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Support Miguel Angel, Arrested by ICE in Denver

March 4, 2019

Foot path to border customs San Diego-Tijuana, American side

Last I knew Miguel Angel, a Chicano activist in the Democratic Party, one of a number of young, brown-skinned, talented political organizers, was running for city council in Denver’s District 9; the next thing I know he is incarcerated in the ICE facility in Aurora, Colorado, a facility he has publicly criticized on a number of grounds, most recently because of a chicken pox outbreak there.

Coincidentally – or not –  in the same few days that our Miguel Angel was kidnapped by what can only be considered the US version of the Gestapo, ICE, an immigrant rights “activist detained in Florida just weeks after he appeared in an acclaimed film at the Sundance Film Festival about activists infiltrating and exposing for-profit immigrant detention jails.” According to DemocracyNow! today (March 4, 2019) Claudio Rojas, an immigrant from Argentina was arrested on Wednesday, February 27, 2019 by ICE after a routine check-in at the Krome Detention Center in  Miami, Flordia for an annual check-in and is now being held at Krome Detention Center, where he faces immediate deportation.

How many other immigrants’ rights activists have been targeted for deportation?

I don’t know Miguel Angel well, but among the young Chicanos that have become active and working in the Democratic Party here in Colorado, he’s already a stand out for his dedication, principle and from what I can tell, his political acumen. I last ran into him at the “Marade” – Denver’s Martin Luther King Jr annual celebration – one of the biggest in the country. I had heard – or maybe read on Facebook – that he was running for city council in Denver’s District 9 that covers parts of Five Points, Curtis Park and Whittier Neighborhoods, long working class, Black and Chicano neighborhoods currently, like the rest of Denver, ravaged by development and “gentrification.” (1)

I was glad he threw his hat in the ring so to speak and even though I don’t follow local electoral politics as closely as some of my friends, was thinking he would make a fine councilman if elected.

Note that his arrest comes after speaking out and calling for an investigation of the chicken pox outbreak at the ICE Aurora, Colorado center. There is a link to the article in which he is quoted in below.

And then this morning this email came in the mail. It is from Michal David, a regional organizer for “Bend The Arc” – a Jewish civil and labor rights organization, pretty new on the scene, five years old or so, that is an attempt to bring Jews across the country “back to their roots” in fighting for social justice rather than fighting against affirmative action, supporting the scurrilous likes of Sheldon Adelson nationally and the Larry Mizels of the world in Colorado.

I urge blog readers to

  1. Contact your Congressman/woman and demand the immediate release of Miguel Angel from the ICE holding center
  2. Call for a Congressional investigation of the chicken pox out break at the ICE facility in Aurora, Colorado
  3. Call for the immediate release of ALL ICE detainees, an end to the putting immigrant children out for adoption, and a complete overall of US immigration policy to render it more humane and responsive to the values and needs of this country, a county founded by immigrants, built-in large measure by slave labor.

Note below Michal’s sample letter if it helps.

And if you think of it, please send me a copy of whatever it is you send to your congress person so I can pass it on to Michal… my kind of Jew.

Cheers…

Rob Prince

_______________________

2016 - 11 - 16 - Auraria Sanctuary - 2Here is Michal David’s post, verbatim:

Good Morning,

Our partners at Colorado People’s Alliance (COPA) have asked for our support in calling for the release of Miguel Angel, one of their leaders who is currently being held in the GEO detention center in Aurora after being transferred from California last year.
Miguel Angel has been a key voice lifting up the abuses and medical neglect happening within the detention center and he has risked retaliation by ICE in order to speak up about his experiences to media and to the Congressman’s office. Here is an article he was quoted in just a couple months ago about the second to last chickenpox outbreak in the center.
Miguel Angel has been indefinitely detained by ICE at GEO because of an old DUI conviction from 16 years ago despite his extensive record of rehabilitation. Miguel Angel has completed 2 rehabilitation programs and has been enrolled in an outpatient rehabilitation program. His clear commitment to rehabilitation, his dedication to advocacy and his community, and the dangers he faces in detention are all reasons why he should be released.
Please urge Congressman Crow to reject the narratives that criminalize our community – the same ones ICE and the Trump administration push – and to support Miguel Angel’s release. 
You can just share our facebook post or you can use the call script below when calling Crow’s DC office at 202-225-7882.
 

“Hi, my name is __________  and I’m a concerned constituent. I’m calling to urge Congressman Crow to publicly support Miguel Angel [Avila Arce]’s case, A# ending in 9906. I urge Congressman Crow to reject ICE’s stance that a single DUI from 16 years ago justifies the abuses he is facing in detention or this prolonged separation from his family. Miguel Angel has completed two rehabilitation programs and has been enrolled in a residential treatment, and has aided in the rehabilitation of other detainees while inside of the center though a bible study group.  Please publicly support this community leader by writing a letter in support of his release.”

In Solidarity,
Michal

_________________

1. Gentrification. Terribly inaccurate term, but generally understood to be development without controls or limits that push middle class, working class and poor folk, people of color out of low rent and more affordable (to them) housing, to be replaced by upper middle class (and above) types.

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