Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

There are only a few days left in our critical Mid-Year Campaign and we truly might not make it without your help.
Please join us. If you rely on independent media, support Common Dreams today. This is crunch time. We need you now.

Join the small group of generous readers who donate, keeping Common Dreams free for millions of people each year. Without your help, we won’t survive.

Jorge Garcia, 39, of Lincoln Park, hugs his wife and two kids before being escorted by ICE agents to be deported to Mexico, on Jan. 15, 2018, at Detroit Metro Airport. (Photo: Niraj Warikoo/Detroit Free Press)

After Living in US for 30 Years, Man Being Ripped from Family's Arms Latest Look at Trump's America

"If Jorge isn't safe, no one is safe."

Jon Queally

As the brutal attack on immigrant families and communities by President Donald Trump and Republicans in Congress continues, the video of a husband and father being ripped from the arms of his wife and two teenage kids and deported on Monday—which happened to be Martin Luther King, Jr. Day—offers the last up-close and personal example of what the GOP's cruel and far-reaching policies look like in practice.

"How do you do this on Martin Luther King Jr. Day? It's another example of the tone-deafness of this administration... If Jorge isn't safe, no one is safe."
—Erik Shelley, Michigan United

As the Detroit Free Press reports:

His arms wrapped around his wife and two teenage children, Jorge Garcia's eyes welled up Monday morning as he looked into their eyes one last time near the entrance to the airport security gate at Detroit Metro Airport. 

His wife, Cindy Garcia, cried out while his daughter, Soleil, 15, sobbed into Garcia's shoulder as they hugged. Two U.S. immigration agents kept a close watch nearby.

After 30 years of living in the U.S, Garcia, a 39-year-old Lincoln Park landscaper, was deported on the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. holiday from metro Detroit to Mexico, a move supporters say was another example of immigrants being unfairly targeted under the Trump administration.

The scene at the airport, with immigration officials standing to the side to escort Garcia onto a plane, was caught in this heart-wrenching video:

"How do you do this on Martin Luther King Jr. Day?" Erik Shelley, a leader with Michigan United, an immigrant rights group, told the Free Press. "It's another example of the tone-deafness of this administration. ... If Jorge isn't safe, no one is safe."

Brought to the U.S. by an older relative when he was just 10 years old, Garcia is now too old to qualify for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program which is now the center of heated negotiations on Capitol Hill.

Nearly forty, Garcia has now living the U.S. for three decades. According to reports he has never been in trouble with the law (not even a parking ticket) and pays his taxes each year.

Before his deportation, Garcia spoke of his sadness and worries for the future. "I got to leave my family behind, knowing that they're probably going to have a hard time adjusting," he said. "Me not being there for them."


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

Just a few days left in our crucial Mid-Year Campaign and we might not make it without your help.
Who funds our independent journalism? Readers like you who believe in our mission: To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good. No corporate advertisers. No billionaire founder. Our non-partisan, nonprofit media model has only one source of revenue: The people who read and value this work and our mission. That's it.
And the model is simple: If everyone just gives whatever amount they can afford and think is reasonable—$3, $9, $29, or more—we can continue. If not enough do, we go dark.

All the small gifts add up to something otherwise impossible. Please join us today. Donate to Common Dreams. This is crunch time. We need you now.

Jan. 6 Panel Subpoenas Trump White House Counsel Pat Cipollone

Noting his refusal to cooperate beyond an informal April interview, the committee's chair said that "we are left with no choice."

Jessica Corbett ·


Sanders Pushes Back Against AIPAC Super PAC With Endorsements of Tlaib and Levin

"Once again, these extremists are pouring millions of dollars into a congressional race to try to ensure the Democratic Party advances the agenda of powerful corporations and the billionaire class."

Brett Wilkins ·


Missouri Hospital System Resumes Providing Plan B After 'Shameful' Ban

The health network had stopped offering emergency contraception over fears of violating the state's abortion law—a "dangerous" move that critics warned could become a national trend.

Jessica Corbett ·


'An Act of Conquest': Native Americans Condemn SCOTUS Tribal Sovereignty Ruling

"Every few paragraphs of the majority opinion has another line that dismissively and casually cuts apart tribal independence that Native ancestors gave their lives for," observed one Indigenous law professor.

Brett Wilkins ·


'Lunacy': Democrats Risk Running Out of Time to Confirm Federal Judges

"Democrats aren't filling open seats right now in federal district courts because, for unfathomable reasons, they are letting red state senators block nominees," said one critic.

Julia Conley ·

Common Dreams Logo