Lawyers inspecting a detention facility full of migrant children in Clint, Texas described the deplorable conditions they witnessed: children, some as young as five months old, living in squalor without toothbrushes, diapers or soap. Lice infestations. Older children told by guards to care for younger ones. They said there was a stench. Indeed. The stench of a policy that stinks.
Trump blames the Democrats. Says they won’t give him enough money. Also—wait for it—blames Obama. Says the former President started the policy of detention of minors. That doesn’t wash. Nothing in the previous administration’s policies created the unsanitary concentration camp like environment we are seeing today. Further he wants to round up undocumented families living in America and deport them. Problem is where to put them once rounded up? He was going to start the ICE raids this week, but has postponed them for two weeks to leverage the Congress to do something about immigration laws that he sees as unfit. Typical strong-arm bluster from our blackmailer in Chief.
Now most of the children at Clint have been moved to other facilities. We are told they are tents with air conditioning. Whoopee, A/C! Will there be toothbrushes, diapers and soap? Where is the plan to reunite them with families? Many are classified as unaccompanied because they came here with a relative, not a parent. Children consider these people family. Officials say they are concerned that if they allow reunification with people other than parents the children will be exploited. Spare me. Aren’t they being exploited now? For what? So Trump can brag to his base that he is tough on immigration.
The solution? Well, for starters try resurrecting the comprehensive immigration reform bill that already passed the Senate. With the Democrats in control of the House now maybe something could be worked out. Would Trump sign it? He might if it makes him look like a winner. Or he might not if Fox News pundits cry sellout.
In the meantime, if we can find money in the budget for the military, trips to Mar-a-Lago on AF One, and tax breaks for the rich, surely we can find money for decent facilities with toothbrushes, diapers and soap.