My jaw literally (well, okay, figuratively) dropped to the floor this morning when I saw this headline:
HHS Secretary: Separating Immigrant Families Is ‘One of the Great Acts of American Generosity’
The separation of children from their parents at the southern border can be defined by only two words: a fiasco, and chaos. ‘Generosity’ is definitely the antithesis of what this nation has done to those families seeking a safe haven. A federal judge ordered all children under the age of five to be reunited with their parents by July 10th — yesterday. However, some 84 of the 101 or 102 children under five remain separated from their families in detention centers, aka concentration camps. How is this ‘generous’?
“We have nothing to hide about how we operate these facilities.” That was Alex Azar, Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) speaking to CNN’s Wolf Blitzer Tuesday night, referring to what he calls the juvenile and “tender age” facilities in which many of the separated children are currently being detained. It seems strange to me that if they have nothing to hide, they have barred media outlets and public figures from filming or visiting. And then he went on to say …
“It is one of the great acts of American generosity and charity, what we are doing for these unaccompanied kids.”
I call FOUL!!! There is no generosity involved in taking a young child, a toddler, from its mother’s arms and putting it in an abandoned Wal-Mart store, surrounded by wire and strange faces! And why is he referring to them as ‘unaccompanied’? A two-year-old child does not just wander across the border on his own. These children were accompanied by their parents!!! Three thousand – 3,000 – children were accompanied by their parents, then taken away to detention centers, scared, alone, and not knowing why they are no longer with their parents. And Mr. Azar calls this ‘generous’? Perhaps his definition of the word is different than mine. Or perhaps he is in the wrong job, for his agency is titled “Health and Human Services”, and there is nothing … not one thing … humanitarian about what is happening to these children!
HHS and ICE have so royally mucked up this entire fiasco that they deserve to be placed in these detention centers themselves. First, they have lost track of some 20% of the parents who were either released in the U.S. or deported back to their homelands – without their children. Second, they are claiming that 27 of the children under 5 will not be reunited because the parents have ‘criminal records’, yet we are not told what crimes they are accused of. Perhaps nothing more than a speeding ticket or jaywalking in some cases. We don’t know … we just don’t know. And frankly, I no longer trust our government to provide us with actual facts, for thus far we have been spoon-fed the b.s. that they want us to believe and I do not buy a single word of it.
The delay in reuniting the children, we are told, is because HHS is conducting DNA testing on children and parents in order to ensure the right kids go to the right families. I see this more as a delaying tactic than a genuine concern for the children’s safety and welfare. Part of the reason for the DNA requirement, according to officials, is that the documents proving parentage were initially taken from the parents at the border, and those documents have since been lost! They cannot keep up with the parents, they cannot keep up with the paperwork … what next? And now we are told that at least four of the mothers have been told they must pay the cost for the DNA testing before getting their children back! These mothers do not have $700 – $800 in their pockets!
There are many people in this administration who must bear the guilt of this fiasco, but at the end of the day, it all falls squarely in the lap of Donald Trump. Separating these children from their parents was a political move, making the children pawns in Trump’s game. The process was hastily thrown together with little or no thought to record-keeping and eventual reunification. These children and their parents are human beings, yet they have been treated as … objects, for lack of a better word. And now, to add insult to injury, Alex Azar has the unmitigated gall to call what we are doing ‘generous’? I don’t think so, Alex … no sir, I do not see generosity anywhere in this equation.