“Some young children reunited with parents don’t recognize them after being separated for months”
— The Hill (@thehill) July 11, 2018
According to the Times, parents who had waited months to see their children again were devastated when the kids cried and didn’t recognize them.
“He didn’t recognize me,” one parent, Mirce Alba Lopez, told The Times of her 3-year-old son. “My joy turned temporarily to sadness.” The parents also said the children believed that the other children they were detained with were their siblings.
The parents and children were reunited Tuesday two weeks after a federal court had ordered the Trump administration to reunify the families whose children had been separated at the U.S. border with Mexico. Several thousand children were taken from their parents after Trump in April began his zero tolerance policy of arresting all adults who came into the U.S. without proper documentation.
The judge gave administration officials until yesterday to reunite with their families the separated migrant children who were under the age of 5.
Two days ago, however, the administration said it would not meet this deadline, and in a federal court filing on Tuesday revealed that it would be able to reunited just 38 out of the 102 identified children by Tuesday’s deadline.
As of now it appears that immigration officials have returned to the so called “catch and release” policy for immigrants which was in place before the zero tolerance policy required the arrest and incarceration of all undocumented immigrants. Under “catch and release” the previously arrested individuals are now released into the United States wearing ankle monitors.
Because separated children are not allowed to be detained for more than 20 days, Trump for now has stopped arresting the parents while they await a determination of their immigration status, a process which can take years or months.
Also on Tuesday, U.S. officials admitted in a court filing that they may have taken a child of a U.S. citizen into custody.
“US Border agents may have taken child of US citizen into custody”
— The Hill (@thehill) July 11, 2018
In the filing lawyers for the Department of Justice (DOJ) said they can’t determine if the child was separated from a parent, and the government can’t locate the parent. The filing said the child is under the age of 5 but did not provide any other details about the child or the parents.
Here is what the filing said about the lost child who may be a U.S. citizen:
“One child cannot be reunified at this time because the parent’s location has been unknown for more than a year. Defendants are unable to conclusively determine whether the parent is a class member, and records show the parent and child might be U.S. citizens.”
What all of this information shows is that the Trump administration is totally incompetent when it comes to administering the U.S. immigration laws, and is routinely violating human rights, civil rights, and constitutional rights of thousands of people.
Trump doesn’t care about the rights of immigrants because he thinks it makes him look tough, and thus he believes he will be more popular with voters. The November elections are less than four months away, and that will be a chance for U.S. voters to express in the voting booth exactly how popular (or unpopular) Donald Trump’s immigration policies really are.
I am a lifelong Democrat with a passion for social justice and progressive issues. I have degrees in writing, economics and law from the University of Iowa.