If all illegals aliens were as smart, industrious and good-looking as Isabel Castillo, a 26-year-old illegal from Mexico, perhaps having them here might not be such a burden.
But they're not, as the crime and welfare statistics show.
[VDARE.com note: They're not all that good looking, either. Manuel Ortega, below left, is a 19 year old high school student in Richmond, California. He could be DREAMactivist, but he's not, he's one of the accused in the prolonged gang-rape of a fifteen-year old girl. Jose Mendoza Cerrato, center, could be a DREAMactivist, but he's not—he's a crack dealer in San Francisco. And finally, Diana Ponce, right, is an anti-Minuteman activist—she's seen below participating in a badly needed hunger strike.]
Regardless, Senorita Isabel will share the stage today (May 20) with the illustrious graduates of the University of San Francisco, a Jesuit (meaning communist—I write here as a Roman Catholic) college in the most radical, anti-Christian city in America. She will receive, hilariously enough, an "honorary doctorate" from the school for her work as an "immigration activist." She will also deliver the commencement address for the College of Arts and Science, from which her degree comes.
Despite being an illegal alien, you see, Ms. Castillo lobbied heavily for the DREAM Act—in full view of the cameras and federal and state legislators.
For this, apparently, she deserves the phony degree. She now joins cop-killer Mumia Abu-Jamal in the pantheon of leftist heroes whose "educational accomplishment" is simply made up out of whole cloth.
Isabel's lachrymose tale of woe has appeared in The New York Times and local paper in her current "hometown", the Harrisonburg, Va. Daily News-Record. It has documented her rise from a timid girl aching to live the DREAM to a full-throated activist who "came out of the shadows" to claim her piece of the American pie.
Or tortilla. Whatever you call it, Isabel is the dream of the DREAM-acters. She landed here illegally when she was just a little fajita, 6 years old. Her parents had jumped the border. She went to the public schools in Harrisonburg, was a smashing success academically, and went to college at Eastern Mennonite University, also in Harrisonburg.
Like many of those who graduate from EMU and other colleges, Ms. Castillo has a completely useless degree: social work. (University Mennonites, I note ecumenically, are just as leftist as university Catholics. )
Castillo put herself through school slinging hash, or refried beans, at a restaurant. When she isn't working, she's doing her activist thing for the DREAM Act. Indeed, she is a founder of an organization called DREAMActivist Virginia.
Revealing her true identity came only gradually, though, The New York Times reported:
"At first, I'd only allow the media to shoot my face turned away and only my first name. And then it just progressed. I said, 'O.K., use my face and you can say I went to a local university.' Then it was, "I graduated from Eastern Mennonite University and I'm Isabel Castillo."[Dream Act Advocate Turns Failure into Hope, By Michael Winerip, New York Times, February 20, 2011]
Now, she fights for truth, justice and the American way completely openly. And she has become the face of the DREAM Act.
The DREAM Act, defeated again by a patriotic uprising last year, would have given an amnesty ("Path to citizenship") for the children of illegals brought here when they were young.
Part of that path was getting arrested and convicted for a DREAM Act protest in Sen. Harry Reid's office. Sentence: One year of unsupervised probation, five days in jail suspended, and $50 in court costs.
"It was just very powerful to be in there and let our testimony be heard," she told the local newspaper of her trial. "Even the federal prosecutor was moved. He said it was the most American thing we were doing, lobbying our senators."
Except that none of those senators are "hers." Ms. Castillo is not a citizen.
Not that it matters. Nothing has happened to her. She is such a celebrity in Harrisonburg that the media even quotes her as expert on how illegal immigration can help bring down the federal deficit. Castillo showed up at a protest where DREAM activists claimed, quoting the Congressional Budget Office, [PDF]that the bill would reduce the deficit by $1.4 billion and add $2.3 billion in tax revenues during the next decade. They even gave the leftist mayor of Harrisonburg a faux $2.3 billion check.
