Over the past week, the nation has been horrified as the dark truth behind the Trump administration’s appalling policy of separating immigrant children from their parents as a “deterrent” to illegal immigration has become clear to us all.
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Over two thousand children – even breastfeeding infants – have been ripped away from their parents and incarcerated in concentration camps by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency over the past few months under the direct orders of the White House and the Department of Justice.
In those camps, reporters have witnessed kids being held in cages, sometimes with 20 to a cell, left to fend for themselves with no toys or entertainment save for the horrors of their own trauma.
Got them from @CBP.
The first photos since zero tolerance was announced inside the largest Border Patrol processing station in US — McAllen’s Ursula.
This is where we toured today.
They say it’s where more kids are separated from their parents than anywhere else in the US. pic.twitter.com/yMsAo1vMKd
— Jacob Soboroff (@jacobsoboroff) June 17, 2018
Former First Lady Laura Bush penned a powerful op-ed piece for the President’s favorite newspaper, the Washington Post, condemning the inhumane policy for its unnecessary cruelty and
I live in a border state. I appreciate the need to enforce and protect our international boundaries, but this zero-tolerance policy is cruel. It is immoral. And it breaks my heart.
Americans pride ourselves on being a moral nation, on being the nation that sends humanitarian relief to places devastated by natural disasters or famine or war. We pride ourselves on believing that people should be seen for the content of their character, not the color of their skin. We pride ourselves on acceptance. If we are truly that country, then it is our obligation to reunite these detained children with their parents — and to stop separating parents and children in the first place.
Unfortunately for Mrs. Bush, the lofty ideals she speaks of in her op-ed are more fantasy than reality.
She, of all people, should know that is false, considering that her war criminal husband, Pres. George W. Bush, created the Department of Homeland Security and the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency following the 9/11 terror attacks, their primary functions being to monitor Muslims in the United States and to ensure the “100% removal of removable aliens.”
He laid the foundations for the apparatus of ethnic cleansing that were expanded upon by President Obama, who greatly expanded ICE’s powers, constructed the first major detention centers for undocumented migrants, and threw the first immigrant kids into cages. The Trump administration simply took what was already there and added his own personal streak of sadism to it.
Sadly to say, this is exactly who we are, and politicians from both sides of the aisle are responsible for this moral travesty.
However, First Lady Bush’s ending words are an inspiration that we all should take to heart; while the ideals she presents may not match reality, they are goals that we as a society should devote our efforts to making sure that they do become a reality.
In 2018, can we not as a nation find a kinder, more compassionate and more moral answer to this current crisis? I, for one, believe we can.