This week’s uproar on separating children from their asylum-seeking parents unpleasantly confirms how far apart on basic morality we are in this country.
To me, my Trump-approving friends ignore the imperative of the urgent human needs of the asylum seekers and their young children. Instead, they cite instances where Democrats years ago may have broken up families of asylum seekers. They mention that the government imprisons criminals with young children, thereby breaking up those families, so Trump’s policies aren’t new.
It’s great misdirection. First, even if the statements were accurate, the comments simply make the argument that two (or three or 100) wrongs make a right. They don’t.
Second, the people Sessions and Trump are locking up are not “criminals” in any real-world definition of the word.
Calling families entering the United States “criminals” is a Big Lie. Repeat it often enough and your teammates will believe it. But it’s not true. At most these people fleeing to traditional safe haven of the US may have violated a misdemeanor entry provision by not following technical rules in presenting themselves for asylum at the right place. They are not dangerous or violent. Sessions and Trump are criminalizing ignorance of proper procedure. That tactic is immoral. Asylum seekers are not criminals.
And, the sudden separation of families along the border with no plan for reunification or visiting cannot be truthfully compared to the incarceration of criminals who are given due process. The children of those convicted of crime generally remain where they are, in a familiar location, in the care of other family members. And, they get a schedule of visits with their parents. All things Trump and Sessions are denying the already traumatized kids being taken from their parents.
Trump’s defenders have an arsenal of reassuring statements they throw against the wall of public opinion to see if they’ll stick. One of these non-fact assertions was the claim by the head of the Department of Homeland Security that the young detainees are being treated wonderfully by DHS. That happy assessment of the children’s situation fell apart when the Director couldn’t answer any questions about the details of the treatment of kids. She really didn’t know what she was talking about. She made up the reassurance. Her story of wonderful treatment was simply a Big Lie
This family separation issue has many Big Lies. For example, blaming Democrats for the separation even though Republicans control Congress and the separation policy was formulated by Sessions. Big Lie.
One friend’s posts spit out words like “liberal” and go into mind-numbing detail of “liberal” 9th Circuit Court of Appeals decisions from years ago. More rational-sounding stuff to throw against the wall. Will it stick?
The problem for Sessions, Trump, and those still loyal to whatever he says is that today the issue is separating kids from parents… parents whose worst crime would be trying to get their kids to safety.
Regardless of what Hillary did with her email and what mistakes Obama, Bill Clinton, or Lyndon Johnson made, we know that our Trump/Republican government TODAY is ripping apart scared, tired, frightened families. Separating husband and wife, mother and child, and father and baby.
What has this country come to stand for?
What happened to the America I was taught about in school? You know the one. The one that says, “Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.”
What has this country come to stand for?
Has “Trump Ueber Alles” become our morality? Are HIS pronouncements more important that core human values? More important that the instructions of the Hebrew prophets, the words of Jesus, and the convictions of ethical humanists?
Trump’s technique is to say falsehoods over and over. His opinions. Accusations. Repeating his Big Lies.
Then, when enough people tire of a particular Lie, he says he was only kidding and Liberals have no sense of humor. That Trump way of admitting that he’s telling untruths is itself another Big Lie.
Besides, I don’t have a sense of humor when it comes to destroying the core values of America that I was brought up on. I don’t have a sense of humor about demonizing the weak and the powerless. I don’t have a sense of humor when it comes to another Big Lie.
I am not in the mood to play nice like Nancy Pelosi and intellectually and bloodlessly point out “discrepancies” between what Trump says and actual facts. It’s time to be as clear and direct as Mr. Trump.
Trump’s rational for separating families: a Big Lie. Trump’s assertion that winning a trade war is easy: a Big Lie. Trump’s declaration that we need not worry about a North Korean nuclear threat: a Big Lie. Trump’s claim that Iran was violating the multinational agreement: a Big Lie. Trump’s comments about the unfairness of the Mueller investigation: a Big Lie. Trump’s claim that the FBI probe cleared his campaign of colluding with the Russians: a Big Lie.
Big Lies are effective. They confuse people. They debase the power of facts.
Unfortunately, I don’t know how to combat a White House that spins out lie after lie after lie. Some get retracted, but even so many Trump supporters always remember and believe the facts made up by Trump in a middle-of-the-night Twitter storm.
I respect my friends who have different policy views than I. I respect them as they honestly believe and repost the latest White House Big Lie. But, I worry. Are there limits to the what Trump and those in power around him will do?
Have they no decency? True traditional American decency?