Anti-ICE Protesters Deface American Flag, Raise Mexican Flag over Colorado Processing Center

Thousands of anti-ICE protesters gathered outside of an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) center in Aurora, Colorado, on Friday afternoon. After breaking through barricades, protesters removed a U.S. flag at the Aurora ICE Processing Center and replaced it with a Mexican flag.

Protesters additionally hoisted a Blue Lives Matter flag upside down, spray-painted in red with the words, “Abolish ICE.” The Blue Lives Matter flag, which can also be called the “Thin Blue Line” flag, depicts the U.S. flag with black and white colors with one stripe being replaced by a thin blue line to represent that law enforcement is the line that stands between chaos and order.

Protesters also raised a flag that had the words, “F--- Cops,” on it. The flag additionally depicted a turtle giving the middle finger.

The incident started when protesters as a part of Lights for Liberty marched toward the Aurora ICE Processing Center. Lights for Liberty defines itself as “a coalition of people, many of whom are mothers dedicated to human rights, and the fundamental principle behind democracy that all human beings have a right to life, liberty, and dignity.”

Ranging from El Paso to New York City to Washington D.C., Lights for Liberty planned a mass demonstration across the country on July 12 to protest “the inhumane conditions faced by migrants” in ICE detention centers. They also want to “end concentration camps and impeach the President.”

It is sponsored by organizations, such as the Council on American Islamic Relations and the Women’s March.

However, at the protest itself, Antifa, the Party for Socialism and Liberation, and various other leftist groups were seen present at the event.

According to CBS Denver, the protesters in Aurora were demonstrating against the treatment of people living inside the Aurora ICE Processing Center, which holds hundreds of illegal immigrants.

In addition to the many signs that called for abolishing ICE, which was labeled a “terrorist” and “white supremacist” organization, some protesters at the event indirectly called for violence with signs that stated, “Being Civil got us Baby Jails.”

In addition to their demands to “Abolish ICE,” protesters chanted, “Free them all,” many times.

Although it is difficult to collect data on those who are detained in the ICE Aurora Processing Center, some of the illegal immigrants detained there have had criminal convictions and were suspected of committing serious crimes like rape.

For instance, detained at the center for some time, Amilcar Aguilar-Hernandez, 23, from El Salvador received a criminal conviction for felony trespassing and is currently a rape suspect involving a case in Fort Carson, Colorado.

The protesters basically called for the release of illegal immigrants who may have been convicted and suspected criminals, in addition to the fact that illegal entry is already a crime.

At the same time, they replaced the U.S. flag with the flag of Mexico, which is a nation that treats its illegal immigrants very poorly.

Mexico refuses to grant sanctuary or free lawyers to those facing deportation. It allows sexual violence against migrants; at one point roughly six out of ten migrant women and girls in Mexico experienced sexual violence. There have also been 5,294 reports of crimes against migrants between 2014 and 2016 in five of the 31 Mexican states alone.

It is clear that the ICE Aurora Processing Center has been suffering problems with its poor medical care and inappropriate segregation practices.

But, to call for the complete abolishment of ICE, to demand the release of all illegal detainees, and to hoist the Mexico flag in place of the American flag are all extremely idiotic and disrespectful acts.

Lastly, the protesters who raised the various flags likely violated the law because they broke through barriers that indicated that the space behind the barriers was not public property.

Before leaving, they also barricaded the entrance to the Aurora ICE Processing Center.