Friday, June 29, 2007
Here's a response from Robert Sorensen, who is at the University of Washington, to our postings on the ICE raids that have occurred in Orange County:
This story makes an impression on my because Santa Ana is my home turf. I can't be there now to keep vigil on the ICE raids, but I recall a similar strong and sweeping police presence by the Border Patrol back in the day leading up to and near the time of Operation Gatekeeper. They used to hit Santa Ana because it was the first major city inland from the frontier.
Freshly arrived immigrants were then an easy prey for unscrupulous merchants and landlords, street criminals, fake immigration experts, and the gestapoesque Border Patrol round ups.
It seems as though history is trying to imitate itself with regard to the round up sweeps. Only this time the enforcement is carried out by a much bigger and more specialized branch of the anti immigrant bureaucracy. It is my hope that the raid will stop. I sense that the sweeps represent a temporary political posturing by a desperate government mega-bureaucracy that has to pander to nativist outcry in order to justify its own existence. I am under the impression that the raids won't last. For one thing, I don't think the residents of Orange County will tolerate the strong arm posturing.
Southern California is too dependent on and intertwined with the Hispanic immigrant community to allow the raids to go on. What may be necessary is a stronger protest reaction by the communities surrounding Santa Ana including some prominent religionists and non Latino leaders to denounce the raids.
As for your monitoring the situation as it plays out in Santa Ana today, I would hope that the blogsters would pick up the ball and get the word out that the raids are going on through out the country. Not enough people know that this is going on, but if they did they would protest. We experienced the Portland del Monte raids here in the Pacific Northwest on June 12. Quite a few of us turned out at the ICE prison in protest of the gestapoesque raids. ICE has a live public information phone line (weekdays) EST. Voice opinions a 1 202 514 2648