Politics, Moderate



Speak out about America's cruelty to immigrants

Esther J. Cepeda on

CHICAGO -- By all accounts, the Trump administration is on an anti-immigrant tear that threatens to obliterate the already-broken immigration system in this country.

President Trump has ousted top officials, saying they weren't as tough as he thought they should be, and elevated the anti-immigrant hardliner Stephen Miller.

At a Texas fundraiser on Wednesday, Trump made the border out to be an apocalyptic battlefield on which Central American gang members are threatening American ranchers. Trump even suggested that the military is hamstrung by political correctness and can't adequately mistreat migrants.

"Our military, don't forget, can't act like a military would act. Because if they got a little rough, everybody would go crazy," Trump said.

The rumors coming out of the White House are astounding, everything from new policies making it harder for asylum seekers to pass their initial screenings (not passing triggers immediate deportation) to making it easier to deny green cards and possibly even reinstating last summer's disastrous family-separation policy.

Observers of Trump's Faustian appetite for gaining favor with his radical base at the expense of people looking for a lifeline in this country say he's not likely to find some heart on this issue.


"This is an administration that by many reports appears willing to implement policies with questionable legal justifications because, regardless of whether the policy is inhumane or is struck down by a court in the future, they still see the public fight against immigrants and immigration as a win for Trump politically," said Ur Jaddou, director of DHS Watch, the watchdog arm of the advocacy organization America's Voice, at a recent press conference.

What to do?

A few weeks back I spoke to Adam Estle, field director and director of constituencies for the National Immigration Forum, a Washington-based advocacy organization. He told me that regular Americans have a lot of sway when it comes to whether policy proposals become reality -- just by making their thoughts known to their elected officials.

Estle said social media, email, phone calls and even faxes can help make a difference.


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