"Your blood is on the hands of ICE and this administration"
August 7, 2019 10:01 PM   Subscribe

Families "Are Scared To Death" After A Massive ICE Operation Swept Up Hundreds Of People (BuzzFeed). ICE arrested about 680 people in a series of workplace raids at agricultural plants in Mississippi. Children of those arrested were "left alone in the streets crying for help" as local schools instructed bus drivers to ensure they weren't dropping off children at empty homes. This is a topical US politics thread focusing on immigration.

Koch Foods (no relation to the Koch brothers), which operates the plants, settled a $3.75 harassment and discrimination lawsuit (Payday Report) last year; "Many immigrants rights advocates have speculated that workers are targeted for raids after their facilities get investigated for worker abuse." Prosecutions for employers after worksite raids are incredibly rare.

Late-breaking update: @Haleaziz: NEW: The owner of a Miss. gym that helped care for kids whose parents had been believed to have been arrested by ICE says that some workers -- mainly women -- have been shuttled back and that ALL of the children who were at his facility have been reunited w/ family members.

No More Family Separations, Except These 900 (NYT): "In the year since President Trump officially ended family separations at the southern border, immigration authorities have removed more than 900 migrant children from their families, sometimes for reasons as minor as a parent not changing a baby’s diaper or having a traffic citation for driving without a license, according to new documents filed Tuesday in federal court."

The Trump Administration announced a "safe third country" agreement with Guatemala, requiring asylum-seekers to attempt to seek refuge there before they can apply in the United States, despite Guatemala's essentially-nonexistent asylum capacity (Univision). Now, The Trump Administration Is Scrambling To Make Its “Safe Third Country” Asylum Deal With Guatemala A Reality, A Memo Shows (BuzzFeed).

In Court Without a Lawyer: The Consequences of Trump’s ‘Remain in Mexico’ Plan (NYT). Most legal aid groups have not accepted clients who are forced to remain in Mexico, leaving most applicants for asylum unrepresented and struggling to understand court proceedings or prepare their cases. But even if asylum-seekers win their cases, they may still be sent back to Mexico (KPBS): one of the first refugees under the policy to be granted protection by a judge was held while the government decides whether to appeal the ruling.

And where do migrants go in Mexico? Overflowing Toilets, Bedbugs and High Heat: Inside Mexico’s Migrant Detention Centers: "Mexico’s detention centers have at times reached triple, quadruple and even quintuple their capacity. Detainees at some centers have endured extreme heat, bedbug infestations, overflowing toilets, days without showers, and shortages of food and decent health care."

Emails show Stephen Miller pressed hard to limit green cards (Politico): "One former Trump official said Miller has maintained a “singular obsession” with the public charge rule, which he's argued would bring about a transformative change to U.S. immigration." The Estimated Impacts of the Proposed Public Charge Rule on Immigrants and Medicaid (KFF) are bleak: the rule could lead to millions disenrolling in Medicaid and CHIP for themselves and their US citizen children. Even though the rule has not yet been published, A Trump Administration Proposal Is Scaring Immigrant Families Away From Public Benefits (HuffPost): "it describes one green card holder who hopes to become a citizen: She not only chose not to receive food benefits herself but persuaded her son, a naturalized citizen, to unenroll." House Democrats are seeking to block the regulation (Roll Call) as part of the appropriations process.

More Than 100 Immigrants Were Pepper-Sprayed At An ICE Facility (BuzzFeed). An immigrant advocacy group says that 115 immigrants are on a hunger strike and were protesting at the facility.

Iraqi man dies after Trump administration deports him (Politico), in which Jimmy Aldaoud, a 41-year-old Chaldean Catholic who speaks no Arabic, has never been to Iraq, and has diabetes and schizophrenia, has died after being deported to Iraq. This post's title was written by Edward Bajoka, an immigration lawyer close to Aldaoud's family.

Kimberly Breier resigns as assistant secretary of state for Western Hemisphere (WaPo): "One senior administration official said she had been chastised, in a particularly unpleasant recent email chain, by White House policy adviser Stephen Miller, who considered her insufficiently committed to publicly defending last month’s sudden agreement over asylum between President Trump and the government of Guatemala."

Protests at ICE facilities have been organized by groups including Movimiento Cosecha and Never Again Action, with a monthlong series of protests planned in San Francisco (48 Hills). The Jewish Group Taking on ICE — and the ‘Concentration Camp’ Taboo (Daily Beast).

Aura Bogado starts a discussion: "Latinxs: how do you feel in public right now? What do you think about? Is there anything you've visibly or verbally changed, and if so, why?"

With the Decommissioning of the Megathreads, we're collaborating on topical uspolitics/potus45-related FPPs, and draft posts can be found on the MeFi Wiki.
posted by zachlipton (102 comments total) 59 users marked this as a favorite
This is a Nazi-grade escalation
posted by growabrain at 10:47 PM on August 7, 2019 [30 favorites]

Prosecutions for employers after worksite raids are incredibly rare.
I wondered about this...seems like the job creators need some justice. Law and order repubs? How bout some mandatory minimum sentencing? Snark aside, I wish everything was so much easier for immigrants. Everything.
posted by j_curiouser at 10:50 PM on August 7, 2019 [10 favorites]

The Guatemala thing really mystifies me. I mean, who thought Guatemala, of all places, had the capacity to make a dent in this problem? WHy?
posted by Archelaus at 11:06 PM on August 7, 2019 [2 favorites]

Iraqi man dies after Trump administration deports him (Politico), in which Jimmy Aldaoud, a 41-year-old Chaldean Catholic who speaks no Arabic, has never been to Iraq, and has diabetes and schizophrenia, has died after being deported to Iraq. This post's title was written by Edward Bajoka, an immigration lawyer close to Aldaoud's family.

He'd been in the US since he was 6 months old. Video of Jimmy after his deportation. This was murder.

Children of undocumented immigrants arrested in Mississippi rely on strangers for food and shelter

The only thing more incomprehensible than the cruelty is the support or indifference with which it is met.
posted by Rust Moranis at 12:57 AM on August 8, 2019 [43 favorites]

It was the first week of school in some of the Mississippi communities where the raids took place. Even as ICE releases some parents with notices to appear late tonight—we don't know how many yet—, these kids were promised it would be ok for them to go to school because their parents would be there to pick them up.

@spindlypete: it's a child's worst fear that they'll one day be right about something like this, and now they'll feel forever that their parents and their teachers were lying to them. how in the world will they ever recover enough to feel safe? i never would. i read it's the first day of school in mississippi. this is the first day some of these kids have ever been away from mom and dad. their parents have been talking to them for months about how to be brave, because mommy will always come get you no matter what. imagine being 5 and being proven right about something like this. you'd never be the same would you
posted by zachlipton at 1:19 AM on August 8, 2019 [55 favorites]

This is evil.
posted by ChuraChura at 2:16 AM on August 8, 2019 [25 favorites]

The Guatemala thing really mystifies me. I mean, who thought Guatemala, of all places, had the capacity to make a dent in this problem? WHy?

Well, Trump expressed admiration for Australia's immigration policy. What we do is, we ship them to a detention centre in a third country and treat them like crap, until they die or go mad. And consequently, fewer migrants attempt to come here. In fact that's very likely the case, but there's a certain moral equivocation in torturing one group of people in order to discourage other people from putting you to some inconvenience, even very great inconvenience.

