Abolish ICE Movement Spreads as Activist Encampments Shut Down Multiple Facilities

(CD) — Protesters in Louisville, Kentucky were outraged Monday after police swiftly removed an encampment they had set up outside the city’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) facility as part of the national #OccupyICE movement.

I cannot get my jaw off the floor the @louisvillemayor had the gall, the NERVE to speak in front of that rally on Saturday, and then turn around and send LMPD to ICE’s rescue the INSTANT they had to look at some determined peaceful protestors. #occupyicelou
— Paperclip Dent🌹 (@brohammersdad) July 2, 2018

Demonstrators had arrived at ICE’s offices early on Monday morning, setting up tents, erecting barricades to block law enforcement vehicles from entering the property, and placing toys in the driveway to symbolize the thousands of children who have been separated from their families by ICE under President Donald Trump’s “zero tolerance” immigration policy.

The Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD) sent officers to the scene immediately, and the protesters had been on the property for just over two hours when Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officers arrived to force them to leave.

Pictures of @DHSgov officers tearing down tents. pic.twitter.com/JN7AQKY04o
— Thomas Novelly (@TomNovelly) July 2, 2018

UPDATE: protestors also built a makeshift barricade to put in front of the ICE entrance. @DHSgov officers promptly took it down. Pic courtesy of a protestor. pic.twitter.com/ExmVva3cK6
— Thomas Novelly (@TomNovelly) July 2, 2018

BREAKING: Vehicle coming out of ICE offices ask protestors to move toys. @DHSgov officer talks to driver. Car runs over toys when they don’t comply. pic.twitter.com/c0SNWOFYGK
— Thomas Novelly (@TomNovelly) July 2, 2018

Protesters noted that Fischer had spoken out on Saturday against the Trump administration’s treatment of immigrant communities, calling Louisville a “welcoming” and “compassionate” city.

Families belong together! Excited to join this rally to show that Louisville is a welcoming city, and to let Washington know that we can be strong AND compassionate at the same time. Es importante que seamos unidos – It’s important that we are all united! #FamiliesBelongTogether pic.twitter.com/eRWa36mEwo
— Mayor Greg Fischer (@louisvillemayor) June 30, 2018

@louisvillemayor If you are truly a mayor of “compassion”, then get @LMPD away from DHS and ICE police. If you are truly a major for our Latinx, Black Muslim and undocumented neighbors, let us #OccupyICELou #ABOLISHICE pic.twitter.com/6KNT924sO5
— Dan Hong (@HongPilgyu) July 2, 2018

DHS removed the protesters days after officers in Portland, Oregon had done the same to the country’s original #OccupyICE protest. The encampment established on June 17 kept ICE’s facilities in Portland closed for more than a week.

In Wichita, Kansas on Monday, protesters reported that police had begun removing their encampment from the entrance to the ICE office where they had been protesting.

DHS has informed us that Wichita PD are on the way to remove us #OccupyICE pic.twitter.com/uz9N4IAcZL
— Ellery AbsolutelyNot (@ellery_glenn) July 2, 2018

Homeland Security and WPD here to remove. Advising the space is leased and thus private property. So, ICE is leasing from an individual. That individual can apparently violate our constitutional rights.We disagree. #OccupyIce #OccupyIceIct
— ICTIndivisible (@ICTindivisible) July 2, 2018

The forced removals come as the Trump administration has taken notice of the movement to abolish ICE, which has gained traction in Congress as well as among progressive candidates like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in New York’s 14th congressional district and in a number of cities.

Days after Rep. Mark Pocan (D-Wis.) announced he would introduce legislation to abolish ICE, President Donald Trump told Fox News that without the 15-year-old agency enforcing his immigration policy, “you’re going to be afraid to walk out of your house,” and tweeted, “Crime would be rampant and uncontrollable!”

Some political commentators have dismissed the #AbolishICE movement as one that plays into Trump’s caricature of Democrats and the left, with CNN‘s Julian Zelizer writing, “a call to abolish anything makes it sound as if the proponents want the entire [immigration] system to go away.”

The Daily Kos‘s Stephen Wolf disagreed on Twitter, reminding critics that ICE’s aggressive raids and arrests of immigrants who have no criminal backgrounds—and at least one whose green card application was underway—is connected with Trump’s overall agenda regarding the oppression of immigrant and Latino communities.

#AbolishICE isn’t @SeanMcElwee’s fever dream, it’s a coherent policy goal. And if you don’t think this is connected to voting rights, Trump’s anti-immigrant policies are designed to scare Latinos into not participating in the census & deprive their communities of representation https://t.co/0h4jxSF9a2
— Stephen Wolf (@PoliticsWolf) July 1, 2018

Trump is actively trying to terrify both undocumented immigrants AND those with authorization to be here or who are naturalized citizens. The entire purpose is to decimate their political power to preserve white supremacy https://t.co/Qk1KfLS6ir
— Stephen Wolf (@PoliticsWolf) July 1, 2018

Fighting Trump’s push to ask citizenship on the census & fighting to #AbolishICE & have saner immigration laws go hand in hand. Trump’s regime tries to terrify immigrants of all stripes & Latinos regardless of their legal status, & it’s intended to dilute their political power
— Stephen Wolf (@PoliticsWolf) July 1, 2018

By Julia Conley / Creative Commons / Common Dreams / Report a typo

This article was chosen for republication based on the interest of our readers. Anti-Media republishes stories from a number of other independent news sources. The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not reflect Anti-Media editorial policy.

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