"Decoupling" Police Work from Reality, Including the Effects of Illegal Immigration

By Dan Cadman on May 22, 2015

My colleague Jessica Vaughan has written an excellent piece on the absurdity of the immigration-related recommendations of the president's Task Force on 21st Century Policing. The report included the recommendation that civil immigration violations not be included in the FBI's national crime computer (which is not, and hasn't been, an issue for some time) and that state and local police distance themselves from immigration law enforcement, even though the adverse impact of illegal immigration stares state and local governments, including cops, in the face daily. If that weren't true, 26 states would not be suing the federal government for its amnesty-surrogate giveaway programs.

It's no puzzle, though, as to why the members of this "task force" decided to wade into deep waters that are far from their fishing grounds. They aren't independent; they aren't bipartisan; they weren't necessarily selected for the depth and breadth of their analytical powers; and they weren't set up as the result of any statutory requirement levied by Congress. No, none of the above. The task force was established because the president wanted it for his own reasons, including those involving politics and pushing of agendas, and the people selected were chosen because they could be counted on to have views sympathetic to his own.

Under such circumstances, even if a member disagreed with something, who among them is likely to stand up, distinguish himself from the pack and say to the president (who, through his selection, has given him visibility, and enhanced his prestige and possibly his career): "Wait a minute. This makes no sense and goes beyond our scope. We have no expertise here." Obviously, judging from the recommendations, no one.

The task force would have us believe that the recommendations are designed to engender a sense of trust between the police and minority communities.

So this is about trusting the police? I think they have enough problems there to last a lifetime with the minority communities, in ways that have nothing to do with immigration enforcement. I encourage you to read the dynamic exchange between South Carolina Republican Rep. Trey Gowdy (a member of the House Judiciary Committee and former prosecutor), and Deborah Ramirez, (a testifying professor who is also a former prosecutor) during a recent House of Representatives hearing.

Given the lack of trust between, for instance, African-Americans and the police, should the police "decouple" themselves from law enforcement in that community as well? Well, that doesn't make any sense, does it?

Neither does pretending that the police, as first responders to virtually any situation, aren't already routinely encountering problems involving illegal aliens in their communities. So why ask them to turn a blind eye to immigration violations through "decoupling" their cooperation with immigration authorities when they see such problems in the course of their duties?