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Oracle bracing for bigger bus blockade at immigration protest Saturday

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Photo: Video by kgun9.com

Oracle bracing for bigger bus blockade at immigration protest Saturday

By Justin Schecker. CREATED Jul 18, 2014

ORACLE, Ariz. (KGUN9-TV) - This small town thrust in the national spotlight is still bracing for the arrival of undocumented Central American Children expected to stay at the Sycamore Canyon Academy.

Nine on Your Side shared exclusive video of the shelter already housing migrant children north of downtown Tucson with both sides of the immigration debate in Oracle. 

"It looks like what I would expect the United States of America to do with these kids," Mary Ellen Kazda said.     
 
"It looks like a school outing," protestor Bob Skiba said, "and we don't have any problems with what we're seeing here, our problems are with the United States government."
 
How the U.S. Government classifies these Central American children is a major point of contention. 
 
"This is not a discussion about immigration or illegal aliens, these kids are refugees," Kazda said.     
"These people are illegal aliens and I don't care what the law says passed in 2008, if they get here we don't deport them," said Skiba, who tells 9 on Your Side he supports efforts by Arizona's senators to amend that trafficking law. 
 
It is a double-standard to deport Mexican children, while allowing Central Americans to stay, Skiba said. 
 
"As refugees, they become guests of the American government and we pay for everything," he added.
 
Frank Pierson has no desire for the law to change, especially after hearing from a friend who visited Guatemala. 
 
"Anybody who thinks that really bad bad things aren't happening down there has completely got it wrong, according to his eye-witness testimony to me," Pierson said.
 
Nine on Your Side asked Skiba what would happen if the Federal government were to hold an Oracle town hall on the issue. 
 
"It could very possibly change the opinion of all the people in Oracle," he said, "so that there would be no problems but we're being denied that opportunity."
 
But that is not necessary for those already hanging heart-shaped welcome signs. 
 
"I wanted to make sure that we are viewed as a welcoming community as opposed to a resisting and blockading community," Pierson said. 
 

Still, Skiba and the protestors are planning a bigger bus blockade Saturday as illegal immigration demonstrations are scheduled across the nation.  

Justin Schecker

Justin Schecker

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Justin Schecker reports for KGUN 9 ON Your Side at 5:00, 6:00 and 10:00. He joined KGUN9 in September of 2012 and spent his first year in Tucson covering overnight breaking news for Good Morning Tucson.