Temple Ner Tamid Presents “Let’s Drive Forum: Driving in Fear, An Immigrant’s Dilemma”


Temple Ner Tamid presents a forum on immigration rights: “Driving in Fear: An Immigrant’s Dilemma,” on Tuesday, February 5, at 7 p.m. The evening will feature best-selling author and journalist Dale Russakoff and a panel of experts who will explore benefits of pending New Jersey legislation which would permit qualified undocumented residents access to a driver’s license. Budd Mishkin, an award-winning journalist formerly of NY1, will moderate the panel.

Dale Russakoff (l.) and Budd Mishkin

The ability to drive a car can be essential to living in New Jersey. This leaves undocumented immigrants with a difficult choice: meeting their daily needs or risking arrest for driving without a license. The New Jersey legislature is considering legislation, supported by Let’s Drive NJ, to permit qualified New Jersey residents, who are undocumented, to obtain a driver’s license. Panelists will discuss how proposed legislation will meaningfully improve the lives of immigrants and their families. By enabling qualifying immigrant drivers to obtain a license, the legislation will contribute to safety on the roads for all.

Dale Russakoff, who has written extensively on issues facing undocumented residents, shared her thoughts on the event: “My reporting for ProPublica has made clear that local and state police officers turn large numbers of undocumented immigrant drivers over to ICE, holding them for hours without a warrant, simply because they do not have a license. The TNT forum offers an opportunity to explore the dimensions of this problem and how to address it.”

Rabbi Marc Katz stated “The Jewish tradition speaks no less than 36 times about caring for and welcoming the stranger because we know what it means to be strangers in new lands, trying to make a home for ourselves. Thus, it becomes our mandate to ensure that all people in our midst can care for themselves and their families and for us to take steps towards building that vision of a welcoming society”.

The event is free and open to the public. The forum is co-sponsored by Faith in New Jersey, the Montclair Clergy Association, the Reform Voice of New Jersey, Let’s Drive NJ and Make the Road NJ.

Let’s Drive Forum: Driving in Fear: An Immigrant’s Dilemma
February 5, 2019 at 7 PM.
Temple Ner Tamid, 936 Broad Street, Bloomfield

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  1. Now we’ve totally lost it. We want people to obey the laws, except where we think our own personal higher morality should prevail. Then it’s forget the law. In other words..obey laws I want…not the laws you think we should.

    That’s called breakdown into anarchy.

    Illegal immigrants broke the law by coming over the border illegally, or overstaying their legal visas. Asking for asylum and not showing up for a hearing because they know 90% of those claims fail. But welcome to the new morality. It’s ‘criminal’ now instead to think about deporting them. Morally criminal to pass them over to big bad ICE agents enforcing federal law. ICE are the bad guys now.

    Really, moral insanity has taken hold. It’s not right v. left. It’s right v. wrong.

    Does the Montclair Clergy Association ever ask what the economic ramifications are here from having to provide more services to illegal immigrants..think about the costs they bring to local government budgets and taxes? Do they ever think about people here already struggling to pay their taxes and paying higher health costs. Cost from schooling more kids coming from illegal families now in the local education system? From people flooding emergency rooms without health insurance? Today, 65% of illegal immigrants use some U.S. welfare program compared to half of that for legal citizens. But oh no, that’s a racist view. That’s unfair to discuss. It’s cruel.

    Because we really should now just open our borders, let everyone in illegally who wants to come, even if it’s just because the economy in their country is not working. Because their culture may be violent and problematic. Somehow, we must fix that all right here. Not there. We don’t make demands on their leaders..on their people. No, because god says “help the stranger.” Did he say all strangers? Did he say we should welcome everyone now to our own detriment without thought that those ‘strangers’ might be best helped in their own local culture?

    This driving forum for licenses to illegal immigrants is just another example of the warped morality taken hold. It’s beyond caring and assistance…beyond charity. So I have an idea instead. Those who support turning a blind eye to illegal immigration should now instead open up their homes personally. Forget sanctuary cities. Take in and pay for one illegal immigrant family yourselves directly. Don’t ask others to do it. If you believe in social justice like this, put your money where your mouth is now. Open your homes, take in a family and assume all the direct financial costs personally for them to remain here. Costs society would instead have to bear. Sponsor them personally. Do not ask others to do it, to ignore the laws and ignore enforcement of them.

    Arguing that plenty of people came here in another century, with even less immigration enforcement at that time…does not hold. There was much more demand for manual labor back then..much more opportunity. And far less mandatory welfare programs which society overally did not had to bear. Today, people come here for those welfare public programs. Not to be “welcomed”. Back then your family members had to certify that they would cover for relatives…not by all others. That’s not the case today.

    There’s a reason there are legal immigration laws…quotas and criteria for acceptance. A reason there’s a ‘line’. So that those jumping it do not create an ‘excessive’ burden. Do not economically overwhelm with public assistance and too much local and state taxes required to cover them — by those already living here legally.

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