For Independence Day, skytypers will expose immigrant jails across the US

Starting today, fleets of skytypers will be flying across the United States to project messages over hidden immigrant detention camps, immigration courts, and former Japanese internment camps. The aerial spectacle, called “In Plain Sight,” is planned for 80 sites on July 3 and 4, coinciding with Independence Day weekend in the US. The ambitious project took a year to plan, and is one component of an artist-led protest against immigrant detention and America’s mass incarceration problem.

In Texas, for instance, the phrase Nosotras te vemos, justice for Roxana (We see you, Justice for Roxana) will appear over a US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) processing center. The message alludes to Roxsana Hernandez Rodriguez, a 33-year old Honduran asylum seeker who died in ICE’s custody two years ago. About 60 miles away, “Abolish ICE” will hover over a detention center in the town of Encinal.

In New York City, the words “My pain is so big” will be written over a detention center in downtown Brooklyn. “To be human,” will appear over Rikers Island and “Carlos Ernesto Escobar Mejia,” the name of the first immigrant to die from Covid-19 in detention will be projected at the Statue of Liberty monument in Ellis Island.

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