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How Did We Let This Happen? On Separating Families & Both Sides of the Immigration Debate

Migrant Children Problem Art Print Carolyn Suzuki
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Sometimes, you just don’t know how you got to a certain place and you need to ask. I’m sure you’ve heard about the child/family border situation happening in our country right now. We all collectively learned that President Trump signed  earlier this week to reverse the family separation order of the zero-tolerance policy. Obviously, this reversal is a good thing in theory, but most of us don’t feel very good right now. There are still many questions, like what happens with the 2,000+ children already detained and what new set of problems could arise involving the indeterminate length of detention of the families. And more importantly: HOW did we let this happen in the first place?

I avoided writing about this issue at first because I thought it was almost unbelievable. Then I avoided it because I felt so sad that I didn’t know what to say or how to say it. Then helplessness overtook (a sentiment shared by many at this point). And then I got called out by you guys for not addressing my stance on the matter yet, and you were right, so here we are. I thought my stance was so obvious that I could hide in my sadness, but you reminded me that it’s my responsibility to use my platform to write about it, especially with the goal of broadening the understanding.

Historically, I try to open myself up to see/hear both sides of the story (see my guns and why did you vote for Trump posts). That’s been a challenge here. I know I’m preaching to the choir and generally beating a dead (non-Trojan) horse. But to be clear, I’m officially ANTI “ripping immigrant families apart and using children as pawns for political leverage.” The idea is horrific, immoral and profoundly damaging to the individuals as well as our moral culture. I’ve lost words. Thus my lack of writing.

But the fact that so many adults chose to enact this family separation policy and took so long to reverse it shows that they were telling themselves their own version of the story. President Trump and his administration felt that, after the last few administrations failed to fix it, the immigration problem had gotten so bad that they went for an extreme measure knowing that there would be side effects but hoping that the end result would create some sort of reform that they wanted and, more importantly, the immigration control he promised his constituents. They spoke of loopholes in the law, sex trafficking, safety of minors, and drugs over and over, but while immigration is nuanced and certainly we have a border issue, morality should never be up for negotiation or worse, negated by politics. I have to think that they believed they intended to help the future of our country, but the fact is they were willing to sacrifice these families in that attempt. What I can’t get my mind around is that these people, who were probably raised with morals, let the policy be in charge and passed the buck of morality while every family crossing the border in search of safety was prosecuted and separated. They feigned innocence, blaming the other side for “existing policy,” but if they had a moment to check their self-awareness, they could have taken responsibility.

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But after watching the Secretary of State’s address on Tuesday and the press briefing on Wednesday, I realized two things:

1. Those in charge are telling themselves and the press/us a different story than we are reading in the media, and therefore…

2. It’s hard to trust anyone.

And historically, I’m a very trusting person.

It seems to me that right now, due to our lack of trust, our country is full of people that don’t feel safe, on all sides. It’s like we are poisoning our own mental wells with cortisol, activating our collective fight or flight response. I feel anxious every time I look at the news, despite the fact that I have a totally privileged life.

Justin Teodoro Illustration
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So why exactly do we feel so unsafe and anxious?

Some of us feel unsafe because we sense that our collective morals are being lost under this current administration.

We feel that the distinction between right and wrong is getting blurred and raising our kids in this political culture is uncomfortable and scary, unable to predict moral responses to problems.

We don’t feel protected, hell, they couldn’t even ban assault weapons AGAIN, so what gives us the confidence that this will be handled in the “right” way (whatever “right” is).

We also feel worried that our political and cultural divide will never again meet.  We fear that we are breeding hatred and not preventing it by taking basic measures to help all of humanity be better and healthier.

I personally fear that our government doesn’t care about the people who need the most help, in every way.

The rich get richer, and those creating laws don’t need to care about social issues like public education, universal healthcare, homelessness, poverty, because it’s NOT THEIR PROBLEM. Literally. Their kids don’t or didn’t go to public school. They can afford private healthcare. They don’t live in neighborhoods full of poverty or homelessness.

These are not problems they are faced with day in and day out. Even if they were once advocates of those in need, by the time they’ve reached a high level in office, they’ve forgotten, their perspective has shifted, they’ve grown older and richer (with some exceptions, obviously). These people have somehow found themselves in 2018 using poor babies, literally poverty-stricken babies, as pawns to expedite their political wishes or even worse, their platform promises.

So that’s my fear. And this current obvious moral breach is just the latest proof that they don’t care about people in need. Living in a country where you don’t think your government will protect and help you when you need it, makes even those of us that don’t need help right now feel unsafe. I can’t imagine how unsafe these families feel.

But there are two sides to every story, right? And liberals aren’t the only ones feeling anxious and unsafe.

Those on the other side of the argument fear that we’ve lost our communities to globalization and that it has created a distraction from protecting and helping the current citizens.

Some feel that loopholes in laws give criminals the ability to come into our country, using children as their pawns.

They believe that while it’s all horrible, the threat of family separation might deter criminals from using children to smuggle themselves and drugs into the country.

Many people feel that their community will be threatened by these immigrants seeking asylum, potentially taking their jobs, weakening their economy, bringing drugs, poverty, and crime with them which could yes, endanger their children and families.

Listen, a lot of this is about where we live and with whom we surround ourselves. But most of this is about the stories that we tell ourselves, crucial to our own self-preservation to adjust our own moral compass. Are we at a point where our government rationalized cruelty…again?

Families Belong Together
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Most of you know me and know that when I ask these types of questions, it’s only to decrease the divide and help come to more of an understanding. I want to pop my own bubble and understand others. We value all opinions and ideas here, unless they are hurtful or cruel. 

So my questions are:

  1. If you were supportive of this administration’s immigration policy, what did you hope would happen?
  2. When you voted for Trump, what were your expectations?
  3. Do you want to build a wall?
  4. What would you hope for in immigration reform that would potentially not turn away people seeking asylum?
  5. What is your biggest fear with illegal immigrants? Is it population control? Crime? Drugs?
  6. Did you support the previous zero-tolerance policy before it was adjusted to keep families together and if so, why?

I know that you value the idea of family so much and likely didn’t predict this outcome. I honestly just want to know what the expectations were when you supported him or the current government’s immigration tactics.

If you have any personal experiences, we’d love to hear them. This could be on either side as long as they are true and not offensive. I’d love to hear happy immigration reports or refugee experiences about our government. I’d love to confirm that the men and women patrolling our borders are good people, doing the best they can in a shitty situation. But if you have a story contrary to that, please know this is a safe space.

You can and will be anonymous (just enter a fake name and email address that doesn’t exist) and we will control and veer the comments toward debate, deleting attack or offense. (Like we did with the ‘Why Do You Own a Gun?‘ or ‘Why Did You Vote for Trump?‘ posts.)

I apologize for not saying anything sooner. I just wanted to know why and how before I reacted emotionally to something political. I needed more facts before I could confirm my public opinion. I needed to stop crying about it before I can write. But I’m sorry I didn’t say something earlier.

In case you don’t want to comment and you just want to find a way to help, here is a list we put together.

If you know of other activities, outlets or organizations to support these families, let us know so we can add them here and ensure that people all over the country can find ways to help locally in addition to fundraising.

DONATE AND VOLUNTEER

National Organizations:

  • : This organization is currently raising money to help “defend asylum-seeking parents forcibly separated from their children.”
  • : They are the largest immigration legal services provider in Texas. The money that is donated will be used to pay the bond for parents currently being held in detention (which usually varies between $1,500 and $10,000). It will also be used to pay for legal services for immigrant children in Texas’ court system.
  • : Also known as ASAP, this is a project of the nonprofit Urban Justice Center and whose goal is to “prevent wrongful deportations by connecting refugee families to community support and emergency legal aid.” This is a volunteer-based organization and needs donations to help fund the legal services they provide asylum seekers. They are also looking for volunteer attorneys and interpreters.
  • : If you feel like your head is spinning and not sure the best way to donate, this great organization disperses funds to other organizations that specifically help these children get proper legal support. They have helped fund , , and , to name a few.
  • :  Their mission is to “promote the best interests of unaccompanied immigrant children with due regard to the child’s expressed wishes, according to the Convention on the Rights of the Child and state and federal law.” You can volunteer to become a Child Advocate. This is an “adult who volunteers to spend time with and advocate on behalf of an individual unaccompanied immigrant child while he or she is subject to deportation proceedings.” They also expect donations. 

Local Border Organizations:

  • : If you are in Texas and want to volunteer, they are looking for people who speak Spanish to help translate for families and their children who have been separated. They also need volunteers to help with the legal intake process.
  • : This organization provides free social and legal services to immigrants who are detained in Arizona, another border state. They are also looking for lawyers to take cases on pro bono.
  • : LAIAC is “dedicated to serving the legal needs of low-income immigrants, including refugees, victims of crime, and families seeking reunification.”
  • : California is not immune to immigration problems. Al Otro Lado is a “bi-national, direct legal services organization serving indigent deportees, migrants, and refugees in Tijuana, Mexico.” These services include helping deportee parents whose children remain in the U.S.
  • : This organization provides humanitarian aid and shelter to refugees and migrants on their way to the U.S.

PROTEST

  • : Continued pressure on our government is necessary to make sure the families who have already been separated get reunited as well as making sure this can never happen again. Check the site to find a rally location near you.

CALL YOUR REPRESENTATIVES

  • Call the United States Capitol switchboard at (202) 224-3121 which will connect you to your local senate member.
  • : If you need help with what to say, is a great resource to speak your voice on this and many other issues. You just need to enter in your zip code, select the issue that you care about, and they will provide you with a script to read.
  • : In situations like this, we’re constantly prompted to call our representatives, and this website makes it super easy to find out who your representatives are in Congress, as well as their information.


  1. Thank you for his post. I’m german and have been following the news in utter horror. Even though I know that horrible things happen to children all around the globe, why did this shook me to the core?
    Then I realised it’s because it happens in america. We share the same values, we watch your shows, we speak your language. We have friends, family and co-workers there. If it can happen in america, it can happen in europe, too. And it is happening. There is undeniably a shift towards isolation and judgement towards immigrants, even though espcially germany should now better. All I can do is watch, hoffified.

    tl;dr This is not solely an american problem. What is happening in the western world? What can we do turn this around?

    1. I was reading on NPR last week a commentators speculation that this isolationist nationalism is stemming from the wide gap that has grown between rich and poor in developed nations. In the past 50 years this gap has widened because people have been left behind when our economies have shifted towards a more knowledge based economy with less manufacting.

      1. I read that, too. I think its such a global problem as so many countries are just getting more poor and dangerous and stricken with war so of course families want and need to leave. But where can they safely go and what can they do when they get there? No answers here, just questions.

        1. Age-old conundrum of the haves vs the have nots (thank you high school social studies teacher for talking about this idea). The haves are afraid they will lose what they have (status, privilege, wealth, access to resources, etc.) and the haves also tend to have access to the power to make decisions around protecting what they have. The have nots are often fighting for survival and bound by rules they did not set.

          The haves are able to continue changing the system to their benefit, again stemming from unconscious fear of losing something or becoming unsafe. The have nots must do what they can to survive in a system that isn’t set up to make that journey easy.

          Those in power (typically the haves) also set a culture around what we value as a society. If those in power decide “having” and “protecting” is valuable, then the rules are set toward those goals.

          Until WE, as a global humanity, (and specifically those in power – the haves) decide to reconsider what is most valuable in life, we will continue to fail those most vulnerable. For me, a rising tide rises all boats because my liberation is tied up in the well-being and liberation of others.

          That approach will take bravery. It will require learning with one another, pushing through stereotypes, listening to stories of humanity, and choosing to value growing as a global humanity over profits, individualism, and fear.

