Local governments, and local law enforcement agencies in particular, shouldn't get caught up in the business of enforcing immigration law. That's the federal government's responsibility, and to the extent police and sheriff's departments get involved, they erode trust between officers and the community. If police are viewed as immigration agents, immigrants — even those with legal status in this country — may be reluctant to come forward to report crimes for fear that it could lead to deportation for them or loved ones. If that happens, it puts everyone at risk. It's true in big cities like Baltimore, and it's true in suburban jurisdictions like Howard County, where the County Council is now considering a bill to declare Howard a "sanctuary county."