By Brie Bristol
My fellow Americans, I am speaking to you because there is growing bigotry against the citizens who live south of the United States border, and as an Afro Latina, every day this “crisis” makes me ashamed to be an American.
President Trump’s speech from his cozy Oval Office begins with addressing the “thousands of illegal immigrants” that he claims are at our border. It seems that the President does not understand the term “thousands,” since these numbers are actually in the hundreds according to his own administration. However, this is not the only “fake news” fact that the President boasted about to his people on Jan. 8. The president asserted from the White House that the U.S. proudly welcomes millions of lawful immigrants, but as a society we see immigrants being discriminated against and enclosed in camps every day—as if they are stray dogs and we are animal control. It is as if racism will never be abolished; it will only be redesigned to discriminate against other minorities whenever a leader will it.
Mr. Trump stated that all Americans are hurt by southern border migration into the United States, but I feel no hurt for my struggling brothers and sisters. The President, within 43 seconds of his speech, proceeded to fabricate the imminent danger to public safety that undocumented immigrants will bring to our society. The danger of straining resources, lack of jobs, and stagnating wages being driven into the dirt as the causation of these migrants bringing drugs into our communities is absurd. Mr. Trump claims that heroin from Mexico is going to ruin the U.S., but how fragile of a country do we live in? Apparently very fragile, if by his account, more Americans will be killed this year from smuggled Mexican drugs than were killed in the “entire Vietnam War.” Really Mr. President? I don’t understand how smuggled drugs from Mexico are going to ruin our society any more than the other illegal cargo that is entering the United States through legal entry points. Drugs, specifically from Mexico, can’t be a crisis if the President is allowing them to also arrive from other countries.
Let me backtrack to the immigrants in camps. The apparent pawns of “vicious coyotes and ruthless gangs” are children being mercilessly ripped away from their parental guardians. Around 20,000 children, according to the Department of Homeland Security and the President, are being placed in holding camps while they await a citizenship trial. Mr. Trump feels that these children should be returned to their collapsing south of the border homes, rather than allow for them to enter in through the “border security loopholes” and live with U.S. citizen family members or be placed into foster care. When will our communities see that these children are not criminals, but they are seeking help and searching for their right to be in a better environment?
It has been proposed by the man in the Oval Office that a border wall will keep Americans safe from criminal gangs, drug smugglers, and undocumented Latinx children. At a cost of $5.7 billion, for a physical steel barrier “critical to border security,” which is allegedly rational. This rational claim by the President will only continue to cause chaos till the end of his term next year. With all the noise being made, maybe one day we can all scream the famous phrase by former President Ronald Reagan together since history likes to redesign itself whenever society wills it—Mr. Trump, tear down this wall!