than they receive in
      >government benefits. ''My parents were immigrants," he said. ''I feel
      >immigrants have a right to earn a decent living and be free of
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      Buy Hydrogen or Hybrid Vehicles, not Hummers.  The government and the NEWS should reflect, not determine, the desires of the people.The news is to be reported not a melodrama of constant trivia. The founding fathers knew that government is always corrupt, that is why they gave us civil liberties.  The people must lead to survive corrupt governments. Read the constitution. (In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this includes information for research and educational purposes.)  Al Soto (c) 2005

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