The most notorious government agency under the Trump presidency is surely U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE. The president may not be able to build his wall, but he can turn a horde of goons loose on America’s schools, churches, and homes.
In the spirit of bold policy ideas, allow me to propose a reform of ICE: Just get rid of it. There is simply no need to have an agency whose major task is rounding up and deporting otherwise law-abiding immigrants.Here is a brief and highly incomplete list of atrocities committed by ICE over the past year, compiled by Sean McElwee: staking out churches to round up people seeking sanctuary; deporting a successful businessmanwho has lived in the U.S. for 40 years; attempting to deport a veteran who served two tours in Afghanistan over a minor drug conviction; deporting an HIV-positive man to Venezuela, where a collapsed medical system means almost certain death; arresting, jailing for two weeks, and attempting to deport a doctor and green-card holder who has lived in the U.S. for 40 years over minor expunged charges from when he was 17; deporting the sole caregiver of a 6-year-old paraplegic boy; and even secretly compiling ways to strip citizenship from legal residents. Across the country, families are being ripped apart for no reason by a police force that is, quite simply, an anti-immigrant militia.