by Lou Binninger
Some California cities and counties are determined to be sanctuaries for their citizens rather than hide-outs for criminals illegally in the United States.
Orange County and a number of its cities (Los Alamitos, Orange, Westminster, Huntington Beach, Newport Beach, San Juan Capistrano, Santa Ana, Mission Viejo) are opting out of the California’s Sanctuary State law (SB54) and advising law enforcement to cooperate with federal immigration officers. The Northern California cities of Ripon and Yuba City recently voted to abstain from SB54. San Diego County’s Escondido opted out, as well.
On April 11, Westminster, the “All-American City,” voted to reject Senator Pro-tem Kevin De Leon and Governor Brown’s law. De Leon actually attended the council meeting and spoke in defense of the law.
The Westminster vote has an historic twist. Westminster has the most Vietnamese-Americans per capita of any city in the nation.
In 1975, with the withdrawal of American troops and the resulting fall of Saigon, the nation of Vietnam became a communist country. Millions of Vietnamese fled the former French colony by foot and by boat. Thousands died trying to escape. Some were shot by Vietnamese military while other freedom-seekers died from starvation, dehydration and drowning at sea.
Hundreds of thousands of survivors languished in resettlement camps of nearby Asian countries while applying for refuge in America and other nations. However, a young democrat California Governor Jerry Brown became a key proponent in a national campaign to reject the Vietnamese and even plane loads of orphans from coming to the US, and particularly to California.
Other prominent Democrats calling for the ban were Delaware’s Senator and future Vice-President Joe Biden, former presidential “peace candidate” George McGovern, and New York Congresswoman Elizabeth Holtzman.
Julia Taft, who in 1975 led President Gerald Ford’s Inter-agency Task Force on Indochinese refugee resettlement, said Brown’s rejection of the freedom-loving and anti-communist Vietnamese was “a moral blow.”
According to Taft, liberals were open as to why they were rejecting Vietnamese war refugees including the Hmong and other mountain people, “....they had too many Hispanics, too many people on welfare, they didn’t want these people.”
“They didn’t want any of these refugees, because they had..... unemployment,” Taft told NPR (National Public Radio).
When Brown took office in 1975 California’s unemployment rate was 9.4%, and the country was in the midst of a recession combined with high inflation. In 2011, during President Obama’s open borders everyone-is-welcome antics California’s unemployment was at 12.4% and was in the midst of the Great Recession.
In 1975, liberals were no friends of immigrants or as they saw it people fleeing a communist ideology. Though hundreds of millions were dying from communist takeovers around the world liberals thought anti-communist Vietnamese should just get over it and settle down over there.
At the Westminster council meeting third-term Mayor Tri Ta, a Vietnamese immigrant and the first Vietnamese-American mayor in the United States said, “Our forefathers of this country, they fought for freedom.” He affirmed his compassion for immigrants, but reminded the audience about the issue. “I would like to clarify that the Vietnamese boat people came legally. We waited twelve years.”
The Hmong, those who survived crossing the Mekong Delta and by land into Thailand from Laos and Vietnam, tell of remaining for years in refugee camps applying for access to America and elsewhere. Many married and birthed their first children in these camps.
Janet Nguyen, State Senator representing parts of Long Beach and Orange County, was born in Saigon, Vietnam, on May 1, 1976, roughly one year after the fall of Saigon on April 30, 1975. She is the first Vietnamese-American State Senator in the nation.
Nguyen and her family fled with other boat people when she was five, making it to California in 1981. Ironically, Governor Brown aggressively opposed Nguyen and her kind. Today, Brown claims to welcome foreigners no matter how they entered the country including protecting dangerous criminals. A communist leaning California Senate leadership shouted down and removed Nguyen when she tried to recognize the sacrifice of the Vietnamese fighting alongside Americans for freedom.
Maybe liberals did not see thousands of Vietnamese and tribal minorities as an easy voting block for democrats. In 1975, entitlement freebies for immigrants were not as plentiful as today. And, these immigrants were anti-communist.
Today, liberals “love” anyone that can float, tunnel under or climb-over to get here, and “Christmas” is waiting. Just vote democrat to keep it coming.
It will be interesting to see how many jurisdictions seek to be a sanctuary from the Sanctuary Law. In the meantime if a high-profile person or two are raped, robbed, or murdered by an illegal alien the foundation of this democrat stronghold might get a little shake-up.