I should also point out that while an unauthorised trip to Australia by boat is a very long and costly enterprise, from what I understand you can literally walk from Mexico into the USA. Also there are probably hundreds or thousands of prospective unauthorised US migrants for every one that would wish to enter Australia. So I really don't know if Australia's plans would scale up.
posted by Joe in Australia at 2:50 AM on August 8, 2019 [9 favorites]

The cruelty is the point.
posted by JohnFromGR at 3:00 AM on August 8, 2019 [31 favorites]

I don't want to be an american any longer.
posted by james33 at 4:44 AM on August 8, 2019 [23 favorites]

I live in a town where ICE flights take off. I have been afraid of actually going to protests about any of this because I live in public housing. Being arrested would not be ideal. I have gone to our city council to express opposition. I have supported local candidates who oppose the ICE flights.
A lot of Americans born here are not going to do the jobs immigrants do. A lot of Americans have NO concept of what these people are fleeing. They don’t even want to know or to care. Stephen Miller is an evil man. I don’t want to say that Republicans are all evil, but I feel the Republican Party has basically been hijacked by fascists. It’s been getting steadily worse. America was NEVER been perfect, but there used to be hope. Everything done to asylum seekers and immigrants can be done to people born here. In a few cases people born here HAVE been deported. This has happened before, most notably during the Great Depression. These latest raids In Mississippi have been huge.
Joe in Australia, yes, people totally can walk from Central America to the US border. People do it all the time. It’s a rough journey. People do ride the roof of a train called ‘La Bestia’ ( The Beast). People pay traffickers to be smuggled across the border, because the Great Sonora and Chihuahuan Deserts are not a joke. The climate itself is deadly, there’s scorpions, rattlesnakes, bad people like cartel people, militia groups, the Border Patrol itself can be just as awful.
The history of the border region is complex. People who have not lived along the border often don’t realize that legally, historically, ecologically, culturally it’s not meant to be closed and walked off. Refuges for rare animals are being destroyed by the damned wall.
posted by Katjusa Roquette at 5:22 AM on August 8, 2019 [14 favorites]

This is evil.

Very, very evil.

I know this isn't a new point, and no one involved worries one bit about the hypocrisy and in fact they probably find it funny, but I can't get over how many supposedly religious people are supporting these actions, despite how directly it contradicts core religious values.
posted by Dip Flash at 6:07 AM on August 8, 2019 [7 favorites]

Link to Metatalk thread on what people can do.

(Never Again Action doesn't care if you're Jewish)

When I was a teenager, my best friend wasn't allowed out without her social security card or passport to prove citizenship (her father was Puerto Rican and her mother was a Latinx Texan). I'd thought it was foolish and weird and overprotective at the time - I wasn't even allowed to look at my social security card at that point. But now it seems like maybe that's good advice.
posted by dinty_moore at 6:15 AM on August 8, 2019 [11 favorites]

He'd been in the US since he was 6 months old. Video of Jimmy after his deportation. This was murder.

The thing about this is that a judge almost certainly had discretion to grant him relief (ie, let him stay). Our laws are bad laws, but as far as I can tell from immigration court stuff, having been in the US since babyhood would be a pretty strong factor pushing a judge to grant relief. But there are already judges - not just Trump appointees - who never let people stay, who literally have never granted a stay of deportation. Basically, it is not enough to reform the law on these points unless the law is reformed to "we have open borders now" (which seems reasonable to me absent some significant new research); if there is deportation at all, it will be abused.

Honestly, there should be no separate border patrol and no separate immigration court system because the very type of person who wants to go into that field is almost certain to be a bad person. Assuming this country doesn't burn to the ground, whatever border and immigration system we develop should not be set up around its own culture and habits.
posted by Frowner at 6:32 AM on August 8, 2019 [22 favorites]

In a just world, we'd have sensible immigration rules, and in a case like this the first step would be to levy a multimillion-dollar fine against Koch Foods. Punishing these immigrants for going where the jobs are is like punishing water for flowing downhill.
posted by freecellwizard at 6:32 AM on August 8, 2019 [15 favorites]

I'll bet the management and stockholders of Koch Foods are pretty stoked that they no longer need to worry about those pesky workplace safety and harassment laws, or the union. They can staff right back up with more undocumented workers, who now know what'll happen to them if they object to their miserable salaries or working conditions.
posted by panglos at 6:57 AM on August 8, 2019 [29 favorites]

abolish ice
posted by entropicamericana at 7:03 AM on August 8, 2019 [12 favorites]

Freecellwizard, agreed.

American companies keep hiring these people and turning a blind eye. I will not fault the person trying to improve their lot through hard work. I'd blame the companies trying to push costs down.

To the argument that it would raise prices if they can't use this labor - of course, but farmed meat isn't cheap. It's resource and labor intensive, and people working under the table are subsidizing it, frequently enough with their lives. Eat more beans and rice.

If the penalties aren't stiff enough, then there is no incentive to not continue with these exploitative hiring practices, and the incentive for people to come here at all costs because they know they can pick up the tough, underpaid jobs will remain.

Personally I think pushing for a very easy to get 6 month work visa would help a lot. Sure, some people will overstay, but I'd wager it won't be the majority, and if they do, you have their last place of work, family info, etc... Those that don't overstay bring wealth back into their home communities, economic growth, etc... Children born to these visa holders don't get automatic citizenship. 7 years work visa with no issues - welcome to America full time, you've earned it.
posted by jellywerker at 7:07 AM on August 8, 2019 [4 favorites]

I mean, who thought Guatemala, of all places, had the capacity to make a dent in this problem?

I also naively thought Guatemala must be set up in some way to take in refugees, but a comment in one of the megathreads pointed out that Guatemala isn't set up at all to do this. They take in close to zero refugees today. They have no experience, no plans, no resources, and very little money. It seems like a recipe for the very worst to happen.

The immigration story is the one story where I keep expecting the worst, and then when I read stories I find I wasn't thinking hard enough. They're always worse than I think. ICE using every underhanded trick in the book to trick immigrants into giving up their rights, targeting people that have lived in the states without issue their entire lives, targeting children, etc. If I was an immigrant, I would consider pulling my kid out of school and living off the grid.
posted by xammerboy at 7:11 AM on August 8, 2019 [6 favorites]

The Guatemala thing really mystifies me. I mean, who thought Guatemala, of all places, had the capacity to make a dent in this problem? WHy?

They're doing this because safe third country designation means that migrants who enter that country cannot claim asylum in the United States. For example, someone flying to Canada cannot cross into the United State to claim asylum. They must claim asylum in Canada.

Mexico is refusing to discuss a safe third country agreement with the United States, hence this Guatemala bullshit. Migrants from the rest of central America cannot enter Mexico without first entering Guatemala, so in effect Guatemala being a safe third country means all central American migrants would have to stay in Guatemala.
posted by Automocar at 7:33 AM on August 8, 2019 [6 favorites]

Basically, it is not enough to reform the law on these points unless the law is reformed to "we have open borders now"

The problem, of course, is that these abusive, violent systems are a big part of the plan for climate change. That's why the dems mostly mock The Wall as a tactic, rather than as an ideology.
posted by Reyturner at 7:43 AM on August 8, 2019 [11 favorites]

Basically, it is not enough to reform the law on these points unless the law is reformed to "we have open borders now" (which seems reasonable to me absent some significant new research); if there is deportation at all, it will be abused.

Agreed completely. As we have seen over and over again on this topic and many others, liberal reforms often backslide right into bipartisan horror. Those camps, cages, and policies were initially built by Obama and until the very nice woke people who claim to be on my side can reckon with this, the horror show will never truly end and we will never actually be safe.

I have family members who were undocumented. I am an immigrant myself, having come to this country when I was 5 years old. There is so much cruelty in even documented immigration to this country; every step along the way, ICE and CBP very deliberately want you to know how little your life is worth.

And separating us into "good" and "bad" immigrants based on idiosyncratic criteria is a bullshit wonky centrist exercise that means nothing in the eyes of the white supremacists who see us all as bad.

Given how much America has destroyed the world under the guise of bipartisanship in just the past few decades, open borders is the only moral thing to do.
posted by Ouverture at 7:56 AM on August 8, 2019 [20 favorites]

Payday Report suggests that the ICE raid could be Koch Food's retaliation for an employee lawsuit: ICE Raids Miss. Plant After $3.75 Million Sexual Harassment Settlement

It would certainly fit the pattern:
In June of 2018, ICE raided a unionized Fresh Mark meatpacking plant in Salem, Ohio; arresting 140 workers.

A week before the raid on a Fresh Mark’s Salem facility, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) fined Fresh Mark $211,194 for three separate incidents in which proper guards for dangerous machinery were not in place. OSHA found that the lack of safety guards resulted in the death of an undocumented worker.[…]

Suspicious was also raised that workers complaining about working conditions in plants lead to raids when the Southeastern Provision in Morristown, Tennesse. The raid came after federal authorities were tipped off by a local bank that the owner of the plant may have been paying undocumented workers under the table.[…]

“These raids send a real signal to immigrant workers not to speak up, and we feel like these raids enable employers in the most dangerous industry to cut corners and violate labor standards,” said Debbie Berkowitz, who served as chief of staff of OSHA under Obama from 2009 to 2013 and now serves as the director of the worker health and safety program at the National Employment Law Project (NELP).
posted by Doktor Zed at 8:50 AM on August 8, 2019 [18 favorites]

I really feel like misusing one of the gun lobby’s favorite expressions and say if immigrants are banned, only corporate criminals will have immigrants. But then I realize that’s actually probably what the policy makers want to happen
posted by inflatablekiwi at 8:52 AM on August 8, 2019 [3 favorites]

In a few cases people born here HAVE been deported. This has happened before, most notably during the Great Depression

Not a few. SLYT on the Mexican "Repatriation."
posted by Abehammerb Lincoln at 9:14 AM on August 8, 2019 [8 favorites]

Migrants from the rest of central America cannot enter Mexico without first entering Guatemala...

