Recently when reading an online publication called Immigration Daily at www.ilw.com, I came across an editorial titled “Vigilantes at ICE.” This website advertises itself as “the news source for immigration attorneys” and claims to have over 17,000 subscribers. I have been a subscriber to Immigration Daily since my retirement because the company I now work for does consulting on “worksite compliance”. Although I do not agree with all that I read on ILW.COM, I find the majority of the content to be informative.
However, this editorial, which appeared in the site’s May 8, 2008 edition, pushed me over the top. In summary, the editorial was critical of recent ICE worksite enforcement initiatives, indicating that the agency was operating outside its intended mission – national security – and specifically, was failing in its goals to protect the U.S. from the next terrorist attack.
The editorial was personally insulting to me and greatly mis-represented reality. It stated that ICE had abandoned its core mission by “hounding busboys and gardeners” and “by squandering away valuable national security resources on harassing the undocumented, ICE appears ready to accept full responsibility for the next terrorist attack on U.S. soil”. Among other misrepresentations, the editorial further stated “al-Qaeda is our enemy….something apparently not clear to those at ICE.”
Although resources are limited, no one has forgotten the “core mission” of national security that is the number one priority for ICE and the Department as a whole.
All programs, initiatives, and operations are evaluated in that context, with resources allocated to those areas first and foremeost. National security resources are not being “squandered” away “on harassing the undocumented”.
The statement “ICE appears ready to accept full responsibilty for the next terrorist attack on U.S. soil” was reckless, ill-informed and an insult to all ICE employees. Worksite enforcement, which is the topic of the editorial, is only one of a multitude of important ICE enforcement initiatives.
The statement “Al-Qaeda is our enemy…..something apparently not clear to those at ICE” is quite simply outrageous. I can assure you that all ICE employees, particularly those who are based in New York City, know all toow ell that al-Qaeda is our enemy.
Immigration enforcement is and will continue to be one of the most important and controversial issues this election year and beyond. To question the dedication and motives of ICE employees in the post-911 period even as they are enforcing an important employer verification program is unwarranted and unfortunate.