We’re getting the bad ones out. Bad people out of this country—people that shouldn’t be whether its drugs, murder…. Donald Trump speaking to followers.
I was a new Special Agent in the U.S. Secret Service—only a couple of weeks on the job. My boss assigned me my first case to investigate: A deceased man’s Railroad Retirement checks were cashed for several months after his death.
I went to the retirement home where his widow lived. She was old and frail, kind and cooperative. She acknowledged cashing his checks after he died. She thought it was okay. She said to me, “I can pay back a dollar a month.” I said, “That will not be necessary.” If I had to take a dollar a month from this lady, I didn’t want to be a Secret Service agent. I closed the case. No one objected.
I watched a news report recently and felt saddened by the reports of good people being swept up under Trump’s executive order on immigration. He said he wasn’t after people with minor criminal records or who made administrative mistakes. His order said otherwise.
One husband and father, in the United States for 16 years, was arrested and quickly deported to El Salvador for missing a meeting. His wife wept as she asked, “Why would you hurt me like this? Why would you hurt my kids this way?”
Another man was pulled over by ICE agents as he drove his children to school. He was arrested in front of his children while his 13-year-old daughter video-taped his arrest. His serious crime? A DWI 10 years prior.
A woman spoke publically about her fear of deportation. Shortly afterward, she was pulled over, detained and awaits deportation for overstaying her visa. She has lived in the United States for 16 years.
And the stories go on and on across the country. Millions of people live in fear.
ICE agents had discretion in these cases. They could leave these people alone. It’s easy to build up one’s statistics by prioritizing such people. People inflate numbers all the time to make themselves look better or for political use. I haven’t read of the arrests or deportations of any murderers or rapists. I wonder how ICE agents feel about these arrests—often done in cruel ways? If I was a young ICE agent, I would ask, “Is this what I have to do to be an ICE agent?”
We will remember Donald Trump as a cruel man without compassion.
I believe people allowed to live and work freely here for as long as these people were should be allowed to remain here forever. We should not break up families.
One way we resist Trumpism is to refuse to behave as he does: We tell the truth, have a higher purpose, treat others with respect, act with compassion and always seek to grow in our awareness of what is happening right in front of us.
The “bad ones” are not those being snatched off the streets.