Sheriff Bill Waybourn, courtesy social media.

This summer, a five-member majority of the Fort Worth City Council refused to join every other large Texas city in challenging SB 4. The state’s “sanctuary cities” law that went into effect on Sep 1 requires police at every level to ask people their immigration status if they appear to be suspiciously non-Texan. Still, Mayor Betsy Price reminded everyone that Fort Worth is a compassionate city and won’t be using the law to get away with profiling and racial discrimination.

Chill out, in other words. Everything will be fine.

While everyone was bickering over SB 4, an equally insidious agreement between U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and several counties around the state had already gone into effect. In July, ICE officials announced the signing of 18 so-called 287(g) agreements with 18 Texas counties — in a huge expansion of an already existing national program — with Tarrant being the largest. The 287(g) program allows local law enforcement agencies to request to enter into partnerships with ICE to enforce federal immigration rules. The agreements call for a limited number of jail officers to be trained by ICE to interrogate people who have been arrested to ascertain their immigration status. The trainees will also learn how to access the Department of Homeland Security’s database to identify undocumented immigrants and detain them until ICE can pick them up and put them in the deportation pipeline.

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  1. How can it be discriminatory to compel someone to obey the law, the law they are openly breaking and flaunting in our faces?? If a criminal lives in fear of being found out and paying for their crime, then we are doing things correctly.

  2. A more pragmatic view is that tax dollars are precious. Entering the lawsuit would cost money but would not affect the outcome. The law is either constitutional or unconstitutional. Courts don’t weigh the numbers of supporters on each side and vote. Courtrooms are not democracies.

    Joining the lawsuit would accomplish nothing other than enriching lawyers and mollifying a constituency.

  3. The federal government is in charge of immigration. Taking local taxpayer dollars for this federal responsibility is overstepping. It also reduces the effectiveness of local law enforcement. More of the people stealing, killing, robbing, high-jacking, and raping are just plain old Texans. That’s right. They are citizens here, born and raised here. Immigration in the U.S. has been declining year over year for a while now. Do you blame them? Once they all go away, we will realize what they actually brought us, a better economy by increasing the number of people who buy goods and services thereby spending money to shore up the economy, cheap housekeeping and janitorial services for citizens who wouldn’t do those jobs anyway, cheaper housing because most local Texans WOULD NOT frame out a house in any weather, let alone in 90- to 100-degree heat. As we run them out, they will want less and less to come back and help us out, so we will be stuck having to do harder physical labor, pay more for housing, and do our own cleaning. There is no sign that the billionaires running this country right now have any desire to help us out. If you have an inordinate sense of fear of immigrants, maybe you should ask yourself where that came from. If one immigrant kills someone, everyone is up in arms. If 2,000 white males kill, rape, and pillage, no one around here gives it a second thought. It is just how our country is.