Sen. Bernie Sanders on Thursday joined rights groups in condemning the racist El Paso massacre and large-scale ICE raids in Mississippi as part of the broad terrorization of immigrant communities that President Donald Trump has unleashed.
"This is evil," tweeted Sanders, a 2020 Democratic presidential candidate. "Days after immigrants were gunned down in El Paso, Trump is continuing the attacks on immigrant families."
"Let's be clear: the El Paso shooting was white nationalist terrorism. These ICE raids are white nationalist terrorism too. Trump and all who enable him are complicit."
—Bend the Arc
"Our job," the Vermont senator added, "is to reject Trump's racist agenda, end the terror inflicted on immigrant communities, and bring families together, not tear them apart."
Sanders's tweet came hours after ICE agents raided food processing plans in six Mississippi cities, rounded up suspected undocumented workers, and sent them to a Louisiana detention center.
As Common Dreams reported earlier Thursday, the raids—which were reportedly the largest-ever workplace enforcement action in a single state—ripped hundreds of parents away from their children and left loved ones in despair.
Greisa Martínez Rosas, deputy executive director of rights group United We Dream, said the raids—like the El Paso shooting this past weekend—were "an act of terrorism."
"Just days after the El Paso massacre where a gun wielding maniac parroted Trump's anti-immigrant hate, a battalion of ICE agents abducted 680 Latinx and immigrant men and women on Trump's orders," tweeted Rosas. "For anyone who tries to desensitize the situation or blur the connections between the acts of terror this week, I call bullshit."
The effect of ripping children from their parents at the border or stealing parents away from their children in Mississippi is the same. We are people going about our lives, working to support our families or going to school at risk.
— Greisa Martínez Rosas (@Grei_sa) August 7, 2019
Bend the Arc, a progressive Jewish advocacy group, echoed Rosas.
"Let's be clear: the El Paso shooting was white nationalist terrorism," the group tweeted. "These ICE raids are white nationalist terrorism too. Trump and all who enable him are complicit."
ICE carried out its raids Wednesday afternoon as Trump visited El Paso despite protests from local residents and lawmakers. As the Washington Post reported, "None of the eight victims of the El Paso mass shooting still being treated at University Medical Center agreed to meet with President Trump when he visited."
Pili Tobar, deputy director of immigrant rights group America's Voice, said in a statement that the Mississippi raids show "Trump's racism and xenophobia go beyond his rhetoric," which the El Paso shooter echoed in an anti-immigrant manifesto posted online before the massacre.
"White nationalism is alive and well in the White House and in this administration," said Tobar. "[Wednesday's] ICE raid is one more in a list of actions to continue demonizing brown people in America who’ve had a target on their back since the day Trump announced his campaign for president."