hard to believe

Bored Immigration Agents Now Also Trying To Deport U.S. Citizens

All of the brown ones, Katie.

It doesn’t really seem terribly equitable for Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents to only be feverishly deporting thousands and thousands of undocumented dark-skinned residents all the time now, does it? And America is about nothing if not fairness! So to keep things “even,” ICE has been steadily trying to kick out thousands of U.S. citizens like Jamaican-American Anthony Clarke, who according to a Star Tribune report was arrested and mysteriously detained for months for the deportation-level offense of being a dark-skinned man living in a nation full of incompetent/corrupt/lazy law enforcement agents.

ICE first considered deporting Jamaican-born Clarke in 2004 when he was arrested for driving while black or whatever, but …eh, you really have to let the irony of these situations mature for the full effect. Why not wait a few years to try to deport him and try again, say, immediately after he’s had a chance to file some paperwork verifying that he’s a U.S. citizen?

Then, in May 2008, Clarke went to the immigration office in Bloomington to obtain proper documentation of his citizenship. On a form, he marked he was an American citizen and listed his address.

Two weeks later, ICE agents raided his sister’s home in Columbia Heights in the early morning. In court filings, she said agents told her through the door that there was an “issue” in the neighborhood and that they then “barged” in. Clarke’s sister said agents then illegally searched her home and found her brother sleeping. ICE would not comment on the incident.

On the day Clarke was arrested, an ICE agent ran a background check on him, using the FBI’s fingerprint database. That electronically retrieved document, contained in Clarke’s immigration file, lists his citizenship as “United States.”

Nevertheless, Clarke was held and moved in late June from the ICE holding block at the Sherburne County jail in Elk River to an unidentified facility in South Dakota, according to court documents.

And what American wouldn’t love that, a free surprise vacation to a secret government detention camp in some godforsaken wasteland? The Star Tribune story also mentions an academic study estimating that four thousand American citizens were illegally detained or deported last year, which kind of makes it seem like those top secret extraordinary rendition programs the CIA is running overseas on various handfuls of furriner enemies might actually just be “practice.” [Star Tribune]

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      1. subsum

        Same here. If that doesn't work, just dump my ass in Mendoza, right across the mountains. The wine is good over there too.

      1. Master Janitor V572

        Es ist zu kalt im Deutschland. Also the Germans are so polite that their politeness is indistinguishable from rudeness.

      1. JustPixelz

        All* our boobs are on teevee in Repubican debates.
        * Just kidding. We have lots of boobs elsewhere. I'm looking at you, Louie Gohmert.

    1. jaytingle

      Bad news. Since formally beginning their immigrant hate fest, Alabama requires an immediate influx of replacement dark people who are also American citizens.

    2. chicken_thief

      I want to go to Greece because they have a government more broken than ours, and I don't want to take shit from some furiner about the Tea Party and Congressional gridlock for the rest of my days.

      1. Snarkfest

        Damn great idea! Don't have to be dark skinned – just get a maple leaf shirt and a toque. BAM you are out the northern portal.

  1. freakishlywrong

    The way this stupid country is cratering, deportation is getting to be seen as maybe more of a perk than a threat.

    1. oldmayfly

      Wonderful! I remember a California protest when Bush the first was prez and the tv news showed a native-American-looking man holding a big sign that read:

      "Who are you calling 'immigrant', Pilgrim?"

  2. BaldarTFlagass

    Yo man — Let's get out of here! Word to your mother!

    ICE ICE Baby Too cold, ICE ICE Baby Too cold, Too cold

    1. Baconzgood

      The only thing Vanilla Ice ever did that was worth while was the movie Cool as Ice! That movie was Hell-air-ous!

      1. SorosBot

        What about his timeless appearance in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze? Ninja, ninja rap…

  3. freakishlywrong

    "He got caught in a horrible trap,'' said Angela Bortel, Clarke's Minneapolis attorney. She forgot to add; "one, not of his own making".

  4. Callyson

    he remained under ICE's jurisdiction until mid-December 2009, a total of 508 days
    Our tax dollars at work…

    1. GhostBuggy

      MODERATOR: "Mr. Cain, what do you think about the fact that there are reports of 4,000 American citizens being illegally detained or deported?"

      <Audience boos moderator>

      HERMUN: "When I am President of 999, I will make sure that number is doubled! Pizza boobies!"


    2. chicken_thief

      Perry will point out, if he can remember to do so, that if the detainee had been in TX, Rick would have killed him.

