Immigrants for sale

Georgia is the latest state to pass an anti-immigrant bill like SB1070, with Governor Deal expected to sign it. Georgia is also home to the largest private prison in the country. Coincidence? Not even close.

It’s hardly a secret that private prison corporations like Corrections Corporation of America and The GEO group, along with right-wing lobbying group ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council) and a few pocketed state legislators like Russell Pearce in Arizona, have been at it–deliberately promoting and designing laws aimed at incarcerating immigrants and turning the prison system into an incredibly lucrative business.

Just last year the private prison industry secured close to $5 billion through state and government elicited contracts of which an increasing percentage is attributed to migrant detention facilities and bed spaces.

An NPR report outlined how CCA aims to translate the anti-immigrant rhetoric and political void into a long-lasting cash drive–believing that immigrants will provide a fresh influx of ‘guests’ in their less then onerous ‘hotel’ cells.

Even worse, CCA founder Tomas Beasly once called his scheme ‘more profitable’ than selling burgers or cars–a clear indication that any sense of justice in the prison industry will be forever trumped by cash flows and profit margins.

It is clear that for CCA, along with the GEO Group and Management and Training, immigrants are like a product, one that is for sale to the highest vendor.

They view locked-up immigrants as the next big share jump, stock option, bonus incentive, or any other motive that tickles their multi-billion dollar fancy.

They have no shame in admitting so — every year the private prison industry gets together for  a major convention to essentially design strategies that will fill the more then 150,000 bed spaces they currently own.

There will forever be an immigration issue, so what better way to stay in business?   Round-em up like cattle, shackle them up by feet and hands and throw them in a cell where they’ll most likely get lost in a system ill-designed to provide justice to anyone except their self-serving patrons.There is always one question that lingers: What happens once these spaces are filled? Their answer: Get the IMMIGRANTS.

What is even more disappointing is that government officials–from the state and local levels to the federal administration–have decided to abandon any possibility for real comprehensive immigration approach.

Instead they continue to allow profit-seeking corporations to fill the gaps left by inadequate policy, offering up YOUR tax dollars and creating yet another industry bubble that uses immigrant persecution as their  main throttle.

The immigration debate needs a serious, integrated national and foreign policy plan–one the deals with the root of the issue. What it doesn’t need are the hands of businessmen looking to make another buck. What we get are ill-advised, constitutionally useless discriminatory laws like SB1070–laws that have caused more harm to the debate, the economy and the nation’s political discourse.

This model prioritizes  profit ahead of brains.

Money ahead of humanity. Greed in place of decency. It’s ‘immigration’ being put up for sale.

We can no longer afford our apathy. The longer we wait to build coherent, legal solutions to the issue, the more abusive practices continue to prosper. It’s time to take a very close look at what private prisons are doing to our security, our social fabric and our Latino communities.

They are using us as scapegoats to fill the coffers–as pawns in the next Ponzi scheme. CCA, ALEC and their cronies are not in it to “fix” the immigration issue.

Who are we kidding?

They love it–the less immigrants to put behind bars, the less Latinos to incarcerate while waiting for proof of papers, the less individuals to get lost in the system–the less dollars deposited into their bank accounts. They don’t care about who is affected, who dies in their care, who faces persecution by the hateful laws they are peddling.

It’s all about the profit.

They are making a killing, and you are paying for it.


  • Axel Woolfolk Caballero

    Axel Woolfolk Caballero nació en Hermosillo, Sonora, México. Es graduado de la Universidad de California en San Diego donde recibió licenciaturas en Relaciones Internacionales y Ciencias Políticas así como un diplomado en Leyes y Sociedad. Cursó un diplomado en Economía Mundial e Integración Europea bajo un programa de la Universidad Sorbonne de Paris, Francia y posteriormente recibió su maestría en Leyes Internacionales y Derechos Humanos de la Universidad de Utrecht en Holanda. Por casi diez años, Axel Woolfolk se ha mantenido activo alrededor de campañas sobre temas migratorios, movimientos sociales, reformas judiciales, tratados internacionales, temas de protección ambiental, la agenda binacional entre México y Estados Unidos, y ha desarrollado un enfoque importante en materia de derechos humanos, paz y seguridad. Así mismo ha sido partícipe en equipos electorales en Estados Unidos y en México, especialmente durante los ciclos de votación en ambos países. Formó parte del Instituto de Seguridad Global, organismo internacional dedicado al desarme nuclear y la seguridad internacional, donde fue colaborador en diversos estudios para tratados de no-proliferación nuclear en coordinación con institutos internacionales como las Naciones Unidas. Participó con el Comité Humanitario de Derechos Humanos en Holanda, organización no-gubernamental de tratados internacionales en materia de derechos humanos. Y ha trabajado para diversas campañas políticas y no políticas. Axel Woolfolk ha colaborado para diversas publicaciones en México y Estados Unidos y a través de su página –

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  1. An effective article on a necessary subject, well written and accompanied by a clear video. I am passing this to my family and friends in immigration law firms, political organizations, opinion groups, the media, etc. Thank you Axel; I hope you are contacted by one of them soon, so that your message spreads.

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