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Discussion » Questions » Current Events and News » New Democratic darling AOC* says "Latinos should not be subject to immigration laws because they are native people" A good legal argument?

New Democratic darling AOC* says "Latinos should not be subject to immigration laws because they are native people" A good legal argument?

*Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

After her speech calling to defund ICE.
AOC said, " We have to have respect for children, respect for families, respect for human rights and respect for the right of human mobility,” she said. “Because it is a right. It is a right. Because we are standing on native land, and Latino people are descendants of native people. And we cannot be told and criminalized simply for our identity or our status. Period.”

Posted - February 12, 2019


  • 1859
    I don't think it's a valid argument.  Everyone should be subject to all laws.  And, whatever legal rights they are afforded come with responsibilities.  Minorities want to be treated fairly, as they should.  So they can't then complain when they can't use that type of status to get a "pass" either.
      February 12, 2019 2:47 PM MST

  • 18823
    I don't either. I am a little shocked that views like that are in our Congress. That is open least for Latinos. 
      February 12, 2019 2:51 PM MST

  • 7481
    Yeah, no. I was a little surprised to hear that one too. It's kind of like saying I should be allowed to migrate to Poland or Ireland without following any laws because of my heritage. No. Those countries would not take me. Not without following the proper procedures. 
      February 12, 2019 3:20 PM MST

  • 18823
    Exactly. As I understand it, they are a mix of Spanish and Native Americans or at least Mexicans are generally. But they still need proper documents to come into a country. Open borders is just not a good policy. 
      February 12, 2019 6:58 PM MST

  • 1324
    No, it's not a good legal argument and if Congress and Senate do their job in a proper, Constitutional manner, that argument won't fly. :)
      February 12, 2019 3:27 PM MST

  • 14615
    I never called her a darling.
      February 12, 2019 3:59 PM MST

  • 18823
    The media is kind of fawning over her right now.
      February 12, 2019 7:08 PM MST

  • 14615
    I wouldn't be surprised. I haven't been watching/reading/listening so much.

    My original answer there looks too blunt.
      February 13, 2019 6:43 AM MST

  • 18823
    Your answer is fine. Sometimes blunt is good. I like blunt: short, sweet and to the point. :)
      February 13, 2019 7:06 AM MST

  • 14615
    Thanks, my2cents.
      February 15, 2019 10:38 AM MST

  • 631
    Hello M2C
    No, it is not a valid argument.
    I believe anyone who migrates to the U.S. should be subject to our laws, no matter where they come from..
      February 12, 2019 4:07 PM MST

  • 18823
      February 12, 2019 7:08 PM MST

  • 3391
    It strikes me as a weird argument.

    Does the term "Latino" just mean anyone and everyone from South America?

    I thought some Latinos have native South American tribal blood in them, but that no Latinos are of 100% native South American tribal descent.
    I thought the 100% ones would be called native South American Indians or named according to their tribe or their locality.
    I also thought some Latinos are of solely Spanish or Portuguese descent, and while others have mixtures of African blood.
    If these are correct, then the AOC is using a false premise for her argument and that would make it logically invalid.
    Logic on it's own may not be sufficient for legal argument, but I believe it usually plays a large and contributing role.

    But the whole immigration debate bothers me.

    The USA and Europe are already densely populated and close to their ecological maximum capacity.
    Australia, while sparsely populated, has insufficient rainfall and underground water and despite its continuing intake, is already past what it can support without further severe and disastrous damage to the environment.
    What the Australian government has done to stop illegal immigrants has been unconscionable and cruel. Rightly speaking, the rest of the world should have imposed sanctions until the concentration camps were abolished. Instead, it has taken activists 15 years to change the views of the majority of voters and begin to dismantle the system.

    And yet peaceful and law abiding individuals should, ethically, always be free to travel and migrate at will.
    On humanitarian grounds, I would prefer to see wealthier countries assisting less wealthy countries to become prosperous and healthy under just and humane governments (irrespective of left or right bias) - without the use of war or coercion. This would hugely reduce the numbers of people desiring to migrate, since most people prefer to remain in and with their home language, culture, family, friends, work and geography whenever possible. This post was edited by bookworm at February 12, 2019 7:04 PM MST
      February 12, 2019 4:24 PM MST

  • 7481
    I don't know if you have Netflix, but if you do, look up John Leguizamo's Latin History for Morons. He's a comedian, so that's why it's got the edgy title, but he actually covers the history/ ancestry really well in it. He listed his sources throughout, though I'm not sure where he got his genetics info from. He says Latinos are 40% Native American. 