        1. PalinzADummy

          Even if he was 250% straight, like all those MANLY straight men out there.

          You know the kind: might suck a little dick once in a while, or let some other man suck theirs, but, OH, NO, THEY'RE NOT GAY!

  5. proudgrampa

    Ok. If we can't stop the planet so that I can get off, I will take deportation. Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Tonga…

          1. Geminisunmars

            Can I have my way with you now that I've won you? How's about a little Tonga? Or is that too Bora Bora?

  6. KeepFnThatChicken

    Is this because our students are failing geography or U. S. Government?

    And don't answer "both"; that's lazy.

          1. Chichikovovich

            But not Moose Jaw. I worked construction in Moose Jaw, and I'm here to tell you that Moose Jaw is one hell of a party town. Swift Current too.

  7. SheriffRoscoe

    First they came for the citizens, sleeping in their homes, and I said nothing, for I was not a….

    Hey wait a minute. This shit doesn't work anymore!

  8. Blueb4sunrise

    "….unidentified detention facility ….."

    Are you fucking kidding me?!?!??????

    Ya know……..

    1. chicken_thief

      In South Dakota – right? Like they got so damn many there that no one will ever, ever figure out which he was locked up in.

  9. Eve8Apples

    WOOO FUCKIN' HOOO! It's about time! Here's my top 10 list (not in any order):

    1 Rush Limbaugh
    2 Bill O'Reilly
    3 Rupert Murdoch
    4 Glenn Beck
    5 Anne Coulter
    6 Michelle Malkin
    7 Erick Erickson
    8 Matt Drudge
    9 The entire Kardashian Klan
    10 Sarah Palin and all her family

    Now get to it ICE!

    1. Lionel[redacted]Esq

      I'm sorry. There is a difference between the Kardashian Klan an Sarah Palin and her family? I thought the same people just used different names depending on what network they had a contract with.

      And you can't deport Michelle Malkin, as then her parents would have to be deported as they wouldn't have their anchor baby anymore.

    2. freakishlywrong

      Problem with yer list…they, other than Fucklin and possibly the Kardash trash, (*whispers* they're all white)..

  10. ChernobylSoup

    Okay, illegal searches, arrests based on sketchy probable cause, and widespread gross incompetence in a government agency is one thing. But sending an American citizen to South Dakota is where I draw the line.

  11. Chichikovovich

    Y'know I think this story can't be true. I called around to my friends with dual Canadian-American citizenship who are also white, English-speaking PhD's teaching at universities. And nothing like this has ever happened to any of us.

    1. oldmayfly

      Right! About 15 years ago I knew a bunch of people I later learned were illegal immigrants. No one every bothered them. They were all from Europe.

  12. SorosBot

    Having worked in immigration law, let me tell you that the ICE courts are just horrible; because deportation is considered a civil, not criminal, penalty there's no such thing as due process or a presumption of innocence, instead at hearings the subject is presumed guilty and has the burden of proof in proving that they are here legally or deserving of legal status (as with refugees). It shows with the most common hearings, those involving marriage; the judge presumes that a couple is faking it and has to prove they really are in love, even though every other legal benefit of marriage doesn't require that a couple prove their marriage is "real".

    1. Chichikovovich

      You've listed many of the things I was getting more and more concerned about, and which finally nudged me into becoming a citizen. That, and some interesting quirks of estate tax law for non-citizens. And: Flemming v. Nestor, 363 U.S. 603 (1960).

      1. SorosBot

        Yeah, any immigrant who qualifies for citizenship should apply for naturalization as soon as they can, because the USCIS and ICE are amazingly good at fucking permanent residents over, often by simple bureaucratic fuck-up.

    2. Geminisunmars

      My husband, a holocaust survivor and one of the sweetest people ever, has nothing nice to say about his experience with the immigration department. They treated him like crap, even while he was in the US Air Force. He had trouble getting his citizen papers until his General made a few calls. And he wasn't even brown. (Of course he was Jewish, so whadya expect).

  13. Lionel[redacted]Esq

    You see, we have finally gotten through the backlog of foreign born brown people, we can finally move on to getting rid of the brown people who are citizens.

    1. GOPCrusher

      I'm so glad that this increased attention on the immigration problem and the states passing anti-immigration laws is not going to result in racial profiling.

  14. Biff

    I had high hopes when I got my passport, but now it seems deportation may be my only means of getting that first stamp in my book. Bring it on.

