Families Belong Together

I’ve spent the last few days arguing with assorted people on various social media platforms that children should not be separated from their parents and kept in cages.  That this is a thing people might support is grotesque.  That anyone I know, anyone I’ve ever known, could defend this policy is mind-boggling to me. 

For just thirty seconds, put yourself in the position of those parents fleeing violence and poverty.  What would you NOT do to keep your babies safe?  What law would you not ignore if it meant there was even a small chance that your children’s lives would be safe instead of threatened by violence or extreme poverty?  WHAT WOULD I NOT DO TO KEEP MY BABIES SAFE?  I can think of nothing.

Imagine YOUR child or grandchild in the position of those children currently living in cages in tent cities and abandoned box stores.  IMAGINE YOUR CHILD THERE.  Do it, I’ll wait.

Imagine that they don’t know where they are, they don’t know where YOU are, they don’t know how long you’ll be gone, they don’t know any of the people “caring” for them.  Imagine how scared they would be.  Imagine how you would feel in those moments and hours and days and weeks knowing your baby was somewhere, scared and alone, and you could not get to them and you could not help them.  I cannot honestly comprehend it.  It would break me.

Yesterday, Bridget asked me what would happen if they split our family up when we move back to the U.S. next month.  Gratefully, I was able to assure her that because we’re already citizens, we are safe.  But the fact that she even had to worry about that – that the thought crossed her mind and gave her an instant of fear – fills me with rage.

Find your empathy and compassion. Find your humanity.  Find your freaking soul.  Dig deep, it’s in there somewhere.

When the existing law was enacted is irrelevant. 

Whether this has been happening for 20 years or six weeks is not the point.

Whether the parents of these caged children broke a law by entering the U.S. is not important.  What’s happening right now, because of the “zero-tolerance” policy enacted by Attorney General Jeff Sessions in April of this year, is child abuse, cruel and unusual punishment, psychological warfare.  It is inhumane. 

If you defend it, I don’t know what to say to you other than you have lost your humanity.

People are people.  They deserve to be treated humanely, regardless of where they’re from and what they’ve done.

Children, most of all, deserve care and love. They deserve to be free of fear.

Here are some articles that explain some U.S. immigration laws and what’s happening right now if you feel like you need more information:

Are undocumented immigrants committing a crime? Not necessarily (CNN)

The facts about Trump’s policy of separating families at the border  (Washington Post)

Youngest migrants held in ‘tender age’ shelters (AP)

Here is a link to a petition you can sign demanding that the families split apart by the Trump administration’s zero-tolerance policy be kept together, and a link to where you can donate to help these families:

Keep them together! Stop separating children from their families at the U.S. border.  (change.org)

Families Belong Together: Help Fight the Separation of Children and Parents (crooked.com)

I feel like screaming and raging and crying with every additional thing I read on this, but that won’t help.  What can help is calling your senators and representatives (especially if you are represented by a Republican) and expressing to them that you want this policy stopped and that they are in a position to stop it.

Call this number – it’s the U.S. Capitol switchboard – and ask to speak to your representative or senator: (202) 224-3121

Don’t know who that is? Go here to find out:

House of Representatives

Senate

It doesn’t matter if you “don’t care” about politics.  It doesn’t matter if you’ve never gotten involved with this sort of thing before.  Do it now, for the children and parents whose lives are being destroyed by an inhumane policy enacted by the U.S. government.

Do it because if it were you in that position, you’d hope someone would try to help you.

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