Im­mi­grants cast as crim­i­nals

Marlborough Express - - FRONT PAGE -

Democrats and peo­ple that are weak on im­mi­gra­tion, they don’t want to dis­cuss, they don’t want to hear, they don’t want to see, they don’t want to talk about,’’ Trump said at the White House.

The pres­i­dent has been on the de­fen­sive be­cause of his ‘‘zero tol­er­ance’’ en­force­ment pol­icy that has led to at least 2500 mi­grant chil­dren be­ing sep­a­rated from their par­ents.

While Trump signed an ex­ec­u­tive or­der Thurs­day end­ing the prac­tice, he has bris­tled at the sym­pa­thy di­rected to­wards the mi­grant fam­i­lies and ar­gued with­out ev­i­dence that many are crim­i­nals in­tent on do­ing harm once in the United States.

‘‘We must main­tain a Strong South­ern Bor­der,’’ Trump tweeted. ‘‘We can­not al­low our Coun­try to be over­run by il­le­gal im­mi­grants as the Democrats tell their phony sto­ries of sad­ness and grief, hop­ing it will help them in the elec­tions.’’

The ad­min­is­tra­tion has strug­gled to im­ple­ment the hastily drafted ex­ec­u­tive or­der, which was in­tended to end the con­tro­versy over fam­ily sep­a­ra­tions by stat­ing that par­ents and chil­dren could be de­tained to­gether.

But the Home­land Se­cu­rity Depart­ment in­ter­preted it as mean­ing they would no longer re­fer for pros­e­cu­tion the cases of adults il­le­gally cross­ing the US bor­der with chil­dren be­cause of a lack of space at ex­ist­ing fa­cil­i­ties for hous­ing de­tained fam­i­lies.

The Jus­tice Depart­ment wanted the pros­e­cu­tions to con­tinue.

Ad­min­is­tra­tion of­fi­cials met to try to hash out these dif­fer­ences as well as to come up with a plan for re­unit­ing the mi­grant fam­i­lies that have al­ready been sep­a­rated.

At the White House event on Satur­day, Trump and many of the fam­ily mem­bers who spoke crit­i­cised what they called onesided me­dia cov­er­age that does not fo­cus on their sto­ries.

‘‘We weren’t lucky enough to be sep­a­rated for five days or 10 days; we’re sep­a­rated per­ma­nently,’’ said Laura Wilk­er­son, whose son Josh was killed in 2010. ‘‘Any time we want to see or be close to our kids, we go to the ceme­tery, be­cause that’s where they are.

‘‘We could never speak to them, we can’t Skype with them.’’

The pres­i­dent blamed Democrats for what he called weak im­mi­gra­tion laws and poli­cies that treat those in the coun­try il­le­gally too le­niently, even though Repub­li­cans con­trol Congress and failed last week to pass an im­mi­gra­tion bill out of the House be­cause of op­po­si­tion from GOP mem­bers. – Wash­ing­ton Post

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