          Just my $.02. <3

      2. That feels so dead on. Could you post a link to that article? Thanks!

    2. Yes this is happening in some form or another all around the Western world. I’m from Chile and things are pretty peaceful right now (even more when compared to the US or even Europe), but we do have some far-right movements that are suprising for most of us. I don’t know what’s causing it and I bet nobody really knows (each professional judges it from his/her perspective). But it’s scary and it’s crazy, so many of us thought everything was “solved” when in reality it wasn’t! There was always something angry, resentful and sad boiling behind, and now it’s exploding everywhere. It’s not a coincidence…
      I tell myself that History isn’t lineal, that maybe we need some setbacks in order to move forward….but that’s an optimistic’s point of view 🙁

      1. I subscribe to your emails because I love to see what beautiful ideas you have not to listen to your political opinion which is one-sided… the one the main steam media wants us to believe. This 1. Is not new!!! 2. Get the perceptive from a border patrol official.
        No more. I’m sorry but I get bombarded every day by bleeding heart liberals, I don’t need it from you. Donald Trump Is my president and I think he is doing an incredible job.

        1. But you didn’t even answer any of her questions. She’s trying to get to know your point of view and you were hateful and just dismissed her.

          1. Touche’ Susan.

        2. Hi Rose,
          It’s not border patrol separating families, it’s ICE. There is a difference. Border patrol locates individuals and processes their experiences. They are then handed over to ICE who is separating the families. I live in DC and personally know individuals working at ICE who all feel horrible about what is happening. Ignorance is bliss. With awareness comes responsibility. And those responsible should be held accountable for their actions.

          Doing nothing makes you compliant. Supporting separating families, speaks to a lack of empathy. I would suggest some mindfulness activities, perhaps imagine being separated from your family after floating on a raft for a week while starving and sunburnt?

          This conversation was meant to open up dialogue not slam the door on it. Choose to be part of the solution but the problem. Every heart could use a little more empathy, yours dangerously needs it.

        3. Go Rose!

        4. I don’t think you’re being fair to Emily at all. Yes, she is sharing her opinion, but she is also asking you to share yours. She is using her platform to try and promoted civilized discourse on an extremely divisive issue.

        5. Yes, why don’t you try answer some of her questions, instead of just attacking “liberals”? After all, as we have seen, many evangelicals are very much against separating families and they’re usually not of the liberal persuasion.

        6. @ Rose Blowers. i’d love to know what immigration problems you have encountered personally or what you think should be done about it. Curious if you just think its a problem or if you have any personal experiences yourself.

          1. Keep in mind, immigration from Mexico is st an all time low. The people coming are mostly refugees. Not that that can’t be problematic too.

            But statistically, those refugees that are allowed in are very motivated to do well. The 3 months of assistance they receive they repay in taxes as productive citizens. And then some. Many of are best and brightest citizens are immigrants and refugees.

            That’s not to say we don’t need LOTS of reform. But not all people coming here should be lumped in the same category.

          2. C’mon Emily, we know Rose hasn’t experienced anything personally. You’re making yourself look silly and a little condescending by asking her.

          3. I think a large part of the issue is that people are having a hard time getting by as it is and when they see people showing up at the border and getting free hand outs, they feel resentful that the government is doing nothing to help them but is giving free support to people who aren’t even American. Secondly, while it is unfortunate that these migrants may come from disadvantaged areas of the world, it’s simply not possible for us to save them all and provide for the global population. You cannot have a society without laws and borders. If we just opened the borders and let the world enter the country, all those new mouths would have to be fed and clothed and housed and it comes out of the pockets of ordinary tax payers. It’s not fair to people to suddenly find their public facilities overwhelmed by newcomers who do not contribute to the tax base. Part of the reason the average American family doesn’t have 8 children is because it would be financially irresponsible and most people wouldn’t be able to support such a large family. If people are truly concerned about these migrants, the best efforts would be to help bring law and order to their original homelands and to educate the population on responsible family planning.

        7. Hello Rose,
          Emily can speak for herself…but I’ll speak for me. I personally like the appeal of multidimensional business people. That is real. Nobody is 100% pretty pictures and filtered in sunshine all the time. It’s the real stuff in life that’s beautiful.
          I also appreciate Emily’s respectful approach to offering a ingrative platform for people with opposing viewpoints to communicate and try and see outside their own bubble. It may not work…but it’s more than most are doing.
          Lastly, and probably most importantly…you choose how to feed you heart and mind. It is not for you to criticize others on how the choose to nourish theirs. There’s tons of pretty pictures all over the internet…search one out next time you feel the need to type out a message discouraging others from their own sense of moral obligation. ✌🏼

        8. Why do Mexicans flee to the US? Because Mexico if full of violet crime, why is Mexico is full of violent crime?Because the US is Mexico’s biggest drug market – end the drug problem, end the illegal immigration problem – this has been a known issue forever but it’s easier to put people in cages than it is to solve such a complex issue.

        9. If you can’t handle living in a world where people dare express opinions that don’t align with yours, go build yourself a bunker and climb in. Your comment isn’t constructive and doesn’t open the door for dialogue and discussion.

        10. Emily, I too come here to escape politics. Using your “platform” means you have the unique responsibility to educate yourself on the policies. You are not just “asking questions” as your listing of protest and organizations points out, not one place to donate to helps citizens, homeless, foster kids – not one. What about those who are poor here? Separated from the parents because of incarceration (like at the border), kids that don’t have enough food… heck people who don’t. It’s full of help but not anyone here. WHY? Not shocking the followers ganged up on Rose because people don’t want to talk about deeper policies points. Many of us ask our kids when they have a disagreement….. “What happened?” They often emotionally state so and so hit me, it’s their fault, etc. We then ask: “ Yeah but what happened before that?” In a nutshell— How did we get here? The deeper question. The policies and the results of those policies over decades. They require more characters then an Instagram or post, or this blog.

          – Emily, Have you researched why kids were separated from adults? It was always done for safety. Not ideal, but it kept them from being part of the traffic trade or abused and assaulted while in detention. It is the same with many homeless shelters. Mind you the women and kids are kept together which is much better however it is in the end to protect them. This is why a faster system is needed and returning people to the country of origin right away is the most human thing to do for the majority.
          – This is not a new policy. Where was the outrage a over the last 3 administrations? 1997 it extended beyond unaccompanied minors to all minors.
          -This IS happening because we don’t have a strong border policy. MOST countries return them right away to their country or are detained and returned quickly. That is what we should be doing, it has been proven to stem illegal entry.
          -This is happening because of the creation and then not dealing with DACA it’s a magnet for what we see today. Understandably so.
          – Also one CAN go an embassy and claim asylum. They don’t have to show up at the border.
          – Being poor is not a reason for asylum. There are plenty of poor and working poor here that no one really cares about- because it’s not popular or cool to advocate for them. Been to an Indian Reservation… it is depressing and they are natives of this country. Where it the outrage there?

          A question you may want to ask yourself.
          Do I really have to live with the policies I advocate on everyone else?
          Does my wealth shutter me from the repercussions of all these policies?
          Does my gated community, neighborhood, private school, investments and other means that put me above 90% of people in the country make me unable to see outside my bubble?
          Your wealth and status keeps you far far away from the crime and poverty. No one is going to threaten your livelihood or drive down your wages that is crossing over. Your kids won’t have a lesser education because so many resources are now dealing with non english speaking students . They get on all many and most of the programs but take away from others who are citizens. Take away opportunities to expand any to really help people out of poverty. Poor, hungry, homeless- they are already your neighbors. Where is your outrage? Emily, you will likely never need Social Security. Good for you, amazing and well don. Yet to advocate for policies that rob citizens of their 50 & 60 years of hard work is not ok either.

          Those of us who have to take a more firm stance on this are also doing it out of moral conviction for the citizens that live here. It is much harder to take a tough,unpopular stance then the easy, popular one.
          One can have a heart for people but still have to come to some tough truths. It is not sustainable and the poverty gap is only being exacerbated by the immigration policy as it stands.

          For those of means, a financial safety net and privilege. I am sure cheap labor is great for you. But for a majority of the county it is not . It takes courage to make that trip, no doubt. But it also takes courage to make your own home, city, country a better place. It takes generations. Perhaps the people making these treks should focus their energy in their countries to make them better. Is detention ideal. No, of course not. Delivering them back to their country of origin immediately is. And for the ones that are housed. They are all safe, fed 3 meals, clothed and under shelter which many have not been during this journey while their parents are in custody for breaking the law. Where is the outrage at the parents who put them thru that? If we as parents, just let our kids go with a stranger we’d have them taken from us. It’s called child endangerment. What about the kids who’s parent/parents might be in jail here. Do they get insured a home, meals, a safe place?

          There is SO much that could be done in our own county. You have to take care of yourself before you can take care of others. We have a lot of caring to do in our own country. It will never get better if we don’t make those here a priority and have some sensible, strong, immigration policies in place to insure that. And it won’t get any better by vilifying, attacking and trying to ruin those who don’t agree with you on some issues. No one here really “knows you” only what you want them to know or think about you. It’s crafted for profit. Their are also a lot of good, decent, lovely, creative, wonderfully kind people who don’t agree with your policy positions for very human and valid reasons as well.

          Also if you are going to allow civil discussion- how are you allowing people to call others Nazi’s and the like?? I notice you have been very silent to those who don’t hold or have serious questions that stand in contrast to your post.

          Maybe on your next fabulous filp. You go to somewhere other then LA or Portland, a place that isn’t in your bubble as you state. You might learn some thing lovely about some people not on the coast and you could share it.

          1. Dear Kris,
            First off, I appreciate your well thought out comment. It gave me a better perspective of the other side of the coin. While I may not necessary agree with everything you said, you bring up very valid points. I agree that there are clearly very serious domestic problems that everyday Americans face -with no solution in sight. Everyday I walk to work, I see countless makeshift tents for the homeless (including women and children and those with severe mental health issues). I hear you – there are poor, hungry, and homeless that are already our neighbors (literally for me). As a parent with 3 young kids, I worry so much for the kind of future they will have. I think about the legacy we are leaving behind to our future generation.

            While I understand that there are only so many resources to go around, I don’t think that this is an either or situation. Just because one is morally aghast by the separation of families in our borders doesn’t mean that they are not also concern for the domestic problems we have here in the US. And on the flip side – just because someone is fighting to keep resources here at home for those that are in dire need doesn’t mean they are for separating families.

            Let’s not make one another the enemy – let’s work together for a better future for all.

            Emily, thank you for this article (I went through the same emotions that you described). To all those that have decided to post their comments and have an open and civil dialogue, thank you to you.

          2. Thank you for speaking out, Kris! I share much of your thoughts. I work for an organization that provides care to under served and I see first hand, the needs of our community. They need housing, food, medicine and the list goes on. Some are sick and sleep under bridges. We simply don’t have the resources to care for every illegal crossing the boarder. Also, as you said Kris, separating families is not new with Trump. My friends have family who were separated for up to 6 months prior to Trump being elected. People need to stop blaming him. He has brought these issues to the forefront to be addressed. Also, I won’t be reading anymore comments. I am here to look at the lovely designs.

    3. HI EMILY

      Thanks for addressing this issue in such a clear but comprehensive way. I loved the pictures you attached to the article (Families belong together and We should all care). Can I print them to take to one of the marches on june 30? Thanks.

      1. of course! they aren’t mine so as long as you respect the artist i think they would be happy 🙂

    4. I feel like Trump is proof that the world is really a ruthless and brutal place. We can stop pretending now. This is what ultimately rises to power, even in a supposedly democratic country like America. Deep down, the masses want a strong man to push people around,

  2. Thank you for finally speaking up!
    Though I live in Germany your statement:
    “So why exactly do we feel so unsafe and anxious? Some of us feel unsafe because we sense that our collective morals are being lost under this current administration.” sums up exactly my thoughts and fears.
    I would never support a wall between countries (hell, I lived behind a wall for the first 11 years of my life) but I fear that this crisis will lead to it. Maybe that was Trump’s plan in the first place?

  3. Thank you for finally speaking up!
    Though I live in Germany your statment ” So why exactly do we feel so unsafe and anxious? Some of us feel unsafe because we sense that our collective morals are being lost under this current administration.” exactly sums up how I feel.
    I would never want to build a wall (hell, I lived behind one for the first 11 years of my life!) but I fear that this crisis was just something that Trump staged to get his way with the wall.

  4. Thank you for writing this. I think it’s so easy to turn away from these issues and focus on our own lives but certain things demand action and attention. Internment camps are one of those things.

    My grandparents were Japanese Americans who were put into internment camps during WWII, and I can tell you that they are still scarred from the experience. I think the most damaging part for them was looking back and wondering “why?” What gains were made from such a painful exercise? I think they would say we lost a lot more than we gained.

