Jose Antonio Vargas, a Pulitzer-prize winning journalist and immigration reform activist, was detained in McAllen, Texas Tuesday morning. Vargas, who revealed in a 2011 New York Times Magazine story that he's an undocumented immigrant from the Philippines, is being held at a Border Patrol station.
Vargas published a story in Politico on Friday explaining that leaving a border town in Texas was sure to be difficult for him, sharing that an immigration lawyer friend had reached out with: "I am so glad you are visiting the kids near the border. But how will you get through the checkpoint on your way back?"
I do not have a single U.S. government-issued ID. Like most of our country's 11 million undocumented immigrants, I do not have a driver's license—not yet, at least. (Recently, California and Washington, D.C., passed laws granting licenses to their undocumented residents. Though New York City will start issuing municipal IDs to its undocumented population, the state of New York, where I currently live, does not issue driver's licenses.) Identification aside, since outing myself in the New York Times Magazine in June 2011, and writing a cover story for TIME a year later, I've been the most privileged undocumented immigrant in the country.
Early Tuesday, Vargas tweeted that he was attempting to leave McAllen Airport with only his passport from the Philippines.
— Jose Antonio Vargas (@joseiswriting) July 15, 2014
About an hour later, Huffington Post report Ryan Grimm tweeted a photo of Vargas being handcuffed by Border Patrol officers.
— Ryan Grim (@ryangrim) July 15, 2014
Define American, the Minority Affairs Council, and United We Dream, all organizations with with Vargas is involved, are at McAllen Airport live-streaming their statements to the press.
[Image via AP]