During the Guerra Civil de Guatemala in the 1990s, many groups of extranjeros worked (and continue today) in the country in various capacities to aid indigenous groups. A particular organized action, Salir a la Luz, involved mostly young European visitors and temporary residents accompanying indigenous guatemaltec@s to and from public spaces, both as a show of solidarity and a deterrent to harassment or murder by the military. After decades of displacement, abuse, torture, and murder, Mayan-descended guatemalans endured more than a decade of no accountability and no justice.
Today, shining a light on atrocities is aided by rapid communications with global reach. That has happened to some extent with the zero-tolerance policy of the Trump administration, started on May 5 and ended on June 20. There are calls for the abolition of Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE). Businesses have declared that they will not or no longer participate in the transportation of children to detention facilities. Others may continue to profit.
It is time for a thorough review of the creation, performance, and need for ICE. The heat of sunlight melts ice. Salir a la luz.
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