    As country we need to find our empathy again. Hate can feel so good. It can give you so much purpose, but it rarely ever gets you where you want to be.

    1. Love this last paragraph – so true. I honestly don’t think Trump supporters would say they *hate* immigrants, but they’re a threat, so power and control must feel good.

    2. Thanks. I had a number of friends in school who’s families were interned during WWII. My sister’s college roommate’s older brother was born in the one of the horse barns at Santa Anita. It’s something I’ve always been very emotionally involved with. Why are we doing this AGAIN???

    3. Japanese internment camps is exactly what this is sounding like. Isn’t it our job to learn from history so we don’t repeat it? I am just overwhelmed with grief that our own country is doing this to people.

  5. There are just no words. I’m still trying to pull myself out of helplessness. I volunteer with Naomi Project which pairs mentors with at-risk pregnant women and new moms. Many of the families we work with are undocumented, and over the past 18 months people are refusing to work with us out of fear we’ll report them to the government. It’s the lack of trust you’re talking about and it’s preventing them from even accepting HELP. These women are in truly terrifying situations — they need healthcare and food, they’re crammed into a 1 BR apartment with 6 other people, working multiple jobs, often struggling in an abusive relationship — OH and trying to take care of a newborn! They are so paralyzed by fear that they can’t even accept a lifeline, they’re just silently suffering.

    I look around at my family who largely voted from Trump and I’m like, REALLY?! Have we grown so far apart that we don’t even share the same fundamental values of honesty, empathy, and decency anymore? I listened to my grandparents, who are otherwise so kind and generous, believe the best in Trump, give him the benefit of the doubt, and be optimistic about how he would “surround himself with smart people” once he became President. I’m sorry, but no. Culture starts from the very top, and it’s poisoned. We knew Trump was a liar without morals before he took office (hell, I remember watching the debates and he refused to admit that he said something or other 10 MINUTES BEFORE in the post-interview. Like hello, millions of people just watched you say it. The reporter was floundering and didn’t know what to do). That kind of willful cognitive dissonance and inability to admit when we’re wrong or misjudged a situation is dangerous. My only comfort is that some people are coming around. I went to college in the Bible Belt and while most of my friends have been silent, there are many that have been outspoken about this. There are others I see quietly donating to RAICES and other fundraisers on Facebook. It’s pretty hard to be anti-abortion but supportive of toddlers and babies in cages, so if this is the straw that breaks the camel’s back, so be it.

    I’m trying to stay above water, support the helpers, and call out friends and family when they try to justify apathy with misdirection or helplessness (what’s the point, immigration is still a problem, what if some of those people are criminals). And most of all, waiting for November, when we can vote these people out of office and elect new leadership.

    1. Thank you for the work that you do, Jess, and your perseverance.

      1. Aw Sarah, thanks so much. I teared up in my car reading your comment this morning. So important to just keep going!

    2. wow, thank you so much for your thoughtful comment and your work. I have a question for you – do you think the women you work with are happier here living in that state of fear than they would be in their former country? It just sounds like living in hell and I can’t imagine. Also is it a national organization? I’m interested in helping.

      1. Woof, good question. Honestly, their attitude seems to be focused almost entirely on the kids (note we work with moms so maybe different from the general population of immigrants). They’re willing to put up with a lot – bad “husband”, culture they don’t know or understand, language they can’t speak, hostility/racism from their neighbors, fear of being deported, and a total and utter inability to navigate the tangled web of our country’s social services. I got involved with NP because I was a new mom and wanted to help other new moms – cue visions of holding sweet babies and gabbing about life with a newborn! LOL. I was totally unprepared for all the sh*t they have to deal with – THE MOST BASIC THINGS like healthcare (XYZ clinic is only open on the third Tuesday of the month, only 2-4pm, this other clinic an hour away every other Wednesday…all of the lines are 5 hours long and oh by the way can you drive me because I don’t have a car?) and food (ugh this one is the worst…there’s often a whole bunch of hangers-on, usually men, that only want the stipend *for the baby* for themselves…just sickening). It’s just a lot of mind-numbing red tape.

        Anyway I got off track – would they rather be here or their former country? I think still here. At least the ones who have already “made it.” The pull of the American Dream is so strong, if not for them then for their kids. And even the ever-present fear of deportation is less intense than the ever-present fear of getting bombed and killed. Just sad.

        Oh, and no, it’s a local organization in Northern VA – thanks for offering to help! I’m seriously trying to brainstorm what more we can do, if you want to partner on this let me know.

        1. Jess and Emily,
          As an immigrant myself I want to say that the hell that latinas live here in US and you stated well is still more bearable than the horror that they live in their own country. Guatemala, for instance, is living in fear and terror for years with the organized crime and drug cartels. These women come here to escape and believing this is “the land of the free”. “No one puts your child in a boat unless the water is safer than the land”, let’s just say that. I’m sure they all dream about having a happy and safe life in their own country near family, attached to their culture and language…

          1. Ana thanks for posting…I have complete respect for people who are working so hard to better their situation and build a better life for their families. Isn’t that what we’re all trying to do anyway?

    3. Jess – thanks for posting. Right on.

    4. It’s all a bad situation. We are now finding out about the rampant corruption in our government. Guess it’s always been there, but I wish you wouldn’t call the President a liar. That’s where the hate starts. Truth is, they all lie and fact checking is meaningless. Most news analysts now are disgruntled former President Obama employees or Clinton campaign people who need jobs. Imagine where we would be if Hillary Clinton had won. Thank God that didn’t happen.

      1. Uh, I think that you should do some more research. Trump lies like most people breathe. Fact checking is not meaningless–there are facts, and Trump ignores them.

        1. Snopes and many fact check sites are liberal biased.
          I have watched congressional hearings then watch how cnn reports what happened and it’s not even close. We American people deserved news not opinions.

          1. If more people did this it would blow their minds and make them seriously doubt everything the MSM has ever “reported”. People like to tune in to whatever narrative fits their world view. Thereby never challenging themselves.

        2. Jenny you are right. Trump is a LIAR! He is the definition of a liar. The truth has to prevail so this is why we have to fact check! In his explanation of why families are separated he blatantly answered : “I don’t want to do this, it’s the Democrats’ fault.” This is a Lie. This is happening because of YOU MR. TRUMP. You and only you signed the executive order to separate families.

          1. Although we don’t agree with him – and calling is not solving anything but teaching others bad habits. Let’s keep it classy!

        3. Politically expediency on the backs of children and families will ALWAYS be wrong. There is no gray area. To have to deal day in and day out with an assault by a potus who has no respect for truth or integrity, is demoralizing. This latest act of dehumanizing people who are desperate to escape their country with their families , risking everything is an affront to ALL OF US.
          We must stand up and protect the asylum seeking parents and their children. I’m doing so , we are also standing up for the preservation of the ideals of our Country.

          It is in my humble opinion, while I am grateful to have been born in the USA, our Country as some significant dark stains in its past.
          Whether taking life and land from the indiginous people( the American Indians ), participating amd codifying Slavery , Japanese Internment Camps, ignoring what was going on with Germany and Hitler, denying a boat filled with Jews trying to escape certain death; refusing to see people and their humanity during the years that led up to the Civil Rights Movement; allowing experiments on American Black males in the Tuskegee Syphilis “study” the subsequent wars we have see ( Vietnam, Iraq/Iran) ignoring our Citizens in Puerto Rico and and ignoring swift help in Flint MI or pretending we don’t know what “Black Lives Matters” is referencing in relation to codified police brutality.
          NOW is the time to reckon with our ugly underbelly of the Democracy we say we love. To make amends to all of the prior injustices mentioned and NOT mentioned.
          I am heartened to see the outrage in so many… it IS NOT a political issue. Ethics and Morality aren’t a “ side” nor should they be situational.

          Standing up NOW is a test for our humanity.
          Let’s not fail at this , as Trump is so willing to do .
          That then” leader of the free world” demonstrates SUCH DISDAIN for basic civility, respect and truth, is bad enough. That he is comfortable playing with families as pawns is a disgrace .

          Let’s REFUSE to let this happen.

      2. Hi Janie, thanks for your reply. I’m sorry I offended you, but I stand behind my comment that the President is a liar. I referenced a very specific instance in which he said X, then 10 minutes later he said “I never said X.” I fully admit that politicians of every stripe and party lie, but not calling someone a liar when they clearly lie does no one any favors. It’s accurate. I wholly reject the premise that fact checking is meaningless. Truth is important and we need MORE of it in politics, not less. You don’t get more truth by ignoring the lies.

        1. And you don’t get more truth by calling anyone a liar either. I learned that from in Sunday school and it’s been such a propelling and valuable lesson I’ve used throughout my life !

          1. Mik, what do you call it when people consistently do not tell the truth?

          2. Catherine,
            You don’t get “more truth”….

          3. You may not get “more truth,” but you are certainly not going to blindly swallow more lies, either. When you consider that Satan is referred to as “the father of all lies” where Christ is known as “the light and the truth,” your Sunday school reference carries a little less weight. If we can’t agree that truth is necessary in this discussion (both here and in he political realm), then I think the war is already lost.

        2. Sadly and offensively, TRump Is a verifiable liar.
          This is a fact that is not up for debate, if one thinks everything else is.

        3. The man can’t even be faithful to his own wife (any of them). If that doesn’t demonstrate a fundamental lack of integrity and character, I don’t know what does. And no. that’s not debatable or hearsay, he’s completely unapologetic about it. Stop justifying bad behavior (especially when it’s at the expense of vulnerable people). And who can forget the infamous pussy grab audio? The way you speak when you think no one else is listening says everything about your character or lack thereof.

      3. I’m trying to imagine it and it doesn’t seem so bad… so, um, where exactly, do you think we’d be if Hillary Clinton had won and why would that be so awful?

      4. The president is a liar. GOP insiders have admitted he is a chronic, habitual liar but it would be suicide to speak up. The evidence that he is a liar is indisputable. Sometimes you have to call a spade a spade and not excuse it by claiming everyone does it when the evidence disproves that theory. Hillary was demonstrably honest. It is provable with real statistics and actual facts, not alternative facts. If Hillary had won, children wouldn’t be in cages, we wouldn’t have pulled out of the U.N Human Rights Council, our natural spaces would be protected, the Great Lakes wouldn’t be open to industrial drilling and mining, and Angela Merkel wouldn’t have been pelted with Starburst candies at the G6+1 Summit. She wouldnt have insulted the Canadian PM and legitimized a murderous dictator. To say thank goodness she didnt win is to claim that everything Trump has done is better than what she would do. She wouldn’t have taken $7 billion from the Childrens Health Insurance Program to cover massive tax breaks for the 1%.

        1. Gah, I was JUST thinking this, prior to reading this post and comments. IF ONLY, Hilary had won the election… (sob, sigh)

          Well summarized, Amy. We could add to the list that we wouldn’t live in such a state of panic and scandal of what the president would do next. (While the right tried to generate a lot of scandal around Hilary, I’m convinced that she is fundamentally a gracious, if yet nerdy, career politician.) We wouldn’t have to explain to our kids why the President has other horrifying moral failures than being caught in lies all of the time, such as bragging about sexual assault and paying off porn stars. We wouldn’t have to watch as the president is/has systematically dismantled many of the agencies and policies that while imperfect we’re doing the job of keeping us together as a nation.

          I have survived these years of a Trump presidency hoping and desperately seeking a silver lining. Maybe there is something good about having an unpredictable leader??? Maybe it will shake up the status quo where the US has been taken advantage of? Maybe our own internal politics will get so shaken up that we might see some reform? Maybe people (like me!) will be awakened and activated like never before to the issues that we face? HOWEVER, the cost is so steep. It is costing us babies in cages right now. What next??? This is not OK. We are not OK. And I’m losing heart.

          1. DON’T lose heart.
            Look at this as a “ test” (more like a sick joke, but still…) We are called upon during certain times in history, to show what we are made of. To be on the right side of history. That time is now.
            Be strong and invigorated to show what good people are made of and WHAT WE CAN DO!
            Hang tight and strong.
            You are not alone.
            Many many more of us feel the sense of moral duty as you do.

            Never give up.