Nanoseconds after this safe-third-country ruling goes into effect, the overstuffed boats will be ferrying them from Honduras to Belize.
posted by panglos at 9:34 AM on August 8, 2019 [6 favorites]

I don’t want to say that Republicans are all evil,

why on earth not
posted by schadenfrau at 9:41 AM on August 8, 2019 [24 favorites]

If you are in Chicago and are an attorney, paralegal or capable of translating in a legal setting, Chicago Volunteer Legal Services runs clinics to prepare guardianship agreements for families at risk of this horrific scenario. The next clinics are this month. Contact them to get involved.
posted by crush at 9:46 AM on August 8, 2019 [6 favorites]

El Pueblo Immigration Legal Services and Mississippi Immigrants Rights Alliance seem to be the organizations coordinating the response from Mississippi if you have some cash to spare or skills you can offer. Things like answering the legal hotline can usually be done from anywhere.
posted by GalaxieFiveHundred at 10:10 AM on August 8, 2019 [3 favorites]

I wish we could somehow create a simulation in which these policies "worked" and the farms in Steve King's corner of Iowa had to shut down because there was nobody to work the fields or milk the cows and chicken was suddenly $30 a pound and all the produce vanished from the stores.

Then again, Trump supporters are so deep into lala land they wouldn't figure it out even if the dots were connected with a big, fat permanent marker.
posted by zenzenobia at 10:16 AM on August 8, 2019 [2 favorites]

Nanoseconds after this safe-third-country ruling goes into effect, the overstuffed boats will be ferrying them from Honduras to Belize.

Belize has spent its existence pretending Guatemala and Mexico do not exist. Transportation links from Belize to Mexico are sparse.
posted by ocschwar at 10:19 AM on August 8, 2019 [1 favorite]

I wish we could somehow create a simulation in which these policies "worked" and the farms in Steve King's corner of Iowa had to shut down because there was nobody to work the fields or milk the cows and chicken was suddenly $30 a pound and all the produce vanished from the stores.

We kind of did do that earlier this decade in places like Georgia and Alabama. I think that those laws are still on the books though a lot of the teeth were subsequently taken out of them through legal challenges.
posted by GalaxieFiveHundred at 10:39 AM on August 8, 2019 [5 favorites]

I guess 45 was right about getting Mexico to build the wall. Turns out it's going to be along the Guatemala border.
posted by kokaku at 11:44 AM on August 8, 2019 [1 favorite]

This probably merits its own post and a lot more research, but I don't have so much time to do this, but this video from Vox is 10 minutes-ish minus credits at the end and this is totally related to the USA's long history of mistreatment of migrants from south of the border - The dark history of "gasoline baths" at the border

The short of it is 100 years ago we totally used to make Mexicans strip, get hosed down, have their clothes gassed in Zyklon B (of Nazi concentration camp infamy - video shows how the Nazis got the idea from us), take baths in kerosene, vinegar, and gasoline, and then there was the part where we sprayed their hair and genitals with DDT, and all this just to cross the border, and this continued for decades because of racist assholes someone probably should have punched.

For more bonus funtime context about how deep America's racist roots are, and the virulence of racism at the time, here's another Vox short feature about the time in 1898 when white supremacists (then called the Democratic Party) organized a terrorist group called (wait for it) Red Shirts to violently overthrow the democratically elected and racially "integrated" government of Wilmington, North Carolina, which I also welcome anyone interested to put together a full FPP on - When white supremacists overthrew a government

So...just gonna put those there. You stop watching the news and destress by watching history stuff and IT'S THERE TOO! Ugh.
posted by saysthis at 11:45 AM on August 8, 2019 [9 favorites]

Mississippi Center for Justice also has a guardianship, safe care for the affected children rapid response going. They have a Google doc at their Facebook page.
posted by crush at 11:48 AM on August 8, 2019 [2 favorites]

Prosecutions for employers after worksite raids are incredibly rare.
I wondered about this...seems like the job creators need some justice. Law and order repubs? How bout some mandatory minimum sentencing? Snark aside, I wish everything was so much easier for immigrants. Everything.

I've wondered about this too. Could the solution to be to start viewing this along the lines of human trafficking? While most undocumented immigrants aren't here against their will per se, many if not the majority are being exploited into working for little pay for these employers, and are brought in by third party organisations who facilitate the illegal employment. The undocumented workers are the victims in all this; even before ICE and the ICE raids.
posted by UltraMorgnus at 11:53 AM on August 8, 2019 [5 favorites]

Mississippi Clarion Ledger: ICE Releases 300 Of 680 Detainees In Mississippi, Some On 'Humanitarian Grounds'
Approximately 30 people detained Wednesday were released at the same site they were detained on "humanitarian grounds," according to a press release issued Thursday by Mike Hurst, the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Mississippi, and ICE.

Another 270 were released after being processed by Homeland Security Investigations on Wednesday. Those 270 were taken back to where they were initially detained, the release stated.

Wednesday afternoon, ICE spokesperson Bryan Cox said everyone taken into custody and detained was asked if they had children. Cox said at the time that everyone would be processed but "not everyone is going to be (permanently) detained."
WJTV on what that translates into in human terms: Children of Undocumented Immigrants Arrested In Mississippi Rely on Strangers for Food and Shelter
Community leaders in Forest, Mississippi brought the children to a community gym to provide care and comfort. 12 News reporter Alex Love was granted permission to talk to community leaders and the children.

Children relied on neighbors and strangers to pick them up outside their homes after school. They drove the children to a community center where people tried to keep them calm. But many kids could not stop crying for mom and dad.
posted by Doktor Zed at 12:22 PM on August 8, 2019 [9 favorites]

Demonstrations happening around the US (and a couple elsewhere) for Tisha B'Av, the Jewish day of mourning on August 10-11; you can find a local Jews Say #CloseTheCamps event here. Anyone in South Florida is welcome to reach out if you'd like to attend together.
posted by youarenothere at 12:50 PM on August 8, 2019 [8 favorites]

Exclusive: Visa denials to poor Mexicans skyrocket under Trump’s State Department (Politico)
Between Oct. 1 and July 29, the State Department denied 5,343 immigrant visa applications for Mexican nationals on the grounds that the applicants were so poor or infirm that they risked becoming a “public charge,” according to the statistics. That’s up from just seven denials for Mexican applicants in fiscal year 2016, the last full year under former President Barack Obama.

The number of public charge denials for applicants from all nations also rose during the past year. Preliminary data obtained by POLITICO shows 12,179 visa rejections on public charge grounds through July 29 — which puts the department on pace to surpass last year’s total. The State Department disqualified only 1,033 people on public charge grounds in fiscal 2016. [...]

The State Department statistics offer a window into how the Homeland Security Department's forthcoming public charge regulation could reshape the legal immigration system. Under the regulation, which is expected to be finalized in the coming days, DHS will adopt a more aggressive public charge analysis to evaluate applications for green cards and visa renewals. [...]

The city of Baltimore filed a lawsuit in November 2018 that argued the State Department’s foreign affairs manual changes had discouraged immigrants from accessing public benefits to which they were entitled. The city claimed the change discriminated “on the basis of race, national origin, nationality, income, or receipt of public benefits, and was motivated by animus and a desire to effect such discrimination.”

Several immigration lawyers told POLITICO that they had dealt with Mexican clients — some of them long-term U.S. residents but undocumented immigrants — stranded in Mexico because they were denied immigrant visas on public charge grounds.

While Mexico saw the steepest rise in public charge rejections, the number of public charge denials also shot up for visa applications from several other countries. [...] Some countries experienced little change. Only three Canadian immigrant visa applicants were refused on public charge grounds in fiscal 2018. A single applicant from that country was denied in fiscal 2016.
posted by Little Dawn at 12:51 PM on August 8, 2019 [5 favorites]

I have been slowly dipping into this website and the case for open borders.

