Sunday, February 15, 2009

Family Values, Immigration and Customs Style

While our government doesn't do such a good job of say, keeping track of equipment at nuclear weapons laboratories, a recent report by Homeland Security's Inspector General found that they do a great job of protecting our nation from people who want to work in construction and pick produce.

The report casually states, almost as an aside, that over 2 million illegal aliens were deported between 1998 and 2007. That's pretty impressive. In nine years, our government just shipped/carted off/mailed via UPS a number of people equivalent to the combined populations of Hawaii and Montana? They really ought to publicize this a bit more.

But that big number wasn't really the point of the report, which had more to do with a tiny subgroup of those deportees. You see, Immigration and Customs Enforcement are so thorough in their work that they deport illegal aliens even when their children are U.S. citizens. Between '98 and '07 over 100,000 parents of U.S. citizens were deported (see page 4 of the linked report).

Homeland Security is concerned about this, and rightly so. So they decided to find out, among other things, a) how often both parents of a child are removed; and b) whether the children remained in the U.S.

Well, it turns out ICE doesn't collect that data (page 7). I suppose there's a good reason for that. Maybe they thought they didn't have the authority to look into those matters. You could argue that these days we should be grateful whenever a government agency decides not to collection information on U.S. citizens.

Or perhaps like me the people at Immigrations think No Child Left Behind is a stupid law that should be ignored and thought it had something to do with their line of work.

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