It's happening now. Here. In the United States.
Officials with ICE, the federal agency that oversees deportations, maintain that such cases are isolated because agents are required to obtain sufficient evidence that someone is an illegal immigrant before making an arrest. However, they don't track the number of U.S. citizens who are detained or deported.And just where are these people being held as the immigration agents slowly plod through the bureaucracy? Where are these people's small children when both parents are swept up? What are they doing to these people when there is no oversight and no legal remedy?
"We don't want to detain or deport U.S. citizens," said Ernestine Fobbs, an ICE spokeswoman. "It's just not something we do."
While immigration advocates agree that the agents generally release detainees before deportation in clear-cut cases, they said that ICE sometimes ignores valid assertions of citizenship in the rush to ship out more illegal immigrants.
Proving citizenship is especially difficult for the poor, mentally ill, disabled or anyone who has trouble getting a copy of his or her birth certificate while behind bars.
The number of U.S. citizens who are swept up in the immigration system is a small fraction of the number of illegal immigrants who are deported, but in the last several years immigration lawyers report seeing more detainees who turn out to be U.S. citizens.
The attorneys said the chances of mistakes are growing as immigration agents step up sweeps in the country and state and local prisons with less experience in immigration matters screen more criminals on behalf of ICE.
ICE's Fobbs said agents move as quickly as possible to check stories of people who claim they're American citizens. But she said that many of the cases involve complex legal arguments, such as whether U.S. citizenship is derived from parents, which an immigration judge has to sort out.
Update 1/26: Distributorcap in comments noted this sounds like the Nuremberg 1935 law. Googling Wikipedia gave me this:
The Nuremberg Laws (German: Nürnberger Gesetze) of 1935 were denaturalization laws passed in Nazi Germany. They used a pseudoscientific basis for racial discrimination against Jews. People with 4 German grandparents (white circles on the chart) were of "German blood", while people were classified as Jews if they descended from three or four Jewish grandparents (black circles in top row right). A person with one or two Jewish grandparents was a Mischling, a crossbreed, of "mixed blood".Exactly.