ICE, the deportation force that rips families and communities apart and puts migrants in cages, is a moral abomination that must be abolished.
So why is Andrew Cuomo rolling out the red carpet for one of ICE's key contractors, Amazon.com—while claiming to be the immigrant-friendly Governor of New York?
Cuomo is acting as corporate hypeman for Amazon's move to Queens—New York City's gateway for immigrants—for their new headquarters.
Local residents, overwhelmingly opposed, are getting zero say.1
Here are a couple of facts to consider:
1) Amazon has been caught red-handed pitching facial recognition technology to ICE—hoping to improve their ability to target and hunt down immigrants.2
2) The company already facilitates ICE's deportation agenda by providing them with cloud computing services.3
3) Cuomo has repeatedly claimed to be a bulwark against Trump's anti-immigrant agenda, stating that New York won't cooperate with ICE and calling ICE agents a "bunch of thugs."4
If he's claiming to stand up to Trump and ICE, it's not a great look for Cuomo to grovel before Amazon to the extent that he offers to change his name to Amazon Cuomo.5 (Yes, he really did that 🤦♀️.)
It's especially not a good idea when the company, anti-immigrant track record and all, is looking to take over space in Queens—one of the most immigrant-heavy counties in all of the U.S.6
Cuomo is movable on this issue—and if we move him, we can show Amazon that there's a cost for working with the brutal anti-immigrant forces of ICE and the Trump administration.
Of course, Amazon's cooperation with ICE isn't the only reason to keep them out of New York.
For starters, there's the over $1.5 billion in tax breaks and incentives that New York is handing to one of the largest and richest companies in the world—funding that could go to repairing a broken subway system, help struggling segregated schools, or any of a number of more worthy causes.7
Then there's the horrible conditions in Amazon's warehouses and its union-busting activities at Whole Foods.
Finally, there's the fundamental issue of its grossly massive economic and political power—which allows the megacorporation to bully not just suppliers and workers, but even the largest city in the U.S. and its allegedly immigrant-friendly Governor.
We've stood up to Amazon before—and won. Let's not allow Governor Cuomo to let them steamroll us now.
1. "New Yorkers, Virginians Wary of New Amazon Headquarters ," Rolling Stone, Nov 6, 2018
2. "Amazon under scrutiny for marketing to ICE," Axios, Oct 24, 2018
3. "Who’s Behind ICE? The Tech and Data Companies Fueling Deportations," Mijente et al, Oct 23, 2018
4. "GOP New York lawmaker calls Cuomo a 'thug' over ICE criticism," The Hill, Aug 30, 2018
5. "New York's governor jokes he'll change his name to 'Amazon Cuomo' to win the HQ2 bid hours before a report that New York City will be home to one of the company's new headquarters," Business Insider, Nov 5, 2018
6. "Facts on U.S. Immigrants, 2016," Pew Research Center, Sep 14, 2018
7. "Amazon is getting massively different tax breaks from New York and Virginia," AOL, Nov 13, 2018