Thursday, July 4, 2019

What did Donald Trump do today?

He said that there was a refugee crisis at the southern border, and it was refugees' fault for being its victims.

While White House staff scrambled to make sure that Trump wouldn't be giving his Fourth of July speech to too small a crowd, Trump himself was busy on his phone, sending 41 tweets and retweets. 

One of them was a link to an article titled "8 Times the Media Said There Was No Crisis at the Southern Border." Its main argument was that when Trump declared an "emergency" in February in order to let him shuffle money around for a border wall, some reporters noted that there was no emerging threat to the United States, and that the number of people crossing the border was relatively low. (This is true, although since February, the number of families seeking asylum has risen sharply as the situation in Central America has deteriorated.)

The border crisis that does exist is the one that has resulted from the Trump administration's policy of forcibly detaining all people crossing the border without papers, including asylum-seekers. This has created nightmarish situations in which children have been sexually assaulted, or have died, or have been psychologically traumatizedDiseases have spread as a result of unsanitary and overcrowded conditions. Migrants have been forced to drink from toilets, go without bathing for weeks at a time, Hundreds of refugees have been crammed for weeks at a time into rooms so small that it is impossible even to lie down.

Yesterday, in a different tweet, Trump blamed refugees themselves for the mistreatment and abuse they were suffering in custody, saying that if they didn't like the conditions in American internment camps, they should have stayed at home. But he also said that in spite of the abuses and dangers refugee-seeking families face in American detention, they were still "living far better" than they had in the places they had fled.

In other words, Trump is saying that he believes that migrants were right to flee from violence and starvation, but also that they should be abused in American custody to deter others from following them.

How is this a bad thing?

  • It is un-American, un-Christian, and evil to mistreat refugees.