Socialist Worker

Horror of child cages shows why we need to dump Trump - and tear down borders

Issue No. 2609

Migrant children are being held in cases after being separated from their parents in the US

Migrant children are being held in cases after being separated from their parents in the US (Pic: Footage from US border patrol)


Horrifying images and footage have shown the true face of the US border regime.

Some 2,000 children have been ripped from their parents at the Mexican border in the last six weeks as a result of White House decisions.

They have been kept in cages in immigration detention centres.

A recording obtained by the ProPublica news website shows a child pleading, “I don’t want them to stop my father, I don’t want them to deport him.”

The latest crackdown comes from a “zero tolerance” attitude toward already-existing immigration law. which border guards previously applied selectively.

“We are enforcing the laws as they exist on the books,” said Trump’s secretary of Homeland Security, Kirstjen Nielsen.

“The border is being overrun by those who have no right to cross it.”

The change came in April when Trump’s attorney general Jeff Sessions said, “If you cross the border unlawfully, even a first offence, we’re going to prosecute you.”

And, far from being shamed over the scandal, Trump’s White House is looking to step the horror up a gear.

Immigration officials told the Washington Examiner newspaper they are expanding capacity to detain 30,000 children by August—adding an extra 250 children a day.

Sickening

What has been almost as sickening is the hypocritical response of some “moderate” Republicans, Democrats—and the rest of the international ruling class.

They are responsible for similar crimes to Trump, but conveniently gloss them over.

Former Republican first lady Laura Bush described the scandal as “immoral”. She didn’t have much to say when Bush administration wars led to the death of a million Iraqis.

Michelle Obama joined in, again demonstrating selective amnesia. More people—2.5 million—were deported from the US during Barack Obama’s Democratic administration than under any other president.

Many of the camps where children are currently held were built during Obama’s presidency.

In another shameful chapter of their pathetic resistance to Trump, Democrats have introduced the Keeping Families Together Act.

If passed it would mean people could still be detained and deported, just that families would not be separated.

Meanwhile, in Britain many of Trump’s critics raise no objection to the regime of detention in migrant prisons such as Yarl’s Wood.

Such people pick and choose which parts of the system they object to, and tinker around its edges in an attempt to fix it.

But any system which criminalises people based on where they come from is beyond reform.

Borders tear people apart. They should be torn down.


Click here to subscribe to our daily morning email newsletter 'Breakfast in red'

Mobile users! Don't forget to add Socialist Worker to your home screen.