Moms July 20 Portland (Noah Berger:AP)
Women form a “Wall of Moms,” joining as many as 2000 other demonstrators in Portland, Ore., on July 20 to protest the use of federal agents. (Noah Berger / AP)

By CONNECTICUT WORKERS CRISIS RESPONSE (CWCR)

The Department of Homeland Security is engaging in a major escalation on the attack of civil liberties of people residing in the United States of America. Multiple activists have been detained by camouflaged federal agents wearing no identifying materials and using unmarked vans. Since at least July 14th, Department of Homeland Security officers have been in Portland, Oregon, apparently without the prior knowledge of city or state police departments. These developments also occur at the exact same time that ICE [has] declared its intention to begin a “Citizens Academy” in Chicago. Under this program, the department that is currently engaged in carrying out detentions with no due process will be demonstrating to sympathetic individuals their methods and procedures making arrests. 

Connecticut Workers Crisis Response acknowledges that these escalations are in direct continuity with the ongoing attack from the bosses on our immigrant and international members and communities. Over the last twenty years, the daily experience for undocumented people in this country has been one of constant victimization and indefinite detention. Similarly, federal, state, and local governments have been ramping up surveillance and scapegoating against Muslim communities. State violence, including attack dogs, freezing water, and drones, was utilized against Indigenous Water Protectors heroically fighting the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline. Under the cover of the so-called wars on terror and drugs, real wars against Black, Brown, and Indigenous people have been carried out within the borders of this country. 

Department of Homeland Security harassment of activists is a bald attempt to roll back the hard won gains of the recent heroic upsurge led by BIPOC youth in the wake of the police murder of George Floyd. The threats being made by acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf to use these tactics on a national level show that workers, students, and activists must be mobilized in the streets not only against repression but also in defense of the demands to defund and disband the police. 

The rights to protest, assembly, and speech are all fundamental human rights, and each was won through determined struggle. These escalations of federal repression against activists go hand in hand with the censorship of COVID-19 data and represent an attempt to broadly expand the ability of the Trump administration to control dissent, and if unchallenged, [they] will be used against picket lines and labor strikes. 

We are calling on all civil liberty, immigrant rights, social justice, and labor groups to come together to fight against these intolerable acts of state repression and stand together against even one more violation of our democratic rights. An injury to one is an injury to all! 

See: Facebook.com/CTWorkersCrisisResponse