Can Trump's America Even Spell Great?
The Only Word Is Heartbreaking
Mr. Trump, Separating Kids From Parents Is Wrong
As a former journalist, I can only imagine how hard it is to report the news right now.
Sure, you strive for objectivity, but there's certain things that will break that.
A crying child who's just been deliberately taken from their parents will be one of those times.
I've got a friend who teaches history - actually, several of my friends teach history. This friend in particular took to social media last night and talked about how news anchors were basically trying not to burst into tears as they reported about what the pundits are calling the immigration crisis in America. He closed his post with "America is broken."
I can't disagree with my friend. Shades of Hitler's Germany, anyone?
However, I really didn't know enough about why this was happening. I knew that Trump's government was determined to crack down on illegal immigration, but it doesn't make sense to me why on Earth he would separate kids from their parents. The only time it would even make a little bit of sense to do something like that is if the child is simply not safe with said parents. For instance, if the parents were heavy drug users and were neglecting the child, or if the child or children were being abused, would be two instances were someone should step in and remove children from what would be a dangerous situation for them.
So I got to doing some research; as a Canadian, I'm really not up on what American immigration policies are, but I digress.
According to the Washington Post, the Trump administration implemented a "zero-tolerance" policy when it came to immigration. Since children can't be prosecuted with their parents, they have to be separated from them as their parents are being detained. While it's refreshing to know that these kids are being sent to relatives whenever possible - there is, at the very least, a friendly face waiting for them in what has got to be an incredibly frightening time - there are still kids ending up in shelters because there are no relatives to claim them.
Here's the catch: there is, again according to Washington Post, no law or court ruling that forces family separations. Trump can end this with a phone call, if he so chose.
The Trump administration also released some 15,000 immigrants at the US-Mexico border (where there is still no wall, but again, I digress) in its first 15 months, and that total included some 37,500 unaccompanied minors.
The Trump administration also says that these kids that are crying as they're separated from families at the border are either bad actors or smugglers, and Trump claims that he's trying to close loopholes to stop people from taking advantage of humanitarian laws that allow for people to cross into the United States. Many are reportedly trying to escape gang violence in El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras.
Where President Barack Obama, who was president when the immigration crisis first began, said his administration would deport dangerous people, President Trump has merely said that those who have committed criminal offences - a definition that runs pretty wide and could include felonies and minor offences - would be turned back.
Then came the "zero-tolerance" policy in April 2018.
Is America Broken?
Scary Times For America And The World
There is absolutely nothing to laugh about with Trump right now.
When we realized the reality that was coming with a President Donald Trump, I doubt very much any of us could have forecasted something as terrible as the forced separation of kids from their families.
Let me be clear: I'm not so naïve as to think that people don't take advantage of the immigration laws. Even in Canada, we need to tighten things up as far as border security goes and so forth - I know that.
However, as a parent, there has to be something completely wrong that you'd think because someone is just crossing the border - illegally or otherwise - you need to take kids and parents and separate the two of them for what appears to be no reason.
I also know that Trump's America is not everyone's America.
What I worry about is now that Trump and his administration is separating kids and families - and again, there is no legal requirement that he does that - what can we expect to see next?
The answer can't be good.