As a New Yorker descended from refugees (Huguenots in the 17th c., Eastern European Jews in the 20th) I have often wondered why we even "need" closed borders. Why do even the staunchest libertarians insist we can't have open borders? Surely there must be another way to think about this problem. I'm open to learning anyway.

It's worth mentioning as well.... I know plenty of people in New York - from Ireland or Eastern Europe - who are here working illegally. Of course they are at risk of deportation but they are not being singled out. This administration is selecting brown people to terrorize. It is racism pure and simple. Nothing new for this country but so appalling.

And then there's this op ed I read in the LA Times that declared kicking immigrants out benefits the Black community and I just think, is that really true? Or is this just another right winger kicking up dust to obfuscate and set us all against each other? Of course that's what I assume.

Anyway, I'm at a loss but in my heart I don't believe in borders at all.
posted by 6thsense at 1:23 PM on August 8, 2019 [17 favorites]

Prosecutions for employers after worksite raids are incredibly rare.

Notice how scrupulously the press is avoiding naming the companies that own the plants that were raided.
posted by srboisvert at 5:49 PM on August 8, 2019 [9 favorites]

Lots of libertarians I know think open borders are a great idea -- most of the more well-known advocates linked from the site you provided are very libertarian.
posted by value of information at 5:51 PM on August 8, 2019 [2 favorites]

> Notice how scrupulously the press is avoiding naming the companies that own the plants that were raided.

what are the names of the companies.
posted by Reclusive Novelist Thomas Pynchon at 5:52 PM on August 8, 2019 [2 favorites]

Between Oct. 1 and July 29, the State Department denied 5,343 immigrant visa applications for Mexican nationals on the grounds that the applicants were so poor or infirm that they risked becoming a “public charge,” according to the statistics. That’s up from just seven denials for Mexican applicants in fiscal year 2016, the last full year under former President Barack Obama.

It costs money to apply for an immigrant visa by the way. Non-refundable.
posted by srboisvert at 5:53 PM on August 8, 2019 [2 favorites]

Interesting. I wonder if these are the same workers who just won a class action suit against Koch Foods, Inc
posted by MrVisible at 8:14 PM on August 8, 2019 [7 favorites]

I'm open to the idea of open borders, but the country is so far from there. In the meantime, Democrats are being slaughtered on this issue. Immigration seems to me like an issue Democrats should be successfully triangulating, because there is just so much room to do so? How about a humane, legal process, that treats everyone fairly and decently? How about an explanation for why this will be better for society? More cost effective, lead to less crime, and be better for the economy? This is another issue that Democrats could take on and just hit home run after home run, but instead are getting demolished on.

The inhumanity of conservatives makes me cry and the inability of liberals to state their case leaves me speechless. Healthcare for illegal immigrants is cheaper. Do you like cheaper? Immigrants are needed for the economy? Do you want a good economy? Immigrants and the police need to work together to decrease terrorism and crime. You want a lawful process? So do Democrats. What is the problem?
posted by xammerboy at 8:18 PM on August 8, 2019 [5 favorites]

If we look at the Treaty Of Guadalupe - Hidalgo, the Border with Mexico is not meant to be walled or militarized in any way. It is MEANT to be as porous as nature itself allows. People have crossed back and forth for decades. The fact is that closing the border and making legal immigration so expensive and time consuming actually means people are stuck here who would have otherwise made seasonal migrations. It wos the same families for decades. Farmers knew when to expect ‘their’ workers. It was a relationship of ‘confianza’ or ‘trust’. Also despite the high* numbers there was not a lot of cultural impacts on either White or Black communities. This was a population which kept to itself. Restricting crossing in the Reagan years meant that people were stuck. Not everyone had a path to citizenship. There were long, workless, cold Winter months with no recourse to any real social services, or unemployment benefits, just half-assed stuff from church groups mostly. These people were having to meet the same expenses citizens have to meet with basically no help and increasing hostility.
This was really hard on the infrastructures of communities in ways that a damn near open border was not.
Where I live people can’t honestly discuss any of this. I don’t know how many times I’ve made the argument that open borders benefits both Mexico and the US a LOT more than restricting entry. People who can go back and forth can support families back in Mexico more cheaply than here, they can Winter in places that don’t get like Planet Hoth, and the farm work gets done by people who know what the Hell they are doing.
Mr. Roquette and I gardened before Mr. Round-Up man poisoned our gardens once too often. I started with NO gardening skills. He taught me a LOT. Even 3 or 4 square feet of earth requires constant care, especially if you are trying to go organic. Fields, orchards and herds of cattle require skills and effort present day Americans began losing in the 1950s. The only reason Mr. Roquette has these skills is he lived and worked on several family farms growing up. His grandparents were farmers.
I saw a few promising communes fail miserably due to lack of skill and effort.
Are migrant laborers abused? Yes, terribly. This is because of their illegal status. An open border policy would end that excuse and means of abuse. Wages would have to go up. It would be worth it. Our food supply is going to be increasingly insecure. We need these people.
President Trump’s administration is violating American treaty obligations with Mexico and international treaties on asylum.
Just last night a new young Republican state legislator visited our local Democratic HQ for a Q&A session. He is not a bad guy. It was good of him to come talk with us. He also got an education on immigration and the ICE raids. He had No Idea. I hope some of it takes.
posted by Katjusa Roquette at 9:10 PM on August 8, 2019 [17 favorites]

I want to tell the story of how this song came to be in my hands, and how it came to be shared at the #Seattle @NeverAgainAction today.

About two months, @EgSophie mentioned that she and some of her friends were putting together a #JewsAgainstICE action in New Jersey and asked me if I'd like to come out and help with music. I said "yes," and jumped on a plane. This is what happened next:

Shortly thereafter, I got an email from @imeanwhat. Abe is a filmmaker who is working on a documentary about his Uncle Wolf, a composer and conductor who ran the Vilna Ghetto symphony orchestra. Wolf died in a concentration camp. But his music lives on: (link: http://www.wontbesilent.com) wontbesilent.com

Abe told me that he'd worked with @albapdl to translate Wolf's song, "Won't Be Silent" into Spanish. Abe asked me if I, as a Latina Jew invested in immigrant justice, would like to sing it. I was floored by the enormity of this ancestral gift that had come into my keeping.

Today, outside of the ICE offices in Downtown Seattle, along with @NeverAgainActn and #JewsAgainstICE, I shared "No Guardaremos El Silencio" for the first time. My hands shook so that I could hardly play my guitar. I am only beginning to understand how to hold this gift. But this is how we win. We lift up our ancestors and share them with each other. We use our power to shelter those who are more vulnerable than we are.

We've learned the lessons of history and we will not stand for more of the same.
If anyone out there is a freelance journalist and I can play assignment editor for a second, it sounds like there's a great story I'd love to read about what Never Again Action is doing with music, not just this one, but also calling upon Yiddish songs like the Holocaust anthem "Zog nit keyn mol."
posted by zachlipton at 10:52 PM on August 8, 2019 [15 favorites]

I’ve not been one to rage indiscriminately at the sky or riot in the streets, at least not since my early 20s, preferring to quietly but competently work my corner of the social justice universe (because privilege I guess) but I don’t know how much more of this I am supposed to sit back and peacefully take. This is it, isn’t it? It’s time, right? Like if Obama or AOC called on people to take to the streets, I think I’d have have to admit it’s time to show up with a sack of bricks and a gas mask.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 11:22 PM on August 8, 2019 [9 favorites]

I wish we could somehow create a simulation in which these policies "worked" and the farms in Steve King's corner of Iowa had to shut down because there was nobody to work the fields or milk the cows and chicken was suddenly $30 a pound and all the produce vanished from the stores.

Not a great flick but, A Day Without A Mexican.
posted by bendy at 2:39 AM on August 9, 2019 [2 favorites]

If the goal is to stop people sneaking into the US for work, I'm sure it's obvious to everyone that arresting and fining the people and corporations that hire them is the solution. Does the employer have no legal responsibility in this regard?
posted by pracowity at 4:49 AM on August 9, 2019 [3 favorites]

@ pracowity Yes employers are obligated to verify status of employees. It’s a complicated legal issue as to how closely they are required to check and false documents can make the process harder.
posted by Katjusa Roquette at 5:02 AM on August 9, 2019 [1 favorite]

I'm sure it's obvious to everyone that arresting and fining the people and corporations that hire them is the solution.