        2. The pictures of kids in cages are from when Obama was President. Have you heard of the Logan Act? Trump cannot sign an executive order that will not be argued in court. Trump is the only President that came into office with more money than he has now. His companies are losing money because he is President. He donates all his salary and works for the American people for free because he loves America. Hillary lied about Benghazi, email scandal, etc. Have you investigated the Clinton Foundation? It’s a money making machine for the Clintons. You can disagree about how to solve a problem—Republican or Democrat—but when the left becomes unhinged, you lose the argument. We have disabled Americans and other needy citizens. We cannot continue to support the entire world. We have to have law and order. You don’t make policy based on emotions—you make laws based on facts. Watch Dave Rubin to understand polite discourse.

          1. He came into office with more money than he has now??? Where did you pick that up? He won’t even release his taxes, you think he’s somehow released his current income? That’s just silly. He “donates” his salary??? To where? To who? His companies are losing money because he’s a bad businessman that’s filed for bankruptcy multiple times. He’s built his entire house of cards empire on lies, empty promises and bad intention. There’s about 10 books and 50 documentaries on it. Watch one. Read an article. All the evidence is out there, you just have to crack your eye open a tiiiiny bit.

          2. Gail:

            Could you please share where you got this information that the pictures of kids in cages is from when Obama was president and that the Logan Act prevents Trump from stopping it? You seem very sure of your facts so if you’d like to educate us, please share where you are getting them.

          3. Jenny, I did not see where I could respond to you directly so I’m adding to my original comment.

            From Business Insider:

            Several former Obama administration officials took to social media and news outlets last month to explain a gallery of years-old photos that showed immigrant children sleeping in shoddy conditions at a government-run holding facility in Arizona.

            The images, which the Associated Press first published in 2014, resurfaced recently for reasons that remain unclear, and quickly prompted viral outrage on Twitter. One particularly disturbing image showed two children sleeping on mattresses on the floor inside what appeared to be a cage.

            A number of prominent liberals — and even a former Obama administration official — shared the photos, mistakenly believing they depicted the Trump administration’s treatment of immigrant children who were forcibly separated from their parents.

            Jon Favreau, who worked as a speechwriter for former President Barack Obama, tweeted, “This is happening right now, and the only debate that matters is how we force our government to get these kids back to their families as fast as humanly possible.”

            Detainees sleep and watch television in a holding cell where hundreds of mostly Central American immigrant children were being processed and held at the CBP Nogales Placement Center on June 18, 2014. Associated Press/Ross D. Franklin Favreau said he later deleted the tweet after social media users pointed out that the photos were taken during the Obama administration. But by that point, critics had already rushed to accuse him of concealing Obama’s own harsh immigration tactics while condemning Trump’s.

            Also, I referenced the Logan Act but should have referenced the Flores case which is why Trump can’t just sign an executive order and make all of this go away. Sorry about that.

          4. The photos taken during the Obama administration are of kids who came across the border unaccompanied, and were in the process of being placed, not kids forcibly separated from their parents as they have been doing now, under Trump. You can learn more here:

          5. He’s being sued by the Sate of New York for using his charity as a personal slush fund. The man is being charged with actually stealing from charity
            Those pictures are not old – here is the photographer who took them:

          6. Gail, I agree with you about Clinton and her rotten Foundation. I also see where you’re coming from about domestic citizens needing support as well. But I would like to know, how can you say that about Trump losing money since being President when (as far as I know) he is still refusing to release his taxes? Not attacking you at all, I’m genuinely interested.

            A general comment on Emily’s article: I’m Australian, so perhaps it is easier for me not to be as emotionally involved. While I understand people are horrified at this situation, I don’t think it’s right to solely condemn the Trump administration. It is a fact that these policies were in place under Obama. I suppose I would vote Liberal if I were American, but in these situations I truly do see where Trump supporters are coming from when they talk about media bias. No one cared about the refugee children before it was used to attack Trump – perhaps because no one was reporting on it.

            Australia has an incredibly harsh policy of dealing with refugees and asylum seekers (we detain them for indefinite periods in heinous detention centres off-shore), so I guess you could say our human rights record is just as bad as America’s; yet our media is going crazy about it, no one is posting anything on Facebook or marching in the streets. I think it’s because we don’t have such a divisive leader as Trump, so no one is using it as a rallying point to criticise our leaders. And they DESERVE criticism, truly: what they are doing is inhumane. But the problem is, no one CARES enough, because they’re not invested in the situation; they can’t see what they personally can take out of it. Whereas it seems in America right now, people suddenly care about something they never paid any attention to before simply because it’s another reason to hate Trump.

            I’m sorry if this is a cynical thing to say, it’s just the way things come across.

        3. Wait… let’s start with Hillary is demonstrably honest. Whatever else you think , please let’s not pretend that any of the majority of politicians are honest. But specifically Hillary Clinton with how her organization fleeced millions of dollars from individuals who wanted to help those in Haiti and then barely spent any of the money to that end. If you want to criticize Trump, fine. He has enough actions to be criticized but I cannot take you seriously when you defend a woman who stole money meant to help disaster victims and called African Americans males super predators. They’re all corrupt. Let’s start our conversation with honesty.

      5. I struggle to understand this statement. Since “everybody lies” does not make it right. Two wrongs don’t make a right. It is still wrong. When we begin to accept that which we know is wrong because we feel as though we have no choice and must choose the lesser of the two evils is dangerous. It’s easier to go down the slide than use our energy to pull ourselves up. Let’s not take the easy way and continue to use our energy to demand better!

      6. If there is someone who lies constantly and surrounds themselves with others who also lie, that person is a liar. If that person is the president, that person is still a liar. It’s not name calling, it’s telling the truth. Fact checking only does noting when you refuse to look at proof, research, or contrary statements made 10 minutes ago by the sameness spokesperson. I can accept that you did not support Hillary Clinton, but to call anyone in the new show just an out of work liberal, and assert that anything she did would be far worse, is the worst kind of deflection. Politicians on nothing sides could certainly do better by all of those they represented if they stopped playing political games, but let’s focus on what’s is actually happening now, under our current president, and how we can hold this administration accountable for their words and actions.

      7. Janie, as a rational, non-emotional person I don’t understand why pointing out that the president is a liar is ‘hateful’? He has, very demonstrably, lied – and he doesn’t even seem to be bothered or ashamed when he is caught in a lie. I agree with you that all politicians, to some extent, misstate or exaggerate or whatnot. It comes with the territory. But when the person holding the highest office in the land declares “I never said that” and a tweet showing that he said it is *readily available*, it shatters a previously-held societal norm regarding presidential behavior.

        I can understand why this might be attractive to some people. It make politics more exciting for them, possibly, to have a candidate/president who’s not like the buttoned-up presidents we’ve known. “He’s a wild card! He keeps you guessing!” But in our connected world, international norms of behavior matter. Here’s a quote from a diplomat (it was a comment to a story in the New York Times):

        “I served the US Government overseas as Trump assumed the presidency and it was striking how quickly the tenor of meetings with allied countries and host-country officials changed. At first, among our country’s friends, it was a smile and a shrug, a shared sense of surprise, and then a return to business. Similarly, country officials were unsure what had transpired but assumed that once the campaign died down that America would mostly stay the course on foreign policy, diplomacy, and trade. So, in those early months, America retained a seat at the table. However, very quickly it became clear that Trump was a different kind of president – mercurial, uninformed, and unpredictable – who eschewed traditional policies, undermined allies and brought into question the policies and values we would project abroad.

        As his emissaries those same qualities were projected onto us. Countries did not have the confidence to work toward long term agreements with us as there were few assurances we would honor them. And so people stopped listening and stopped calling. Countries like China readily stepped into the void. Thugs like Duterte were emboldened. Even before Trump pulled out of the Paris Accords, officially declared the end of the TPP, or upended the Iran deal we were a marginalized nation, less powerful, less respected, and certainly less loved than we had been.

        Trump is not making America Great Again, but accelerating our decline while practicing a gleeful cruelty.”

      8. Thank you so much for supporting President Trump! The liberals didn’t do anything to help the illegal immigrants, sine Bill Clinton began the separation of children from their families. Actually, a lot of children flooding across the border are by themselves and the ones that have an adult could be coming across with an abuser! President Trump is made to look responsible by the Democrats to ruin his accomplishments. President Trump 2020!

        1. Thank You! A voice of fact and reason!!

      9. But he IS a liar, and while it is true that all politicians/people lie, Trump is a systematic and unapologetic liar.
        Also, why “thank God”?
        Our standing in the world is diminished, we’ve alienated our allies while the POTUS praises dictators and despots. We are making great stides towards collapse the economy with a trade war. The US has cleared the way for China to be the most powerful, influential and respected nation in the world. China! Our education system is underfunded which means future generations will not be able to complete with the students from around the globe who will be the innovators of the future. All of this before we even get to the issue at hand which is a humanitarian crisis. Yes, I would love for the governments of Honduras and Guatemala to speak up and to step up to protect their own people so that refugees do not have to flee their own countries. But, guess what, those governments are super corrupt, with concentrations of power and no functioning representative democracy. This is the path we are careening down now. Our military has been commissioned to set up areas to hold immigrants in a concentrated area — concentration… it’s chilling.
        What in the world did you think Hilary was going to do that makes this a better alternative? I am baffled? Did you anticipate that we would have been at war with another country? Engaged in a civil war with the MAGA diehards? Those are terrifying prospects, and if that was your worry, I suppose I get it. I am just unable to see how any of the current administration’s assaults on the most core principals of the nation and the rapid disintegration of our position in the world as a beacon of possibility are defensible in any way.
        And Janie, if you were being sarcastic and I misread your intent… sorry for the big ‘ol thing I just did 🙂

      10. People who tell lies are liars. That’s what liars are.

        Hate doesn’t start from calling out lies. Hate starts from lies being used as political fodder, spectacle, media attention, and erosion of democracy.

      11. If Hillary had won, I would still have health care, a nazi protest never would have happened, the mental health/ gun purchasing policy would still be in place, shows like handmaidens tale wouldn’t be something that truly terrifies women because it would never cross our minds that it could actually happen, CHILDREN would still be with their parents.
        What’s the absolute worst thing Hillary could have done. I’m curious.

        1. Health care hasn’t changed since Trump came into office. I will tell you that several people I know was no longer able to afford healthcare under the Obama plan and as a result now pays the yearly penalty and still have no health care. They’re just out of more money.

      12. I agree

    5. I think there has been a lot of division because we are labeled as those who voted for Trump and how could we. When given the choice (which there wasn’t one) I couldn’t bring myself to vote for Clinton. To me, she is just plain evil. I know that half the country thinks otherwise. I am not putting these people down. It came down to who is the lesser evil. Trump was willing to address more issues that I thought were important to me than she was. The clincher – abortion. I could never stand in front of God and say I voted for someone who felt no wrong when it came down to abortion. What the bottom line is, stop dividing families because they voted for Trump. We truly didn’t have a choice. We didn’t have good options on either side of the table and it is our own fault. When Republicans could have rallied together behind a good candidate, they divided. Same on the Democratic side. They divided and didn’t conquer. Plain and simple. The border issue has been around for a long time. At least this president is willing to step on toes to get something done. The cages were from the Obama administration. Can’t trust the media.

      1. Donna,
        I understand that this is not the point of this conversation but I was hoping you could elaborate on your stance on abortion. I feel that it is dangerous to women who are unable to support a child or even make the emotional and financial investments necessary for giving birth. Could you explain your side of this issue please?

        I also want to respond to your “can’t trust the media” statement. If you do not trust the media, then where do you get your information from and how do you make sure that you’re getting the full story? for example, while your “cages from the Obama administration” comment is not entirely inaccurate, this months crisis was caused by Trump’s 0 tolerance policy.

        This was not meant to be accusatory. I’m just curious about your words. Thanks

        1. I don’t want to speak for Donna, but people are pro-life because they genuinely believe terminating a pregnancy is killing a human life. Would you be ok with a mother killing her baby after it is born because she doesn’t have the financial or emotional ability to support it? I understand that a lot of people don’t think of babies in the womb as the same as babies after birth, but if you had that genuine belief, you would view abortion the same as killing a baby out of the womb. I know a lot of people believe people who are pro-life want to control women or don’t care about women or women’s health, but please believe me when I tell you this is not the case. I appreciate you asking your question in a respectful way and hope you and others will believe me that being pro-life doesn’t automatically make you anti-women.

