You are currently browsing the daily archive for February 7, 2009.

h/t Wellsmus

From the New York Times:

Federal immigration officials had repeatedly told Congress that among more than half a million immigrants with outstanding deportation orders, they would concentrate on rounding up the most threatening — criminals and terrorism suspects.

Instead, newly available documents show, the agency changed the rules, and the program increasingly went after easier targets. A vast majority of those arrested had no criminal record, and many had no deportation orders against them, either.

Internal directives by immigration officials in 2006 raised arrest quotas for each team in the National Fugitive Operations Program, eliminated a requirement that 75 percent of those arrested be criminals, and then allowed the teams to include nonfugitives in their count.

In the next year, fugitives with criminal records dropped to 9 percent of those arrested, and nonfugitives picked up by chance — without a deportation order — rose to 40 percent. Many were sent to detention centers far from their homes, and deported.

Bush’s attempts to appear “tough” on immigration where just that, appearance. But his cosmetic needs created two sets of victims.

The first is immigrants and those suspected of being immigrants.

[R]andom arrests of low-level violators in residential raids not only raised a new set of legal and humanitarian issues, including allegations of entering private homes without warrants or consent and separating children from their caretakers, but was “dramatically different from how ICE has sold this program to Congress.”

The second is taxpayers.

“If we just want to arrest undocumented people,” [Michael Wishnie] said, “we can do it much more cheaply.”

Congressional financing for the fugitive operations program rose to $218 million in the 2008 fiscal year, from $9 million in 2003, as the number of seven-member teams multiplied to 104 from 8.

It’s so obvious that harassing immigrants and racially profiling brown people is totally making America safer!

My friend Many is an activist for the rights of immigrants, especially those who face deportation. He once held a anti-deportation protest where his slogan was Donut Deport! and gave out Krispy Kremes to attendees. Learn about his work here and here.

ANYWAY, Ken Starr is trying to divorce all the LGBT couples who got married before Prop 8 passed. I strongly recommend you check out this video about it:

“Fidelity”: Don’t Divorce… from Courage Campaign on Vimeo.

The one at the link above is nicer, but if you want, the Youtube version is below: Read the rest of this entry »

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