There’s no denying at this point that our nation’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement department – better known by its unsettling abbreviation, ICE – is little more than the American Gestapo. The agency gleefully relishes in their job of rounding up black and brown “undesirables,” subjecting them to all manner of inhuman and unlawful treatment, and unceremoniously dumping them in the generally war-torn countries from whence they came.
But this? This is beyond the pale, even for them. From the Huffington Post:
President Donald Trump’s administration ramped up its crackdown on so-called sanctuary cities this week when U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement carried out nationwide detention raids, arresting 498 people from 42 different counties for alleged violations of federal immigration laws.
The operation, dubbed “Safe City,” targeted undocumented immigrants with criminal convictions, pending criminal charges, gang affiliations or those who have fled and re-entered the country following a previous deportation, the agency said on Thursday.
Around one-third of those rounded up had no criminal record. Among those with convictions, driving under the influence was the most common crime.
The raids were carried out in jurisdictions that don’t fully comply with ICE efforts to enforce immigration laws, including Baltimore, the Chicago area, Denver, Los Angeles, New York, Philadelphia, Portland, parts of Massachusetts and Washington, D.C.
Maybe they’re worried about scary drunk driving undocumented migrants running over neo-Nazis by “mistake” as payback for Heather Heyer or something. After all, what’s good for the goose is good for the gander, or so sayeth the fear that gives every white bigot a cold sweat, amirite?
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The goal of “Safe City” was clearly twofold, as not-so-subtly expressed by ICE Acting Director Tom Homan in a statement regarding the operation on the ICE website: to flex ‘Merica’s muscles in the face of an nonexistent overweening threat to public safety, and to punish “liberal” big cities for not rolling over and showing their bellies to the president*.
Sanctuary jurisdictions that do not honor detainers or allow us access to jails and prisons are shielding criminal aliens from immigration enforcement and creating a magnet for illegal immigration. As a result, ICE is forced to dedicate more resources to conduct at-large arrests in these communities.”
“ICE’s goal is to build cooperative, respectful relationships with our law enforcement partners to help prevent dangerous criminal aliens from being released back onto the streets,” Homan added. “Non-cooperation policies severely undermine that effort at the expense of public safety.
The statement goes on to say that “[s]ome of the individuals arrested during this operation will face federal criminal prosecutions for illegal entry and illegal re-entry after removal. The arrestees who are not being federally prosecuted will be processed administratively for removal from the United States.” That means every single one of these people will be deported, no matter how long it takes. Most of them will rot in federal detainment for who knows how long before eventually being tossed out like so much trash. The ones who survive, anyway.
ICE arrests have skyrocketed since Trump took office, as he’s cleared a rhetorical path for them to receive unblemished support from the conservative movement. The agency is notoriously opaque when it comes to information regarding their internal practices and actual enforcement statistics because it’s a lot easier to “disappear” people under cover of institutional darkness. And now that they’re about to be operating hand-in-glove with the Department of Homeland Security to start hoovering up Internet user data on millions of immigrants, it stands to get a whole helluva lot worse.
The Department of Homeland Security will soon begin collecting social media data from all immigrants entering the United States, part of what agency officials call an effort to more effectively screen those coming to the country but privacy advocates see as an unnecessary intrusion that would do little to protect national security. […]
Green card holders and naturalized citizens will also have their social media information collected, with the data becoming part of their immigration file. It was unclear whether the monitoring would take place only in the application process or could continue afterward.
The department published the new requirement in the Federal Register last week, saying it would collect “social media handles, aliases, associated identifiable information and search results,” which would be included in an applicant’s immigration file. It said the data would come from “publicly available information obtained from the internet, public records, public institutions, interviewees, commercial data providers.”
This is how ethnic cleansing begins. Not with a bang, but with the collective whimper of our nation’s most vulnerable as they are dragged off into the darkness at the behest of people too scared and too dumb to realize that those who forget the past are forever doomed to repeat it.
This was originally posted on Pink Elephants