Ask not what you can do for your country, but what your new country can do for you.
“Welcome to USA.gov,” a website maintained by the Department of Homeland Security’s U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), bills itself as the “primary gateway for new immigrants to find basic information on how to settle in the United States” — featuring a prominent section for new immigrants about how to access government benefits.
“Depending on your immigration status, length of time in the United States, and income, you may be eligible for some federal benefit programs,” the Web page reads.
“Government assistance programs can be critically important to the well-being of some immigrants and their families. Frequently, however, there is a lack of information about how to access such benefits. Benefit programs can be complicated and you may be given misleading information about how they operate.”
The DHS page offers links to government websites that explain how to access benefits including food stamps, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Medicaid, Medicare, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and the “official website with information on all available federal benefit programs,” with a nonworking link to Benefits.gov.
WelcometoUSA.gov also boasts to immigrants that “[f]ree public education for children is one reason many immigrants come to the United States.”
Though the website appears to advertise benefits, new immigrants are not necessarily eligible for the benefits displayed on the website; enrollment in SSI and TANF may also serve as impediments to future immigration status adjustments.
“One of the important points about the legal problems with the DHS site and materials is not only the issue of immigrant eligibility, but the fact that U.S. immigration officials are obviously granting visas to those they believe will and should be receiving government assistance,” the staffer wrote in an email to TheDC. “Immigration law is supposed to operate so that individuals at risk for being placed on public assistance are not admitted in the first place.
According to a recent analysis of census data by the Center for Immigration Studies, 36 percent of immigrant heads of households, both legal and illegal, used at least one form of welfare in 2010, compared to 23 percent of native born heads of household.
The heads of household from Mexico, Guatemala and the Dominican Republic constituted the highest users of welfare 57 percent, 55 percent and 54 percent, respectively. The heads of households with the lowest participation were from Canada at 13 percent, Germany at 10 percent, and the United Kingdom at 6 percent.
Townhall: (Some time in the not-too-distant future at a public university near you).
Good morning, everyone. My name is Dean Crawler and I would like to welcome everyone to new staff training here in the Dean of Student’s Office at the University of Neo-Communism in Wonderland, or UNCW. I wish to welcome all returning Deans, Associate Deans, Assistant Deans, and Adjunct Deans as well. They say it takes a village to raise a child. One could say that it takes a fiefdom to raise a generation. Of course, we prefer to avoid references to Western civilization here at UNCW. We are soaring to greatness. And that means leaving past traditions behind. Even an Adjunct Dean of Diversity knows that. No offense or disrespect intended.
Our training today will focus on four new programs that will help us gain control over student dissidents in an effort to assure the smooth operation of the university. Diversity and tolerance are very complex concepts. And sometimes rigid conformity is needed to ensure their full realization. I would appreciate it if everyone would give her, his, its, or undecided’s full attention while I explain these new programs:
1. No administrator left behind. We have decided to add a few new positions to help with our ever increasing workload. We will add a new Dean of Noise Complaints this semester. As you know, students often have parties off campus that result in noise complaints. We have partnered with local police to set up a system whereby all noise complaints received by police are channeled into the university administrative structure. When police answer a noise complaint off campus, we soon find out. Then we will call the student into the Dean’s Office and interrogate him, her, it, or undecided concerning the alleged violation. Each violation will be recorded by the Dean’s Office and will be placed in the student’s permanent record. If the student complains loudly in response to interrogation, the Dean of Noise Complaints will then file a separate noise complaint with the UNCW police. This will result in the student being brought back in for further interrogation by the Dean of Noise Complaints.
2. Two strikes and you’re out. All infractions will require recidivism before students can be expelled from UNCW. However, our previous policy of allowing three strikes has been modified. Now, only two strikes will be needed for expulsion. For example, an off campus noise complaint resulting in interrogation to which a student noisily complains will be sufficient for expulsion. Students will forfeit all tuition and fees paid for the duration of the semester, regardless of whether expulsion occurs before or after the official drop date for regular courses.
3. The Universal Administrative Trial Program. To date, we have employed a two-tier system for dealing with student non-conformity issues. Criminal hearings have been used as a means of dealing with criminal conduct. Administrative hearings have been used for dealing with non-criminal violations. In the latter type of hearing, students have been stripped of all needlessly cumbersome due process rights. In our collective view, the system has proved to be unworkable. Therefore, we have decided that all hearings will be classified as administrative in nature. All rights will be suspended except for cases involving sexual assault and sexual harassment. In such cases, students bringing charges will be granted a right to counsel and a right to full appellate review. Student plaintiffs will be able to appeal adverse rulings. The accused will receive no corresponding benefit. All attempts on behalf of the accused to either a) retain counsel or b) appeal an adverse ruling will be subject to the noise complaint policy. The Dean of Noise Complaints will preside over all such hearings.
4. Our New Government Respect Compact. Our Student Respect Compact was originally designed to preserve the rights of students to work in an environment free from the following: incivility, discomfort, disrespect, unwarranted intellectual challenge, and unwanted solicitation of ideas and opinions.
The policy has been modified to include the protection of administrators from all of the same invasions. For example, student complaints concerning “administrative waste” and control over “private” or “non-academic matters” are often distressing to the administration. The complaints are rarely solicited and often result in administrative discomfort. We now consider them to be uniformly disrespectful and uncivil. Any conflict between Our New Government Respect Compact and state “whistleblower” laws or the “constitution” will be resolved in the favor of Our New Government Respect Compact. Any resistance will be referred to the Dean of Noise Complaints and subject to the aforementioned policies.
The Obama administration has done a lot to move us forward. The Obama Department of Education told us that we must reduce the burden of proof in sexual assault cases to a mere preponderance of evidence. They told us we would receive no federal funds if we did not conform. We based all of our other sexual assault and sexual harassment policies on the model in place at Stanford University. We call them our Cardinal rules of sexual conformity. That great institution believes that the new Obama policies were a mere starting point – a minimum list of expectations. We agree with that philosophy.
When it comes to implementing policies that ensure administrative victory over student dissidents, we want to do more than just the minimum required by Washington. We want to stay one step ahead of the federal authorities. Not everything we do may be “constitutional” as they say. But our constitution is a living, breathing document. We are confident that the federal judiciary will share and affirm our grander vision by the time any disagreements reach that level. You all are a part of that grand vision. For those of you who are new, I welcome you into our community. For those returning, I welcome you back. And I welcome you all to move with us. Forward.
In closing, I would remind you that extremism in the defense of conformity is no vice. And let me remind you also that moderation in the pursuit of civility is no virtue.