Many believe border agents and other immigration officials must have hate in their hearts in order to go through with their jobs. After all, they have faced several accusations of mistreatment against immigrants. Now, we can even more clearly see the disdain some of them have for undocumented immigrants.
ProPublica reports that for about three years, Customs and Border Protection agents have belonged to I’m 10-15, a secret Facebook group that makes fun of the deaths of immigrants and includes sexist comments. The 10-15 refers to the border patrol’s code for when they have an immigrant “in custody.”
On May 20, news broke that Carlos Gregorio Hernández Vásquez – a 16-year-old boy from Guatemala – died in US custody. The responses in the Facebook group were callous: One posted a GIF with Elmo with the words “Oh well,” and another said, “If he dies, he dies.”
There are about 9,500 members, and they’re not just posting insensitive, racist, and xenophobic memes about immigrants; they’re also being derogatory against Latina politicians, particularly Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
The messages are incredibly alarming because it’s further proof that the people who are responsible for immigrants are actively rooting for their misfortune and misery. As Daniel Martinez, a sociologist at the University of Ariona in Tucson, told ProPublica, these posts represent the “pervasive culture of cruelty aimed at immigrants within CBP. This isn’t just a few rogue agents or ‘bad apples.’”
Learn more about the Facebook page here.