      1. Chichikovovich

        Just going by the numbers, you figure there must be one or two of them out there. Those are two busy jackrabbits.

  15. el_donaldo

    "a nation full of incompetent/corrupt/lazy law enforcement agents" – to which you should add overfunded, militarized, and a few other choice terms. America – it takes a lot of adjectives to describe our peace officers!

  16. Goonemeritus

    Maybe ICE is on to something here; if we keep the undocumented and deport the citizens I suspect our country would be a lot more rational.

  17. SayItWithWookies

    Hmmm — is it a coincidence that Homeland Security, founded by Dubya, doesn't allow collective bargaining and for a long time had the lowest morale of any cabinet office? When you treat workers like they're crappy interchangeable cogs, the good ones leave and you're left with a increasingly dispirited and uncaring labor pool. Then add a rabid and sweeping policy into the mix and don't be surprised when you get a big fucking shitstorm as a result.

    Fortunately we have a huge number of adults in public office who are dead set on applying reason and evidence to our misbegotten policies, right? Oh shit — I'll just keep an overnight bag by the front door.

  18. anniegetyerfun

    Oh, god, the guy has a felony under his belt (also, marijuana possession, like that's a real crime). I just just hear the furious fapping from the Right wing as we speak, as they work themselves into a froth over the idea of deporting any black citizen with a criminal record.

  19. Mojopo

    What happens to those 4,000 people? Do they even get a US flag card that says "oopsie, my bad"? 4,000 people! Holy crap. That's not incompetence, that's an outright campaign against brown people. A mistake would be, like, five people. 4,000? Are you shitting me?

  20. Tundra Grifter

    Remember how the right wing nutz told us there was nothing to worry about when Arizona pushed through its "tough" new laws on "illegal aliens?"

    "There are plenty of protections in the law," they said. "What are you scared of if you aren't doing something worng?"

    &c., &c., &c.

    I'm going out on a limb here and suggesting there are plenty more cases we just haven't heard about yet…

    1. Antispandex

      This sounds suspiciously like you may not believe everything your government tells you. That is un-American, and paranoid, also. I'm sure I just read it wrong.

  21. Antispandex

    "…to an unidentified facility in South Dakota…"

    For the love of god, the man has been punished enough. There are probably only about two places in SD that any American would care to go, but if you are from a poverty stricken, and mostly undereducated island, being sent there is like going home…. except there are no pretty beaches, or good music, and you will freeze your ass off.

    1. Biff

      The Black Hills are beautiful, and cover a pretty large chunk of western South Dakota real estate. You can bet your ass whatever undisclosed location they've decided to put this prison is nowhere near there.

  22. SpiderCrab

    I'm certain that once news of this injustice reaches the Oval Office, Barry will slip on his Spiderman duds and right the wrongs, woncha' Barry? Barry?

  23. jus_wonderin

    "A gripping psychological thriller that will have you cringing every time the door opens and you hear the words Daddy's Home, just in time for Christmas." Get one for each of your kids.

  24. KeepFnThatChicken

    On the lighter side, this would keep people from Mississippi in Mississippi.

    Just. Not. Seeing. A. Down side.

  25. DahBoner

    Remember back when the only time you saw ICE in the media, was in a glass of scotch with airbrushed naked ladies in teh cubes?

  26. Master Janitor V572

    Poor old ICE, used to just be the Border Patrol, whose job was to desultorily catch the occasional Mexican. Then Lieberman moved 'em to DHS and pumped them up to where they have to have secrets'n'shit, including unconstitutional detainment, invasion of privacy, etc, just like the big kids at CIA and FBI get to do.

    So here's another thing to blame Lieberman and Bush for.

    And by the way, was Lieberman's monstrously disloyal speech at the 2008 Republican convention the price he had to pay to get Chimpy to agree to set up DHS as his personal fiefdom? Sure seems like it…

  27. HateMachine

    Maybe we can just deport everyone, start fresh with an empty country. Or maybe make everyone leave but the natives. The ACTUAL natives.

  28. comrad_darkness

    Since the republicans have made this a banana republic, clearly Mr. Clarke simply didn't offer the ICE a big enough bribe.

  29. Redhead

    Errrmmmm… when Ken goes on his long absences from posting (at least under his own name), he's not on one of these surprise vacations to South Redneckita, is he?

  30. anniegetyerfun

    They'd have trouble getting around the Constitution on that one – BUT if you can prove that a dark-skinned naturalized citizen committed a crime? BOOYAH. Conservaboner.

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