Trump’s cruel deportation policies just claimed their latest victim

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Much ado was made about the Trump administration’s recent announcement that they were launching a new campaign aimed at decriminalizing homosexuality across the world, but the recent murder of a deported trans asylum seeker exposes the show of ostensible goodwill towards the LGBT community for what it really is — a cynical and insincere attempt to exploit the language of human rights in order to advance their heinous neoconservative agenda.

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Camila, a trans woman from El Salvador, was facing threats on her life, so she joined a caravan of LGBTQ refugees heading towards the United States and sought sanctuary last year.

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But her asylum request was denied and she was deported by ICE four to five months ago back to her home country. “She migrated to the U.S. because of threats that she had received, but she was deported because they [ICE] didn’t believe her,” said activist Aislinn Odaly’s to the Washington Blade.

Camila’s worst fears soon came true. She was attacked by unknown assailants and admitted to the Rosales National Hospital on January 31st, where she died of her injuries a few days later. Eight days later, a second trans woman named Lolita was killed with a machete.

El Salvador has one of the highest murder rates in the world, in no small part thanks to the chronic instability and poverty left in the wake of the devastating civil war waged by the US-backed government death squads against leftist rebels and any civilians who got in the way. Over 75,000 died during the conflict, many in brutal massacres that were covered up and excused by men like Eliot Abrams, President Trump’s new special envoy for Venezuela. 

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The United States’ constant urge to deport the refugees that flee the violence that the United States’ funding of right-wing dictators and their death squads creates simply fuels one of the most horrifying cycles of violence in the world, and both Democratic and Republican presidents continue to perpetuate it without a thought in the world for its countless victims.

For Donald Trump’s administration to roll out a push for LGBT rights in the name of “human rights” rings entirely hollow and insincere, not in the least because Trump had no idea that his administration was doing it.

Reading between the lines of the LGBTQ rights campaign reveals that it is aimed squarely at the Islamic Republic of Iran, a rainbow-washing of the neoconservative agenda that hungers for a confrontation with a major power that refuses to bow and scrape before Washington.

Are we honestly supposed to accept that the administration which has fought tooth and nail to ban transgender Americans from serving in the military, stripped away Title IX protections for trans students, expanded the ability for employers to discriminate against LGBT folks, and exploited the slaughter of 49 LGBT people at the Pulse Nightclub to promote his hateful anti-Islamic agenda all of a sudden is deeply concerned about the rights of gay people across the world?

Original reporting by Michael K. Lavers and Ernesto Valle at the Washington Blade.

Colin Taylor

Managing Editor

Colin Taylor is the managing editor of the Washington Press. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice, equality, and universal health care in America.

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