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It takes one idiot, i.e., a woman scaling the Statue of Liberty on July 4, to perform a personal protest that shut the monument down for several hours, keeping 3,000 tourists away from a vacation destination. reported, “Four days after almost a million immigration activists took to the streets in over 700 locales across the country, a 44-year-old woman named Therese Patricia Okoumou became perhaps the most visible activist in the country when she climbed the Statue of Liberty on July 4th, protesting President Trump’s aggressive immigration policies. She was one of several demonstrators arrested after protesting against U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and calling to ‘Abolish ICE.’

“Born in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Okoumou has lived on Staten Island for a decade. On Thursday afternoon, she made her initial appearance on misdemeanor charges of trespassing, interfering with agency functions and disorderly conduct in the U.S. District Court Southern District of New York, according to court documents sent to Rolling Stone. She pleaded not guilty to all three charges and was released on her own recognizance.”

Abolish ICE (U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement) – so what is the logic in that? End separating children from their parents? Yes, but ending ICE … kind of equates to a person getting a speeding ticket and then petitioning to end police agencies to protest that ticket.

Sorry, but it doesn’t work that way. I understand the desire to get into the United States. It’s a great place, so far a blessed land, but we are a land of laws, as are most other countries on the planet – and we have laws guiding immigration.

I can’t think of a person I’ve talked to that doesn’t welcome a legal immigrant; I’ve got many naturalized citizen friends that have been through the process, and they echo each other: “We did it, so can the others.”

So … if Okoumou received her wish and our elected leaders got a wild hair and abolished ICE, what would we be losing?

According to the ICE website, “ICE executes its mission through the enforcement of more than 400 federal statutes, focusing on preventing terrorism, immigration enforcement and combating transnational crime.

“U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) is the largest investigative agency in the Department of Homeland Security. ICE HSI enforces a wide array of laws, including those related to financial crime, trade fraud, counterfeiting and cash smuggling.

“In recent years, the smuggling of bulk currency has become a preferred method for drug trafficking organizations and other criminal enterprises to move illicit proceeds across our borders.”

Those protesting ICE are doing a bit of throwing the baby out with the bath water. ICE has far broader responsibilities than just immigration control; they perform a whole host of other law enforcement duties.

Once again, ICE is enforcing laws created in Washington, D.C., the same Washington, D.C., where Congress is sitting on their hands, not doing anything, letting ICE and other agencies take the blame for laws they enacted and refuse to work on changing.

Okoumou is just another idiot seeking fame through her protests. The separation of children from their parents is tough and seems inhumane – but Congress is enabling the entire situation to occur simply by their inaction.

Abolishing any kind of border authority will send our country into chaos – maybe those with the “one world” thought process are for it, but the majority of Americans realize that we need border security. Laws to allow good people to become citizens and laws to keep those that mean us harm out.

And that, my friends, comes through the Border Patrol and ICE – law enforcement.

Meanwhile, Okoumou will be held responsible for the cost of all of the officers that had to respond to her protest and get her off the statue safely. I’m not going to hold my breath that they see any money from that goofball.

Jackie Taylor

Linn County News publisher


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