crImmigration.com is going on the road! Over the next week I’ll be speaking in Oklahoma City, New York City, Chicago, and Valparaiso, Indiana about my book Crimmigration Law. These talks follow on a series of presentations I did in Texas a few weeks back about the book.
While I’m the person who will be heading to the airport, these talks reveal far less about me than they do about the role that crimmigration law is playing in the lives of millions of people. Without a doubt, migrants face the brunt of crimmigration law’s reach most directly. But migrants don’t exist in a vacuum. Despite attempts by President Obama and others to bifurcate migrants who are family members from migrants who have committed criminal activity, the reality is far more complicated. Migrants are involved in all manner of activity—from the most to the least righteous—and it serves no one to pretend otherwise. Relatedly, migrants are enmeshed in families and those families are firmly planted in communities throughout the United States.
Like migration patterns, crimmigration law’s broad reach isn’t mere happenstance. Instead, it results from policy decisions that seem designed to fan crimmigration law’s flame. Indeed, my interest in crimmigration law was stoked when I represented migrants apprehended in the Northeast after having run up against state criminal justice systems there—only I was located in the Río Grande Valley of South Texas trying to help these migrants from the Northeast who were stuck inside the region’s immigration detention centers.
Since then I have lived in several cities in the Northeast, Midwest, and, now, Rocky Mountains. In all of these disparate regions, immigration attorneys find themselves spending countless hours sifting through penal codes. From D.C. to Denver, criminal attorneys have to ask themselves whether a plea will bring ICE to the courtroom door. And we’re all left to wonder why the same police officers who run fingerprints to see if someone is wanted for a crime are now tapped to see if someone is wanted out of the country.
As such, I’m thrilled to be able to talk about Crimmigration Law in Oklahoma City, New York, Chicago, and Valparaiso.
- October 8: Oklahoma City University Law School, 5:00 p.m., Room 502
- October 13: Cardozo Law School, noon, Room 423
- October 15: Loyola University Chicago Law School, 11:30 a.m., Room 206
- October 15: Valparaiso Law School, 3:30 p.m., Stride room
Plans for another talk in Manhattan are underway, but as yet not finalized. Check back here in a few days for an update.