If nothing else, Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano is a woman of her word. During a telephonic press briefing yesterday, Napolitano proudly crowed the start of unmanned predator drone flights out of Corpus Christi, Texas, beginning on Wednesday, Sept.1.
The rest of the telephonic conference was more of the same with an emphasis on more. I think the Secretary of Homeland Security said the word “more” so many times creating a dramatic crescendo effect that drove home just how militarized the U.S. border with Mexico was becoming and just how far we are from comprehensive immigration reform.
The drones, which beginning tomorrow will be able to monitor the entire U.S. Mexico border, are meant to track the “illegal movement of drugs, money and people”. While I know many will say the “illegal movement” of people refers to the disgusting crime of human trafficking, I picture families and individuals crossing the frontera and wonder how is movement declared illegal and only the movement of certain people.
Napolitano’s language on border enforcement sounded much like what President Obama said during his last big speech on immigration. She touted that under the Obama administration the U.S. Mexico border had more “boots on the ground” and was doing unprecedented border enforcement. Napolitano said:
” Everything that is supposed to be going up is going up”.
One can assume that this means that the record breaking number of deportations are to be celebrated even when according to the DHS Secretary herself yesterday half of those had criminal records. The other half? Were they heads of households? Mothers, fathers, students who could have benefited under the DREAM Act?
Napolitano self-praised her department and the administration that hired her with a “top ten list” of ways that the border was being secured including the expansion of Secure Communities and targeting the “criminal” immigrants. Her late night television type bit highlighted workplace “audits” (are those the same as raids) and acknowledged that those audits are meant to protect “American workers”. The not American workers? Well I guess they can just screw themselves even if studies show them not to be a threat to the “American worker”.
And if you needed more proof of just how far away the administration is from working towards any semblance of comprehensive immigration reform, on yesterday’s telephonic briefing, Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano gave a special shout out to Senator “Biometric Chuck” Schumer, thanking him for pushing the $600 million Southwest Border Security bill.
Remember when he was called a “Champion of immigrants”?