6/27/2018, 9:53 a.m.
We also were incensed when Mr. Sessions last week used Bible scripture to defend separating immigrant families. It was the same scripture, Romans 13, used by white people in the 1800s to defend slavery.
The nation will feel the effect of the trauma inflicted on these children for years to come.
Earlier this week, Kenneth Wolfe, a spokesperson for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration for Children and Families, said 11,786 children are being held as part of the “unaccompanied alien children program.” He said the agency currently operates 100 shelters across 17 states.
We are uncertain if the children separated from their parents under the Trump zero-tolerance policy are counted in those numbers.
In 2014 when the Obama administration was dealing with youths who crossed the border alone without their parents, they sought to turn the former St. Paul’s College in Lawrenceville into housing for about 500 undocumented and unaccompanied children. That plan died when officials in the area raised concerns.
Sens. Tim Kaine and Mark Warner earlier this month introduced legislation prohibiting the federal Department of Homeland Security from separating children from their parents except in extraordinary circumstances.
We believe such a measure still needs to be approved by Congress to prevent President Trump — or future leaders — from reinstituting such a barbaric policy.
This nation has a history of inducing trauma on people it deems as unwanted. This latest chapter with immigrants of color is no different. We must stop it before we continue to repeat the sins of the past.