Sunday, August 30, 2020
NBC News reports that Asian American advocates are criticizing the Trump administration's appointment of Tony Pham, a Vietnamese refugee, as the new Acting Director of ICE. Here's a quote from the article: "The Trump administration’s appointment of a Vietnamese refugee to lead Immigration and Customs Enforcement sparked anger among Asian American advocates, many of whom condemned the move as hypocritical. . . . During the Trump years, deportations of Southeast Asians have grown at an alarming rate. Pham’s nomination comes at a particularly fraught time for a group already reeling from the health and economic fallout of the pandemic. Earlier this month, ICE removed 30 Vietnamese Americans, including some refugees thought to be protected under a 2008 agreement between the U.S. and Vietnam."
The nonprofit organization Asian Americans Advancing Justice issued a statement on Pham's appointment, quoted in part below:
"Tony Pham’s emphasis on his family’s 'lawful path' to citizenship perpetuates an ahistorical and harmful narrative that ignores the harshness of our immigration system and dismisses the humanity of the millions of immigrants in the United States who are at risk of deportation. We reject this narrative. Tony Pham does not represent or speak for our communities, and his appointment as ICE Director in no way changes the fundamental cruelty of an agency that exists to criminalize immigrants. The United States must defund ICE and end the violence of deportation, and we will continue to fight for a future where our immigrant and refugee families can finally feel safe in their homes."