          1. How often do you think women get abortions? Do you think they look like they are easy? I know several people who have had abortions for devistating reasons – threats to their lives & problems with the fetus that mean the child won’t live a week after birth. These women have wanted children and been devistated. The abortion laws that pro livers stand behind don’t even allow for these exceptions.
            What I truely cannot understand is how someone can be pro life and not have a heart for the lives that are already in the world. Assault riffles in schools? Caging children? Limiting social services? If you care about life, I would love to see it extend beyond fetuses.

            Back to immigration – can someone please speak to their right leaning perspective about boarder walls and immigration?? I too am very curious about what about Trumps stance is appealing?

          2. If you’re going to call yourself “pro-life” or “pro-child” it has be to more than pro-birth. Refusing to help children and families in need outside the uterus is not Christian, is not moral and is not pro-life. This applies to health care, pre-natal care, pre-K, nutrition, childcare, abuses in foster care and much more, and it clearly applies to what is being done here.

      2. Totally agree! Great comment!!!

        1. Gail,
          Thank you for sharing the article. I think it’s important to recognize that immigration has been an ongoing issue, but that was only a snippet of the facts/article. The rest of the article goes on to explain (briefly) why it happen then and the difference between then and now

  6. Emily – thank you very much indeed for this very thoughtful post! I really appreciate the time and consideration you have put into explaining your position as well as the platform you have provided – through this blog – for people on both sides of the debate to post their views.

    I won’t add any more as I think I’ve exhausted my posting limits on this topic under the question of lilac.

    1. Thanks, Bea. xx

  7. There are just no words. I’m still trying to pull myself out of helplessness honestly. I volunteer with Naomi Project, which pairs mentors with at-risk pregnant women and new moms. Most of our work is with undocumented families, and over the past 18 months people are refusing to work with us out of fear that we’ll report them to the government. It’s the lack of trust you’re talking about and it’s preventing people from accepting HELP. These women are in truly terrifying situations — they need healthcare and food, they’re crammed into a 1 BR apartment with 6 other people, working multiple jobs, often struggling in an abusive relationship — OH and trying to take care of a newborn! They’re so paralyzed by fear they can’t even accept a lifeline, they’re just silently suffering.

    I look around at my family who largely voted for Trump and I’m like REALLY?! Have we grown so far apart that we no longer share the same fundamental values of honesty, empathy, and decency anymore? I listened to my grandparents, who are otherwise so kind and generous, defend Trump, give him the benefit of the doubt, be optimistic that he would “surround himself with smart people” after he became President. I’m sorry, but no. We knew Trump was a liar with no morals well before he took office (hell, I remember watching the debates and during one of the post-interviews he refused to admit that he said something that he CLEARLY SAID just 10 minutes prior). That kind of willful cognitive dissonance and inability to admit when you’re wrong or misjudged a situation can be so damaging to our society, and my only comfort is that people are starting to come around. I went to college in the Bible Belt and while most of my friends have been silent these past couple weeks, several of them are speaking out. I see others quietly donating to RAICES or other orgs on Facebook. It’s pretty hard to be anti-abortion but support innocent kids in cages, so if this is the straw that breaks the camel’s back, so be it.

    As for me I’m trying to stay above water, support the helpers, and call out friends and family when they try to justify inaction through misdirection or helplessness. And most of all, gearing up for November so we can vote these people out of office and elect new leadership. Hugs to all! Stay strong! And keep going.

    1. Sorry guys, I didn’t seee my previous post go through so tried to recreate it from memory lol.

      1. I had the same experience with double posting, lol.

        1. Sorry. Its happening these days! We aren’t monitoring in case you think it was us delaying. Just a big site so it takes a few to load. Thanks for your patience. xx

        2. Glad I’m not the only one! 🙂

  8. The New York Times podcast The Daily did a good job laying out the history of this practice, what previous administrations tried, what worked, what didn’t, what changed with this administration. There are several episodes over the past couple of weeks that are worth listening to (~1.5 hours of listening total). For me, the key takeaway is that this option, this policy of prosecutions first, has been around for years. Previously, no one was willing to enact it. Even last year when John Kelly was DHS Secretary (before he moved over to the WH to be Chief of Staff), he declined the option. Pursuing criminal proceedings first is the major shift here. Our justice system was not and is not prepared for that influx. DHS (Border Patrol) and HHS (who takes care of the now-unaccompanied minors whose parents are in criminal custody for crossing the border illegally) were not prepared. Think of the federal government like the largest oil tanker or aircraft carrier; these ships don’t turn on a dime. And, when you try to make them, the torque can cause chaos (things go flying, people get seasick) and capsize the vessel. This mess will reverberate for lifetimes. And, Americans should be prepared for our government to be sued by the impacted border crossers and children. I predict those proceedings will be lengthy, heartbreaking and costly (billions and billions paid out of taxpayer dollars in settlements to children especially).

    1. Even prosecuting more people trying to come in the border will raise our costs! And keep in mind that the first-time families doing this are only committing a misdemeanor. And they get a few days in jail.
      Our response to this is very costly.
      And our immigrant population is only about 14 percent (less than Germany’s).
      This issue of people migrating is not going to change. So there needs to be more creative ways to address global poverty and violence. Trump’s actions are mindless.

      1. This is so true… there a major impetus here pushed by the private prison system that benefits in a major way with the more people we detain. Also, it’s true that the Obama administration also detained women and children (albeit TOGETHER) in horrid detention facilities, where the children were malnourished and often were unable to get necessary medical treatment. I am an immigration attorney and my partner volunteered down at the facilities on two different occasions and came back in tears. And this was pre-Trump.

        I’m not defending the current practices – my point is that while this is much about the anti-immigration platform that Trump ran on, it’s also about the money that private prisons make when our government detains people.

        Like you, Emily, I can’t even think about the family separation without nearly sobbing. I just keep hugging my baby and little girls at night and fighting back the tears.

    2. I listened to most of that podcast as well (on my runs in the morning) and was actually going to recommend it. For the most part I felt it was educational on the nuances of the problem and didn’t just blame Trump which is always refreshing. Obama, Bush and Clinton were all unable to solve this problem. This isn’t the answer but I think no one knows what is.

      1. I listened to these as well and found them very informative.

      2. On the topic of podcasts addressing immigration – I just listened to a Revisionist History episode called “General Chapman’s Last Stand” (season 3 episode 5). The episode discusses the history of the border starting in the early 70s. At that time, the border was very porous so laborers (data shows those who crossed were largely young, male laborers) would come to the US (yes, illegally) for 6 months or so and then return home for 6 months or so. They would often do this over many years, a process called circular migration. As a result, net migration (those who crossed the border and stayed in the US) was quite low becasue the laborers returned to their families.

        Now that the option of going home doesn’t exist, those who make it across the border never leave the US and they eventually send for their families. If the “policy” of allowing circular migration was allowed to continue, it’s believed that the number of illegal immigrants in the US today would be one-third what it currently is. What if building a wall actually keeps illegal immigrants in rather than keeping them out? Food for thought.

  9. This doesn’t answer any of your questions, but please take a look at the executive order (). While families will not be immediately separated, “illegal” immigration will now be a criminal offense, which will lead to children being separated from their families when their parents are charged criminally. This isn’t over, and we still have a lot of work to do.

    1. From what I’ve read, it’s more complicated than that. Families will still be kept together even when charged criminally. There are strict rules that govern the types of facilities where children can be held, so there’s the question of where these families will actually stay, the fact that there’s not really room for this kind of influx in the first place. Additionally, there’s a federal court ruling that states that children are only allowed to be detained for 20 days. Trump has asked that ruling to be overturned (not sure if he’s formally appealed it), which would give the government the ability to detain these children (and their families) indefinitely. I’ve read that the decision is unlikely to be reversed, but it’s still scary.

  10. Thank you, Emily for this post. The United States has always been a country made up of immigrants. How dare we not help the most vulnerable among us. I can’t believe that there are any good people left supporting Trump.

    1. How about the Trump supporters that care about human trafficking, the safety of all, and the law. These children are innocent and we should protect them. Human trafficking is a huge problem! I don’t understand how the left can be so ignorant! Obama detained over 90,000 children, but you’re mad at Trump?!

      1. Taylor, your claim is false:

        From AP:
        “President Barack Obama did not oversee the separation of 90,000 migrant children and their parents at the U.S. border, contrary to a misleading online report and claims circulating on social media.

        “The claim, published on a conservative website, was repeated on social media throughout the week …”

      2. If the children are victims of human traffickers, should they be treated like stray animals, caged and unloved? I say no. And yet US OFFICIALS are doing this.

      3. How is separating children from their parents and locking them in cages helpful? If you are prolife , you must be it for ALL people.

    2. Legal immigrants!

      1. What?
        And what does human trafficking have to do with this?
        “ignorant”??????

  11. Emily,

    Seriously: people are expecting you to comment on this nightmare?

    From one working mom/ happily married woman to another: remember- you don’t need to do it all/be everything to everyone and you probably can’t to have a peaceful and thriving family and successful business. You’re so crazy accomplished…and Doing/Being It All is a trap that many of us learn late in life- often around peri-menopause!

    I have a full life and lots of creative (amateur) outlets. But I’m a doctor and no one at work also expects me to be a master plumber and musical expert laying down some sick beats and ready to exhibit my oil paintings next week.

    It seems insane to me that you’re pressured to be more than you already are when your central product is a really valuable fun, deeply informative and amusing style/design/renovation blog. If you’re fine with it all, great. But just be careful not to feel that you have to take it all on- especially when there’s a seemingly endless barrage of shocking issues to cope with these days. I’m still not sure why readers expect you to be their online BFF or therapist!

    1. “I’m still not sure why readers expect you to be their online BFF or therapist”

      Oh my gosh, so well said. I really appreciate that you speak on so many topics, some not related to design/fashion, but it isn’t kind of us to chastise you, or anyone, (ON A POST ABOUT LILAC) for not doing it as fast as WE think you should. Give a girl a second to breathe! I can’t imagine even how long it took to get your thoughts together, research all of this so you are informed on both sides AND type it all up. I bet you felt the weight of the world on your shoulders this week, partially because of words said by strangers and directed to you, and I’m sorry for that.

      I know I’m not answering the questions you asked in the post, but I know plenty of others will, and I’m ready to read those comments. Thanks Emily and team.

    2. In the past Emily has bravely used her unique platform to encourage healthy dialogue among women readers of differing opinions. It’s a brilliant use of her blog to help get us each out of our own inevitable echo chambers. I personally really appreciate her thoughtful contributions and the opportunity to read others opinions. Thank you Emily. I was one of the Lilac contributors and really really appreciate your bravery.

    3. Normally I wouldn’t expect this from any random lifestyle blog. But Emily is different and spoke her mind in the past about hot topics. And I’m thankful for this and the platform she gives for honest discussion (for example about the Trump election).

    4. Alice,
      I don’t do anything I don’t want to do (I mean that seriously, not in a passive aggressive way – ask my friends:)) and if I didn’t want to write about this i would just put a quick ‘how to help the kids’ post. Historically I have written about and asked the audience for help on controversial issues so yes its expected but its also something that I feel compelled to do. I knew I was staying silent too long. But as a reader of this blog even I was reader for someone to start talking. Additionally and more importantly I can’t find ANY site that I trust where we get real opinions of the more conservative side. I’m desperate to know more and hear every side because I myself don’t always love how the some of the media slants things towards my views. Anyway, all to say yes I feel a responsibility but I kinda think we all should, too. Besides I secretly really want to be a therapist 🙂 I want to learn from our readers to help understand.

      1. I appreciate the dialog on this, but I agree it’s not something Emily HAS to do for her platform. I find the discussion interesting to follow because we are having respectful discussions on the topic which is so NOT like discussions on news sites where the trollers hang out and just want to fuel the fire.

        I want to learn more. I don’t think children should be treated inhumanely, but I also am a proponent for following laws. If I were to go to another country, I would follow the laws to get there. There are those who want to legally come to this country but can’t because of the limits. The children aren’t old enough to know what is legal or not, but I am sure many adults who come here illegally know what they are going to face if they get caught. They take the risk, they take the “punishment”.

