Protect the Unwanted

The other great-again product of the last national election that looms large in my mind is not an employment matter, just a human rights catastrophe unfolding in real time, which we have not had the benefit of since the heydey of the Iraq War: the impending mass incarceration crisis of our own making as we attempt to detain and deport everyone in sight, our best response to the record levels of human migration that we have felt ripples of on our shores in recent years.

There is no good reason for the immigration enforcement system to imitate the corrections system that we use for violators of criminal law, other than corporate efficiencies and a thematic consistency with ongoing efforts to conflate unlawful presence with criminal illegality, but there are many good reasons not to do so.

Thus, I applaud the efforts of municipalities to help the members of their communities suddenly rendered vulnerable to such detention and to otherwise attempt to hold their communities together in the face of forces of division. Such efforts are especially welcome where the powers-that-be no longer hesitate to crack down on even those who only seek to aid immigrants when they are in distress.

Looking forward, funding the legal defense of immigrants facing detention and deportation should be the priority for anyone wondering how best to help in these turbulent times. The social costs of doing otherwise are simply too high.

One thought on “Protect the Unwanted

  1. Pingback: Our Most Vulnerable Workers Deserve Our Best Efforts, Not Our Derision – The DU Just Wages Project @ Korbel

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