Posts tagged ICE

Alabama Sin Miedo / Alabama Unafraid

The immigrant justice movement is a freedom struggle. This is exactly what is needed. More confrontation. More direct action. Not one more deportation.

Shared Article from inthesetimes.com

The Immigration Movement’s Left Turn

Advocates are moving away from the “pathway-to-citizenship” compromise—and are demanding a moratorium on deportations.

inthesetimes.com


#Not1More #BordersAreStupid #ShutDownICE

Shared by Alabama Coalition for Immigrant Justice.

Who will be the Obama administration’s two-millionth deportee? The question haunts neighborhoods, schools and workplaces from Phoenix to Philadelphia.

And as the Obama administration continues its en masse removal of undocumented immigrants, that unlucky distinction could go to any of the roughly 11 million undocumented people who call the U.S. home—a carwash worker nabbed for a broken taillight; a field laborer who has overstayed her work visa; or a youth donning a cap and gown, deliberately crossing the path of the border patrol in a show of civil disobedience.

Deportations are expected to reach the 2 million mark in early April, and activists are campaigning fiercely at the gates of detention centers, border checkpoints and congressional offices to show the White House they will not let the Obama administration’s reach that milestone without a fight.

Last month in Alabama, immigrant rights advocates organized one such action by forming a human chain outside the Etowah County Detention Center, chanting “not one more”—the rallying cry of a wave of anti-deportation actions that have swept the nation over the past year, gaining political currency as a social media campaign, a slogan at street demonstrations, and more recently, a political salvo in Washington, where more conciliatory policy demands from inside the Beltway have sputtered.

One protester at the Etowah rally, Gwendolyn Ferreti Manjarrez, declared, “I am tired of living with the fear that my family or any family can be torn apart at the seams for living our everyday life.”

— Michelle Chen, The Immigration Movement’s Left Turn,
from In These Times (1 April 2014)

Immigration Police State

In which President Obama’s I.C.E. plan some new tactics for escalating their deportations of undocumented immigrants — destroying lives and separating families — for the sake of keeping up their stats. To keep up their stats, they implement a combination of the worst sorts of profiling and police-state dragnets. From USA Today (emphasis added):

WASHINGTON – U.S. immigration officials laid out plans last year that would ratchet up expulsions of immigrants convicted of minor crimes as part of an urgent push to make sure the government would not fall short of its criminal deportation targets, new records obtained by USA TODAY show.

Among those new tactics – detailed in interviews and internal e-mails – were TROLLING STATE DRIVER’S LICENSE RECORDS for information about foreign-born applicants, DISPATCHING U.S. IMMIGRATION AND CUSTOMS ENFORCEMENT (ICE) AGENTS TO TRAFFIC SAFETY CHECKPOINTS CONDUCTED BY POLICE DEPARTMENTS, and PROCESSING ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS [sic] WHO HAD BEEN BOOKED INTO JAILS FOR LOW-LEVEL OFFENSES. Records show ICE officials in Washington approved some of those steps.

President Obama’s administration has made deporting convicted criminals a central feature of its immigration policy, while also saying it would halt some efforts to remove low-priority immigrants who pose little risk to public safety. [sic — see above; see below] … By the time the government’s fiscal year ended in September, ICE had deported 225,390 criminal immigrants [sic] – a record, and well above the agency’s target of 210,000. ICE has not specified how many of those deportations were based on minor offenses; the year before, it reported that MORE THAN A QUARTER OF THE PEOPLE IT CLASSIFIED AS CRIMINALS HAD BEEN CONVICTED ONLY OF TRAFFIC OFFENSES… .

— Brad Heath Immigration tactics aimed at boosting deportations, in USA Today (17 Feb 2013)

Now I should take a moment to say that even if this sort of quota-filling violence, data-mining surveillance and police-state dragnets only netted people guilty of major criminal offenses (and not bullshit traffic offenses or drug beefs), then this would still be absolutely appalling, because the police-state means are appalling whatever results you might be able get from them; and also because there is no reason at all other than pure discrimination for immigrants convicted of crimes to be punished not only by the usual jail sentence, but also by then being exiled from their homes and banished from the country, when non-immigrants convicted of similar crimes are not.

However, as it stands, the claim that the administration’s tactics are targeting those who pose a risk to public safety are purely propagandistic lies. In either case, adopting these tactics in order to destroy people’s lives and livelihoods, for the sake of meeting bureaucratic statistical targets is despicable.

This story comes via Flavia Isabel’s A Really Complicated Chart About Deportation Policy, which is also great, and well worth reading.