        As for immigrants, I am all for them. Illegal immigrants, as people, don’t scare me. I just want everyone to do it the lawful way. If we don’t follow the laws, what is the point of having laws at all for anything? Do we want to then become a lawless country?

    5. Alice, I completely agree. It is very presumptuous of people to dictate what subjects Emily addresses. We are not entitled to her thoughts and feelings!

    6. Yes! I expect!
      Not for this blog to be an “online BFF or therapist” but to speak UP in times when something is happening that is so horrifying and terrifying that people are comparing it to Nazi policy.
      Maybe before it was ok to ignore politics but not now. If Emily can reach out to her 1000s of readers and touch the heart of someone, even one person, who might think differently about voting for the monster in charge of the USA next time then that is a good thing.

    7. Emily,
      I have the same thoughts as Alice. (Thanks for summing it up so well, Alice!) I saw a rather pushy comment yesterday asking why you hadn’t addressed this on your blog yet, and honestly, it made me a little angry. This is YOUR blog and YOUR space, and you will speak on issues when you feel moved to. I know that interaction with your readers is important to you, but please don’t let anyone bully you into writing about subjects that you may not feel ready to address or that you may not wish to address at all in your space.

      I do want to thank you for approaching this from an approach of inclusion and trying to understand people on the other side of the political spectrum.

    8. Hi Alice – I was the one to post the request that Emily express her voice on this matter. I am an avid follower of her blog and have always appreciated her amazing interior design skills but also her ability to engage readers from both sides of the spectrum on a controversial topic .

      I know Emily is an adult who can choose who she wishes to engage with and what she blogs about. She could have completely ignored my questions but she didn’t – and for that I am grateful.

      I really do find the comments here enlightening – all the way from yours to people who have talked about their own personal experience and how they process and consider this global problem.

      I am not American but British and I have a very different Weltanschaung to many who live in the USA. I find the comments here really do help me to understand how my fellow English speakers across the pond tick and why they think a certain way.

      My questions have been considered entitled, presumptuous and pressuring. But to be honest – in the light of the tragedy that these children are going through – I’m on Melania Trump’s coats side …

    9. IDK –

      Emily has a history of showing empathy – we ALL make up this democracy no matter what creative field we’re in-

      Sometimes it’s hard to show up and look at pretty pictures of home when you know the world is on fire for other families and it’s decent to say so. All my fave bloggers have.

      Emily doesn’t owe us her personal life, but taking a moment to have conversation about kindness and empathy never hurt.

  12. Emily, I appreciate your wanting to see both sides but this administration is 100% focused on personal gain. If a starving child asked Trump for his hamburger, I doubt he would hand it over even though he could immediately buy another one. Additionally if these children and families were pale skinned, blond, blue eyed children, they would be treated very, very differently by the administration.

    1. I do not like to admit it, but based on what I’ve heard others say to justify this, I think your last sentence is so unfortunately true. There is such a strong anger and fear of people that look and talk differently than what you do. I wish everyone could see that we all want to have happy and healthy children, random moments of uncontrollable laughter and inside jokes with our spouse, quality family time, food on the table, a safe home, and friends to support and love. We are really not different from each other when it comes to what matters most.

      1. A story form the northern border: there is a beach that people in both the US and Canada walk that happens to straddle the border. There is a sign, but it is hard to see in the bush that has grown up around it. If you know people who live in this area you have heard stories of accidentally walking across the border and being politely informed by US border patrol that you have to turn around and go back. However, a young brown woman recently accidentally crossed in this same way and was detained for 2 weeks. You’d have to be naive to think the colour of her skin was not a factor in the different treatment she received. Here is the story with a picture of the beach/invisible border:

      2. It is very hard not to see the actions of this administration, from the first weeks, as a sustained attack on people of color.

    2. 10000000% agree

      1. I think that this post was written verrry carefully because Emily is a kind conscientious person who does try to please everybody and trust everybody and not alienate her fan base. But I was shocked that there was no mention of the outsize role RACE and WHITENESS have in this and many of the current administration’s decisions. These are explicit acts of WHITE SUPREMACY. Trump supporters have the right to say they aren’t white supramacists, but they 1000% voted for one. I think this specific issue touched so many of us because we have children we love, or parents we love, or families we love. If there weren’t babies/children involved, we would not be responding in the same way.

        1. 1000000% AMEN to this comment. THIS is implicit in all of the discussions/concern/“crises” No one is overly concerned until the situation might have relevance in their life. So now, while it is heartening to see, I find it a bit too little, too late.

          Trump supporters and the wider American people have quietly stood by and allowed white supremacism to rebrand itself as “making America great again” and it has led to this. And it will get worse. But I really don’t understand why people didn’t see this coming. They knew what Trump was and who his constituents were. They knew. And they let it happen. Because it feels powerful to be “better than.”

    3. “Additionally if these children and families were pale skinned, blond, blue eyed children, they would be treated very, very differently by the administration”. Sorry, but this is a ridiculous statement. Where is the outrage that parents who know that crossing the border is illegal are putting their children in harms way? Do you really honestly think that if thousands of Norwegians suddenly showed up at the border without documentation and without legal entry that we would just say “Sure, come on in?” Just be honest and say you want completely open borders! Then everyone including those from “white” countries and Asian countries and black countries could just roll on in with a kid and they’d be let into the country, given free healthcare and education and welfare because “its the right thing to do” because people in this country are “too rich”. I get that there are people who are suffering in their own countries — but why are we bashing America and not holding those countries responsible for protecting their own citizens? You can’t put everyone in the lifeboat no matter how much you want to.

      I’m sure that I’ll get skewered for this point of view and accused of all kinds of terrible motives and character flaws. But I see not a single one of you talking about what a good immigration policy would be. Open borders ? At least be honest about it. If you can’t detain families with children, what’s the alternative?
      Just let them in the country to go on their way with no way to track them? How long before you think some unscrupulous coyotes will be selling or stealing children for people to cross with?

      And please, don’t start in on the “we need these people to do the jobs others won’t”. Also ridiculous. You think it’s OK to exploit brown people so you can your toilets cleaned on the cheap or be able to buy cheap produce? Americans would do the jobs if you paid them more money. Supply and demand is a natural law. If you flood the market with cheap labor then you don’t get any wage growth and have to resort to mandating higher minimum wage and its a vicious cycle that helps no one in the long run.

      There is a lot of hand wringing and virtue signaling going on here. Someone, anyone, give me an actual solution to the immigration problem that isn’t mired in emotion. Simple yes or no question — should anyone who wants to be able to come across our borders and live here without going through legal channels?

      1. Trump is on record saying he wants/prefers immigrants from Norway and other similar countries. Look it up, he said it. He doesn’t want the brown-skinned ones.

      2. “an actual solution to the immigration problem that isn’t mired in emotion”

        I think that you should try having a little more emotion. There is no reason that any of us were born in America; it was just dumb luck. We didn’t earn this. Others have just as much right to be here as we do.

        1. OK, so you’re answer is “open borders” for all. Thank you for your honesty at least. I disagree completely, but at least you have stated clearly what you want.

        2. Your reply to this comment resounded with me. Do we want decisions or policies being made about people’s lives, especially children’s lives, without emotion? God I hope not. It is the dehumanizing comments and terminology that makes Trump’s intentions so apparent and his rhetoric so dangerous. It is a complex issue, but to live in a world where a decision is made without consideration for the people so desperate to be here and to read that anyone would think that’s the way to do it is abhorrent to me.

        3. Yes, Tess, we need to know the background story behind these people’s history and reason for coming to the U.S.A. Could people fleeing violent gangs have moved to another part of Mexico? I have great empathy for Americans living in neighborhoods with violent gangs. I’ve been thinking about moving and for the past year, I’ve been looking at on-line crime statistics in small cities all over America. It is horrendous. People would be shocked if they saw the truth of what is going on here. To say nothing of the extreme poverty, lack of education and history of incarciration in areas of Chicago, Milwaukee, etc. And then there is Appalachia. I used to work at a community college and 85% of the free- tuition students were illegal immigrants. People have jobs that required that the spaces be filled by and fill them they did. We have so many people, the working poor, who will never be able to go to college. Don’t say any American can get ahead in America, if one’s entire adult family is incarcirated currently and routinely and many relatives have been murdered, those people live in a different world than we do. I want the government to help poor Americans get on their feet. When they are on their feet, we can help others. As far as these poor Mexican people are concerned, we need to encourage their government to help them. That is probably wrong, as we don’t help ours, so why would they help theirs?
          ~Discouraged

      3. Your response is 1000000% spot on. Thank you!

      4. Trixie I believe wholeheartedly with your comment. Other countries have strict immigration policies. If you look at Australia; there is no way you can stay in their country illegally or ever gain citizenship by doing so. We do have laws. Laws are made to PROTECT NOT TO HURT and when these laws are broken, there ARE consequences. You.cannot realistically pick out the people who are good and bad that are breaking the law and decide. If you were to do that. that would not be a just way. Because who is to say and you could not physically do that! The Law is the Law. Laws need to be changed through our democratic system where we the people decide; not one person with a click of the pen. If we were to become a country without laws, can you imagine the havoc of the unscrupulous on our society! We would not be living the life we live today without a just-law abiding society.
        I feel horrible for these children that these parents are bringing them over here and may or may not know the repercussions. However, if the laws are not reinforced, who is to decide the fate of these and the many many children to come hereafter. What is the plan for these poor children?

        1. Val Ciger, not all laws are just. Not all laws are moral. As an attorney it pains me to say that but it’s a fact. Do you know that it was a law in Germany that Jews had to wear a yellow star? You implication that because something is a law, that makes it right, is disheartening to say the least.

          In American we have a legal system, but we don’t have a JUSTICE system.

          1. Elise – yes- and in fact Jews were decreed “unlawful ” in Nazi Germany as part of the dehumanising process. They were considered “Untermenschen” – literally “under people” with no access to justice.

            Today, when refugees who are seeking aslylum are denied their international rights, criminalised, separated from their children and put into dog cages , the Trump regime is dehumanising them too and treating them as Untermenschen”

        2. Elise. I find it hard to believe you are an attorney and said that! Obviously, you did not study Constitutional Law!

      5. To answer some of your questions: 1) Ankle monitoring with regular check-ins with ICE throughout removal proceedings have been over 90% effective in keeping families out of detention facilities while navigating the former civil, now criminal proceedings for unlawfully crossing ports of entry to claim asylum (the policy is called Family Case Management and had been monstrously effective in keeping the majority of family asylum seekers out of detention through the last two administrations). 2) The USCBP (border patrol) could also stop blocking regular ports of entry for asylum seekers to cross safely into the US and allow them to avoid surrendering at alternative checkpoints, which then triggers criminal processing. Most migrant families are completely unaware that border patrol has blocked traditional ports of entry where asylum seekers typically cross and learn of the “zero-tolerance” policy during their processing with CBP. Many parents have no idea their children will be taken from them. Keep in mind they have travelled thousands of miles in search of safe-haven from torture, death threats, physical and sexual trauma already. Moreover, people fleeing persecution in Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras often do not have regular access to TV, internet, or telephones. Honduras is one of the poorest countries in the world. Their exposure to US immigration policy most often happens in direct confrontation with CPB and through information diffusion in their social networks, which is often unreliable. Furthermore, for those that know about family separation, being away from their son or daughter is often times a more effective way to ensure their basic safety in cases in which they are fleeing death threats at home. Let that sink in for a minute and tell me you still demand “outrage” and finger pointing at asylum seekers for finding a way to keep their children alive. It is not “illegal” to apply for asylum, however, the US government has made it very difficult in the last six weeks to do so forcing desperate individuals to cross an unlawful points of entry. There is no turning around and going back home, on foot, without a smuggler.