According to Isabel, the honorary doctor of humane letters:
"'The way the economy is right now, we have a lot of deficit. We want to help and pay taxes,' said Isabel Castillo of Harrisonburg, a 25-year-old undocumented immigrant and founder of local advocacy group DREAM Activist-Virginia. 'This is the [fiscally] smart thing to do.'" [What's A Dream Worth? ]Immigration Reform Bill's Supporters Play Fiscal Card, But Success Is A Poor Bet, By Jeremy Hunt, Harrisonburg Daily News-Record, December 08, 2010]
Of course, this didn't take into account the annual cost of illegals, some $84 billion, according to the Federation for American Immigration Reform.
[VDARE.com note: Isabel Castillo's claims eerily echoed talking points supplied by the White House. Ed Rubenstein reveals that the White House misquoted CBO tomorrow. UPDATE: see here.]
No matter, it looks as if Isabel is here to stay, no matter how many laws she breaks. Says Isabel: "I'm not ashamed or scared. I'm not a criminal. I'm no longer going to hide in the shadows."
One can least understand Isabel's position. She didn't ask to be brought here. She has worked hard, made good grades and graduated college.
Hard cases make bad law. The hard case in this instance arose because the federal government failed to control the borders. Law enforcement officials and legislators are now left between a rock and a hard place. Either deport the likes of Isabel and look like ogres, or don't deport them and essentially admit immigration laws are meaningless.
The Obama Administration U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano has chosen the latter path, as she made clear a few weeks ago. Napolitano spoke at a leftist confabulation and admitted that the Obama Administration had unilaterally made the DREAM Act de facto law.
For years, the Immigration and Naturalization Service (now Immigration and Customs Enforcement) have flatly stated that the federal immigration authorities are interested only in "criminal" aliens—meaning illegals who rob, rape and murder. They are not interested in so-called "administrative" cases such as Castillo's.
Napolitano, and her immigration deputy John Morton, confirmed that longstanding position. Said Napolitano:
" 'I will say, and can say, that you know what? They are not, that group, if they truly meet all those criteria, and we see very few of them actually in the immigration system, if they truly meet those [criteria], they're not the priority,' the secretary said at an event sponsored by NDN, a progressive think tank and advocacy group, on the future of the nation's border policies.
"The reason we set priorities is so that the focus could be on those in the country who are also committing other illegal acts.' "[DHS: Illegal immigrant students not a target for deportation, Washington Times, April 1, 2011 ]
Said Morton: "If you take a look at the record, people that fit within the confines of the Dream Act, there are in fact very, very few deportations of those kinds of individuals."
Thus it is with Isabel Castillo, recipient of a faux doctorate for breaking American law.
Again, one can understand Castillo's defending her position. One understands the DREAM legislators, too. They want votes.
WWhat one cannot understand is a Catholic University honoring her for breaking the law.
Then again, maybe one can understand it, given that the Church hierarchy in this country, particularly in universities, is solidly leftist.
Said USF president and Jesuit priest Stephen A. Privett, [Email him] in a University Press Release:
"We honor Isabel Castillo for her selfless courage in advancing the cause of undocumented college students and to underscore the fundamental unfairness of our denying a path to citizenship to some of the most motivated college students in the country. Isabel challenges our graduates to use the knowledge and skills they have acquired here to fashion a more just world for all."
But the true Catholic notion of justice imposes a requirement upon the State, as the Catholic Encyclopedia explains, "to protect its subjects in their rights and to govern the whole body for the common good."
The leftist Catholic position on the DREAM Act does not account for the common good—the good of this country's citizens. Rather, it takes into account only the welfare of those who are breaking the law by being here.
Catholic doctrine also imposes a duty upon human beings to obey the law. Ms. Castillo flouts that dictum.
Sounds to me like Father Privett has some 'splainin' to do..
For her part, "Dr." Castillo vows to keep agitating for change: "We've been fighting for the DREAM Act for 10 years. We're not going to stop."
No, she's not. And that is what's most worrisome of all.
A.W. Morgan [Email him] is fully recovered from prolonged contact with the Beltway Right. He now lives in America.