Editorial

EDITORIAL: America Deserves More Sensible Minds in a Chess Game that Has Made Immigrant Youth Pawns

Even Congressional Republicans have begun to formally oppose President Trump’s controversial policy that separates immigrant children from parents who illegally cross into the U.S. But Trump remains unmoved and defiant, probably in efforts to maintain the support of his base, while neither the Senate or the House have been able to come up with a workable alternative plan.

Meanwhile, Trump incorrectly puts the blame for the separation crisis on the backs of Democrats and has asked for a total overhaul of our country’s immigration laws — something that would take months to achieve. Further, the president has all but laughed in the face of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell who has given his endorsement to a bill that would detain parents and children together while the courts consider their future status.

So, while Trump maintains his stance on his “zero tolerance” policy, ignoring the growing number of heartbreaking stories of children taken out of the arms of their mothers, he also claims that it’s up to Congress to find a solution — as if he’s powerless to dissolve the questionable policy that he himself devised. In reality, Trump could end the growing crisis with the quick flick of his pen, using his executive authority to put an end to the family separations. He could also grant border agents and prosecutors, once again, the ability to let families stay together and be released while court proceedings continue. But Trump says he disapproves of such a move.

He’s even called into question a Senate Republicans-sponsored plan that would hire hundreds of new immigration judges so that they could expedite the processing of immigrant families, indicating that many of the judges could be corrupt, adding that some lawyers who appear in U.S. courtrooms are “bad people.”

Once upon a time, the U.S. stood as the world’s leading voice for protecting those who sought asylum after escaping countries where oppressive regimes and policies threatened their very existence. Now it seems that under the notion of “making America great again,” we have turned the corner that’s more familiar with despots and authoritarian regimes than the country that once professed its promise to open our gates and welcome the “tired and poor.”

We can only hope that our country’s leaders will come to their senses before it’s too late for those seeking a better way of life … and to the hardworking citizens of America.

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