        I wish it was so simple a solution as to think raising US wages would draw Americans into low-wage labor. Its not. Structural inflation would then trigger wage increases across other sectors of employment and no profit-maximizing business owner is going to raise all wages in his company to attract American workers (see Piore 1979, Birds of Passage if you are so inclined to read about this more). Think about it this way: if the owner at a restaurant wanted to hire blonde, blue eyes dishwashers, they would have to increase the wage to attract them and likely provide benefits and full-time employment. When you raise the wage of the busboy/dishwashers, they are now making as much or close to the server and hostess, who are used to having a higher position on the social hierarchy in the restaurant. If their wages don’t increase concomitantly, they will demand a raise or leave for alternative employment and so on and so on. Americans have come to expect (and rightly so) certain social status and prestige attached to wages, employment security and benefits. Raising wages triggers structural inflation for other jobs that business owners would rather not pay, so instead, they hire low wage immigrant workers who are willing to work those jobs because their social status is often rooted back home and not in the US social strata. Part of the reason why lawful migration through formal channels is problematic is because major employers in the US (big agricultural, construction, textiles, service sector) are keen on hiring undocumented workers to maximize their profits. The blame cannot solely be on those who come to the US to make more money. This is a supply and demand problem and even that characterization woefully simplifies a deeply complex, institutional problem. I’m a professor of migration so I think about the complexity of these issues daily and cannot boil down 100 years of research and immigration policy in a paragraph. But if you are truly open to the questions you ask in your post, there are, indeed, answers that are not reactionary and emotional and are also informed by empirical research and theory. (See Joseph Carens, the Case for Open Borders, for an example of the argument for open borders if you truly want to understand this argument: ).

        1. To Lauren the migration professor (and of course to Emily!) – a huge THANK YOU FOR THIS.

        2. Thank you! Fantastic information.

        3. Wow, Lauren. Thank you so much. I’d love to continue this conversation and interview you. Are you open to more conversations? email [email protected] and lets talk. thanks so much for your comment. xx

      6. Separating families is a very different issue from open borders. These parents are being deported back to their countries without their kids. They are never going to see them again. We can barely keep our dmv organized – how are they going to reunite these families?

        And another note – we should be holding the employers responsible who are hiring these people for cheap labor.

      7. At the very least, when this policy was implemented they should have had a way to identify children, toddlers and babies, and how they were related to the parents or family members they traveled with. Failing to do so demonstrates complete incompetence, utter disregard for human dignity, and the compassion that children and babies deserve, regardless of where they come from. You are welcome to believe a policy of separation is a good idea. But please don’t defend how badly it’s been implemented, and the horrific results and unknown consequences we as a society will have to deal with collectively.

      8. Thank you Trixie for the above sentiment. I appreciate you reeling it in and challenging people to stop looking at this situation from an emotional lens, and asking for ideas that will actually benefit our neighbors. Answer to your question is “no”, and none of us want children separated from their parents, but, they are breaking the law, and are willing to risk putting their children in harms way. However, it is terrible to imagine to be so desperate, that you feel it is better to risk this, than fighting for a better life in your own country. Personally, I need to do something that helps me cope with this hopelessness. Right in my own community there are people that need so much help. I opened my home to a homeless family for two months to bridge a gap so they could find work and find affordable housing. Last year, I helped rehab a trailer house so a family could have affordable housing and their child could stay in same school district. I do what I can, besides working full time and raising my family. I want to live in a society that helps with head and heart. I agree we need to keep these families together, but what do we do when we can’t help our own families in our own communities? I need to educate myself more on the topic, regarding the policies and economics behind it that make it so complicated. There is so much we don’t understand. Thanks for this discussion Emily!

      9. i’m a canadian LOLing at “free healthcare”. get outta here. who cares what country anyone was born in. we’re all humans and this canadian has no issue paying taxes so a syrian or mexican who is living in canada can have a better life.

      10. Yes. This is the hard truth. And, Emily, this is exactly the forum where we should air our thoughts, even if and especially if they diverge from one another. Since the time of Abigail Adams, political matters have been discussed and in many cases improved in the domestic realm. Home is where the heart and mind are. Now, let’s please remember that as we well intentioned folk try to reckon with the complicated realities of our world. I bristle at the pat characterization of Trump supporters as racist. Let’s also please remember that according to NPR as well as the NYT, the Obama administration deported more illegal immigrants than any other administration. That’s not an indictment of him, it’s a sign that this is a long standing issue that doesn’t have easy answers. I suppose the bigger issue is that there are places in the world where people are willing to take incredible, dangerous risks to leave in favor of the chance to come to the relatively more stable USA. And that, friends, is not something that the USA alone can solve.

      11. You’ll get skewered, not because you have a differing point of view, but because your point of view is based on lies and assumptions and ignorance. Sorry, just being honest with you.

      12. I hear what you’re saying.

        It’s not up to us citizens to come up with an immigration policy that works for the country. But we can demand that the ones in charge can come up with something more humane than treating everyone as a criminal, and forcebly removing children from their parents. Cant we at least agree that causing massive trauma and suffering is not a good idea?

        Also, i do think its important for wealthy countries to house citizens of other countries fleeing from danger. Countries all over the world do that in healthy ways every day.

        The way this current US administration is handling this crisis is shocking and sad.

        What strikes me most is that i thought most republicans were christians with traditional values, house the poor, feed the hungry etc. Does that not apply to actual humans?

      13. I completly agree.

    4. That is such an unfair statement about president Trump. He donates his salary to charity and works for our country for free. Please don’t believe everything you hear on the mainstream media. This problem has been around for a long time. Trump is trying to protect these kids and our country. Do you lock your doors at night? A country is not a country without borders. We want to help those who are truly seeking asylum but some of these situations are not legitimate. The hatred that is coming from the media, Hollywood and the left in general is just horrible. I’m sorry but when democrats and the media start calling the opposition Nazis, they have lost the argument and have no solutions. They are desperate to take the news off the great economy and low unemployment number—not to mention the IG report about FBI corruption. This is a manufactured crisis playing on people’s emotions. Listen to the interviews of the border control agents to get the true facts of what is going on at the border.

      1. Totally agree with you. Of course this is sad, but at least we have a President who is trying to fix the problem. I have waited my whole life for a President with a business background. Look what he is GETTING DONE. I call this real service to our country. I come from a military family and we are loving that President Trump is so patriotic! I was open minded with President Obama, but I am feeling very positive with the Trump Adm.

        1. Emily — you are only feeding these people by asking for their opinion.
          I’m glad you are benefiting from the administration, Sally! Screw the children, amIright!?

          🙁

          1. “These people”. You are creating a divide, and not a discussion. Sit down with someone who sees things differently than yourself and you might realize you have a lot more in common. I, for one, probably am not on the same political spectrum as you, but I don’t believe “screw the children.” I wrote letters to my reps, demanded action, and hold accountable those who are in office, left or right. The dialogue of “F Trump and half the country that voted for him” is divisive and removes the opportunity to work together to create change for the better. Because believe it or not, we’re all a lot more aligned than you think.

        2. Sally, I want you to know, or at least really consider, that Trump is a really bad business man. He lives atop a house of cards. It’s all a show. His tax returns would likely demonstrate this but nonetheless, there’s plenty of public information that shows this. He isn’t patriotic. That’s all show too. He’s playing you. You’re being manipulated. Don’t balk at that – he’s VERY GOOD at manipulating. You have to seek it, but the truth is out there, and it’s not on Fox News. You have to want it! It’s upsetting and will maybe make you an outcast in your home and among your friends. It’s hard. But seeing the truth is real bravery.

        3. Sally, there were times when I thought ‘great, he at least has a business background’ but then I reminded myself that running a democracy is almost the opposite of a business. A democratic country should benefit the people, not the business. This distinction is massive.

          1. I have so appreciated this post and it’s subsequent dialogue.

            I will say, I really don’t understand your comment here. One of the central ways a country benefits it’s people is by advocating for a healthy and robust economy that affords its community a livable wage and opportunity for growth and advancement.

            Competitive and beneficial trade negotiations, participation in international organizations, domestic spending allocations etc are extremely relevant to democracy and a free and successful population. A strong economy has the capacity to lift up those in need. A weak one very much limits that potential.

            A democracy is definitely not the opposite of a business.

          2. We are not a democracy. We are a republic. There is a difference.

      2. Hi Gail,
        Not trying to bait or attack you, but I do want to respond to your nazi comment. Over the past year, I have found many of the cries of “nazi-ism” to be hyperbolic. In this instance, however, I was really shaken by the parallels between Nazi Germany & what the implementation of this zero tolerance policy looks like. Specifically, I am referencing the cages, the separation of families without explanation or tracking, and the use of dehumanizing language like “infestation” and “animal.” This is not to say that I am calling individuals nazis, but I do think there are troubling parallels between this administration’s actions and actions taken by the nazis.
        I don’t mean to be overly assumptive, but my guess would be that many of the “nazi” comments you’ve heard are more likely talking about policy & actions than name calling.

        1. When I heard that the lie they were saying to a lot of kids who were with their parents, in order to separate them more willingly was “you’re just going to go take a shower” I was chilled to my core. If that’s not an echo of extermination camps I don’t know what is.

      3. Works for free? Trump and his family are making millions of dollars off of his presidency. Crime levels are at historic lows in the U.S. As you say, the economy is “booming.” If illegal immigration was such an economic depressor, how is that possible?

        1. Yes, he donates his salary as president to charity. Look it up. His net worth has fallen his his presidency. Look it up.

      4. Why would the border control agents give a more true picture of what is happening than the immigrants themselves? It sounds like you are looking for a source that will confirm your pre-existing beliefs.

        1. Read Amber’s post (border agent’s wife) for her perspective.

      5. Gail I am from Germany and following the US politics closely since Donald Trump ran for office.
        What I find really troubling in the US is the strong division between liberal and pro Trump. Often it seems your country can only see black or white, democrat or republican. There seems to be no middle ground or room for compromise. The whole campaign was so incredibly based on division and often just outright hateful and this issue is still going strong. Politics shouldn’t be about one person but rather about what is going to make a country prosper.

        Living in a highly developed democracy is a great privilege and we should be very thankful for all the advantages this political system is giving us. Free press is one of them! I can not understand how in this age it is ok to attack the free press constantly. I it right to assume by mainstream media you are referring to nearly every news outlet despite Fox? Everybody has a right to believe what they want (and where they get their Information from) but it is extremely disturbing to see the majority of news being labeled “fake” just because it is coming from the wrong outlet.

        Looking back at my own country’s horrible history and how the tragedy unfolded it is not wrong to compare the current US situation to the Nazis. Remember your president saying “there were fine people on both sides” after Charlotsville? Your administration is limiting legitimate reasons to seek asylum (domestic violence for example) and taking away more and more rights. “Since becoming Attorney General, Sessions has limited the ability of asylum seekers to appeal decisions, restricted the discretion that immigration judges have over their own dockets, and used his authority as Attorney General to personally review immigration cases.” (source: The New Yorker). Your government is ripping families apart without any need. This all has similarities to the methods the Nazis used and I am horrified to see those arguments being called nonsense by you just because they are not coming from your preferred source.

        1. The Nazis did not feed, cloth, educate, and provide safe shelter to children whose own mothers sometimes put them in danger with strangers. To compare our border facilities to Nazi camps is unforgivable and misguided.

      6. Gail, you’re reading and believing only what you want to because it’s helping you sleep at night. It’s not fun to believe that child abuse is happening now for the purpose of political leverage, but it’s true. Trump has shown he doesn’t truly care about those kids. He has shown he only cares about enriching himself. I wish you’d give these opposing views a fair chance. Want a good example of playing on people’s emotions? That’d be Melania’s jacket yesterday.

        1. You do realize that her jacket was a slap in the face to the media who constantly lie about her. Not one fashion magazine has interviewed her or had her face on their cover since her husband was elected—unlike Michelle Obama. I know her husband is divisive and he is blunt and unfiltered. He is not a politician and that’s the appeal for a lot of people. Politicians don’t accomplish anything. However, because democrats lost the election doesn’t give them the right to destroy their opponents. It’s very easy to follow group thinking but it’s hard and I would say brave to be conservative and actually not think by emotion alone. The left has become unhinged and the horrible things that actors, actresses and others on the left say and suffer no consequences is unbelievable to me. Threats to her child are just one example. Agree?

      7. You do realize that Trump is playing on your emotions? Like a fiddle. He knows how to manipulate the truth and then get people to believe him as the one and only truth. When you put him up on a pedestal, you can’t see into his eyes, leaving you to kiss his feet.

