On Wednesday, the Trump administration launched VOICE, a hotline intended to help American citizens report crimes committed by undocumented immigrants.
The hotline, an acronym for “Victims of Immigration Crime Engagement”, has drawn criticism for furthering President Trump’s anti-immigrant agenda.
In a strange coincidence, Trump officially announced the hotline on #AlienDay. If they knew about it, that would be a surprise. Naturally, trolls have been reporting their encounters with aliens from outer space instead. Twitter has been having a field day. Or, we suppose, a space day. As it were.
In case you want to share your X-Files fan fiction with DHS…— Parker Molloy (@ParkerMolloy) April 27, 2017
If any of you need to report space aliens to our government, please call their hotline: 1-855-48-VOICE. Here are some of their Most Wanted: pic.twitter.com/nWnVYdDdpG— Steven Santos (@stevensantos) April 27, 2017
somebody call 1-855-48-VOICE, an orange colored, toupee wearing alien in a bathrobe has been spotted at 1600 Pensylvania Ave 👽#AlienDay— modrax (@modrax) April 27, 2017
VOICE alien crime hotlineline still overloaded. My 3rd attempt to report anal probing by Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal failed.— Gen JC Christian, Expert (@JC_Christian) April 28, 2017
Immigration officials are having none of it.
“The VOICE line remains in operation,” an official from the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency said in a statement to Fusion. “As yesterday was its first day I can’t give you any sense of whether this group had any impact at all on wait times or call volume because there’s no prior data to compare.”
“I hope you won’t dignify this group with the attention they are seeking. But if you choose to do so…this group’s cheap publicity stunt is beyond the pale of legitimate public discourse.”
The ICE accused the group of bad intentions.
“This group’s stunt is designed to harm victims. That is shameful.”
Alexander McCoy, a Marine Corps veteran who jokingly called the hotline to report a UFO sighting, told Buzzfeed that calling in with an actual alien sighting on #AlienDay was, “a catchy way to fight back against the Trump administration’s use of bigoted language and racist stereotypes of criminality.”
“I think there are a lot of people who have been searching for something they can do to speak out and I’m glad that so many people are showing solidarity with the immigrant community,” he said.
VOICE ignores the fact that there’s literally no difference in crimes committed by undocumented immigrants over American-born criminals. Crime is crime. Both are bad. But if we’re in the space to draw comparisons, let’s consult some research.
A study on the subject found that immigrants to the US are less likely to engage in “violent and nonviolent antisocial behaviors” than native-born Americans. This was true despite the fact that native-born Americans were four times more likely to report violent behavior than any other nationality.
But, as we all know, you can’t reason with Donald Trump. So, extraterrestrials it is.