Turning in "illegal immigrants" for $25 prize, game angers local students

"Catch An Illegal Immigrant" will take place at UT Austin Wednesday

Shameful, offensive and just plain sad are some of the ways students at the University of Texas at Brownsville are describing an event planned at the UT Austin campus called "Catch An Illegal Immigrant."

"It's very offensive, there's a lot of diversity on that campus. I don't think they thought about what other students would think and how they would feel about it."

They, being UT's chapter of the Young Conservatives of Texas who are hosting this "game" to allegedly raise awareness about illegal immigration and how it affects everyday lives.

But it's raised a red flag for many reasons.

"The words they are using and the way they are going about it has really bad negative connotations."

UTB students Christina Garza and Alex Rodriguez heard about the YCT's planned event on Facebook where the club's chairman Lorenzo Garcia posted details of the "Catch An Illegal Immigrant" game along with a sign that reads "Illegal Immigration Is A Crime."

It's not just the name of the game that's upsetting people, it's how it is to be played come Wednesday.

Certain people on campus will have the words "illegal immigrant" posted on their clothing.

Any student can then approach them with a student ID and say "Border Patrol" then escort them back to the YCT club.

That's where they get their prize.

"Especially the idea that you're getting a $25 gift card for turning someone in, it's very inappropriate," said Garza. These students attend classes with young adults who cross the bridge every day from Mexico to get their education and others that are undocumented but allowed to continue their education in the US.

They can't imagine this "game" being played out on their campus and say UT should shut it down.

"They're trying to get an education, however they got to this country it doesn't matter they are just trying to better themselves and for them to target them in this way is very bad, it's sad," said Gonzalez.

We reached out to Lorenzo Garcia, the creator of the event page and chairman of the UT chapter.

He did not respond for comment.

The president of UT has publicly stated that he does not support the event and encourages the club to find another way to raise awareness about illegal immigration.