A post shared by Feminist Nerds does a really good job at summarizing the immigration issue from the past few years, including what happened during the latter part of the Obama presidency. I still do not approve of the increase in deportations that happened under Obama. In fact, I hate it. But it's important to understand our immigrant policy vs. our asylum seeker policy and how this all got so fucked up.
I'm going to highlight the parts important to a point I want to make, but I recommend reading the whole thing.
- Worsening conditions in Central and South American countries (quick aside, this was due to U.S. fuckery and climate change, which we also contributed plenty to) resulted in a spike in people coming to the U.S. to seek asylum. Obama took action to reduce this by sending money to the countries the asylum seekers were coming from.
- Trump cut this budget, once again increasing the number of asylum seekers.
- Before Trump and Sessions, people who came to seek asylum were not treated as criminals, because it's not a crime. They were given help and their kids were not taken from them. Teens who arrived alone would often be temporarily housed by the government, and this did cause problems, by which I mean abuse.
- Then Sessions came along and declared that any crossing of the U.S. border with the proper paperwork was a crime that required arrest and detainment. Then he started the child separation thing. Because 91% of the people who cross the border (and you have to cross the border to seek asylum) from Mexico are doing so to seek asylum, this caused a huge spike in detained children and the uproar of the past few days.
- Instead of being like "we're going back to not treating asylum seekers as criminals," Trump signed an executive order ending the policy of separating children and parents only, resulting in a situation where they can try and make it legal to detain people of all ages indefinitely.
There's your five-step program to shitting on the constitution and making it so you can put brown people in cages forever without having to do something like planting drugs on them or making their lives so miserable through poverty and shit education that crime is inevitable.
On top of this, the awfulness of our government admitting that the child separation policy was supposed to be a "deterrent." When they knew all along that 91% of the people you're "deterring" are seeking asylum from places that they know full well are dangerous and awful because WE MADE THEM THAT WAY. Also, the currently caged children are now being held hostage for fucking wall money.
Is that enough to make you want to take to the streets? Go protest the closest ICE office on June 30 and/or July 1st.
There's more fucked up stuff in this Caer Jones' post, though, so really, go read the entire thing.