American Gulag

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You need to read this new Amnesty International report on immigrant detention in our country. Even those who have some knowledge about this national shame will be jolted by AI’s findings:

– Tens of thousands of people languish in U.S. immigration detention facilities every year — including a number of U.S. citizens — without receiving a hearing to determine whether their detention is warranted.

– Hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars are being used to hold these people for months—sometimes years—in detention. The people detained include lawful permanent residents, undocumented immigrants, asylum seekers and survivors of torture and human trafficking.

– Oversight and accountability is almost nonexistent and individuals in detention often lack treatment for their medical needs. 74 people have died while in immigration detention over the past five years.

If you’re looking for a healthy way to channel your rage after reading the report, you can send this letter to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano,  urging her to find meaningful alternatives to detention and ensure that conditions in detention are “humane and meet international standards.”

(…and then while you’re inspired to help change our deeply broken immigration system, send this letter to your congressperson and urge him/her to help pass the Dream Act in 2009. )

3 thoughts on “American Gulag

  1. (…and then while you’re inspired to help change our deeply broken immigration system, send this letter to your congressperson and urge him/her to help pass the Dream Act…)

    Please tell me what passing the oh-so-wrong and oh-so-illegal Dream Act has to do with prison attrocities?

  2. Not sure why you consider the bill “wrong” and “illegal.” So far it’s garnered fairly strong bipartisan backing and I doubt these congressional leaders would agree with your analysis. (I’m sure Sam Brownback, for instance, would be surprised to know he’s throwing his support behind an “illegal” bill)

    And in answer to your question: conditions in ICE detention centers are part of the same unjust system that deports innocent children. That is what they have to do with each other.

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