Monday, July 9, 2018

Why is This Allowed to Happen?

Can somebody please explain to me how we've reached this point as a nation?

A 1-Year-Old Boy Had a Court Appearance Before an Immigration Judge in Phoenix

The 1-year-old boy in a green button-up shirt drank milk from a bottle, played with a small purple ball that lit up when it hit the ground and occasionally asked for “agua.” 
Then it was the child’s turn for his court appearance before a Phoenix immigration judge, who could hardly contain his unease with the situation during the portion of the hearing where he asks immigrant defendants whether they understand the proceedings. 
“I’m embarrassed to ask it, because I don’t know who you would explain it to, unless you think that a 1-year-old could learn immigration law,” Judge John W. Richardson told the lawyer representing the 1-year-old boy.

Brief moment to appreciate how Time kept repeating "1-year-old" in the article. It might have been for SEO purposes but it works as an effective rhetorical device anyway, reminding the reader that THIS DEFENDANT WAS A 1-YEAR-OLD.

But let's talk about how fucked up a country needs to be to require a literal bottle-drinking baby to appear before a judge who has to ask him if he understands the proceedings. At least this one had a lawyer. Many of the children made to appear in these unfunny Saturday Night Live skits come to life don't have any legal representation, because they don't get constitutional rights.

Also, this case has some additional fucked up details.

In Phoenix on Friday, the Honduran boy named Johan waited over an hour to see the judge. His attorney told Richardson that the boy’s father had brought him to the U.S. but that they had been separated, although it’s unclear when. He said the father, who was now in Honduras, was removed from the country under false pretenses that he would be able to leave with his son.

One moment, please.

Carry on.

In the end, Johan was granted a voluntary departure order that would allow the government to fly him to Honduras so that he could be reunited with his family. An attorney with the Florence Project, an Arizona-based nonprofit that provides free legal help to immigrants, said both his mother and father were in Honduras.

Well, I hope they don't all die horribly there, because that is a distinct possibility.

The United States of America is officially the United States of Disgrace.

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