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The good people of Fremont Nebraska, (they really are good and kind in so many ways) have put in place a very misguided (or shall I say bad) ordinance to discriminate against the Hispanic community that lives and works there. I walked in to several Latino businesses when I was last in Fremont and the first thing I saw was a sad, downcast look on their faces. As one Hispanic business owner told me, “It’s a hard time right now.”

Fremont, this is no way to treat anybody. You should be ashamed of yourselves.

If a landlord rents to someone who is not licensed, they can be fined $100 a day. Of course, there is the claim, that Fremont is not discriminating because they are requiring this of everybody who wants to move to town. But this is just a sham. This law came about because a woman went to her child’s elementary school and noticed a large percentage of the class was Hispanic. She started the initiative that was passed because of people’s fears and ignorance.

The requirement that anybody who wants to rent a place in Fremont, has to go to the police department, prove legal status if you don’t look white enough, provide an address and buy a license to live there is an egregious violation of human rights that we have not seen since Jews in 1930s Germany were required to go to police departments and register their residency. This is not acceptable in Nebraska or anywhere in the USA. It is just plain wrong.

It has been put forth by some in Fremont that the US government won’t do anything about the very real problems that are coming up because of undocumented people. But abusing people is not the way to solve the problem. If Fremont is truly concerned about solving documentation issues of foreign workers, you should fire all of your representatives in Washington DC. They are willfully doing nothing to solve this issues and they are doing it for their own political gain.

Fremont, the nation is looking with disgust at you for this really bad thing you’ve done. It truly is unacceptable. I was arrested while staging a one man sit-in the Fremont City Hall in protest of your discriminatory ordinance. I even did a little time in jail while awaiting bail.

I so believe that what Fremont has done wrong that I’m willing to be arrested and jailed to help bring an end to your anti immigrant ordinance. I hope others will stand up as I have to keep this fear and ignorance based behavior from spreading further.

Lyle George 2014JUL6

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