Right, but for Republican politicians, then you'd be hurting the people your base wants you to help. And you'd not be hurting the people your base wants you to hurt.

Also, losing undocumented workers would drive prices up and stall production, which would also piss off the base. So the trick is to keep prices down and keep supply regular by relying on undocumented labor—while performing law and order theater that pleases your base, and punishes only the people in the equation who pose you no political threat.
posted by Rykey at 7:29 AM on August 9, 2019 [9 favorites]

I think the performative theater part is what's ended. A lot of Trump supporters explained their support of him by saying "He's not like the other Republicans. Instead of dancing around it, he just says it, and means it."

For a while I listened to a bunch of podcasts interviewing NeverTrumpers, and no one is as clear on this as they are. Republicans historically played upon racism, but it was considered dirty politics.

It wasn't meant to be the main event, but racism's unquestionably Trump's draw. It's interesting now to see many of them have come back to the fold, saying out right racism is okay if it leads to their policy, things like tax cuts, being adopted too.

There's still a lot of both side-ism in the media. I was really surprised that in many conservative circles the situation is stated very plainly as a matter of fact.

And the NeverTrumpers are not fringe conservatives. They are basically most conservative writers and thinkers these days. As soon as you leave Fox News, this is orthodox conservative opinion.
posted by xammerboy at 8:13 AM on August 9, 2019 [6 favorites]

I think the theater is supposed to be the big raids like this, sending the National Guard to the border, mass detentions, etc.
posted by Selena777 at 8:36 AM on August 9, 2019 [3 favorites]

Yes, I meant that in the way Selena777 describes above. The "theater" reference isn't meant to diminish the real, unmasked racism at work here—I mean it in the sense that ICE and Trump make a big deal about arresting undocumented people in the name of law and order, when it's clear that any serious attempt to eradicate widespread undocumented labor would necessarily—maybe even exclusively—focus on employers, not workers.
posted by Rykey at 9:14 AM on August 9, 2019 [4 favorites]

Former U.S. attorney in Alabama Joyce White Vance in the WaPo calls the Mississippi raid a wasteful "display of intimidation", Prosecutors pick their battles. I chose not to pursue an ICE raid in Alabama:
Early in my tenure as a U.S. attorney in the Obama administration, I was approached about conducting an ICE raid, very similar to those executed in Mississippi, on poultry plants in northeast Alabama. My first question was whether agents were building a case against the employers. There had been media reports of advertising in Central American countries that directed residents interested in finding jobs in the United States to cities like Albertville, Ala. I was told we did not have a case on the employers in the works; that it was unlikely we could make one because of difficulty in proving intent. So what exactly were we doing, I asked? The plan was to round up workers, determine who was present in the U.S. with authorization and who wasn’t, and detain those who did not have legal status. There would be potential prosecutions of people who had reentered the country after a prior deportation. I asked if we expected high numbers of people who had a history of crime or violence and had reentered the country after being deported in violation of federal law — “aggravated” offenders. Because of the large number of workers at such plants and the difficulty in knowing who they all are before they are detained, it was unclear.

That raid never took place in my district. We had serious cases involving public corruption, violent crime, drug trafficking and civil rights in progress. I did not see how it would be a wise use of our resources to pull away from crimes that were affecting our community in visible ways to arrest people who, while they might have lacked legal immigration status, were going to work every day. We do not prosecute everyone who violates our drug laws, our theft laws, or even our public corruption laws. It did not make sense to redirect our resources in this way.
posted by peeedro at 10:18 AM on August 9, 2019 [24 favorites]

Polls Indicate Immigration Brutality on Track to Defeat Trump in 2020
From the Markin Report, which I am not familiar with.

But then there's that whole thing where the bad guys steal the election again. Didn't Russians literally purchase the voting machine company for some state. Oh yeah, Maryland. A small state. But um. WTactualF. How do we win against cheating which they are not even trying to hide?
posted by Glinn at 5:39 PM on August 9, 2019 [2 favorites]

Few Prosecuted for Illegal Employment of Immigrants
According to Immigration and Customs Enforcement, "ICE's worksite enforcement strategy focuses on the criminal prosecution of employers who knowingly hire illegal workers." However, actual prosecution of employers for employing immigrants without proper documentation actually has been relatively rare. For example, the latest available data show that during the last twelve months (April 2018 - March 2019) only 11 individuals (and no companies) were prosecuted in just 7 cases. There were no prosecutions during either of the last two months.

During the same period, these 11 prosecutions compare with 85,727 individuals prosecuted for illegal entry, 34,617 prosecuted for illegal re-entry, and 4,733 prosecuted for illegally bringing in or harboring immigrants. Given the millions of undocumented immigrants now living and working in this country, the odds of being criminally prosecuted for employing undocumented workers appears to be exceedingly remote.

As workplace raids multiply, Trump administration charges few companies (WaPo):
There were at least 88 such cases against companies for immigration violations between 2009 and 2016 during the Obama administration and at least five companies prosecuted for immigration violations since Trump took office in 2017, according to the data on corporate prosecutions and a review of news releases from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
posted by peeedro at 6:22 PM on August 9, 2019 [6 favorites]

Crying children and broken families: huge raids break immigrant communities (Guardian)
Father Jeremy Tobin, a Catholic priest who works with the Mississippi Immigrants Rights Alliance (Mira), told the Guardian he had been flooded with worried calls and messages from immigrants, documented and undocumented alike.

Tobin, who was based in Carthage, one of the cities federal agents raided, from about 2005 to 2014, said he knows personally many of the families affected. [...] At a rally with other Mira organizers on Thursday, Tobin compared Ice to the Nazi-era Gestapo.

“This is totally unAmerican,” he said afterwards. “When I got up there and talked about the Gestapo, I meant that. We’ve got to abolish Ice. This is nothing more than a hit squad. It’s inhuman. The whole process is dehumanizing … These Trumpites just need someone to scapegoat.”

He compared Trump’s rallies to Adolf Hitler’s Nuremberg rallies. It is all about “white supremacy”, Tobin said.
posted by Little Dawn at 11:32 AM on August 10, 2019 [5 favorites]

Bertrand Russell once wrote, “The infliction of cruelty with a good conscience is a delight to moralists. That is why they invented Hell.”
posted by ricochet biscuit at 10:50 PM on August 10, 2019 [7 favorites]

From the Guardian story:

Agents stormed the workplaces and loaded up about 680 employees whom they claimed were undocumented immigrants. The agents arrested and tased at least one US citizen.

ICE must be abolished.
posted by GalaxieFiveHundred at 1:53 AM on August 11, 2019 [6 favorites]

A friend of a friend on Facebook posed an interesting question. You know how the employers give the immigrants fake social security numbers? What happens to all the money they pay in and never claim?
posted by Weeping_angel at 8:23 PM on August 11, 2019

It's used to pay other people benefits. This is one of the great lies: "undocumented workers don't pay taxes". When employed like this they not only pay a full share, they also can't get refunds or take advantage of many programs they pay for.
posted by Mitheral at 9:05 PM on August 11, 2019 [17 favorites]

Demonstrations happening around the US (and a couple elsewhere) for Tisha B'Av, the Jewish day of mourning on August 10-11

Over 150 #JewsAgainstICE protesters and allies, were arrested last night in NYC, and it was announced this morning that their court dates fall on September 30, which is the first day of Rosh Hashanah. As Sophie Ellman-Golan points out, this does not appear to be by accident:
NYC schools close oh Rosh Hashanah. I find it hard to believe that city govt, when looking at a calendar, would not have seen this.

NYPD appears to be further punishing #JewsAgainstICE arrested holding [Amazon] accountable by scheduling their hearing on a major Jewish holiday.
posted by zombieflanders at 6:11 AM on August 12, 2019 [8 favorites]

They tried to fix it . . . by rescheduling the court date for the second day of Rosh Hashanah
posted by dinty_moore at 6:21 AM on August 12, 2019 [6 favorites]

WaPo, Trump administration tightens rule that could deny green cards, citizenship to immigrants who need public assistance
The new rule — from USCIS, an agency within the Department of Homeland Security — focuses on the obscure definition of what it means to be a “public charge,” or someone dependent on U.S. government benefits, and who is “likely” to become one. Likeliness of becoming a public charge already is grounds to be denied a green card or the opportunity to become a U.S. citizen.

