Standing at the Detroit Metro Airport on January 15, 2018, Jorge Garcia hugged his wife and two teenage children before boarding a plane back to Mexico. Tears swelled in the eyes of the family while two ICE agents stood nearby waiting to escort Mr. Garcia. After 30 years of living in the U.S, 39-year-old Garcia 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.
Garcia was brought to the U.S. illegally when he was 10 years old by an undocumented family member. Although one might say that he could have received legal status, Garcia is too old to qualify for DACA, which allows the children of undocumented immigrants to legally work and study in the U.S.
Today, he has a wife and two children, all of whom are U.S. citizens. He's been trying for years to find a path to live legally in the U.S., with he and his wife spending $125,000 in legal costs and fees since 2005. Garcia has been facing removal since 2009, but previously he had been given stays of removal. But because of the Trump administration's immigration crackdown, Garcia was ordered in November to return to Mexico. Garcia has no criminal record — not even a traffic ticket — and pays taxes every year.
OUR VERDICT: Although he did enter illegally, he had established a family and roots with the Detroit Area. The rhetoric of the current administration and policies put forth by the State Department has lost direction for human dignity.