    Latinos are all sorts of things. They're a huge mix depending on the region they're from. Some have Asian heritage. Others have European heritage. They're also African. 

    There was a whole lot happening in North and South America. Lots of activity even before people crossed the ocean, but once people starting coming in from Spain and such, then the blood mixed there too. And, a whole lot of Latinos are not happy about that because those coming over were intruders who either outright murdered and raped their people or or simply killed them with germs. 

    Ergo, because so many still have Native American DNA, they're likening their situation to Native Americans (Indians), with some going so far as to say they are Native Americans. And, our Indian tribes are not happy about that either, genetics be damned. 

    If we were going to go by ancient history, anyone with ancestors native to this continent would have rights to it, which would mean Native Americans and Latinos would get a free pass to come and go. 

    I don't think AOC was wrong in her general concept. We can't argue that Native Americans and Latinos didn't have the land first. They did. They obviously didn't occupy all of it, but they were spread out across the lands we occupy today. And, I also think we cannot deny that early settlers from Spain, Portugal, Italy, and England did horrible things. They absolutely did. They decimated populations.

    But, we're hundreds of years out now. If it really was just land they wanted, I might almost be sympathetic. But, they don't want the land. They want the infrastructure that they didn't build. 

    Anyone with more details is free to correct me, but this is what I've been able to gather from what I've read/ watched. 
      February 12, 2019 5:25 PM MST

  • 3391
    Thanks, JA. 
    I don't have netflix.
    I'm an Aussie, so my "history" of  America and South America is limited to sketchy summaries from high school days - which qualifies for the dummy category.

    If I understand it correctly, the Native Americans, both North and South, had complex societies and were highly territorial; they would never have permitted those outside their tribes or nations to settle on their land on mass. Though they might have used some as slaves, married some, and accepted some as traders and diplomats.

    If I understand the conquistadors, they were after land, minerals (esp. gold), power and the spread of Christianity. I've seen a few documentaries of the archeology and history - waves upon waves of abominations of cruelty - but I think there are few groups of people who have never committed atrocities at some point in their histories. It seems all of us are prone to pathologies if sufficiently twisted by upbringing.

    It seems most muggers, liberal or conservative, agree with the idea that migrants should only come by legal means. Perhaps it is assumed that this brings a better class of law abiding citizen. As a generalisation, maybe so. But there would be a signifigant number or people for whom that rule would not apply.
    Criminals are pretty efficient at organising false documentation, identities and "backgrounds".
    Genuine refugees often don't have identity papers for all sorts of reasons. They may have come from areas so poor or remote that they have never had identity papers; some do not even have their births recorded. Or, if they are asylum seekers because of religious persecution (Hindus/Tamils from Sri Lanka, Hazaris from Afghanistan, Rohingya and tribal peoples from Burma, Christians or Yasidis from the Middle East) have refused to give them identity papers and passports as part of the denial of their rights. Surely these people deserve a fair process of review to determine their status, such as that used by the United Nations. 
      February 13, 2019 5:45 PM MST

  • 18823
    I don't really know what the definition of a Latino is vs Hispanic etc. I do know that Mexicans are a mix of Native American and Spanish. 
      February 12, 2019 7:10 PM MST

  • 12424
    Hispanic simply means Spanish speaker.
      February 13, 2019 4:13 PM MST

  • 46267
    I don't think anyone here has a handle on what she was saying at all.
      February 12, 2019 4:34 PM MST

  • 14615
    Yeah, I think there is more to what she was saying than somehow comes across. I'm terribly unpolitically-savvy, though.
      February 12, 2019 4:40 PM MST

  • 46267
    It makes no sense.  Her argument.  And her arguments usually make a lot of sense.  That is what I am basing this on so far.
      February 12, 2019 4:44 PM MST

  • 18823
    I thought it was probably being spun and/or something left out. So I looked for the full quote which I pulled from they are supporting her.
      February 12, 2019 5:48 PM MST

  • 7962
    First  Nations people born in Canada are automatically granted duel citizenship USA/Canada and free to cross borders even with criminal records. (If that relates to the topic)

    Was about 35 years ago when I learned of that, maybe changed since.  This post was edited by Kittigate at February 12, 2019 6:35 PM MST
      February 12, 2019 6:22 PM MST

  • 1720
    It's kinda silly to me. I mean, I have Russian ancestors and I don't expect them to just let some random American bypass their laws and go walking on in just because I have Russian heritage. Or any other country my ancestors came from for that matter.
      February 12, 2019 6:34 PM MST

  • 18823
      February 12, 2019 7:05 PM MST