The Trump administration will broaden the public charge definition to encompass not just those primarily dependent on public assistance programs, but anyone who uses a public benefit, including publicly funded health care programs including Medicaid, food stamps, other nutrition-related programs, or housing assistance.
Factors that can count against a green card applicant include having “a medical condition” that will interfere with work or school; not having enough money to cover “any reasonably foreseeable medical costs” related to such a medical condition; having “financial liabilities;” having been approved to receive a public benefit, even if the individual has not actually received the benefit; having a low credit score; the absence of private health insurance; the absence of a college degree; not having the English language skills “sufficient to enter the job market;” or having a sponsor who is “unlikely” to provide financial support.

“With one regulation, they are attempting to scratch two itches: one is penalizing immigrants for using public benefits that they are legally entitled to, and the other is cutting legal immigration in half,” said Doug Rand, a former Obama administration official and an immigration consultant. “And the way you cut legal immigration in half is by kicking the doors out from the definition of ‘likely to become a public charge.’”
In many cases, this has already led to parents not receiving SNAP even for their US citizen children, for fear it could prevent them from receiving a green card in the future.
posted by zachlipton at 11:15 AM on August 12, 2019 [5 favorites]

The Intercept, Bad Information: Border Patrol Arrest Reports Are Full of Lies That Can Sabotage Asylum Claims
Border Patrol officers in particular are supposed to ask migrants if they fear returning to their home country, and the answer to that initial question can be key to establishing the basis for an asylum claim. However, research from the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom concluded in 2016 that in “86.5 percent of the cases where a fear question was not asked, the record inaccurately indicated that it had been asked, and answered.”

Some of the errors that appear on immigration intake forms would be laughable, if the consequences weren’t so dire. The New Jersey attorney had an ICE agent declare that one of his clients had a sawed-off shotgun in his car, when there was no evidence of any such thing. In a 2015 brief, the American Immigration Lawyers Association highlighted an I-867 where a defendant, identified as Y.F., said that they came to the U.S. “to look for work.” At the time of the interview, Y.F. was only three years old. More than one attorney told The Intercept they’ve seen I-213s for infants as young as a few months old who, according to Border Patrol, claim that they came to the United States to work.

Government documents provided to Human Rights Watch via a Freedom of Information Act request and shared with The Intercept reveal further instances of Border Patrol agents and Customs and Border Protection officers including erroneous information on intake forms, and they also shed light on abuse of asylum-seekers. The documents, internal complaints filed by asylum officers with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, show that front-line border officials often go to extraordinary lengths to deny the people in their custody the ability to make an asylum claim.
“They took my son away for two days,” she continued. “It was the worst experience of my life. I couldn’t sleep. I didn’t bathe. I couldn’t eat the food. The AC was so, so, so, so cold. There were 35 people in there. It’s so, so bad. They move you from one hielera to another to another, and you don’t even know where you are.” Amid that confusion, the separation from her child, as well as the cold and the hunger and the filth, an armed Border Patrol officer interrogated her and asked her if she was scared to return to her own country. She said that she was, but when her asylum officer interviewed her later, she was told that her I-213 was blank. Her case is ongoing.
posted by zachlipton at 11:49 AM on August 12, 2019 [5 favorites]

Re SS#, I assume it's harder now, what with our current security set up where all of your documentation has to match (ask divorced women what fun that is), but in the past, undocumented workers were often using real SS#, but with a different name attached. Both I and my husband had our numbers used at a poultry processing plant.

SS#s were defacto identification for decades, example, it was printed on my university ID card, because it was my student ID as well. So for many Americans born before the 90s, our SS#s are freefloating data that could be anywhere, stored on any number of systems, in cleartext.

That said, when undocumented workers use real SS#, those SS contributions accrue to the person who will eventually make claims on that number.
posted by SecretAgentSockpuppet at 2:19 PM on August 12, 2019 [3 favorites]

Trump official: Statue of Liberty poem should mean 'poor who can stand on own two feet' (Guardian)
The famous lines, taken from The New Colossus by the 19th-century New York poet Emma Lazarus, read: “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.”

In a radio interview on Tuesday, Cuccinelli offered a change: “Give me your tired and your poor who can stand on their own two feet and who will not become a public charge.”

On NPR’s Morning Edition, Cuccinelli defended the Trump administration decision to make it harder for migrants to be awarded permanent residence, or a “green card”, if they have ever accepted benefit programs such as food stamps, housing assistance or Medicaid.

Starting in October, decisions on green card applicants will be based on a wealth test, meant to establish if they have the means to support themselves. Poor migrants will be denied if they are deemed likely to use government programs. The policy change triggered a swift backlash, some critics saying migrants may now drop out of government assistance programmes even if they are not seeking permanent residence.

Seattle mayor Jenny Durkan tweeted: “I am so tired of waking up to cruel and hateful policies like this one. Too many have been hurt. We must and will fight – and we will win.”
And then inexplicably, the Guardian invents another side to the story and seemingly suggests that joking about increased suffering and death would be appropriate, by failing to point out that there's nothing funny about this:
Cuccinelli’s remarks were perhaps made in jest but nonetheless point to the administration’s stated intention to reduce legal immigration.
Related: “The truth is more important now than ever.”
posted by Little Dawn at 9:32 AM on August 13, 2019 [6 favorites]

In a radio interview on Tuesday, Cuccinelli offered a change: “Give me your tired and your poor who can stand on their own two feet and who will not become a public charge.”

It's much more succinct in the original German.
posted by zombieflanders at 10:08 AM on August 13, 2019 [10 favorites]

The Intercept, Bad Information: Border Patrol Arrest Reports Are Full of Lies That Can Sabotage Asylum Claims

I do immigration court observation and I remember one case in particular where the report about the arrest was so full of lies that the judge questioned it in open court. It wasn't lies about immigration stuff, it was just pretty obvious lies about why the guy had been stopped in the first place.
posted by Frowner at 11:07 AM on August 13, 2019 [3 favorites]

@joshtpm [video]: Cuccinelli: That statue of liberty poem was about "people coming from Europe."

@BetoORourke: This administration finally admitted what we’ve known all along: They think the Statue of Liberty only applies to white people.

@cd_hooks: the quote in context is arguably less racist than this makes it sound but infinitely stupider so it’s kind of a wash really. when you join the admin do you think they hold you down and put the brain worms in you or do you think they spread naturally
posted by zachlipton at 6:23 PM on August 13, 2019 [10 favorites]

California Counties Sue to Block Trump’s New Green Card Test (NYT)
In the lawsuit, filed in United States District Court in San Francisco, the counties say the rule would have a “chilling effect.” It would push many away from needed federal health care programs that also guard communities against disease, like the Zika virus. Local governments would have to provide similar services and pick up the costs, the lawsuit says.

“This illegal rule is yet another attempt to vilify immigrants,” Dennis Herrera, San Francisco’s city attorney, said in a statement Tuesday. “It makes it easier to unfairly target hard-working, lawful immigrants while sowing fear and confusion in our communities.["]

The rule’s announcement Monday prompted a swift backlash, and Tuesday’s lawsuit was not unexpected. Several advocacy groups called the policy cruel and several vowed to sue the federal government. [...]

In the Federal Register, officials with the Department of Homeland Security estimated that more than 382,000 immigrants seek an adjustment to their immigration status each year and would be subject to the public charge review. It is estimated by the government that more than 324,000 people in households with noncitizens would drop out of or not enroll in public benefit programs if the new rule went into effect.

Advocacy organizations, however, estimate that 26 million immigrants living in the United States legally would reconsider their use of government benefits because they might fear that accepting assistance could affect their ability to remain in the United States. [...]

When the regulation was published in the Federal Register on Monday morning, it contained an acknowledgment of how contentious the debate over it has been. “While some commenters provided support for the rule,” it said, “the vast majority of commenters opposed the rule.”
The Complaint is available here. (via MSN)
posted by Little Dawn at 9:40 PM on August 13, 2019 [4 favorites]

Slate, Immigrants who weren’t swept up in the ICE raids reported to work Tuesday at the PH Food chicken plant. They were fired.
Workers at one of the seven central Mississippi chicken plants raided last week by U.S. immigration authorities say that more than 100 additional employees lost their jobs on Tuesday. Poultry workers arriving for the afternoon shift at PH Food were met by a supervisor with a list of names of those who would be allowed to return to work. A few dozen, at most. Everyone else was fired on the spot.

