Wednesday, June 11, 2008

What ICE Won't Tell You about May 12, 2008

Not long after the ICE immigration raid May 12 in Postville, IA human rights watchers reported:

  • Some of the women apprehended in the raid were still unaccounted for a week afterwards, having been initially detained in various county jails. ICE was unresponsive to requests for their location.

  • Several employees detained lost their housing because replacement workers Agriprocessors hired took over the former workers' company-owned housing.

  • The Agriprocessor plant brought in busloads of Lakota from the Dakotas to replace apprehended workers.

  • Union representatives claim the plant employed workers as young as 13 and that they have evidence that supervisors beat workers.

  • The employer has still not been charged in the raid for any violation whatsoever.

Tomorrow is one month since the raid. Activists call for a monthly moment of rememberance of the ICE raid on the 12th of each month. If anyone hears any work of the raid or of this movement in MSM, let me know.

LULAC (League of Latin American Citizens) states (5/21/08):

"It is about time that Congress begins to look at the extremely aggressive tactics of Immigration and Custom Enforcement Officials (ICE) and the effects on the immigrant community. Up to this time congressional hearings that have been held focus on problems of immigration and rarely on human costs. We urge Congress to hold hearings so that lawmakers are better informed about the human costs of aggressive enforcement measures so that they can develop more proactive immigration laws that meet the needs of our economy while expecting human dignity and the right to work.” (emphasis mine)

Who will step up to the plate with reasonable proposals for the reform of immigration law? I've shirked my duty long enough. This summer, I'm going to consider what acceptable comprehensive immigration reform should look like. If I come up with anything, I'll let you know.

Your thoughts will help. What should our country do to get our system in sync with our reality?


dada said...

Thanks for keeping us updated on this B.E. I'm having real difficulty reconciling what I was taught America is as I was growing up with what America appears to really be.

eProf2 said...

The Maricopa Sheriff's Department conducted a raid on the three water works parks in PHX yesterday arresting and detaining a number of suspected undocumented workers from the more than 1100 employees. There is now some concern that the AZ economy will falter badly as a result of a mass exodus from the state. The Iowa raid seems to be the most blatant and the most inhumane of all the national raids I've been reading about lately. Do you suppose these raids have something to do with the upcoming elections? Neither candidate thus far has addressed this most human of all concerns: the right to earn a living wherever to provide for one's family. Thanks for keeping us up to date.

Border Explorer said...

Thank you for the update from PHX, eProf! That's a news flash to me. Like you, I wonder about the political nature of the raids. It smells funny in Postville, where the plant owners made hefty political contributions. Could that money have earned them the favor of requesting a well-timed raid? Additionally, I think the border wall is purely political posturing (as was the Bush decision to send the National Guard to the Border last year). I agree: no candidate or elected leader is courageous enough to put a reasonable proposal on the table.

Yeah, Dada, I feel betrayed by my education also. No wonder cynicism is the prerogative of the old (and wise). We hide the truth from our kids.

Thanks to both of you for your comments this post.