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Dear Editor:
I agree with John Frecker (June 21 Letter to the Editor) that favoring lower numbers doesn't make a person "anti-immigrant." And I'm sure the label doesn't apply to him, either. To say that "FAIR" is not anti-immigrant, however, is just ridiculous.

As was the case with Barbara Jordan, a person certainly can have noble reasons to support restricted immigration. The "FAIR" agenda, though, goes a bit farther. Lately, "FAIR" has gone on the warpath against a very narrow bill in Congress that has nothing to do with the numbers of legal immigrants we welcome but rather with their basic legal rights. In rallying its membership and Congressmen like Lamar Smith and Tom Tancredo to oppose H.R. 1452, "FAIR" is arguing that the INS should be able to imprison long-term LPRs for months or years without trial and kick them out with no chance for an IJ to decide whether it's actually necessary, if they have committed nearly any crime at any point in their life.

It does this through blatantly dishonest arguments about what constitutes an "aggravated felony" and what H.R. 1452 would and wouldn't do for people who fall under this overly broad & misleading term. It does it by stooping to boogeyman scare tactics about "killer nannies" and other criminals running amok in the streets. "FAIR" is essentially saying that long-term LPRs simply do not deserve minimal due process - or even minimal common sense - when facing something as serious as deportation. Even those who have been here so long that they can scarcely be called "immigrants" anymore.

If that's not "anti-immigrant," then I don't know what is.

Rob Randhava
Washington, DC


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