Relief for some



Young immigrants can relax just a little. The United States Supreme Court this week swept away an arbitrary March 5 deadline set by the Trump Administration to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) protection extended by the Obama Administration. The high court refused the Trump Administration’s request to pre-empt the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals from fully considering a lawsuit filed by several state attorneys general, led by California’s Xavier Becerra. The lawsuit argues that the Obama Administration created the DACA program legally, using a rule-making process based on facts and law, and that Trump must use the same process to wind it down.

This means that the end of DACA probably will not come before the November mid-term congressional elections, Becerra said. He encourages children brought here by their parents without proper documents should apply or renew their certification with the government. Becerra said he has faith that the government will not come and snap them up for deportation if they expose themselves by coming forward.

We do not share the good attorney general’s trust, given the Department of Homeland Security’s obvious enthusiasm for deporting people who have committed no crime but crossing the Rio Grande a decade ago.

But we do appreciate his commitment to hear this case out. He said that will take “months or years.” Long enough, anyhow, for the American people to speak sense to Washington.

For those adults and children from Haiti, Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador who enjoyed special Temporary Protected Status due to emergency, they had better beware. They came here to escape devastating earthquakes and floods that destroyed their economies (not to mention narcoterrorism fueled by US demand). They enjoy no protection from deportation, Trump and Attorney General Jeff Sessions have made clear, because they think that conditions are fine just to ship them back to a country they never really knew or forgot. That’s why we appreciate especially the courage of Morena Navarro of Storm Lake, a native of El Salvador who stepped forward to plead for freedom in our Wednesday edition. “You cannot believe how happy I am here,” she told reporter Tom Cullen. “My kids are here and they’re well fed.”

That’s all she wants. A safe place for her two girls. A job. A bit of hope that they will do better than her. She does not ask much. To work hard and be part of Storm Lake, which needs her and her bright daughters who want to be professionals here someday.

It’s terribly hard for us to see the problem with that. How could we send someone back to a near-certain death and certain despair in San Salvador?

Selena Gonzalez of Storm Lake wants to be a police detective. She fears she might be deported because she was brought here as a child from El Salvador. We told her story the week before. She can sit tight for now, because she falls under the DACA program and not the TPS protection that is about to be pulled from the likes of Navarro.

It takes a lot of guts for these people to risk their security to tell their stories. They want you to understand that they are not criminals but they are people who are afraid and vulnerable, that they have all the same hopes that any of us do.

We will keep on telling those stories as the Dreamers and the hostages to a mindless bureaucracy grind them up. We will tell them as long as they step forward, and until Congress finally does what is right and lives up to the ideals expressed on the Statue of Liberty.

We’re the best

We didn’t need US News and World Report to tell us that Iowa is the best place in the whole wide world to live. That’s why we planted our flag in Storm Lake, the best county seat in the state. Pick up any copy of The Storm Lake Times and you see why it’s the best. And Minnesota is second-best. We always have felt that way. Minnesota used to be part of the Iowa Territory, and we left them the best we could.

That Iowa is best says something about the rest. The Raccoon River runs foul with toxins. Half our children are born into poverty. Our schools are on a starvation budget. We have too many structurally deficient bridges. Rural people especially nowadays live in substandard housing. Few opportunities are available anymore for people with college degrees in small towns. If we are the best, think what it must be like in any of the southern states listed as the worst. It is hard to get worse than Steve King. Hey, we elected him.

Pat yourself on the back. And then get back to work making Iowa live up to the billing. We may be the best according to the datasets, but we certainly can do better by the people.