Free Alfonso Perez

Remember back when Barack Obama made a big announcement that his Immigrations and Custom Enforcement agency wasn’t going to be detaining or deporting undocumented immigrants who were brought to the United States as children? When he made the announcement, I was happy, but very cautiously so — as long as it holds up, that will at least help some people out. But I wondered whether the promise would last even a few months after election season, or whether it would promptly go the same way as his promises about Guantanamo and his promises about ending DEA raids on medical marijuana dispensaries. This was too optimistic of me. The answer is that it never even lasted through campaign season, and was broken within weeks.

This is appalling. From my friend Evelyn in Las Vegas:

Another DREAMer Detained! Alfonso Is Being Denied Shoes While In Detention. Let Him Free!

President Obama stated that, as of June 15, DREAMers[1] will no longer be detained or deported. Alfonso was detained one month after the announcement and he has yet to be released! Why is DREAMer Alfonso still being detained?

On July 26 at 6 a.m., Alfonso was walking out of his apartment to head to work when ICE officials detained him. He has been held at Henderson Detention Center in Nevada ever since. Alfonso has a 14-month old baby and a fiancee who need him home! Please call and sign the petition so he can be released.

Make a Phone Call

  1. Call ICE – John Morton (202.732.3000)

Sample Script: “I am calling to urge you to release DREAMer Alfonso Perez (A# 205-151-137) from Henderson Detention Center in Nevada and stop his deportation. Alfonso has been living in the U.S. for 20 years. **He has a 14-month old daughter and a fiancee who are suffering without him. Alfonso is a DREAM Act youth and, according to President Obama, should have never been detained. Release Alfonso from detention!”

Please help us raise funds with your contribution to help Alfonso and his family: Help Free DREAMer Alfonso Perez!

— Dream Activist.org: Alfonso Perez

Please:

Alfonso Perez was brought to the United States by his grandmother at four years of age (when his parents abandoned him in Mexico). After twenty years of living in this country, he was detained by I.C.E. on Thursday, July 26th, 2012 at 6:00 a.m. when he walked outside of his apartment to go to work.

He is currently detained at the Henderson Detention Center and has not been provided with shoes, nor has our family been allowed to provide any for him. We need your help to release him, reunite our family, apply for Obama’s DREAM deferred action, and fulfill his dream of attending college.

His lifetime calling is to become a Registered Nurse and help heal his community. In fact, he has a track record of working with elderly and disabled people since the age of sixteen. He DREAMs of finishing college and dedicate his life to provide for his family and care for those people who are most in need.

Alfonso is a dedicated father to his fourteen month old baby and a loving partner to his fiancé. He is the sole financial provider for his family and works 10 hours a day, 6 days a week as a landscaper in Las Vegas, Nevada. His family is distraught by his incarceration and his baby misses him a lot.

— Help Free DREAMer Alfonso Perez @ IndieGoGo.com

  1. [1] [Undocumented immigrants who would have been eligible for a path to citizenship under the DREAM Act — i.e., people who were brought to the United States as children and have lived and gone to school within the U.S. —CJ.]

Change You Can Believe In (Vol. III, No. 10)

From Adam Serwer, in Mother Jones (18 Oct 2011):

Barack Obama Deported More Immigrants This Year Than Any Other President in American History.

Immigrations and Customs Enforcement announced Tuesday that it has reached a new record number of deportations for Fiscal Year 2011: 396,906 removals of unauthorized immigrants.

The numbers should be taken with a grain of salt. Last year ICE miscounted the number of deportations, and the number was revised down to 387,790, still a record. Or at least it was a record, until today. ICE has previously stated it has the resources to deport about 400,000 people a year, which means that Tuesday’s number puts ICE around 3,000 people shy of the total number of people the agency says it has the capacity to deport.

… In the twisted bizarro world of Washington politics, media conventions have obliged journalists to report with equal “balance” the Republican claim that Obama is pursuing a policy of “backdoor amnesty” even as he racks up more deportations than any president ever before… . What you won’t hear about, however, is the human cost to the families, citizen and non-citizen, impacted by the sheer volume and efficiency of the Obama administraton’s immigration removal policy

— Adam Serwer, Open-Borders Obama Sets New Deportation Record, in Mother Jones (18 Oct 2011)

But of course once the U.S. government has stormed your home, locked you in a hellhole detention camp, separated you from your family, and cast you out thousands of miles from your home, they’re not really done with you. Because the United States government hardly stops at United States borders — our Progressive Peace President is a humanitarian and his campaign for peace, democracy and human rights will bring Hope and Change to you in whatever land you may be exiled to. For example, by forcing your former neighbors to subsidize governments that draft child soldiers and send them to kill you:

Barack Obama Forces U.S. Taxpayers To Subsidize Armies That Use Child Soldiers In Conflict Zones

President Barack Obama has decided to waive almost all the legally mandated penalties for countries that use child soldiers and provide those countries U.S. military assistance, just like he did last year.

