Is ICE Staffed by Sadistic Racists?

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

While Trump's plans for mass deportation terrify innocent families and working people, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents appear to be enjoying themselves.

According to the New York Times, the memo issued by the Department of Homeland Security last week that cleared the way for mass deportation has boosted morale among sadists.

“Morale amongst our agents and officers has increased exponentially since the signing of the orders,” the unions representing ICE and Border Patrol agents said in a joint statement after President Trump issued the executive orders on immigration late last month. [...]

Two officials in Washington said that the shift — and the new enthusiasm that has come with it — seems to have encouraged pro-Trump political comments and banter that struck the officials as brazen or gung-ho, like remarks about their jobs becoming “fun.” Those who take less of a hard line on unauthorized immigrants feel silenced, the officials said.


Their idea of fun apparently includes arresting transgender victims of domestic violence while they're in court seeking protection, or abducting people from their homes in the middle of the night as their kids watch, or arresting model members of the community who've given far more than they've received from anyone.

I'm not sure what the solution is, but we clearly have a problem in this country with law enforcement from the local to the federal level attracting recruits for the wrong reasons. We've belabored over this point many times in the past in regards to police brutality, but it extends to every level.

The Trump regime has enabled the worst impulses of people who joined the force for the wrong reasons, and that very well could be the key to it all: don't enable them.

  • Aynwrong

    Sickening. Just sickening.

  • muselet

    Is ICE Staffed by Sadistic Racists?

    The short answer is yes.

    The long answer is, if anything, more troubling.

    Muhammad Ali Jr was detained by ICE for over two hours when returning from a Black History Month event in Jamaica. Ali was born in the US and carries a US passport. Officers repeatedly demanded to know how he got his name and if he was Muslim. (Customs and Border Protection now insists he wasn’t targeted because he’s a Muslim, but declines to explain what the rationale was, citing policies protecting travelers’ privacy. Uh-huh.)

    Henry Rousso—”The Egyptian-born Jewish scholar, a senior researcher at the French National Center for Scientific Research, is a specialist on French World War Two history,” as BBC News described him—was on his way to a conference held at Texas A&M. He was detained by ICE for 10 hours and threatened with deportation over a misunderstanding about his visa.

    The people at ICE clearly aren’t merely sadistic racists, they’re stupid, ignorant sadistic racists who will go after high-profile individuals as well as ordinary nobodies because they’ve been given license by Donald Trump to be themselves to the greatest degree possible. (Yeah, yeah, not everybody at ICE yadda yadda yadda blah blah blah I’ve heard that song before. As I’ve said about local police departments, I’ll believe there are good cops when they stop defending the bad cops.)

    I feel safer already. You?


    • ninjaf

      One quibble…your examples here are CBP, not ICE, I believe.

      • muselet

        Crap. You’re right, of course.


    • Christopher Foxx

      I’ll believe there are good cops when they stop defending the bad cops.


      Folks can’t insist things like “it’s just a few bad apples” when those bad apples are not immediately fired.

  • Ellen Kuhlmann

    I read that it takes so long to hire border agents in part because a high percentage fail the polygraph test -I guess they all have to take one. So yes, jobs like this attract certain personality types, and how to combat that is a good puzzle. Not sure paying better would help, but its something that needs renewed attention now that Trump has let them off the leash.

  • Dread_Pirate_Mathius

    Is anyone else getting Gestapo vibes off all this?

    Just me? Ok, then.

    • Scopedog

      Not just you.

      But to be fair, Trump and company already stomped all over Godwin’s Law. It’s perfectly fine to use “Gestapo” or “Nazi” or “Stalinist”–because this is exactly what the fuck it is.

      And people are still whining about how Hillary and Obama were somehow just as bad, or worse. Fucking hell.

      • Badgerite

        Seriously. And there was another rash of bomb threats on Jewish Community Center and attacks on Jewish Cemeteries.

        • Dread_Pirate_Mathius

          Well that’s the playbook, isn’t it?

          Bitch about the war on “traditional values” and Christianity while curb stomping everyone else in the name of “self defense.” The writing was on the walls years ago with the “war on Christmas” bullshit. All it’s lacking at this point is a spark.

          The question is who is going to get it the worst. Muslims, certainly. Immigrants of all stripes, but especially illegal Hispanic immigrants, certainly. Are Jews on the docket for this round? Probably – it’s just our shit luck.

          • Badgerite

            Undoubtedly. I don’t care about the guy’s In-laws. If you encourage neo-Nazis, this is what you get. There is not “center” to the Mercer family idea of ‘center’-right politics. Given license, fascists feel emboldened.

    • ProudLiberalAlways

      Yes! This is NOT amusing in any sense. In case Rump cannot get the military to back up his eventual take-over of the country, maybe he’s planning on using the ICE agents as his private force!

  • gescove

    I’m not sure what the solution is either. But the current situation of our highly weaponized/militarized police on the local, state, and Federal level is truly frightening.