News Shame on Us
posted by May 14 at 13:50 PMon
First there was this story in the NYT this morning…
He was a carefree Italian with a recent law degree from a Roman university. She was “a totally Virginia girl,” as she puts it, raised across the road from George Washington’s home. Their romance, sparked by a 2006 meeting in a supermarket in Rome, soon brought the Italian, Domenico Salerno, on frequent visits to Alexandria, Va., where he was welcomed like a favorite son by the parents and neighbors of his girlfriend, Caitlin Cooper.
But on April 29, when Mr. Salerno, 35, presented his passport at Washington Dulles International Airport, a Customs and Border Protection agent refused to let him into the United States. And after hours of questioning, agents would not let him travel back to Rome, either; over his protests in fractured English, he said, they insisted that he had expressed a fear of returning to Italy and had asked for asylum.
Ms. Cooper, 23, who had promised to show her boyfriend another side of her country on this visit—meaning Las Vegas and the Grand Canyon—eventually learned that he had been sent in shackles to a rural Virginia jail. And there he remained for more than 10 days, locked up without charges or legal recourse while Ms. Cooper, her parents and their well-connected neighbors tried everything to get him out.
And now there’s this in the Washington Post…
Some Detainees Are Drugged For Deportation
The U.S. government has injected hundreds of foreigners it has deported with dangerous psychotropic drugs against their will to keep them sedated during the trip back to their home country, according to medical records, internal documents and interviews with people who have been drugged….
Such episodes are among more than 250 cases The Washington Post has identified in which the government has, without medical reason, given drugs meant to treat serious psychiatric disorders to people it has shipped out of the United States since 2003—the year the Bush administration handed the job of deportation to the Department of Homeland Security’s new Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, known as ICE.
Involuntary chemical restraint of detainees, unless there is a medical justification, is a violation of some international human rights codes. The practice is banned by several countries where, confidential documents make clear, U.S. escorts have been unable to inject deportees with extra doses of drugs during layovers en route to faraway places.
Mr. Cooper’s girlfriend—who is now living in Rome—was quoted by the NYT as saying, “Who on earth would ever seek asylum from Italy?” Dunno. But if a Democrat doesn’t get elected president in the fall, and if that Democrat doesn’t start undoing the damage done to this country by the GOP, I’m going to go somewhere and claim asylum from the US.