Business

Happy ‘Immigrant Heritage Month’ — now vote for immigration reform, please

Above: "What year was your family welcomed to America?" the splash page for Welcome.us asks.

Image Credit: Screenshot
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“When were you welcome?” asks a new pro-immigration site backed by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.

Welcome.us invites people to contribute their own stories about how they or their ancestors immigrated to the U.S. — and it’s designating June as “Immigrant Heritage Month.”

Mark Zuckerberg’s embattled political lobby, FWD.us, is behind the new site. The transparently timed campaign coincides with the tech industry’s last hope to push high-skilled immigration reform through the most unproductive Congress in American history.

“We are Welcome.us, a non-profit dedicated to celebrating a United States that is fueled by an immigrant tradition,” explains the new splash page, populated by supporters, including Zuckerberg and actor Kal Penn. “We’re kicking things off this June with the first ever Immigrant Heritage Month, a nationwide effort to gather and share inspirational stories of immigration in America.”

The dearth of top-notch engineers in Silicon Valley and limited supply of high-skilled visas has made immigration reform the technology industry’s #1 goal. But, Congress has refused to allot more visas without overhauling the entire immigration system. Last year, Zuckerberg’s FWD.us was part of an unsuccessful multi-million dollar push to pass immigration reform.

So now they’re going guerrilla.

The social media-fueled Welcome.us website begins with an interactive graphic that invites people to enter the year when their earliest ancestors “were welcomed in America.” (There’s no mention of what to do if your ancestors were unwelcome invaders, or unwilling slaves.)

Once you’ve entered a date, the site displays a big, bold “Est. 1619” (or whatever date you entered). That graphic can then serve as your Facebook and Twitter avatar, if you like.

As the June primary elections wind down, there is a slight chance that Republicans will have beaten back enough Tea Party challengers to force through a vote on immigration reform in the House of Representatives, without fear of being unseated by extremist challengers. But as I and many others in the press (and Congress) have pointed it, it is unlikely that immigration will be brought to a vote in an election year.

But, the ever-optimistic FWD.us is trying everything within its considerable power to keep the pressure on. Whether or not FWD.us can push through immigration reform for the tech industry anytime in the near future, this latest project may have some legacy power. There are a lot of immigrants. And, like Black History Month, there is good reason to push back against bigotry with an on-going appreciation month.

While some of FWD.us’s past tactics have been questioned by industry leaders, this new one has nothing but an up side. Either it will be completely ineffective or it will prompt people to appreciate immigrants more. Super.

It is unclear what role FWD.us and Zuckerberg will have in this latest project (or where the money is coming from). I reached out to FWD.us and they were not immediately available for comment.

Luck is not on their side, but it might just work. Check out the website here and participate if you feel so inclined.


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7 comments
don honda
don honda

No,  it is Illegal Alien Month!

Alton Robinson
Alton Robinson

Surely this article was not referring to illegal immigrants.  Very few have and objections as long as they obey the laws and do it the legal way.

David Francis
David Francis

The American people who haven’t been brainwashed by the Democrats and their counterparts the Liberals and some instances the Republican Party should vote in future elections, not for the imperfect politician or especially NOT incumbents but the issue that involves your future, your children and their futures. Illegal Immigration as I see it, is a bloody conspiracy. Both political parties are to blame about this never ending deluge of poor, uneducated people. BOTH PARTIES ARE TO BLAME FOR THIS PREDICAMENT WE ARE IN? Obama has told ICE not to detain illegal aliens once they cross the border. THIS PRESIDENT HAS SUCH A BIG MOUTH, THAT NO WONDER WE ARE BEING INVADED? They are already aware that AMNESTY is blowing in the wind. THE CALL GOING OUT, THEY ARE SENDING THEIR KIDS TO OUR POROUS BORDER, ACKNOWLEDGING THEY CAN USE THEM AS A PAWN TO GAIN ENTRY UNDER THE CHAIN MIGRATION LAWS. There is so much lying and corruption emanating from Congress, that honest politician has a hard time keeping their head above the sewerage? Within the walls are your tax dollars that are spread around through the political game of Special interest and cronyism. So much money goes to stupid, unnecessary issues that the waste is in billions of dollars. Most politicians have a loyalty to corporations and big business, whereas the other side brought and paid for by unions and their own special interests. The Republicans have their wave of Agendas, and the Lib-Democrats have their ideas.