The mass dismissal is the latest fallout of last Wednesday’s ICE raids, in which 680 immigrant workers were detained in the largest act of workplace enforcement in a decade. It is a glimpse of how Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s newly aggressive posture will devastate families, communities, and the regional economy—long after the agents, and the news cameras, have left town.

Tuesday brings the total number of jobs lost in Morton to over 450, meaning that more than 10 percent of the population of this tiny Mississippi city has been either fired or imprisoned in the past seven days.
posted by zachlipton at 8:10 PM on August 14, 2019 [6 favorites]

Anti-Immigrant, Pro-Exploitation (Bill Saporito, NYT Opinion)
Millions have gained citizenship and productive lives while the economy has thrived. Agriculture could not exist without an immigrant work force, while the list of immigrant-dependent industries has grown to include meatpacking, construction, hospitality and recreational sectors such as ski resorts — as well as golf courses owned by the president. [...] And if they work full time, their median pay is about one-fifth less than what their native-born counterparts earned last year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

[...] the Migration Policy Institute says most noncitizens who are in families that get benefits are working. By cutting off immigrants’ path to a green card for the sin of being underpaid, this public charge rule makes them less desirable to some employers but vulnerable to exploitation by others that have only short-term gain in mind.

“This is not just that you are kicking people while they’re down,” said Shannon Gleeson, an associate professor at Cornell’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations. “It’s telling them, ‘We are not going to give you access to compete in the labor market.’”

As the administration makes life miserable for immigrant workers, life goes on for the employers of immigrants. Last week, Immigration and Customs Enforcement raided poultry processing plants in Mississippi owned by Koch Foods, in which 680 workers were detained on suspicion of being in the country illegally.

The owners have not been charged for employing undocumented immigrants, and the state helped them find new workers.
posted by Little Dawn at 10:58 PM on August 14, 2019 [4 favorites]

Never Again Action (cw: vehicular assault):
BREAKING: Here is HD video of an ICE guard driving his truck into us as we sat peacefully blocking the Wyatt Detention Center.

We’re putting our bodies on the line because we see the camps and the roundups. We’ve learned from our ancestors: NEVER AGAIN FOR ANYONE.

After the first ICE guard ran us over with his truck, the rest of them ran over & pepper-sprayed us. The police present just stood by and watched, doing nothing.

We are #JewsAgainstICE, immigrants, and allies. #NeverAgainMeans doing what it takes to #ShutDownICE. We'll be back.

It was not just #JewsAgainstICE who were attacked by ICE guards. We were there with our immigrant allies from @amornetwork, @FangCollective, @ProgresoLatinoRI, & @Fuerza_Laboral.
posted by zombieflanders at 9:09 AM on August 15, 2019 [12 favorites]

Well duh, Investigators believe five poultry companies violated immigration law, search warrants say (WaPo):
There were clear signs that the companies were hiring people who could not legally work in the country, the search warrants allege. Some workers wore ankle monitors as they awaited deportation hearings; gave Social Security numbers belonging to the deceased, or were hired twice by the same manager even though the worker used different names on each occasion.

Since 2002, federal officials have reported more than 350 encounters or arrests of undocumented people who said they worked at two of the plants, Koch Foods and Peco Foods.

The companies for years have employed a stream of Guatemalan and Mexican immigrants who are not authorized to work in the United States, according to the search warrant affidavits, unsealed in federal court after Aug. 7 raids on seven plants operated by Koch Foods, Peco Foods, PH Food, A&B and Pearl River Foods. In the affidavits, Homeland Security Investigations agent Anthony Todd Williams Jr. said there is probable cause to believe that the chicken plants in Mississippi intentionally hired undocumented workers who presented fraudulent documents “for the purpose of commercial advantage or private financial gain.”
posted by peeedro at 10:14 AM on August 15, 2019 [2 favorites]

Court rules that detained migrant children must have access to soap, and a place to sleep (Guardian)
The Trump administration had contended that detained immigrant children, who are required to be provided with “safe and sanitary” conditions, didn’t need to be given basic hygiene products. The government had appealed a 2017 decision by a lower court judge that a landmark 1997 settlement called the Flores Agreement required that kids be provided with soap and toothpaste even though those items weren’t specifically listed.
The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruling is here. “Assuring that children eat enough edible food, drink clean water, are housed in hygienic facilities with sanitary bathrooms, have soap and toothpaste, and are not sleep deprived are without doubt essential to the children’s safety.”
posted by Little Dawn at 4:03 PM on August 15, 2019 [2 favorites]

Investigators believe five poultry companies violated immigration law, search warrants say

Does that mean a company is actually going to get in trouble for once instead of just the workers?
posted by LizBoBiz at 12:33 AM on August 16, 2019

Does that court ruling imply that adults don't have to be afforded the same basic level of care?
posted by Mitheral at 6:58 AM on August 16, 2019 [1 favorite]

Cuccinelli paused like he was just accepting the inevitability of the soundbite, though.
posted by Selena777 at 11:54 AM on August 16, 2019

AP, Claim: Migrant children molested in US-funded foster care
After local Guatemalan officials burned down an environmental activist’s home, he decided to leave his village behind and flee to the United States, hoping he’d be granted asylum and his little boy, whose heart was failing, would receive lifesaving medical care.

But after crossing the border into Arizona in May of last year, Border Patrol agents tore the man’s 7-year-old son from his arms and sent the father nearly 2,000 miles (3,220 kilometers) away to a detention center in Georgia. The boy, now 8, went into a U.S.-funded foster home for migrant children in New York.

The foster care programs are aimed at providing migrant children with care while authorities work to connect them with parents, relatives or other sponsors. But instead the boy told a counselor he was repeatedly sexually molested by other boys in the foster home.
A forthcoming Frontline film on PBS will discuss this case and the treatment of migrant children.
posted by zachlipton at 11:59 AM on August 16, 2019 [2 favorites]

Slate cover story: After ICE—On Aug. 7, immigration agents arrested 680 factory workers in Mississippi. Here’s what happened next.
Fresh crises are unfolding now. Husbands are trying to find (and pay) lawyers for their incarcerated wives, and vice versa. The economic consequences of mass job loss will soon come face to face with September rent payments. The fallout from the country’s largest workplace raids in years has blanketed the Hispanic community here in sadness, fear, and desperation. Their roots in these small towns north and east of the state capital—many arrived more than a decade ago—have permitted them to call upon extensive social support systems, from family to school to church. At the same time, as they navigate a legal process designed to encourage them to leave the country, they will face wrenching decisions about the houses they purchased with the savings from years of chicken work and what the future will hold for their U.S.-born children.[…]

More than 350 workers remain in ICE detention centers in Mississippi and Louisiana, where advocates say it will be weeks, at least, before they can secure bond hearings in front of a judge. Those who have been released are struggling to make ends meet with one or both of their family’s earners out of the workforce. For the many immigrants who have lived in central Mississippi for a decade or more, staying put may mean permanent unemployment.[…]

Residents remain on edge. One afternoon, I watched scores of workers protesting a firing scatter in minutes after a city official drove by, talking on a cellphone. A television station reported that one plant, Koch Foods, had scheduled a sparsely attended Monday job fair before the raids. (Not true, said a local official.) A groundskeeper who mows the lawn of a raided chicken plant told me that dips beneath the fence had been filled with rocks days before the raid to prevent workers from fleeing. Many people remain afraid to drive, and Hispanic residents share ICE sightings instantaneously over WhatsApp.
(The article contains too many heart-wrenching stories from individuals to excerpt easily.)
posted by Doktor Zed at 6:48 PM on August 18, 2019 [2 favorites]

NYT, How Trump’s Policies Are Leaving Thousands of Asylum Seekers Waiting in Mexico
By early August, the waiting lists had expanded to three more cities. The total number of asylum seekers on these lists surpassed 26,000. But they are not the only ones waiting. Over the same period, under a program known as “Remain in Mexico,” the Trump administration sent back to Mexico nearly 32,000 asylum seekers already in court proceedings....Altogether, nearly 58,000 asylum seekers are stranded in Mexico.
posted by zachlipton at 11:55 AM on August 19, 2019 [1 favorite]

Jonathan Chait, NYMag: Conservative Scholar: The Real Racists Are People Who Call Trump Racist
The most astonishing turn in Mac Donald’s argument comes at the very end. She acknowledges that overt white supremacists have been emboldened and carried out several terrorist attacks. MacDonald blames this on … leftists in media and the academy. Progressives are “creating a group of social pariahs, a very small percentage of whom — already unmoored from traditional sources of meaning and stability, such as family — are taking their revenge through stomach-churning mayhem,” she argues. “Overcoming racial divisiveness will be difficult. But the primary responsibility rests with its main propagators: the academic left and its imitators in politics and mass media.”

