Racial profiling arrests of innocent immigrants skyrocket under Trump


Trump's oppression of immigrant communities is about racism, not law and order.

As part of its racist border crusade, the Trump administration has started arresting immigrants without a warrant in large-scale "sweeps" — a tactic that human rights advocates say amounts to racial profiling.

As a result, NBC News reports, immigrants who have no criminal record in the U.S. are being arrested three times more often under Trump than under President Obama.

The number of so-called "administrative" arrests of immigrants with no criminal convictions has skyrocketed from 19,128 in the final 14 months of Obama's presidency, to 58,010 in the first 14 months of the Trump administration.

These administrative arrests are for civil violations of immigration law, not criminal. If a person has committed another crime in the U.S., even jaywalking or a previous immigration offense, that person isn't counted in these numbers.

"What's really different about this enforcement action is that they are literally doing roving stops, whether by car or on foot, stopping people without any sort of articulable facts," Mark Fleming, associate director of litigation at the Immigrant Justice Center, told NBC.

"It sends a message to the Hispanic community that we intend to racially profile you in your communities."

But while these racial-profiling arrests have shot up by 203 percent, the Trump administration is only making 18 percent more arrests of undocumented immigrants who do have criminal records.

And in ICE's eyes, even a single jaywalking misdemeanor is enough to turn an innocent immigrant into an immigrant "with a criminal record."

These findings are especially significant since Trump often hides behind the idea of "law and order" to defend his racist, anti-immigrant actions.

Trump routinely smears Latino immigrants by conflating all of them with the dangerous MS-13 gang.

Now we know that the Trump administration isn't getting tougher on crime — it's just terrorizing tens of thousands of people who aren't criminals, and who just want the chance to make a better life in America.

Meanwhile, the White House is also plotting ways to deny citizenship to millions of legal immigrants who have been living in the U.S. for years and dutifully waiting their turn to become citizens.

If Trump has his way, some immigrants could lose their legal status, and even be deported — simply because they made legal use of U.S. safety net programs, including Obamacare, due to legitimate financial need.

This other hateful initiative is the brainchild of Trump adviser and white supremacist Stephen Miller.

Yet Miller's own ancestors benefited from the types of "chain migration" policies Miller fights against today — and on Monday, Miller's uncle publicly condemned his nephew's hypocrisy.

"I have watched with dismay and increasing horror as my nephew, who is an educated man and well aware of his heritage, has become the architect of immigration policies that repudiate the very foundation of our family’s life in this country," David Glosser wrote in an op-ed for Politico Magazine.

"Acting for so long in the theater of right wing politics, Stephen and Trump may have become numb to the resultant human tragedy and blind to the hypocrisy of their policy decisions," Glosser wrote.

And now, it seems, both Miller and Trump are working hard to worsen that human tragedy.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.