So if your friend told you to jump off the Empire State Building, would you? If your friend told you to walk across the desert and into a foreign country to get a chance a better life, would you? What if it was your parents and family doing the daring? All the kids crossing our southern border took that dare. Fifty-two thousand of them since October. Our president has called this "an urgent humanitarian crisis." When I think about urgent humanitarian crisis, I don't tend to think about this continent. I think about places like Syria. Or Somalia. Texas? California? Land of the free, home of the brave? Wouldn't we expect the United Nations to set up shop in Granjeno, Texas?
In a word: No. We're stuck trying to figure out how to save children while maintaining border security. Ours is a nation of immigrants, after all, and we can't just turn our backs on the plight of kids pouring over our border, can we? Maybe we can. Our president would like to step up the deportation process, seeing as how those clever little nippers figured out a loophole in our immigration policy: it says that kids from Mexico have to go back immediately, but those from countries farther south like Honduras, and El Salvador require a court hearing. Fifty-two thousand of them? While the powers that be scramble about trying to get those scheduled, what happens to all those kids?
Many of them are turned over to family who have already crossed the border and are living in the United States. Many of them will stay right where they are, on Air Force bases and converted shelters, until America figures out what to do. But why should we? "Your poor huddled masses, let's club 'em to death," that's what (according to Lou Reed) the Statue of Bigotry says. That may sound a little rough, but compared to the voices of many of our countrymen, it's not so bad. Something everyone seems to agree on: It's our president's fault. He is, after all, the guy in charge. Not the guy who signed the legislation back in 2008 that "enforces our laws and upholds our highest ideals." That guy really ought to be run out of town.
Oh wait, we already did that.