Support Rep. Cabral’s Legislation

Massachusetts Representative Antonio Cabral has written a bill (H.3033) that places limits on the use of state funds that can be used for the federal ICE program. Another bill (H.3034) prohibits sending prisoners out of state [for example, working on Donald Trump’s Great Mexican Wall].

Please send emails in support of Rep. Antonio F.D. Cabral’s bills to both the Massachusetts House and Senate chairs of the Joint Committee on the Judiciary — Senator William Brownsberger and Rep. Claire Cronin:

“Sen. William N. Brownsberger, Chair (Senate)”
“Rep. Claire D. Cronin, Chair (House)”
“Rep. Antonio F.D. Cabral”

If you’re not an enthusiastic letter-writer, here is one possibility:

Dear [—]:

I am writing in support of two bills introduced by Rep. Antonio Cabral and recently assigned to the Joint Committee on the Judiciary. These bills limit (a) the involvement of Massachusetts resources in ICE’s deportation efforts (HD 3033) and (b) the use of prison labor outside the State (e.g., to build a wall between the U.S. and Mexico) (HD 3034). I also support Senator James Eldridge’s Safe Communities Act (S 1305).

These bills both deserve our support. Residents of Massachusetts towns and cities should be able decide for ourselves what type of community policing we want. The nation’s police departments have not (yet) been federalized. It will be a dark day if this ever happens.

How voluntary is a prisoner’s consent to be used as a “Great Wall” builder when prison is an inherently coercive environment and when a prisoner’s treatment depends on the goodwill of a sheriff supporting that wall? Are there no other educational and rehabilitation programs prisoners can participate in within the Commonwealth? And how can the fair treatment of our state’s sons and cousins be guaranteed if they are transported thousands of miles out-of-state?

The current wave of deportations is being executed without prioritizing the removal of truly dangerous individuals or concern for the destruction of families. It is also being carried out without regard for the previous administration’s promises to young people who grew up in the United States and know no other home. And this ideologically motivated purge is being done without regard for the economic impact the disappearance of thousands of workers will have. Worse, these reckless and cruel deportations are causing chaos and fear.

But we have an opportunity to restore tranquility and security.

I am not advocating anarchy or the selective application of law. We are indeed a nation of laws, but federal laws have their own scope and their own agents of enforcement, while the same is true of states. The Commonwealth of Massachusetts should not be compelled to effectively turn its law enforcement officials and county prisons into ICE agents and federal facilities.

I appreciate your consideration of this letter, and I hope you will give prompt and favorable attention to the bills I have endorsed. Thank you.