Other than a few honest politicians Washington, DC, is overrun with deceit, cover-ups and bad policies from lobbyists as in the 50 state assemblies. In California, the former Golden State High taxes, bad energy regulations, bigoted policies. Nationwide ugly shadowed issues as releasing 36.000 criminal illegal aliens and the latest releasing dangerous Taliban terrorists for one American soldier who has some questionable answers about leaving his obligated duties The IRS that is out of control and other agencies doing the dirty work of the white House. Then we have a union ownership of most government agencies, policies that promote unemployment and welfare, lawsuits to kill jobs and lawsuits to kill businesses and the major problem of the almost unhindered illegal immigration in the nation. We have election system that is easily compromised as there is no centralized data base. We need a National digital ID card based on the Social Security number, to send the consistent voter fraud

The national Tea Party leadership is the one and ONLY chance we have to stop the Obama administrations move to towards a Socialist Empire. Tea Party Patriots stands for every American, home to millions who have come together to pursue the American Dream and to keep that Dream alive for their children and grandchildren. The Tea Party is a grassroots movement that brings awareness to any issue which challenges the security, sovereignty or domestic tranquility of our beloved nation.

·To abolish the inequity of the IRS, and deliver to the American people a fair or consumption tax, so nobody escapes paying in the indigenous United States. Not ME, politician…corporation….NOBODY.

·Only two terms allowed for each politician. No more career individuals in Congress.

The Democratic assemblies have shown no interest in voter fraud. Go on line today and register to vote—under any name you want. Almost impossible for the State to figure out the name is bogus. Register to vote via mail, as an absentee ballot same result? The state has a signature—so what. Here illegally who cares that it carries a penalty of perjury; so who is going to stop you from registering to vote and then voting? There is no voter ID allowed in California or any Democratic run state.  You can register as a voter in Los Angeles and also in Orlando, Florida—or some other location no one will know. Elections in California and most of the other States are as corrupt as mafia run numbers game. Without these rising problem legal immigrants and citizens would be paid a fair wage for work, instead illegal aliens have stolen jobs from construction workers, service industries, health care industry and kids who are looking for some part time employment. Instead they must compete with foreigners who have entered this country, without permission, bring with them criminals, health problems and a needing to apply for public benefits, which Obama gives freely. Employers have been allowed to turn a blind eye by the authorities and the invasion continuous under this Administrations plan.

Ver Acity
Ver Acity

When you go to the polls, remember that the pro illegal lobby are:

Valuing illegals above lawful immigrants and US citizens.
Taking your social security contributions and using them for illegals.
Undermining the middle class by allow illegals to undercut their wages and steal their jobs.
Rewarding criminals.
Destroying your kids financial futures.
Discriminating against prospective lawful immigrants by blocking them from entry and jobs.
Having a wide open southern border with a continual invasion of illegals, dragging the US economy down to that of their native countries.

It's your choice - you know what is right and wrong. Vote. 

CyberSoup Kitchen
CyberSoup Kitchen

@Ver Acity Not true.  High skilled immigrants put jobs into the economy by creating businesses, and low skilled ones do jobs that Americans do not apply for.  In 2010, undocumented and illegal immigrants paid over 10 billion dollars in taxes (income, state, and excise).  You don't need an SSN to pay taxes, you just need an ITIN when you're employed.


http://www.visanow.com/do-undocumented-immigrants-pay-taxes/


Immigration reform would allow children born from illegal immigrants who are law abiding and educated to stay in the USA.  Why not keep the knowledge and skills we supported when they entered the workforce?


Immigration reform also would increase and optimize border security.


Do your reading before you start opining.