He also blasts border state governors who sent migrants to other parts of the country.
Mayor Michael O’Connor
Frederick, Md (KM) Immigration enforcement is not usually an issue addressed at the local level, but Frederick Mayor Michael O’Connor was asked about that during Tuesday’s “Morning News Express” on WFMD.
This follows migrants being transported by bus or by plane to other parts of the country such as Washington DC, New York and Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts by border state governors. They say it’s a way to let the Biden Administration know about this problem of unsecured borders, and get federal government to do something.
No bus loads of migrants have come to Frederick, but if that should happen, the Mayor says the city is ready. “We have a Department of Housing and Human Services, and a number of more than capable non-profit organizations. I have no doubts about the welcoming nature of this community that if that would happen, there would be people, including the city’s Department of Housing and Human Services, that could step up and provide assistance,” he said.
These migrants are often called illegal immigrants, and Mayor O’Connor took issue with that. “I hate the phrase illegal alien, illegal immigrant. I think it’s stigmatizing and dehumanizing,:” he said. “What would you call them, then,” asked morning host Bob Miller. “They’re people who lack proper documentation to be in this country, legally. But they’re not illegal people.”
“The unfortunate part of the politics that are being played by these governors in these states is not all of these people are illegal, under that definition,” O’Connor continued. They’re not in the county unlawfully.”
The Mayor said they are here to seek a better life. “They’re people who are fleeing crisis. They may be fleeing challenges in their country that their own country can’t get around,”: he said. “The United States has always been a beacon for people who are coming from someplace else trying to find a better life.”
Many of these immigrants are coming from Central America, mostly Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua. O’Connor brought up his own family who came to the US. “My grandparents, immigrants from Ireland. Nobody was too concerned about them coming to the United States,” he said
“Michael, they came in a completely different manner. That’s what history has shown,” Miller responded. “I don’t know that they did,” said O’Connor. “I’m reasonably certain that my own family, based on the family narrative and stories that I’ve been told, that not all of my aunts and uncles that arrived here from Ireland arrived here through the property methods.”
In the end, Mayor O’Connor said immigration enforcement is a federal responsibility, not one for local governments.
By Kevin McManus