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Why Is Customs And Border Patrol Detaining So Many U.s. Citizens In Michigan?

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U.S. Customs and Border Patrol should patrol the border, not the entire state of Michigan.


Did you know that U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) considers the entire state of Michigan to be a border zone?


Because our state is on the Great Lakes, and CBP considers all of those waterways to be part of the international border with Canada, CBP believes that its officers have the power to stop and search your car anywhere in Michigan at any time—even when the officers don’t have a warrant.


As unsettling as this notion is, equally as disturbing is the fact that the CBP has steadfastly refused to provide even the most basic information about how often it stops, detains and arrests individuals. For that matter, CBP won’t even reveal information about the complaints it receives about its practices and policies.


As one of the nation’s largest and costliest law enforcement agencies, CBP can no longer operate in the dark. That’s why the ACLU of Michigan is taking CBP to court so that we can all find out what they are doing in Michigan.


But what we know already is that the entire state of Michigan should not be a border zone.


This is why we’re asking you reach out to your elected representative and CBP and tell them keep warrantless border enforcement at the actual border.


CBP’s job is to patrol the border. However, research shows that nearly one in three people processed by Border Patrol in Michigan are U.S. citizens. Furthermore, many of the immigrants who are detained by CBP aren’t even eligible for deportation.


Pulling over American citizens 100 miles from the border isn’t effective law enforcement. And such distractions only muddle CBP’s purpose and risk leading to needless and widespread violations of the Constitution's Fourth Amendment, which prohibits unreasonable searches.


Tell CBP and Congress that Border Patrol should patrol the border, not the entire state of Michigan. 100 miles is too much. Ask CBP and Congress to limit Border Patrol operations so that they take place only near the actual border. Border enforcement – and the powers that go with it – belongs at the border. Not in our communities.


In Solidarity,

ACLU of Michigan

Edited by Wild Bill
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If you watched Russia invade Ukraine, and take over Crimea, you would see that 100 miles is nothing. Border patrol would have to extend quite some distance to be effective at all. We need to get away from this 'wall' border mentality because walls are of the past. What we need now is a buffer zone because walls are worthless to fight against encroachment into our country. They know that at our southern border. A wall is just a joke. We need protection ranging from 100 miles in the other country too. It's just the way it is.  

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