Abolish LIES

There are a few things about ICE, the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, that aren’t in doubt. First, it is in desperate need of reform and supervision, as there are agents engaged in outrageous conduct with no one preventing it, overseeing it, protecting undocumented immigrants (particularly children) in its custody from all manner of harm, from drugs to rape. It’s out of control, and there appears to be little interest in the Trump administration to deal with it.

But Abolish ICE, the trendy response to this abortion of an agency, doesn’t deal with the problems either. Without ICE, who watches the borders? Who prevents people from strolling in at will? It almost sounds like, dare I say it, open borders.

Or perhaps they mean abolish one enforcement agency and replace it with an entirely new one, where its agents are sweet and compassionate? At the New York Times, Sean McElwee tries to sell his unicorn.

In Minnesota, Ilhan Omar, who wants to replace Keith Ellison, who is running for attorney general, notes that ICE is relatively new. “ICE’s mission was created in 2002 — they’ve only been around for 15 years,” she told me. “In that time, they have grown to be an agency whose mission is to tear families apart and put fear into immigrant, refugee and undocumented communities. ICE has only become increasingly militarized, brutal and unaccountable.” For her, the call to abolish ICE is a demand to create an immigration policy “based in compassion.”

It’s correct that ICE was created in 2002. It’s a lie that ICE’s mission was created then. ICE was merely the renamed version of United States Customs and the United States Immigration and Naturalization Service when they were combined and placed under the new Department of Homeland Security. To say ICE has “only been around for 15 years” is to deliberately deceive. The name, yes. The agency, not even close. I remember sitting in a courtroom in EDNY right after the consolidation, when an INS agent I’d known for years showed up. He showed me his new, cool ICE shield, but he was the same agent.

Immigration has been a disaster for decades, maybe longer but I can only speak to my personal experience. And McElwee doesn’t entirely ignore this.

From the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act in 1996 to the Homeland Security Act of 2002, Democrats have voted overwhelmingly to help construct the apparatus that President Trump is using to engage in a campaign of mass deportation.

Democrats, no less than Republicans, were integral in making immigrants lives miserable. Part of it had to do with disproving the Republican cries that they were soft on crime and illegal aliens. Part of it had to do with the fact that nobody was of the view that undocumented immigrants didn’t present a significant problem, and that the ones convicted of crimes ought to be unceremoniously thrown out.

This presented terrible problems, but nobody shed tears back then, even when it involved someone who was here legally but not a citizen since he was a year old, for decades, with citizen spouse and children, a good job, paid taxes, was nailed for some trivial offense. The Dems were as harsh, if not harsher, than the Reps. And aside from their lawyers, no one gave a damn.

But this new “solution,” Abolish ICE, plays on the sad tears of the suddenly-discovered plight of our harsh treatment of immigrants combined with ignorance. Lying about ICE by pretending it didn’t exist until 15 years ago perpetuates and exacerbates the ignorance. Surveys about people’s views on immigrantion are foolish, since people have essentially no grasp of immigration laws and policies. They only know that the guy with his hands on the wheel at the moment failed his drivers test. So let’s ban the car.

If we were to Abolish ICE, would we replace it with NICE? We could give it a new name and pretend it was entirely different, but it would be a lie, just as it’s a lie that ICE’s “mission” was created in 2002. Or we could Abolish ICE and not replace it, but nobody with a clue thinks that won’t be a complete disaster.

America hates ICE with good reason. America doesn’t want open borders either. And nobody is better off when the argument is reduced to lies that make people stupider about immigration.

19 thoughts on “Abolish LIES

  1. Lee

    I suppose all the Border Patrol agents who risked their lives (and lost partners and friends killed in the line of duty) guarding our nation’s borders from 1924 to 2002 would be surprised to learn that they and their fellows sacrificed without a mission.

  2. Billy Bob

    I scream, you scream. We all scream for ICEcream!
    There are lies, damn lies, and … It’s only the Times, forgodsake. Without lies, Trump would have little to b!tchabout. We cannot have that this late in the game.

    1. SHG Post author

      This may be the most cogent comment you’ve ever posted. Aside from yesterday’s “no.” Now that was impressive.

  3. Hunting Guy

    Once more, people that don’t live by the border and don’t have to deal with its events are shooting their mouths off.

    I talk to Border Patrol officers all the time. They cover my companies mining claims and tell us about the drugs and bodies they find.

    The majority of the crossers now aren’t job seekers, they are drug runners and cartel soldiers that got on the bad side of someone.

    We need law enforcement out here.

    1. SHG Post author

      Distinguishing between enforcement and needless brutality is always the problem. It’s not either/or, but how to do one without the other.

    2. Justin

      I agree. That’s the downside of politicization. Nobody wants to offend the less offensive version of illegal immigrants. So they avoid addressing the matter entirely.

  4. Mario Machado

    ICE has always been cold. It’s the devil we know, and its “replacement” will be equipped with a sense of self-righteousness that may make things worse.

    Plus, many USCIS officers are ex-CBP agents who were looking for a respite from the rigors of guarding our borders, only to end up feeling overworked at CIS.

    Many ex-ICE will likely end up there, and I dont want a disgruntled ICE agent adjudicating residency and citizenship applications. I know many who are frustrated with the new directives (everyone is a priority) from DC, because there’s only so much bed space.

    Let ICE be. Not much has changed since Trump.

  5. Ross

    Amid all of the calls to abolish ICE, none of these screaming fools seem to notice that ICE deported more folks under Obama’s policies than under Trump. Maybe ICE was kinder and gentler under Obama, and didn’t attract as much attention, but the numbers were higher.

    1. SHG Post author

      On a year to year basis, Trump is no slacker compared to Obama. Then again, Obama was no slacker compared to Trump, either.

  6. B. McLeod

    It sounds almost like “open borders” because that is the underlying precept of those who would abolish ICE. Just go back to a time where anyone and everyone could come to the United States, and let the citizenry and state and local police forces handle whatever problems may arise.

  7. Richard Parker

    “Who prevents people from strolling in at will?”

    Abolishing the mission is the goal. Abolishing the agency is just a tactic. “Open Borders” is the goal of many now with no concern for any consequence.

    1. B. McLeod

      It isn’t the most insane thing these people stand for. They at least can point to historical precedent that at one point, open borders at least did not destroy the country.

  8. LTMG

    I’m reminded of the Beverly Hillbillies episode when Jethro become a Vice President at Mr. Drysdale’s bank. Uncle Jed objects to the word Vice, adds a stroke to the letter V to render Nice President. Silly then, and silly now.

    1. Lex

      I am stunned that—in world of of Chief Think-Hackers, Troublemakers-in-Residence, and Innovation Sherpas—Google doesn’t show a single hit for “Executive Nice President,” etc.

  9. Frank

    First thing that needs to happen is to do something about this “the border isn’t really the border, the border is 100 miles in from the border” crap that give ICE license to terrorize residents that don’t go anywhere near the actual border. That’s not “feelz”, that’s actual abuse of authority and at least half of the public resentment ICE receives.

  10. Dan

    “Without ICE, who watches the borders? Who prevents people from strolling in at will?”

    That would be the U.S. Border Patrol, which is a separate agency under the DHS. ICE does not watch the borders or prevent people from strolling in. Since you asked.

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