Update on this. I spoke with a family member today about the loved ones in detention. They’re still there, in part due to what appears to be incompetence on the part of the lawyers involved (for instance, failure to inform folks that there needs to be a statement made by someone on the outside saying that the loved ones can be released to the person on the outside, who will be legally responsible for them).

They’ve been in since just before xmas. That’s right around 65 days. The adult I think still has a job, fingers crossed. The kids’ school year is most fucked once they get out, they’ll be repeating this year unless they get really luck and can get away with summer school. The legal bills are approximately ten grand, possibly more.

They’re in a facility called Hutto, in Texas. The facility is described as a “humane alternative to maintain the unity of alien families.” Asked how the sleeping units have been changed since the place used to be a prison, director Gary Mead says “The paint is different, the rails are different, the carpet is different.” There you are, from the mouth of the beast itself, humane = cosmetic paint job.

I found a story indicating that not only deportees are being kept here but at least one family who were flying into Canada across the US and whose plane made an unscheduled stop in the US.

Hutto is one of two detention centers in the US that houses children with adults. That’s part of why our loved ones are there, instead of in the state where the pigs grabbed them – they wanted to stay together rather than be separated. The policy of detaining families is said to be “a response to the [Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency’s] decision in August to end its controversial practice of “catch and release,” in which migrants with children detained on U.S. soil were typically set free and told to show up later in court.”

According to this, the facility has had 21 grievances related to food. The relative I spoke to today said the food inside is reported to be so bad as to sometimes be inedible, resulting in de facto hunger strikes. The ICE has tried to push its humane paintjob in the press, but some guards have been more upfront about the situation, saying the “Hutto center was being sanitized, or “prettied up,” for [a recent] media tour, with furniture, artificial trees and other amenities appearing in the facility immediately prior to the tour.”

Hutto is operated by Corrections Corporation of America (also discussed here), scum who are the largest private prison company in the US (according note 39, here). According to this, CCA has been involved in privatized border maintenance since 1984. I found a list here of uglynesses which CCA is responsible for. Very much abridged, I’m sure. CCA also has a history of retaliating against detainees who talk to the press. Given the identity of the border management regime with the prison system, perhaps no border folk should join the Texas Prison Labor Union, and vice versa.

There are currently around 2.18 million people in prison in the US, about 1 in every 136 people, and around 200,000 people in immigration related detention, close to 10% of the prison population. Out of curiousity, anyone read this?

No conditions (Badiou-ian or otherwise) can be attached to demands against border policing (demands may also not be the right way to frame anti-border/free-mobility activity, either), as those conditions merely prefigure a new count. When one starts doing the police’s job for them, well, that’s just the cop in the head which must be dealt with as per Vaneigem’s advice, ie, ruthlessly.