Bear in mind that white nationalists themselves are very explicit about their admiration for Donald Trump and their belief that the president is inspiring the white nationalist cause. Yet MacDonald not only denies this linkage, but inverts it, placing responsibility on the people who call Trump racist. What’s convenient about this bit of reverse logic is its endless applicability. The more Trump inflames racism, the more his critics cite that racism, and therefore the more support Mac Donald can find for her theory that the major problem in American life is conservatives being called racist.
posted by tonycpsu at 10:47 AM on August 20, 2019 [1 favorite]

@Jordanfabian: Trump on Omar/Tlaib: "Any Jewish people that vote for a Democrat -- I think it shows either a total lack of knowledge or great disloyalty."
Seems like a fitting reminder that when Niemöller wrote that "First they came for the socialists...Then they came for the trade unionists", those groups included a lot of Jews. And rather predictably, the Republican Jewish Coalition wasted no time endorsing Trump's remarks and casting the vast majority of American Jews of being enemies of the state.
posted by zombieflanders at 1:22 PM on August 20, 2019 [5 favorites]

ABC News, Trump administration to roll out plan for longer-term detention of migrant families
The Trump administration is expected to announce, as early as Wednesday, that it's moving ahead with new rules that would allow for the longer term detention of families traveling with children across the U.S.-Mexico border, according to two government officials familiar with the plan.
posted by zachlipton at 6:04 PM on August 20, 2019

According to the internet there is going to be a national coordinated weekend of anti-detention camp actions around October 12. There will likely be things here in Minnesota/Minneapolis. MN mefites are welcome to memail me and I'll send you a link when I learn more.

There will also be some anti-Thrivent actions, but I couldn't go to the meeting so I'm not sure what they'll be - but No More Cages MN is organizing something. Twin Cities Never Again is a Jewish (and allies) org that works with No More Cages.

Immigrant Law Center of Minnesota, Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Committee, CAIR-MN and The Advocates for Human Rights are also organizations which work on this issue.

If there are any Minneapolis/St Paul mefites who would like to banner with me, get in touch (that just means making a banner and holding it on an overpass during rush hour; there is no need to be affiliated with a group and it's very low commitment.)
posted by Frowner at 6:12 PM on August 20, 2019 [4 favorites]

CNBC: The US won’t provide flu vaccines to migrant families at border detention camps
• At least three children held in detention centers at the Mexican border have died, in part, from the flu, a group of doctors say.
• The government is not vaccinating migrant families and has no plans to do so ahead of the next flu season.[…]

“In general, due to the short-term nature of CBP holding and the complexities of operating vaccination programs, neither CBP nor its medical contractors administer vaccinations to those in our custody,” a Customs and Border Protection spokeswoman said in an emailed statement.
Combine this with the Trump administration’s plans for longer-term detention of migrant families mentioned above and you get exactly the kind of medical crisis that always happens in concentration camp systems.
posted by Doktor Zed at 8:46 PM on August 20, 2019 [10 favorites]

Jewish cartoonist Eli Valley:
The Evangelical antisemite Trump quoted this morning on how American Jews are shit rags also blamed the Nazi murder of Heather Heyer on George Soros. The President is an antisemite and by refusing to impeach, Congress endangers our lives.
posted by zombieflanders at 8:36 AM on August 21, 2019 [7 favorites]

The Trump administration has virtually closed the door on Iraqis who worked as interpreters for the U.S. military, issuing only two U.S. visas to former interpreters last year, according to government statistics obtained by NBC News.
posted by peeedro at 8:42 PM on August 23, 2019 [1 favorite]

DOJ making changes to agency that runs immigration courts
The U.S. government on Friday announced changes to the agency that runs the country’s immigration courts, giving its director authority to weigh in and make appellate rulings on cases.

The interim rule published by the Justice Department faced immediate criticism by the immigration judges’ union and immigration lawyers’ association, which say the Trump administration is trying to exert political sway over immigration court decisions.

The rule gives the director of the Executive Office for Immigration Review the ability to issue appellate decisions in cases that haven’t been decided within an allotted timeframe. It also cements the administration’s decision to create an office of policy for the immigration courts in 2017.
DOJ: Immigration facility shouldn’t have to pay minimum wage
The Trump administration is opposing Washington state’s effort to make a privately run, for-profit immigration detention center pay detainees minimum wage for the work they do.
posted by peeedro at 1:59 PM on August 24, 2019 [1 favorite]

Some history of the term "public charge": Trump administration revives public charge clause that kept Nazi-era refugees from the US
posted by XMLicious at 11:54 PM on August 25, 2019

ABC News, Trump administration to roll out plan for longer-term detention of migrant families

Axios: 19 States and D.C. Sue Trump Administration Over Family Detention Rule
"California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, along with 18 other states and the District of Columbia, are suing the Trump administration over a new rule allowing migrant families to be kept in detention long-term, Becerra's spokesperson confirmed Monday."
posted by Doktor Zed at 1:11 PM on August 26, 2019 [2 favorites]

"Take the land." "Don't worry, I'll pardon you." (WaPo)
President Trump is so eager to complete hundreds of miles of border fence ahead of the 2020 presidential election that he has directed aides to fast-track billions of dollars’ worth of construction contracts, aggressively seize private land and disregard environmental rules, according to current and former officials involved with the project.


When aides have suggested that some orders are illegal or unworkable, Trump has suggested he would pardon the officials if they would just go ahead, aides said. He has waved off worries about contracting procedures and the use of eminent domain, saying “take the land,” according to officials who attended the meetings.

“Don’t worry, I’ll pardon you,” he has told officials in meetings about the wall.


The companies building the fencing and access roads have been taking heavy earth-moving equipment into environmentally sensitive border areas adjacent to U.S. national parks and wildlife preserves, but the administration has waived procedural safeguards and impact studies, citing national security concerns.

“They don’t care how much money is spent, whether landowners’ rights are violated, whether the environment is damaged, the law, the regs or even prudent business practices,” the senior official said.


Trump has recently urged the Army Corps to award a contract to a company he favors, North Dakota-based Fisher Industries, though the firm has not been selected. Fisher has been aggressively pushed by Trump ally Sen. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), who briefly held up the confirmation of a Trump budget office nominee last month in an attempt to put pressure on the Army Corps.

Cramer demanded to see the contracts awarded to Fisher’s competitors, lashing out at the “arrogance” of the Army Corps in emails to military officials after he was told the bidding process involved proprietary information that could not be shared. The CEO of Fisher Industries is a major backer of Cramer and has donated to his campaigns.
posted by box at 1:00 PM on August 28, 2019 [3 favorites]

Buzzfeed: The Trump Administration Wants To Start DNA Testing Undocumented Immigrants In Government Custody—A draft rule, seen by BuzzFeed News, said hundreds of thousands of people could be tested if it is fully implemented.
The Trump administration wants to expand its DNA testing program by enabling Customs and Border Protection officials to extract genetic material from undocumented immigrants in its custody, according to a draft policy obtained by BuzzFeed News.[…]

Administration officials estimate that CBP officials would spend more than 20,000 additional work hours on such a policy in its first year of implementation. Hundreds of thousands of individuals could be tested each year if the draft regulation, proposed by the Department of Justice, is fully implemented.

While the regulation does not specifically say Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials would also test people in their custody, it also does not limit them from doing so.

In a statement to BuzzFeed News, a DHS official said "DHS is working closely with the Department of Justice on a path forward for DNA collection."[…]

The current draft proposal would […] include people who are awaiting deportation and those who are not charged with a crime, such as undocumented immigrants, to the testing.
posted by Doktor Zed at 1:45 PM on August 29, 2019 [1 favorite]

The US is on the verge of losing it's measles free designation (likely to happen in November); the last thing they need is a big pool of unvaccinated children.
posted by Mitheral at 10:35 PM on August 31, 2019 [1 favorite]

« Older Constellations from Around the World   |   You’re not going to go into dire straits buying an... Newer »

This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments