Protesters Call for De-Funding ICE, Garamendi District Director Calls for Quiet

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Garamendi Deputy Chief of Staff and District Director emerges from their office during the rally to ask the protesters to keep it down

Local groups came together at noon on Tuesday to protest the continued policies of the Trump administration with regard to immigration policy, as well as to put pressure on Congressional Democrats, who control the House, “to stop the abuse being perpetrated by ICE and CBP in detention camps at the Southern border and around the country.”

While the crowd, notably smaller than the one on July 2 which drew between 250 and 300 participants, was lively, the most notable development may have been the response from the Congressman’s staff itself – a staffer identified by organizers as Debbi Gibbs, Deputy Chief of Staff and District Director, emerged from the office to complain about the noise of the crowd.

As Seth Sanders posted on Facebook, “Garamendi’s staff seem not to be bothered by the concentration camps that he sent a remarkable amount of your tax dollars to fund. Here staffer Debbi Gibbs comes out not to tell us his position (he doesn’t seem to have one) but to complain about the noise that Japanese American detention camp survivors are making.”

The incident caught many organizers and activists off guard.

The Congressman’s staff did not respond to a Vanguard request for comment on this incident.

However, in a statement from Congressman Garamendi on the overall protest, he said, “I share this group’s outrage over the unconscionable and inhumane conditions children and families are subjected to in U.S. custody. This President’s cruel immigration policies are a stain on America’s history, and I will continue to fight back by supporting strong legislation to end the mistreatment of asylum seekers at the border. I greatly appreciate the passion our community has for this issue.”

“Today our specific task is to de-fund ICE and CBP in the upcoming budget vote,” one of the organizers stated.  “Why are we seeking to de-fund ICE?  Some people ask well shouldn’t these agencies have more money so they can address the humanitarian concerns at the border?”

“No,” was the resounding answer from the crowd.  She continued, “What ICE did with the increase in funding that Representative Garamendi voted for earlier this summer is drastically expand the capacity of their detention camps.”

“This is not a problem of lack of resources,” she said.  “This is a problem of ICE and CBP misusing the money that they have been given to unnecessarily and cruelly abuse immigrants.”

Greg Brucker speaks on Tuesday at the rally

Greg Brucker said that “we are at an unfortunate crossroads in our country.  We are at the point where we are looking at a direct representation of the past.”  He asked, “If you were alive when the Nazis were taking over Germany, what would you have done to help stop them?

“What we’re seeing has happened before,” he said.  “What we’re watching, we experienced and we must say together that Never Again is Now!”

Rev. Pamela Dolan said that she is from one of the whitest, most mainstream and most establishment churches in the history of the US, the Episcopal Church.

“Even the Episcopal Church is beginning to wake up and beginning to understand that we cannot be on the sidelines,” she said.  “We need to show up and we need to amplify the voices of the people who have been on the frontlines and the people whose lives have been sacrificed to this evil – this evil that is being done in our names.”

Rabbi Greg Wolfe said, “Only when we look around and say you are my brother, you are my sister, only then can we say that God’s presence is with us.”  He said, “We have to treat each other as brothers and sisters.”

Rabbi Greg Wolfe blows his shofar

He referred to the story of Cain killing his brother Abel, after which he asks, “Am I my brother’s keeper?”  The Rabbi said, “God never answers his question and I believe that the whole Torah, the whole bible is, in fact, a response to that question.  Every day we are asked to be the brother and the sister’s keeper.  That means everyone that comes to this country is our brother and our sister – and we have a responsibility to take care of them and watch out for them.”

He added, “Everyone of us is an immigrant and a refugee.  If the doors were not open – we would not be here.  So we must make sure that the doors stay open for those who need us, who need a safe haven.”

Attorney Josh Kaizuka

Josh Kaizuka described the process of Japanese Americans during World War II being sent to relocation camps.  “Concentration camps,” he said.  “That’s what they were.”  He said, “They were imprisoned for years, in indefinite imprisonment for years.  That’s why we’re here today.”

Christine Umeda said, “We’re here because we have a history.  I am a survivor of the concentration camps.  I was a four-year-old when we were put into concentration camps in the United States.”

She added, “I could empathize when I heard about the children being separated because that happened to me.”  She was removed for medical reasons, “but they didn’t allow anyone to go with me – think about it, I was four years old.”

“These things have lasting effects,” she said.  “Generation after generation.”

Josh said he was detained by ICE from his sister’s home, as he prepared to apply for asylum.

“I had never committed a crime and was just picked up and taken to the police station here in Sacramento,” he said.   Within an hour, he was handcuffed, shackled, driven to Oakland and put on a plane with about 300 other men.  “We were flown to Arizona,” he said and kept in a for-profit prison for two and a half months.

Two and a half months later, it took the judge “five minutes to grant me bail.”

“This is what the detention of immigrants has become,” he said.  “It is a for-profit industry.”  This was in 2009.  “This has been going on for more than a decade,” he added.  “ICE has been operating outside of the law, whenever it can, whenever it has a chance, just to make more money.”

Annoosh Jarjorian talked about the time they spent talking to Garamendi’s staff about a house bill, which she said, “had guard rails on it – to ensure that any funding would be used exclusively for humanitarian care of the families and children inside of detention.”

However, the Senate passed their bill without any guard rails.  She said that the house, including John Garamendi, caved and let President Trump get what he wanted.

“Garamendi caved on that bill,” she said.  “He could have denied the Trump administration what they wanted…  But he rolled over.  That is not okay.”

She said that family separation is a very personal issue, noting that her kids – 9 and 11 and the nine-year-old still will not spend a night away from her – “Imagine the trauma to those children being separated by people who don’t speak their language and possibly being separated from their parents forever.”

—David M. Greenwald reporting


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About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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68 thoughts on “Protesters Call for De-Funding ICE, Garamendi District Director Calls for Quiet”

  1. Ron Glick

    “Garamendi Deputy Chief of Staff and District Director emerges from their office during the valley to ask the protesters to keep it down”

    Bad move. Perhaps it would be a good idea to apologize.

  2. Tia Will

    On a related note: Yesterday the County Board of Supervisors issued a revised version of the resolution initially passed by the Davis City Council. In light of the El Paso shooting in which motive was claimed by the shooter to decrease the population of Hispanics, the Board added two additional points including a call to the administration to end the hate speech targeted at immigrants. It is my hope that additional jurisdictions will consider the adoption of resolutions such as these modified to fit ongoing events as they see appropriate for their communities.

  3. Alan Miller

    more so because she was asking folks, including a Japanese American Internment camp survivor and local Jewish groups, to quiet down

    Maybe she had a headache.

    1. Don Shor

      Maybe she was doing constituent service; as in, trying to help people who contacted the office for assistance. I’m told that is what the people who staff the offices of congress members spend a great deal of their time doing. I’m told Garamendi’s office has a good record in that regard. Perhaps she was trying to help someone on the phone, or in person, and had trouble communicating with that person. Maybe she was trying to politely get the protesters to reduce their volume so she could do her job.
      Maybe people should not put so much onus on the staff person about this, and not try to make this a big story when it isn’t one.

      1. David Greenwald

        Maybe Don, but she shouldn’t have said anything.

        (A) it simply encouraged people to be louder

        (B) it looked bad, especially given who the speakers were, and the seriousness of the issue.

        Nothing good was going to come from a request of that sort at that time.

      2. Tia Will

        Don

        Or maybe you had to be there to understand the context in which it was occurring. Were you there? I honestly don’t know, but I was. I know that the speakers were sometimes hard to hear because of the honking of passing cars. I also know that two of the women were soft-spoken and had to be repeatedly asked to speak directly into the amplifier. It is also important to know that Rep. Garamendi’s office has a back room in which she could have worked had she chosen. It would have been sound protected. I found it profoundly disrespectful and ironic given the importance of the exercise of free speech, especially by those who have themselves been targeted for silencing in the past.

        1. Bill Marshall

          It would have been sound protected.

          Cites as to how you know this?  Having been there, different time, different purpose, I seriously doubt that.  Unless it is a new feature…

          Or, are you suggesting the staffer should be dismissed for not showing ‘good judgement’?

        2. Ron Oertel

          It’s not a new feature, it’s from the 1960’s.  It’s called a “Cone of Silence”.  Works like a charm.

          And it was funny, every time.  Only recently learned that Mel Brooks and Buck Henry created that show (both still alive).

      3. Bill Marshall

        “Garamendi Deputy Chief of Staff and District Director emerges from their office during the valley to ask the protesters to keep it down”

        David… “during the valley”?  Did you mean “rally”?  Or, am I missing something?  You need to pay Highbeam and/or self-review… goes to credibility… am always amazed that lib arts majors make more spelling/grammar errors than most engineers… but by the rules of this blog, we are supposed to ignore those, and focus on content…

        Maybe Don, but she shouldn’t have said anything.

        But, you felt it necessary to focus on it… Don wrote,

        and not try to make this a big story when it isn’t one.

        That bad is on you David… it was a gratuitous swipe, that really didn’t help the main story (which is #1 importance)… whatever… your blog, you can “report” as you want to… but that detail was “cheap”… technically correct, distracts from ‘moving the football’… the football is the important thing…

         

         

         

        1. Tia Will

          Bill

          Cites as to how you know this?  Having been there, different time, different purpose, I seriously doubt that.”

          That is exactly how I know. I have been in Rep. Garamendi’s office a number of times for a number of purposes. I have seen people move in and out of the front reception area into the space in back. I find it interesting that you would doubt that as the reason I would know. Why would you have even had a reason to doubt it?  You do not know me or the extent of my activities, political or otherwise.

      4. Ron Oertel

        (B) it looked bad, especially given who the speakers were . . .”

        Some people are more important than others?

        The photos show people with loudspeakers in the street.  Might this be disturbing to others in the area?  Or, does the importance of the issue outweigh courtesy?

         

        1. Ron Oertel

          I assume you’re being facetious.  But, perhaps a better question to ask is whether standards are different, for those viewed by some as “more important”.

          On a broader level, the relative “importance” of various individuals (even, or perhaps even especially those in “leadership” positions) is not likely to garner universal agreement.

        2. Ron Oertel

          Sure, but there is a point at which it becomes discourteous (e.g., perhaps in this case), or downright unlawful (as we’ve sometimes witnessed in other areas).

          Not sure that either of these approaches accomplishes the intended goal.

          This may not apply when the law itself (e.g., “Jim Crow” type laws) are “broken”.

        3. Ron Oertel

          With loudspeakers, on the street.

          Just bringing up the possibility that it disturbed others, besides the workers in Garamendi’s office. (As if that was “perfectly acceptable”, as well.) No matter, I’m sure that they weren’t doing anything else “important”, and enjoyed listening to electronically-amplified voices for some undetermined amount of time. I know I would. 😉

          Hey – it’s like those protesters elsewhere, who delay traffic (and sometimes engage in more serious or dangerous behavior) because other people should suffer, as well.

        4. Tia Will

          Or, does the importance of the issue outweigh courtesy?”

          I realize that this is a subjective assessment, but yes, in my opinion, the deaths of six children in US custody, separated from their families and in our custodial care related to illegal provision of adequate medical care does indeed outweigh “courtesy”. I would also note that the inconvenience was brief with the entire event lasting < 2 hours.

        5. Ron Oertel

          If 2-hour, disruptive protests occurred for every important issue (including those that involve more than 6 deaths over some period of time), it’s not likely that any important issue would be resolved.

          There are issues right now involving Congress (such as preventing potential wars), that would involve more than 6 deaths.

          Disruptions with loudspeakers isn’t likely to prevent anything.

        6. Ron Oertel

          If one wants to make a difference, they’d probably do what you stated that you’re planning, regarding efforts in states that might/might not support Trump.

          Protests in Davis don’t make much difference, other than to disrupt an office/efforts of someone who is largely supported (as well as others, nearby).

          Perhaps requesting a meeting is more effective, if a group isn’t satisfied with efforts from their representative. Or, vote that person out of office, next time.

        7. Alan Miller

          (B) it looked bad, especially given who the speakers were . . .”

          Some people are more important than others?

          To some, the more victimy you are, the more status you have.  Yet, this only applies if the victimy peson shares your politics — as evidenced when I witnessed an uber-liberal Davisite go into an emotional rant, shouting over the attempts of a 92-year-old holocaust survivor to reply to his questions, because – yep, the holocaust survivor had conservative views and was sponsored by a conservative Christian organization.  So much for respect because of “given who the speakers were”.

        8. Ron Oertel

          Tia: There also seems to be an implication in your statement that the 6 deaths were caused by conditions at the detention centers.  If that’s the case, then it is indeed a very serious issue, and warrants immediate attention by representatives.  But, detention itself does not necessarily cause deaths.

           

        9. David Greenwald

          In April, a 54-year-old immigrant from Mexico died after several feverish days in a solitary cell. In May, a 21-year-old man from India hanged himself in an Arizona jail. On June 1, a 25-year-old asylum seeker named Johana Medina Leon died in a Texas hospital after nearly six weeks in the custody of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
          The deaths of three ICE detainees since April, along with the release of several internal and watchdog reports documenting dismal conditions at ICE detention centers, have prompted an outcry from advocates who say the Trump administration is pushing growing numbers of immigrants into a detention system ill-equipped to care for them.

          “What we’re seeing is a reckless and unprecedented expansion of a system that is punitive, harmful and costly,” said Katharina Obser, senior policy adviser at the Women’s Refugee Commission, an advocacy group. “The U.S. government is not even doing the bare minimum to ensure [immigrants] are getting the medical care and the mental health care they need.”

        10. David Greenwald

          “Protests in Davis don’t make much difference”

          Except they are trying to push Garamendi, an important Democrat in the house, to take an opposing viewpoint.

        11. Alan Miller

          Or, does the importance of the issue outweigh courtesy?

          I work across the street from the Capitol.  Nearly every day, some group is out there protesting — and I guarantee you ever one of them considers “their issue” — “very important”.  Maybe even enough to BE REALLY ANNOYING about how they get their point across.  We hear those loudspeaker chants just about every day.  FUZZZZZZZZ – FFZZZZZZY – FZZZZZZZZZZ – FZZZZZZZZZ is what we hear.  Charming.  Yes, “In the middle of the day”.

          As an example, yesterday hundreds of Anti-VAXXERS descended on the Capitol.  As they walked home, some idiot parked his car right in the middle of a single traffic lane, not moving even though there were cars behind him due to a construction site, and sat there for five minutes honking his horn as the protestors walked by, in honking-support, because “OUR ISSUE” is of the “UT-most IMPORTANCE”.

          F-ing honking moron.

        12. Ron Oertel

           Alan:  ” . . . as evidenced when I witnessed an uber-liberal Davisite go into an emotional rant, shouting over the attempts of a 92-year-old holocaust survivor to reply to his questions, because – yep, the holocaust survivor had conservative views and was sponsored by a conservative Christian organization”

          I have not found “tolerance” to be the hallmark of any particular political persuasion.  However, only one side seems to consistently “claim” it.

        13. Ron Oertel

          Alan:  “As an example, yesterday hundreds of Anti-VAXXERS descended on the Capitol.”

          Clearly, you don’t “understand” how many people have been killed by government-mandated vaccines.  😉

          (Of course, many more have likely been saved.)

          Every day, Sacramento is becoming more like the Bay Area – impacting those who are just trying to get to work. (Sometimes even experiencing direct harassment, in some form or another.)

          Stuff like this is a reason that some leave the area.

        14. Alan Miller

          In April, a 54-year-old immigrant from Mexico died after several feverish days in a solitary cell. In May, a 21-year-old man from India hanged himself in an Arizona jail. On June 1, a 25-year-old asylum seeker named Johana Medina Leon died in a Texas hospital after nearly six weeks in the custody of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
          The deaths of three ICE detainees since April, along with the release of several internal and watchdog reports documenting dismal conditions at ICE detention centers, have prompted an outcry from advocates who say the Trump administration is pushing growing numbers of immigrants into a detention system ill-equipped to care for them.

          Do you regularly quote stuffs without citing the source?  Makes a difference, y’know . . .

          Also, none of these incidents you cited involved the intentional mass-gassing of a race of people, nor the rounding up of US citizens by race.

  4. Ron Oertel

    What ICE did with the increase in funding that Representative Garamendi voted for earlier this summer is drastically expand the capacity of their detention camps.”

    If the policy of the United States (under all administrations) is to detain those who are entering the country unlawfully, how is it “cruel” to ensure that there’s adequate capacity, when “demand” surges?

    Same type of question would apply to prisons, regarding “capacity”.

    In fact, wouldn’t the opposite be true?  (Cramming people into inadequate space designed for a smaller number of people?)

    And, if the initial policy is what protesters are objecting to (e.g., that those entering the country unlawfully should not be detained), shouldn’t that be the argument, vs. arguing that ensuring increased capacity is cruel?

  5. Tia Will

    Ron

    You would be correct if detaining vs letting go without monitoring were the only two options. They are not. There are other, less expensive, options than detention. 1.Families in which there is no question of relationship could be released directly to their sponsors. Where there is question, genetic testing requires only a $1-200 oral swab and a 72-hour turn around time, far less than the $750/person/night the for-profit camps are charging.

    2. Instead of building holding pens, another less expensive option would be to hire more immigration lawyers and judges to process asylum requests in a more expeditious manner. Ankle monitors could be used for those felt at risk of “disappearing” while awaiting their court dates. These are well-known options which have been discussed for months, but not used by choice for political and profit motives.

    3. Or think of how much more economically beneficial it would have been to allow these people, many of whom would be willing to do seasonal farm work or take other jobs Americans do not apply for to contribute to our economy while waiting rather than warehousing them at $750/night.

     

    1. Ron Oertel

      Tia:  Those are all arguments against the policy itself, which is what I suggested as the focus.

      But again, if the policy remains detention (as I assume it has been, for years), then it would be cruel to house them in inadequate facilities.

      1. Tia Will

        Ron

        There are a number of ways to affect policy. One is to pressure politicians and administrators by showing enough public dissatisfaction to cause them to change. Another way is to defund the agencies that enact the policies. Another is to vote out the involved politicians. I personally believe in acting on all fronts.

        As for universal agreement with any given action, that will never be the case and is not the goal.

    2. Ron Oertel

      You know – there is another option (which would likely be the “cheapest” of all) – prevent entry, or return to point of origin as soon as possible.

      There are people all over the world who are suffering, starving, and/or in extreme danger in their homelands.  And yet, the policy that some advocate favors only those who are (essentially) able to walk into the U.S., often putting their own lives in danger as a result. And, this system allows employers to take advantage of them, once they’re here. (From what I understand, ICE often focuses on such employers.)

      This is simply an observation – not an “advocacy” statement.

        1. Ron Oertel

          I’m not sure what the law is, nor am I sure if I’d advocate changing it.

          I do know that if people didn’t think that the U.S. was a viable “option” for them, the inflow would largely disappear.  And, that they’d likely have to continue living in their homelands, for better or worse.

          I don’t think a physical wall is a very effective deterrent.

          Maybe someday, there will be one world government (” . . .imagine there’s no countries . . .”) (Thanks, John Lennon.) Or Star Trek – the “United Federation of Planets”. 😉

          1. David Greenwald Post author

            Maybe before throwing out another option, you should start with the current law and whether you agree with it and if not, how you would change it.

          2. Don Shor

            And, that they’d likely have to continue living in their homelands, for better or worse.

            I’m going to assume you have no idea how desperate conditions are in their homelands. IMO most of these folks could be classified as refugees. A brief review of US interventions in Central American governments might be in order before you reply, if you were planning to, that it isn’t our problem.

        2. Ron Oertel

          David: Well, you brought up the law, which I’m unfamiliar with (in terms of returning to point of origin).

          We already know that it’s unlawful to enter this country, in the manner referred to in this article.  This is not in dispute. It’s also “legal” to create barriers to prevent it.

          Don: The U.S. has “intervened” all over the world. The policy that some advocate favors only those who are essentially able to walk into the country.

          As expected, some (rather angrily) read more into the comments I made than are actually there. This is quite common, on this blog. It’s a reason that some are wise to avoid it, unless they go along completely with the views that are espoused by the blog, itself.

        3. Ron Oertel

          “If so, the likely leader will be named Xi Jinping.”

          That is hilarious!  (And, maybe sooner than we think.)

          Who knows, might be an improvement. Regardless, no country remains the “leader”, indefinitely. Tariffs, or not. (Maybe that purchase of Greenland isn’t such a far-fetched idea?)

        4. Ron Oertel

          In reference to the “United Federation of Planets” – wouldn’t you know it – we still have enemies.

          Damn Klingons.  Even the Romulans weren’t exactly “with us”, from what I recall.

          Don’t get me started, regarding the leader of the genetically-altered “superior” group. But, at least they were from “our” planet.

  6. Bill Marshall

    This makes me wonder, given the surnames used as posters,

    “Who (themselves or ancestors) LEGALLY immigrated here, under current rules?

    Just food for thought, no responses needed… mine didn’t (under current rules)… but on one side of the family, since the 1740’s… on the other side, 1870’s… guess we should pack our bags and/or go to a detention facility…  but not… they’ll have to come after us!

    Certain high administrative folk, including the ‘administrator in chief’, should take a bit of mirror time…  and not just to check the hair…

    1. Ron Oertel

      Perhaps the question is whether or not any country can continue accepting immigrants, indefinitely.  Legally, or not.

      Trump said (when he suggested that those held in detention centers be sent to “sanctuary cities”), that there’s an “unlimited supply” of immigrants.  Maybe not entirely accurate (and insulting), but perhaps some degree of truth.

      Those who honestly say “go ahead” are at least being consistent in their position.

       

      1. Tia Will

        Ron

        that involve more than 6 deaths”

        Yes, I know there have been atrocities that involve more than six deaths. I find that irrelevant to the atrocity of these deaths. Perhaps you would like to specify exactly how many deaths you think would warrant attention.

        Also, I implied nothing at all about where or how the original illnesses were acquired. What I do know is that once in detention, our detaining agency, by our own law becomes solely responsible for their medical care. I also know that in all of the cited cases ( six children) medical care was either delayed or not obtained at all until the child was in critical condition.

        As for less crowded accommodations being preferable, I will refer you back to my post of 10:11 for practical and less expensive alternatives that the administration was made aware of and declined to implement. How do I know they were made aware of these options. Well, because I, as well as many other doctors,  made the suggestions when the circumstances were first made public. I wrote both individually, tweeted and signed several physician group letters requesting these changes.

        1. Ron Oertel

          Just to clarify – if Garamendi’s office was dealing with some other issue at that time, you’re assuming that this issue warrants more immediate attention (despite the fact that it’s been unfolding for some time), at the time, place, and manner in which the group pursued it? And, that Garamendi has the immediate power to change the situation, as a result?

          Again, it seems like there isn’t governmental agreement regarding whether or not to detain (at these type of facilities) in the first place.

  7. Tia Will

    I do know that if people didn’t think that the U.S. was a viable “option” for them, the inflow would largely disappear.  And, that they’d likely have to continue living in their homelands, for better or worse.

    Having visited Honduras on a medical mission about 10 years ago, I would like to rephrase what you wrote. And, that they’d likely have to continue dying in their homelands. The conditions at the time I was there were desperate, not only from poverty but from societal breakdown. We were under armed governmental escort the entire time we were there. The locals had no such protections. I see our purpose as not to “save the world” but certainly to help those who reach our border seeking asylum. It is our law. We have no legitimate reason not to follow it.

    1. Ron Oertel

      Some would die, as is occurring all over the world.  Including in places where they can’t walk to a safer country. In fact, it’s way more than “some”. Sometimes they’re killed in ongoing wars, as well. Many have no opportunity whatsoever, to escape those conditions.

      Some immigrants are simply pursuing a better life.

      Some die during the journey to the U.S., or are taken advantage of along the way (and/or after arrival).  That part would not occur, if there was no incentive to do so. In fact, supporting incentives will facilitates that problem.

      1. Tia Will

        Ron

        Perhaps I mischaracterizing your sentiment. But it appears to me that you just stated that because people are dying in many places in the world, we should facilitate the deaths of those who are able to make it to our border by sending them back to near-certain death in many cases. Please correct me if I have misunderstood. I certainly hope I have.

        1. Ron Oertel

          I suggest you re-read my statement.

          For one thing, encouraging people to risk their lives doesn’t seem like a sound policy to me.  Nor does it differentiate between those who are simply pursuing a better life, vs. those who are actually in extreme danger. Honduras is a pretty far “walk”, to the U.S.

          Not sure if I have an “answer”, other than that.  (However, see my response to Ron G., below. His statement was quite well-written.)

  8. Ron Glick

    Two points.

    Staff of our representatives should not be asking people to keep it down, as the first amendment protects us from such interventions, specifically from the government. Yes there are time, place and manner exceptions but none of these were violated yesterday during lunch hour in front of a congressional field office. If, as has been speculated, she had a headache or was on a phone call or trying to help a constituent a simple apology, as I said before, would be in order.

    Second, its the inhumanity that I find offensive, the crowded facilities, the lack of soap, washing facilities, toothbrushes, beds, blankets and decent food. The separation of children from parents, the people dying in government custody, the general cruel mistreatment of humans as a deterrent. Whatever you think about the law or immigration to me is not relevant. We should not be treating people this way, we are the United States of America. A bright shining city on a hill, a beacon of democracy and freedom should not treat people this way. Even if we ultimately turn them away while they are here they should be treated humanely.

    1. Ron Oertel

      The second paragraph sounds good to me.  Conceivably, that might involve increased capacity at facilities – something which is implied as “cruel” in the article.  (Assuming that agreement is reached that detention is the policy – which doesn’t seem to be the case.  Even within the government.)

      It’s no wonder that this situation is such a mess.

    2. Ron Oertel

      I’d also agree that the staff member probably could have handled it better, as well.  Perhaps something along the lines of, “Mr. Garamendi is already well-aware of the concerns, and is concerned as well.  He is also willing to meet with the group, to discuss options.  However, we do respectfully ask that you avoid disrupting the office with bullhorns, as we are working on (fill-in-the-blank) for constituents.” (Which might even include the same issue that you’re concerned about.)

      (And if such a request was subsequently ignored, I’d suggest that it’s not the staff member who might “owe” an apology.)

      As a side note, I seem to recall a similar situation regarding the “green new deal”.

      1. Don Shor

        I’d also agree that the staff member probably could have handled it better, as well.

        We don’t know what she said or how she said it. David’s reporting doesn’t cover that.

        1. Ron Oertel

          Don: I guess that’s true. Thanks for pointing it out.

          Kind of getting the feeling that the “side” issue is being “trumped-up”, for lack of a better phrase. Perhaps in an attempt to bring more attention to the primary issue of concern.

        2. Ron Oertel

          If so, that’s a terrible strategy.

          Looking at it more closely, the entire article is highly and unnecessarily inflammatory.  Short on objective reason or logic, long on emotionally-charged statements.

          Maybe that’s (also) why Garamendi didn’t want to meet with this group. He already knew what to expect, and what they were going to say (and simply doesn’t agree with it). (Just speculation, on my part.)

          The subject matter itself is part of the reason for the manner in which this article is written. But, not “all” of the reason.

        3. Alan Miller

          “Short on objective reason or logic, long on emotionally-charged statements . . . ”

          “Garamendi’s staff seem not to be bothered by the concentration camps that he sent a remarkable amount of your tax dollars to fund. Here staffer Debbi Gibbs comes out not to tell us his position (he doesn’t seem to have one) but to complain about the noise that Japanese American detention camp survivors are making.”

          You say you’ll change the constitution
          Well, you know
          We all want to change your head
          You tell me it’s the institution
          Well, you know
          You better free you mind instead
          But if you go carrying pictures of chairman Mao
          You ain’t going to make it with anyone anyhow

          — Lennon/McCartney (I cited that in case the Vanguard’s Google was broken)

      2. Tia Will

        Garamendi has the immediate power to change the situation, as a result?”

        Yes. The request being made was for a specific vote to not support further funding for ICE on the part of Rep. Garamendi. He certainly has the ability to make that decision regarding his own vote at any point in time.

        He is also willing to meet with the group, to discuss options.”

        This request had been made by the group and declined by Rep. Garamendi as had a request for a town hall on this issue. This was not a spur of the moment decision to go be rowdy outside his office. It was only after multiple requests had been declined that this action was taken. This also was not the fault of the staffer but might have been seen as cause to be at least a little more respectful of the feelings of many members of the group.

         

        1. Ron Oertel

          Me:  “Garamendi has the immediate power to change the situation, as a result?”

          Tia:  Yes. The request being made was for a specific vote to not support further funding for ICE on the part of Rep. Garamendi. He certainly has the ability to make that decision regarding his own vote at any point in time.

          Again – to clarify:  You’re stating that defunding ICE will prevent future immigrant deaths?  (I’m not sure I’d agree with that assessment. Therefore, I may not view that goal through the same lens as you.)  Regardless – even if Garamendi agrees, would defunding ICE be the likely result?

          Tia:  “This request had been made by the group and declined by Rep. Garamendi as had a request for a town hall on this issue. This was not a spur of the moment decision to go be rowdy outside his office. It was only after multiple requests had been declined that this action was taken. This also was not the fault of the staffer but might have been seen as cause to be at least a little more respectful of the feelings of many members of the group.”

          That does seem strange, regarding the refusal. Seems like he should at least meet.

          Just wondering – if he doesn’t agree with the group (not sure that I do), would that justify more disruptions with bullhorns?

          As Don noted, we’re (apparently) not sure exactly what the staffer said.

           

  9. Tia Will

    CBP and ICE as I recall as initially formed, had the purpose of detaining and confining individuals felt to be dangerous to US citizens. Over the decades, this has morphed into something entirely different. Can we all at least agree that infants and toddlers pose no imminent threat of any kind to Americans? What they have become is an enforcement arm of an ill-conceived attempt to circumvent our own laws surrounding immigration and asylum by essentially rounding up everyone suspected of not yet having applied. This is not according to US law, nor is warehousing of individuals in unsafe and unsanitary conditions which is what this administration is doing, not because it is overwhelmed, but because it maximizes profits and in theory, although apparently not fact, serves as a deterrent. It is this new devolved CBP and ICE for which defunding is sought, not the neutral descriptions found on the internet.

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