Click the Link Indeed
A few days ago Kevin had a post on how you should always click the link. Today, he has a post on how gasp 1,700 immigrants have to wear electronic monitoring anklelets that tracks these people. So I click the link…ahhh TalkLeft. But low and behold there is another link to a 2003 DoJ Report [PDF]. So I click that link. And what do we see in the Executive Digest? How about this,
Each year, millions of aliens attempt to enter the United States without proper documentation, or enter legally but overstay or violate their visas.
So we see it isn’t immigrants in general, but those who are to be deported and are not detained. Of the non-detained illegal immigrants who are to be deported, only 11% of these people are deported.
So to summarize here. Kevin’s post is misleading. The TalkLeft post is misleading. The anklets are part of a pilot program for keeping track of aliens who have been ordered to leave the U.S., who unless detained we’d expect about 90% to disappear.
Oh yeah, and Kevin can’t follow his own advice.
Update: TalkLaft maintains this program is not for immigrants who are in the middle of removal proceedings. I find this claim interesting considering that in the first link we have this from the sidebar comment,
Sarah Barry fled Liberia’s civil war in the early 1990s. She’s now awaiting a decision on her appeal of a government deportation order.–emphasis added
Further on the very same page is this link to the Vera Institute of Justice. From the Executive Summary,
In 1996, the Immigration and Naturalization Service asked Vera to establish a supervised release project for people in removal proceedings in New York City….
In 1996 the Immigration and Naturalization Service asked the Vera Institute of Justice, a nonprofit organization with experience implementing demonstration projects that promote just practices in government, to establish a supervised release project for people in removal proceedings in New York City.
Now not everybody is the same when they are in a removal proceeding. But these are all individuals who are likely to disappear at the first chance they get. Many are seeking asylum (i.e. they fear something bad happening to them if they go back), are criminals, are illegal immigrants, etc.
The NPR article does make it sound like the Dept. of Homeland Security is grabbing random immigrants, but the other documents just don’t support this conclusion.
The monitoring devices were assigned to “low-risk, nonviolent alien offenders,” said agency spokeswoman Barbara Gonzalez. “We hope to use these devices to release nonviolent aliens into the community while still ensuring their appearance in court as required.”
That doesn’t sound like any old random immigrant to me, but hey maybe I’m wrong.
Illegal immigrants awaiting deportation hearings are being monitored by electronic ankle bracelets under a federal pilot program that is expected to relieve prison overcrowding nationwide and save taxpayers millions of dollars.
The Detroit Free Press also has an article on the use of ankle bracelets to monitor immigrants who are at high risk of disappearing into the population and who are low risk.
Using Michigan as a test site, the federal government is quietly rolling out a national plan to put electronic tethers on illegal immigrants — easing overcrowding in jails and allowing closer monitoring of immigrants who might otherwise skip court hearings or deportation proceedings.
And the height of irony! A TalkLeft post that notes the initial plan to jail these people and…oh this is good…that the better alternative is….are you ready…ankle bracelets. You had to see that coming. What really amusing are the comments by kdog over at TalkLeft. On one hand house arrest is good, on the other it is bad.
This page at Human Rights First also seems to be talking about the progrma the NPR article is discussing in that it deals with a pilot program in 8 cities. However, this is a much more detailed report and notes once again that these are people in the middle or removal proceedings.
I think this is enough support for my take on this issue. TalkLeft is wrong.