On the topic of former Democrat state representative Aaron Regunberg of Providence, I briefly observed at the end of another post that Mayor Jorge Elorza ought to be concerned that one of his employees is terrifying residents with the false specter of an American holocaust. Of course, Mr. Elorza is not concerned; in fact, he’s whipping up the same demons:
Mayor Jorge Elorza said there is no indication that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s planned raids this weekend will target Providence, but he reiterated Friday that Providence Police would not cooperate in any way if ICE does come here.
“Providence Police will not be part of these inhumane actions,” Elorza said during a news conference at Dorcas International Institute. “We stand by all our residents regardless of their immigration status.”
At issue are plans by the Trump administration to deport people who have already enjoyed due process and have refused to leave. The mayor says “he was concerned that ICE would be detaining not just people with final orders, but also other family members or people whom agents come across during their work.”
To review: ICE was not going to Providence, but the mayor thought it important to inform the public that his police force would not cooperate… theoretically… because ICE might abuse its authority. Giving Elorza more credit than he may deserve and taking this seriously as a policy question, one must wonder why a mayor who is concerned with the well-being of residents of his city wouldn’t instead insist that local police offers must be involved so that they could ensure that no abuses occurred.
Perhaps public safety and accordance with the rule of law are not truly the issue, here. Perhaps scaring up a political constituency is, which brings us back to Regunberg.
The young progressive’s arrest came during a “Never Again” protest during which the politician likened the United States to Nazi Germany:
Regunberg said as a Jewish man, he can’t stand by and watch parallels to the Holocaust unfold at ICE detention centers.
“Concentration camps are being operated under our name, under our flag,” said Regunberg.
He said his stance is personal because his grandfather is a Holocaust survivor.
“When I was little, I felt a lot of anger about what my grandpa experienced. Sometimes I was angry at Hitler. Sometimes I was angry at faceless Nazis,” explained Regunberg. “But more often than not, what really made me sick to my stomach was to think about the people in my grandpa’s town — my grandpa’s neighbors — who watched the escalating violence happening in their community, and choose to go about their lives, business as usual.
Speaking of “escalating violence,” a man identifying himself as a member of Antifa attacked an ICE facility in Tacoma, Washington, with a rifle and some “incendiary devices” over the weekend. Apparently, he sent his friends a manifesto:
… In it he says, ‘i regret that i will miss the rest of the revolution,’ he wrote, ‘doing what i can to help defend my precious and wondrous people is an experience too rich to describe. i am antifa.'”
KIRO-7’s report included a link to the manifesto, where the attacker used the term “concentration camps” four times and referred to them as being “corporate for profit.”
If Mayor Elorza believes ICE is so prone to abuse during this ““dark period in our nation’s history,” while he applauds a policy advisor who claims our country is operating concentration camps like the Nazis, then it is difficult to see why he would object to radicals’ fighting back with force. The fact that he almost certainly knows better than to believe such a thing and yet participates in the fearmongering is something that he ought to be asked to defend.
Featured image: A scene of performance art from an immigration enforcement protest last summer.