At present, there are over five hundred children who can’t be located in order to be reunited with their families when they were taken from them at the US border under a 2017 policy from the Trump administration (story here) . The reason this story affects me so deeply is because of the following:
Separating children from families is the beginning of genocide.
The Nazi’s did it to begin the Holocaust. The Franco regime did it in Spain for decades as did the Pinochet regime in Chile, and both of those regimes also committed mass murder.
Separating children from their families is also what is referred to as ‘cultural genocide’. For almost a hundred years in the United States, thousands of Native American children were taken from their families and sent to boarding schools many miles away. At these schools, they were forbidden from speaking their native language, learning their native culture and history, and many of them were never reunited with their families. In Australia, thousands of children were taken from Aboriginal communities and were called ‘the Stolen Generations’. This also happened in Canada until the 1980’s. The governments of Australia and Canada have apologized for this. Our government hasn’t. (this is an overview here)
But this policy of separation at the border from 2017 to 2018 is a crime against humanity. I hope one day to see all the monsters who did this brought to justice.
And as for the claims that this was policy before the Trump administration, it wasn’t. Children were only separated if a custodial relationship could be not determined, or if they were deemed to be in danger. This is a fact-checked article explaining this in more detail going all the way back to the Clinton administration:
Because of this, and many other crimes committed by the current administration, this election is the most important in American history. Hopefully it will be the last one of this magnitude.
To look back, this election is more important than the one in 1860 that would decide if and when a war happened and how it would be won. It is far more important than the election of 1932 determining the course of how America would be brought out of the Great Depression, and in 1940 to determine if and when America would enter World War II. It’s more important than 1960 when an election would determine how the Cold War would be fought, how we would get to the Moon, and begin the Civil Rights movement in earnest.
The Republican Party has aligned itself with white supremacists who initiated this policy of zero tolerance and mass family separations and deportations. It has aligned itself with organizations that incite and commit acts of violence in our cities and towns, and set fire to those cities. It has aligned itself with organizations hell-bent and determined to strip every right away from women to make their own healthcare choices, including abortion and birth control. It has aligned itself with organizations that would strip every right from LGBTQ Americans. It has aligned itself with corporate interests who have pushed through trillion-dollar tax cuts that benefit no one but those corporate interests. It has aligned itself with conspiracy theories that have led to the weakest response to a pandemic that has killed over two-hundred thousand people.
When I say this election is about conscience and humanity, I say it’s also about how we stop genocide from taking hold in this country more than it already has. I’m not talking just the COVID-19 deaths, but the deaths of people of color at the hands of police and hate groups. Of fear and lies being told as truth that are killing people in hospitals and making them die alone without loved ones by their side.
I’m not going to change anyone’s mind with my words and that’s not what my goal is here. My goal here is to make my statement to the world about my own thoughts and feelings on this election. And to ask other people to think about their thoughts and feelings and make their own decisions.
As of today, early voting records are being shattered across the country. It’s proof that people are realizing their vote wouldn’t mean so much if people weren’t trying so damn hard to take it away. I hate the fact that it’s so damn hard to vote and that people are having to sacrifice so much time and energy to do it. Someday we’ll tell the story of how millions rose up and voted with their conscience, voted with their humanity. We’ll teach future generations never to be silent, to never disengage themselves from their government, and to believe and work toward a better future.
I believe this story will have a happy ending though I know to get to that ending will be very hard. But with hope, faith, and conscience, we’ll begin to heal and live freely without fear.