Your School. Your Paper. Since 1936.

The Suffolk Journal

Your School. Your Paper. Since 1936.

The Suffolk Journal

Your School. Your Paper. Since 1936.

The Suffolk Journal

Enforcing immigration law on campus- a necessity

When Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi announced the House would begin formal impeachment proceedings against President Trump, Democrats rallied behind the mantra “Nobody is above the law.” The subsequent investigation into the alleged quid pro quo revealed to all Americans (or at least to those willing to look) the actions the President took to leverage American foreign policy for his own personal and political gain. Democrats correctly argued that the President had abused his power, violated his oath of office to support, protect, and defend the Constitution and needed to be impeached. The results of the House of Representative’s impeachment vote on Dec. 18, 2019, gave credibility to the claim that Democrats cared about the rule of law. It was therefore saddening, but not surprising when the Suffolk University College Democrats endorsed a policy plan that would aid and abet criminal activity on campus.   

The plan/petition, originally proposed by the Suffolk University Marxist Student Association on Jan. 13, demands that administration and President Marisa Kelly create “safe zones” where SUPD and other authorities cannot ask to verify a student’s immigration status. The Marxists and Democrats also request that federal immigration officials are to be restricted from entering campus grounds and that campus security and police be prohibited from collaborating with federal immigration authorities for the purposes of enforcement or information.

According to the petition, now nearing 400 online signatures, the motivation for the proposed changes stems from the fact that, “Recently MIT has warned international students that federal immigration officials may visit their worksites to verify that their employment is directly related to their studies. Students have been detained and imprisoned for allegedly “stealing information to bring back to their home countries” on school break.” In their appeal to administration, the Marxists then state “We, the Marxist Student Association, hope to work with Suffolk Administration, Student Affairs and President Marisa Kelly to ensure ALL students at Suffolk remain safe and within a welcoming environment on and around the Suffolk campus.”

The logic behind the Suffolk University Democrats’ decision to endorse these demands is ill-founded. In this case, enforcing immigration law is a good thing. Let’s explore why.

As the petition correctly notes, the increased monitoring and enforcement efforts from ICE and other immigration officials are a result of recent criminal activity among a few members of the brilliant international student population in Boston. Most notably, on Dec. 31, a graduate student at Harvard University was arrested at Logan Airport for attempting to smuggle vials of proprietary serum used in cancer treatment from Brigham and Women’s Hospital back to his home country of China. This is part of a disturbing trend of espionage and intellectual property theft emanating from the Chinese government.

According to The Economist “In 2018 and 2019 agents from the FBI’s 56 national field offices contacted hundreds, perhaps thousands, of students, researchers and professors with ties to China—many of them from China or ethnically Chinese, including Chinese-Americans—to determine whether they might be working on behalf of the Communist Party.” Additionally, The Economist states that, “The [National Institute for Health] says that it has identified 180 researchers to whom it has provided grants who may not have disclosed payments from, or other affiliations with, Chinese institutions—including some who appear to have established “shadow labs” in China mirroring their NIH-funded ones in America.”

In a statement made to A House Divided, a political podcast and radio show a friend and I host, the Suffolk University Democrats argued, “Suffolk Democrats believe these actions by ICE are unconstitutional. If they were only checking on students who they had probable cause to check on that’s one thing. However, what we’re seeing is them checking every foreign student which is racial profiling, not probable cause. We understand the government’s attempt to try and protect intellectual property but in 2019 more U.S. citizens were charged for this type of theft than foreigners.”

This analysis simply does not hold up to scrutiny. For starters, the Suffolk Democrats did not present a shred of evidence confirming that ICE is “racially profiling” students when conducting investigations into visa violations and other criminal activity. The Dems are just plain wrong when they suggest ICE doesn’t have probable cause for checking foreign students’ immigration status. According to the ACLU, an organization that can only be described as vehemently pro-immigrant, “If you are not a U.S. citizen and an immigration agent requests your immigration papers, you must show them if you have them with you.” Simply being a foreign national in America is probable cause enough to be asked to prove your immigration status. Finally, the idea that since more Americans commit intellectual property theft crimes, therefore we shouldn’t worry about intellectual property theft from abroad is laughable.

According to CNN, it is estimated that losses from Chinese intellectual property theft alone total between $225 billion and $600 billion annually. To resolve these issues, strict enforcement of immigration law must be utilized. We should not be creating spaces on campus for immigration law to be broken.

Unless they’re simply obfuscating their preference for open borders, it seems to me that the Suffolk University Democrats got duped. Swept up in the quest to stamp out the wave of xenophobic sentiment sweeping the country in recent years, the SU Democrats endorsed a policy that would empower regimes seeking to undermine our nation and neuter the power of immigration officials to protect Americans from communist governments and criminal activity. The SU Democrats should abide by the words of Nancy Pelosi when she said “Nobody is above the law.”  Hopefully, this column will help the SU Dems realize the real threat we face and convince them how foolish of an idea it would be to take their immigration policy cues from an organization best known for telling white students to go back to Europe.

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About the Contributor
Nick Sammarco, Senior Staff Writer | he/him
Nick Sammarco is a sophomore economics major from Plainville, Mass. When he’s not writing opinion pieces for The Suffolk Journal, he’s hosting a weekly politics radio show with his friends or watching Boston sports teams win championships. Nick plans to enter law school after his time at Suffolk. Follow Nick on Twitter @nicksammarco

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Enforcing immigration law on campus- a necessity