It’s finally happening. Big, bad, bigoted President Trump is starting his campaign of mass deportations. The recent arrests of illegal immigrants in major cities across the nation can be seen as his first step in kicking out every single undocumented immigrant in the United States. Or, maybe this is just another example of the establishment media playing on fear in order to get ratings and further their political agenda.
Over the last few weeks, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) have arrested hundreds of undocumented immigrants in at least six states, in what officials called routine enforcement.
These arrests caused a frenzy of fear and anger from those on the left, leading to rumors of ICE assembling checkpoints in order to catch illegal immigrants. In a statement made to the Los Angeles Times, the Fontana Police Department said,
“It appears that unknown subjects are trying to create a public panic and we want our community to be assured that this is a complete hoax. We understand that fake news can spread quickly via social media and encourage you to always fact check things you read or hear.”
And, of course, there have been protests. According to James Barrett of the Daily Wire,
Protests erupted in Southern California Thursday night after immigration authorities reportedly rounded up more than 100 illegal immigrants across three counties. Outraged protesters converged on the Metropolitan Detention Center in downtown Los Angeles, many blaming the new Trump administration for what they portrayed as unfair and unorthodox “raids” on illegals inspired by the new regime’s hardline immigration stance.
So what do you think? Is this the beginning of Trump’s mass deportations? Not quite.
According to David Marin, director of enforcement and removal for the Los Angeles field office of ICE, these are routine arrests. Sharon Bernstein wrote a piece for Reuters explaining the reason for the arrests. Bernstein writes,
In a conference call with reporters, he (Marin) said that such actions were routine, pointing to one last summer in Los Angeles under former President Barack Obama. “The rash of these recent reports about ICE checkpoints and random sweeps, that’s all false and that’s dangerous and irresponsible,’ Marin said. ‘Reports like that create a panic.’”
Naturally, when these raids occurred under former President Obama, there was no media hysteria. As a matter of fact, we rarely heard about them. Enforcement raids such as these occur multiple times per year in different states.
ICE raids are not uncommon historically. In 2015, under President Barack Obama, over 2,000 undocumented immigrants were detained in a raid targeting those with criminal records. In October 2016, before the election, ICE raids occurred at Mexican restaurants in Buffalo, New York.
So, who is being arrested by ICE? It is an important question, isn’t it? According to KTLA, the majority of these particular immigrants happen to be criminals who have committed serious crimes while remaining in the U.S. illegally.
In a statement given to KTLA’s Erika Martin and Kimberly Cheng, ICE spokesperson Lori Haley said, “Examples would include known street gang members, child sex offenders, and deportable foreign nationals with significant drug trafficking convictions.” The immigrants being arrested are not exactly models of good behavior, are they?
The raids that occurred recently were planned prior to Trump taking office and, so far, they have primarily targeted criminals. However, the executive orders President Trump signed late last month gives ICE a wider berth when it comes to enforcing immigration law.
The concern is that this dictum could result in the deportation of many illegal immigrants who have not committed any other serious crimes while residing in the country. It is still unknown how far President Trump intends to go in his efforts to address the issue of illegal immigration.
Instead of sowing panic, perhaps the media should consider just reporting the facts.