Denver Immigration Activists Picket Detention Facility
On Monday, June 7th, 2010, immigration activists met at the corner of 33rd Avenue and Peoria street in Aurora, Colorado, outside the Denver Metro Area contract immigrant Detention center.
Without their signs, passersby might not guess what the protest was about. While there was a strong Latino presence, the majority of the people were not Hispanic. The majority were Anglo, and there was even a Japanese doctor, Dr. Alan Matsuko.
“We are a peaceful angry people” they sang.
Most Americans don’t know what happens in an immigration raid. The raids often occur early in the morning with a knock on the door. Surprised immigrants open the door, not realizing they are not required to do so unless a search warrant is presented. ICE usually does not bother with a warrant. They depend upon the ignorance of the immigrants to open the door.
Once the immigrant has allowed ICE into the house, every member of the household is identified. Children scream out in fear when they are startled by men dressed in bullet-proof vests and with guns drawn. Household members who are undocumented are detained in front of the entire family. Children are traumatized when a mother or father is placed into handcuffs. Some beg the ICE officers not to take their parents, but the tears get the children nowhere.
Legal residents of the house who do not have a passport at hand often get a free trip to the immigration detention facility pending their identification. The thinking is: no harm no foul, the person is released soon enough. Meanwhile, the legal resident may miss work the next day.
When the activists carry signs that say "Stop the raids," these kinds of practices are what they are protesting. They are protesting the broken families when one parent or a child is deported and leaves the rest of the family in the U.S. They are protesting because children of undocumented immigrants cannot go to college to break the chain of poverty.Continued on the next page