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Editorials: Denying Human Rights – Storm Lake Times Pilot

President Joe Biden is denying America’s best tradition and hope, and forgetting its own heritage, by severely limiting refugees’ ability to seek asylum in the United States. We are a nation of immigrants. Biden’s family came from Ireland, refugees from the British famine. Our attitude towards immigrants and refugees has always changed throughout history. We are at one of those low points.

The politics based on a false narrative – that we are being overrun at the Mexican border – demands that we deny basic human rights. This fake story has been sold for decades. The Know Nothings despised the Irish and Chinese. Now we hate Latinos. Donald Trump, the Republican candidate for president, says immigrants poison our blood. His wife is an immigrant.

The heirs of the teeming masses longing for freedom agree with Trump: close the border, shut down asylum, build a wall and call in the National Guard because Pedro is crossing the Rio Grande with his family. So he can go to Storm Lake and chop pigs.

President Biden, who likes to quote Irish poets, must realize the tragedy and futility of rejecting asylum claims. He is forced by the polls to put his values ​​in his back pocket and tell the Salvadoran who hopes to shovel manure, “tough luck.”

Rural Iowa is emptying out. The buildings are empty and falling into disrepair. Schools close. And we say we are being swamped? That North Dakota is full? That Pocahontas couldn’t use a few Cubans? That we don’t need the help here? That we don’t need young people with families in rural America?

Yes, that’s the message.

Biden acknowledged a global refugee crisis when he issued his order closing the door to refugees. He said he had no choice in the absence of congressional action, which has been ongoing since the last immigration reform in 1986. The Senate and White House had a compromise bill in hand, but Trump stifled it because it would eliminate an election problem. Biden thus renews Trump’s policy of denying asylum requests, which has already been rejected by the court. None of it makes sense. You don’t solve immigration problems by excluding basic human rights. That’s un-American.


Congressional candidates debate
Rep. Randy Feenstra, R-Hull (R), and challenger Kevin Virgil, R-Sutherland, last Thursday at Western Iowa Tech in Cherokee during a debate on biofuels. The moderator was Dave Price of the WHO. The two candidates differed on the future of the Renewable Fuels Standard, regulations on foreign-owned agricultural land and the federal government’s role in controlling the spread of livestock diseases. Feenstra won the primaries on Tuesday evening 60-40. Photo by TOM CULLEN

The divisions among Republicans in Iowa were clearly visible during Tuesday’s primaries. Representative Randy Feenstra of Hull fended off a strong challenge from Kevin Virgil of Sutherland. Virgil denounced Feenstra for being too concerned with corporate interests, and took advantage of the opposition for carbon dioxide pipelines. Virgil received 37% of the primary votes in the Fourth Congressional District.

Populism is never far from the surface west of I-35. It held Rep. Steve King in good stead for two decades. Feenstra takes money from Smithfield, a subsidiary of China, Inc., and that provided Virgil with fodder. The challenger questioned the premise of ethanol, which is sacrosanct to the Iowa political establishment.

Virgil’s displays indicate that all is not well on the farm. People are frustrated with the status quo. Not that they would go so far as to vote for a Democrat, Ryan Melton of Nevada, who voices some of Virgil’s skepticism about the order of things in the corporate world. The primaries do indicate a fairly deep dissatisfaction with Feenstra within his own party in one of the most conservative districts in America. It’s because he’s dependent on corporate money, pure and simple. Virgil held a lamp against it.


Donald Trump recently met with the oil giants in Texas and told them he would do anything they want if they gave him $1 billion for his campaign. People who support corn ethanol must be crazy to vote for him. Big oil hates ethanol. When he was president, Trump tried to waive ethanol blending requirements for petroleum refineries. He would shut down the ethanol industry if Houston told him to, and it will. Oil companies have been fighting ethanol for centuries. Trump couldn’t care less about the farmers of Iowa, yet they seem to love him for no good reason. The oil titans will probably get away with the $1 billion, since the alternative would be clean energy.

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