Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Swift justice

The Rocky is all over yesterday's raids at the Swift meatpacking plant in Greeley and five other plants around the country. Federal agents rounded up more than 1,200 people for various charges related to identity theft and illegal immigration. What a mess, and the Rocky's got the angles covered:

  • Hysteria and anger in the aftermath of the raid:
    As ICE agents stood in a line outside the Greeley plant, supporters of those being questioned expressed anguish time and again.

    Marta Granillo ran toward the crowd, screaming. "Why is this happening? Why?

    These are our families," she said before slumping over in tears.
  • Union to the rescue:
    "Essentially, the agents stormed the plants, many of them in riot gear, in an effort designed to terrorize the work force," said Mark Lauritsen, director of a division of Washington-based United Food and Commercial Workers International. . . .

    Lauritsen, in a statement, described Swift workers as "innocent victims in an immigration system that has been hijacked by corporations for the purpose of importing an exploitable work force."
    They're safe now! Their union leader is mouthing platitudes!

  • Arrested parents leave kids stranded at school:

    Alice Navia, who said she has lived in Greeley most of her life, heard about the raid on the radio and rushed to the school to offer her home to kids whose parents might have been taken into custody.

    "I could not sit there and do nothing," Navia said. "I wanted to take all the children whose parents got arrested home."

  • Identity theft is rampant, and Swift has problems identifying illegals anyway, one of which is:

    A 20-year-old federal law [which] lists 29 different documents that employees can use to establish their identities and employment eligibility when they fill out what's known as an I-9 form to apply for work.

  • Reaction from Colorado's congressional delegation. Both senators voiced support for the Colorado raid, as did, of course, Rep. Tom Tancredo, who probably really scares companies like Swift:

    "No matter how high up it goes in Swift, (anyone) that is culpable in this needs to be gone after to the fullest extent of the law. We need to know who knew what and when they knew it and what they did about it."

    Wipe the foam off your lips, Tom. The Post has all kinds of stories, too, and is first out of the box with a "let's be sensible" editorial.

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