The White House is expected to soon announce its decision to issue a series of waivers for the Child Soldiers Protection Act, a 2008 law that is meant to stop the United States from giving military aid to countries that recruit soldiers under the age of 15 and use them to fight wars. The administration has laid out a range of justifications for waiving penalties on Yemen, South Sudan, Chad, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, all of which amount to a gutting of the law for the second year in a row.

… In a meeting with NGO representatives on Tuesday afternoon at the White House, State Department officials, led by Deputy Assistant Secretary for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor Dan Baer, explained this year’s reasons why the White House will continue to give military funding to countries that use child soldiers.[1]

Fo r South Sudan, State Department officials argued that since the country didn’t exist when the latest report on child soldier abuse came out, that country doesn’t fall under the law. Their reasoning is that the report in question, known as the 2011 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) report, came out June 27. South Sudan was declared independent 12 days later on July 9. They will receive $100 million in U.S. military aid this year.

“South Sudan may be a new country, but it’s not a blank slate here,” one attendee at the White House meeting told The Cable. “There’s been two decades of child soldier use and unfulfilled promises by the [Sudan People’s Liberation Army].”

For Yemen, the administration’s argument is simply that counterterrorism cooperation with that country is too important to suspend. Yemen is set to receive $35 million from the United States in foreign military financing. What stunned activists in the room, however, was State Department officials’ admission that they don’t know who actually controls the Yemeni military these days.

“The officials said, ‘We don’t even know day by day who we’re even talking to,’” one attendee reported.

— Josh Rogin, Obama waives penalties on countries that employ child soldiers — again! in Foreign Policy: The Cable (4 October 2011)

But I am sure that their collaboration is vital to defeating terror and safeguarding human rights throughout the world. Whoever the hell they are.

Oh well, close enough for government work, anyway. The more things Change….

See also.

  1. [1] Sic. Actually the announcement from Deputy Assistant Secretary for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor Dan Baer — since the White House has nothing to give and countries don’t use soldiers, is that the White House will continue forcing U.S. taxpayers to give multimillion-dollar subsidies to war criminals.

A feature, not a bug

So border-psychotic Jan Brewer, proponent of ethnic cleansing and arbitrary Governor over the state of Arizona, is unhappy with the U.S. federal government. The Feds recently got part of her racist Papers-Please police-state bill struck down in court; so she has decided to sue them back:

Gov. Jan Brewer of Arizona said Thursday that she will raise private funds to countersue the federal government for failing to enforce immigration laws…. At a news conference, Ms. Brewer and Attorney General Tom Horne said the Obama administration had failed to prevent illegal immigrants from crossing the border in huge numbers and stuck the state with the cost of dealing with its failed policies…. In their legal challenge, the state intends to argue that it is being “invaded” by illegal immigrants from Mexico.

— Arizona: State Countersues Over Immigration Law, New York Times Briefs (11 February 2011)

This is of course a desperate stab at protecting a vicious and idiotic policy — in which a tiny minority of power-mongering Arizonans are trying to use a suit in federal court to get the U.S.’s paramilitary Border Patrol and Immigration Enforcement squads to pour into their state, in order to assault, imprison, and exile the large number of perfectly peaceful travelers and longtime residents of Arizona, who happen to be there without papers from the federal government; but in a typical statist inversion, it is the peaceful travelers and the longtime residents, not the militarized, due-process-free federal occupation forces that are described as invaders. Ho, ho.

However, while I can’t say I have any sympathy for Jan Brewer or her fellow power-mongers, I can say that I’m actually glad to hear about this lawsuit. Why? Because, as A Spokesman For The Department of Homeland Security puts it:

A spokesman for the Department of Homeland Security, Matt Chander said in a statement in response, A meritless claim such as this does nothing to secure the border.

— Arizona: State Countersues Over Immigration Law, New York Times Briefs (11 February 2011)

Precisely; that’s why, despicable as I think Brewer’s cause is, I’m happy to see the claim being pressed. Every day and every dollar that the state government spends fighting a futile court battle with the federal government is another day and another dollar that won’t go towards securing government control over borders, or to designing and passing more idiotic power-trip police-state laws like SB 1070. The more bickering they do and the less security they’re able to inflict, the better it’ll be for all peaceful people making an honest living.

I hope this stupid lawsuit lasts forever.