ICE is preparing to launch nationwide raids to arrest thousands of members of undocumented families starting this Sunday, according to a new report by the New York Times.
Ten unlucky cities, including San Francisco, Houston, Denver, Miami, New Orleans, New York, Baltimore, Chicago, and Atlanta will be targeted.
The Times got hold of the news from two current and one former homeland security officials.
Of course, the operation is backed by our xenophobe-in-chief, President Trump. But it seems like he’s being met with resistance. Even ICE officials seem to be shaking their heads at the heartless move, leading the operation to be postponed until now. Some officials were reportedly reluctant to arrest babies and young children, suggesting that the idea of empathy might exist with ICE’s ranks after all.
But with Trump pushing the plan with a mighty yet tiny fist, there’s nothing stopping the depraved deportations and detentions.
The raids will stretch out over multiple terrifying days and ICE officials will be free to detain immigrants who happen to be around, even if they’re not the target of the raids. They’ll then be held in ICE detention, a.k.a. those ramshackle, abusive and neglectful concentration camps on the border. And of course, without legal recourse or due process, because this is America, where you get access to a “fair” trial only if you’re white and rich enough to advocate for yourself. Looks like it will be a scary few days for any undocumented family near the border.
ICE’s goal, the report says, is to deport families as quickly as possible, holding arrested family members—hopefully together, at least—in detention centers in Pennsylvania and Texas. But the larger goal is to use the plan as a show of force to scare desperate families out of heading to the southwestern border.
Mayors of many of the major cities targeted have been opposing the plan. Last month, London Breed, mayor of San Francisco, described the raids as intended to “inflict as much pain and fear as possible.” Sounds about right.
Democratic lawmakers have also unsurprisingly been opposing the plan. And some mayors are even refusing to cooperate with ICE.
Immigration defense lawyers will also be lending a hand, filing motions to reopen cases in moves that will delay but not stop their deportations. Immigrant advocates have been hard at work with campaigns to make sure people know their rights when ICE agents knock on their doors. That’s right, even undocumented immigrants have basic, human rights. Go figure. For example, ICE agents can’t forcibly enter someone’s house, but of course that doesn’t stop them.
This isn’t the first time news of a raid broke before operations were set to begin. Last month, ICE was planning to once again ramp up efforts to round up families, but, ever the impulsive tweeter, Trump stupidly announced the plan on Twitter, possibly compromising the safety of ICE officials just days before the plan’s launch.
Thankfully, Kevin McAleenan, the Department of Homeland Security’s acting secretary, rushed to call off the plan in early June, citing concerns that undocumented parents would be separated from their children. It’s worth noting that many of these children are American citizens, but you know, you shouldn’t have to be an American citizen to be treated with a shred of kindness and humanity.
But now, it looks like nothing’s stopping the raids.