It doesn't really seem terribly equitable for Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents to only be feverishly deporting thousands and thousands of undocumented dark-skinned residents all the time now, does it? And America is about nothing if not fairness! So to keep things "even," ICE has been steadily trying to kick out thousands of U.S. citizens like Jamaican-American Anthony Clarke, who according to a Star Tribune report was arrested and mysteriously detained for months for the deportation-level offense of being a dark-skinned man living in a nation full of incompetent/corrupt/lazy law enforcement agents.

ICE first considered deporting Jamaican-born Clarke in 2004 when he was arrested for driving while black or whatever, but, you really have to let the irony of these situations mature for the full effect. Why not wait a few years to try to deport him and try again, say, immediately after he's had a chance to file some paperwork verifying that he's a U.S. citizen?

Then, in May 2008, Clarke went to the immigration office in Bloomington to obtain proper documentation of his citizenship. On a form, he marked he was an American citizen and listed his address.

Two weeks later, ICE agents raided his sister's home in Columbia Heights in the early morning. In court filings, she said agents told her through the door that there was an "issue'' in the neighborhood and that they then "barged'' in. Clarke's sister said agents then illegally searched her home and found her brother sleeping. ICE would not comment on the incident.

On the day Clarke was arrested, an ICE agent ran a background check on him, using the FBI's fingerprint database. That electronically retrieved document, contained in Clarke's immigration file, lists his citizenship as "United States."

Nevertheless, Clarke was held and moved in late June from the ICE holding block at the Sherburne County jail in Elk River to an unidentified facility in South Dakota, according to court documents.

And what American wouldn't love that, a free surprise vacation to a secret government detention camp in some godforsaken wasteland? The Star Tribune story also mentions an academic study estimating that four thousand American citizens were illegally detained or deported last year, which kind of makes it seem like those top secret extraordinary rendition programs the CIA is running overseas on various handfuls of furriner enemies might actually just be "practice." [Star Tribune]


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