      8. I do lock my doors at night. But if my neighbor 8 houses down ran to my door and told me that his life was in grave danger, I would let him in my house while I processed that information. In your analogy, my house is fully equipped with protections to make sure he doesn’t murder me or take my wallet, which I imagine is your next point.

      9. Although he receives no salary, his company is making lots of money as a result of him being in office. That’s what the 1%, the really wealthy elite do, they leverage their capital and salary is nothing to them.

      10. “He donates his salary to charity and works for our country for free.”
        !!!!!!!! LAUGHING AND CRYING AND CRYING MOSTLY BUT ALSO LAUGHING
        The unethical financial gains the Trump family is REAPING are staggering and if anybody thinks Trump ran for presidency for any reason other than thickening his thick thick pockets, well, the only other reason I can think of is filthy ego-stroking.

        1. Look it up—he donates his salary to charity and his net worth has fallen since he assumed the presidency. Obama came into office with very little net worth and is now worth millions. Who made money off the backs of the American people—not Trump. He worked and built his own company. Obama never built anything. He was a community organizer.

          1. Donald Trump’s father built a real estate empire. Trump inherited it and benefitted from the s and business ties his father already created. The president should be a civil servant anyway, not a boss.

          2. Gail, you can’t win with these people. Thank you for your passion and your posts.

    5. I totally agree with your last sentence, and I think so many (white) people are appalled at these actions and want to join in on the conversation, but also want to ignore the huge, racist red flags with the whole system. The family separation policy was initially thought up by Steve Bannon and Stephen Miller, both of whom are overtly racist. The hosts on Fox and Friends (Trump’s favorite news source), just this morning brushed off children in cages, saying ‘it’s not like we are doing this to children from Michigan’ or something to that affect. It’s not just about safety, jobs, etc. It’s about keeping our country more white, and we need to bring that strong undercurrent to the surface.

      1. ‘”Do you really honestly think that if thousands of Norwegians suddenly showed up at the border without documentation and without legal entry that we would just say “Sure, come on in?”’

        If they were fleeing violence and poverty and came with children, then yep, I absolutely do.

    6. This is your complete opinion on the matter. You do not know our president personally and maybe you choose to ignore the good deeds this man does (helping feed families with Red Cross after the Hurricane) but maybe you don’t believe any of that either. Please do yourself a solid and look from both sides of the line.

      1. Seriously? Because he had a photo op at a shelter? What did he do for the people of Puerto Rico, who are ALSO US citizens? It’s a crime what he’s doing to this country.

  13. Nobody should ever be made to feel less than human. Nobody. Ever.

  14. Thank you for your courage. We are all nesters here and thus care about family. We create sanctuaries, which we need now more than ever. This is insanity and I’m afraid too.

    1. ^^Loving this comment.

      1. And at the end of the day for these immigrate moms, they put thier babies in rafts or walked them through unknown lands all because the country they were born into was scarier than the unknown of leaving all they’d ever known. I can’t imagine how horrid thier lives were to pick up and leave only hoping for something better. It so important sometimes to put politics aside and only look at morals and how we treat each other. It’s what defines us, not blue or red. Thanks Emily for posting your thoughts, and for those who commented for opening a discussion postivily… American needs positive disagreement, we need common ground. Xxx (posted while bf infant pls excuse typos or crazy spellings)

  15. Like you, I am sure I am not getting the full story. Like you, I am unable to completely trust any one side/what any one person is saying. Basically, I feel really psycho on this whole issue for a number of reasons. If I were a Mexican, living under druglord ‘rules’, I would do everything in my power to get my family to the US, even if it were illegally. If it seemed like it would happen within a few years and I felt like our life was safe enough, I like to think I would try to do it legally. If we lived in a dangerous area and were trapped by what I imagine is the normal trappings that a family cannot control and thus cannot manage to leave an area b/c of those trappings, I would enter the US illegally and I would, if need be, send my children without me illegally…anything to try to save their lives/give them the best possible life. I am a mother. I understand that need to save a child. The VAST majority of the children detained were sent without their families, therefore they are separated from their families. I have a college friend who is Mexican American. Her family lives on the TX border. She is the only sibling to go to college and the only one to make it out of poverty/drugs aside from her parents. Her three brothers and one sister are all legal Americans who all are perfectly healthy/capable of getting jobs (or were at one time) but live off welfare, multiple children each with multiple partners and lots of drugs and alcohol. She is merciless in people entering legally, which her parents did and worked/still work their tales off trying for the American dream (mostly for their deadbeat kids now who are all over 30 years of age.) My friend is the oldest in the family and is 46. She says in the community there are many illegals and 90 percent of them do nothing, live off our system. She said of the legals, it is about half…and she has been here since she was a pre-teen. Locally, we have a Mexican family whose kids go to school with my kids who constantly are discussing with local parents that they strongly believe the rules to enter legally are good and must be followed…they did it and they feel safer knowing that if/when people enter legally, our country is safer. Mexico and many central/south American countries are extremely unsafe and they don’t want that here. My sis-in-law is from Ecaudor…her relatives have been kidnapped and some murdered by drug gangs. Her entire nuclear family came legally and they are die hards for these laws. My husband is a veterinarian in Ohio. When he did large animals (dairy cows), most of the farms (all “family” farms) had Mexican workers. He assumed they were all legal. During one call to a farm, he learned the head worker was deported b/c his disgruntled girlfriend turned him in for being illegal and on drugs. He was sent somewhere for a few weeks, “registered”, deported, and back on the same farm in Ohio in 6 weeks! Apparently it is really, really easy to get in here. I had a muslim friend while my husband was in vet school and her husband was in professional school. We were neighbors in married student houseing. She was adament that Clinton and Both Bushes (this was before Obama) needed to crack down on the border b/c she was from the middle east and didn’t want the US to be dangerous like it is there. She came legally, years after her husband and she said it was worth it to do it legally. She said often that Americans hold themselves to a standard that the illegals and the dangerous people do not. I’m torn! I was ready to send letters to my representatives about that little boy crying in the cage…how inhumane! After I wrote the letters and was ready to send, I see on the internet that that was a staged demonstration by people trying to stop the separation of families….WHAT! That is so wrong. I imagine there is abuse…there is always abuse and it is never okay, but that friend I mentioned above is volunteering at a place in TX on the border and she said, obviously children cry without their mothers. All the ones she has worked with/translated for came without their parents. They are well fed and taken care of in every way. Still not ideal to not have them with their families, but she is part of the process of trying to identify them, locate family, filter through the liers tying to traffic these kids. I happen to live near the crossroads of I70/I75. (I’m using my real name and email so if you can track me, do it if it helps you know I am being honest.) I went to a human trafficing talk talk last fall. The vast majority of children being trafficed and apparently this is a very high trafficked area are kids/teens sent to the US without their families to earn money for their families and those kidnapped from Mexico and brought here and those kidnapped from illegal families already here…b/c they are safe to kidnap b/c the parents won’t authorities b/c of the fear they will be deported. Holy crap. There are more problems than we know and it isn’t an easy fix. From the videos I have seen of Clinton, Bushes, Obama, Trump is doing what they all said needed to be done. I think, the border needs to be shut down until it can actively be guarded and safe people/families brought in through legal methods. I think that is the just and truly helpful thing to do even for the families trying to come. With that said, I still think I would risk my kids being trafficked and through them over the wall if I felt their lives were immediately in danger. I’m a mother. So, a suggestion for all of us not volunteering at the border…go through foster parenting. I have several friends who are and they said the need is so great for this. I haven’t yet, though we have adopted three children. But I am feeling seriously convicted to become foster parents…I was scared. My husband has asked this of me for a year now. Maybe more of need to not feel like we have done something by writing a check and actually get our hands ‘dirty’ doing the hard work. If I lived at the border, I would be there changin diapers, holding, singing songs, LOVING those kids. Somehow fostering them up here in potentially a longer situation scares me. I am convicted!

    1. omg. THANK YOU for saying all of this. i’ve thought this so many times. if any american were in the same situation of these people with kids, they would do the EXACT SAME THING. i mean, just look at the “white flight” out of Detroit because of the riots in the 60s. there were riots, not even the same as the absolute craziness and terror of living in some of the countries that these immigrants are leaving, and all the white people left. i mean, it wasn’t illegal to leave Detroit to go to the suburbs, but the idea is the same. they didn’t feel safe, especially if they had kids, and they ran away.
      i’m pretty sure all these people that say that the immigrants should stay in their own country and fix those problems would not be saying that if they were in that situation. there just seems to be a real lack of empathy in america right now.

      And, “go the legal route” doesn’t work for people that are dirt poor and living in these situations. if it did, we’d have way more people leaving those countries and coming here.

      1. And, “go the legal route” doesn’t work for people that are dirt poor and living in these situations”. So, is your point that American citizens who are “dirt poor” and living in poverty don’t have to go the “legal route” either meaning that they should be able to just take what they want from anyone and everywhere? I mean, theft isn’t LEGAL but it is expedient. If a homeless person took your purse would you be OK with that? They are just poor, and maybe fleeing inner city violence. Where is your humanity? And before you tell me that illegal immigrants are not taking something from us — they definitely use our taxpayer dollars for all kinds of services. Maybe in 5-10-20 years they may start also contributing to that tax base but until then it’s my dime and I should get a say.

        You know, it is possible to have empathy and still not think that the best option is to just fling open the doors to the country for anyone that wants to come here.

        I’m not anti-immigration, but should there NOT be SOME limits? Any limits? Any vetting?

      2. This is not said enough. There is no viable legal route for those who are living in poverty.

    2. Thank you for taking the time to write about your experiences. I found it very helpful.

    3. You raise an interesting point that some of these kids were sent to cross the border without parents. Still I don’t belive this for the so called “tender aged” children.

    4. Thank you Christina. Seriously interesting and enlightening to have personal experiences. Brian and I talk about this all the time, re your comment at the end – physically volunteering and knowing first hand how things are is so much harder than writing a check and there are many of us who just put our charities on auto-pay monthly and call it a day. I can’t wait til my kids are a little older and they’ll come with us to volunteer. For now we donate and write letters. xx

      About the rest of it, I think its such a nuanced problem and I so appreciate your view and the time it took to write. THANK YOU.

    5. Thank you for your post. I agree with you 100%. My son lives in San Antonio and the border workers work very hard and try to be humane. Don’t forget that these are not traditional families like most of these posters and the illegals are breaking our laws. Still, they are human, and right now there is no good answer. We need the wall, even if it will be painful. It’s just too bad Congress can’t put their petty politics aside and come together for America. Supportive or not of this administration, at least the President is checking off promises. And the MSM is still so mad they were wrong about him that they are what’s wrong with America now. And also, I fear these posters here think that Cup of Joe is real news. On a side note- I love your lavender kitchen!

      1. We do not need a border wall – conservatively, it will cost $50 billion to build (but many reports have said it will cost much more), $20 + million to maintain, and the wall won’t be impenetrable (there will still be ways to get across, be it scaling the wall, digging under, bribery or otherwise) or be a real immigration policy.

        For example, the border wall will not:
        – grant legal status to DREAMERS and otherwise provide citizenship to longtime residents that may have come here illegally but that pay taxes, abide by our laws and contribute to our country in meaningful ways
        – deal with the fact economy depends on and rewards companies that use illegal labor and treats those who enter illegally (or on a seasonal visa) for work differently than those seeking entry for asylum or citizenship.
        – address vast number of companies apply for and utilize seasonal work visas for their low cost labor needs (in addition to perhaps illegal labor)
        – create a bi-partisan, humane and appropriate program for refugees and asylum seekers (who are currently being prosecuted as criminals or just told not to come at all)
        – end the backlash against immigrants of color

        I am the granddaughter of a Jewish refugee of WWII. My grandfather came here through Gavelston, Texas seeking asylum at a time when this country did not welcome Jewish immigrants with open arms. The isolationist approach of America to immigrants and refugees that extended well into WWII (and led to internment camps for the Japanese in the US and a blind eye to the “jewish problem” in Europe) is still strong in my family’s mind. When I hear cries to build the wall, keep immigrants and refugees out of this country, see Congress ready to deport DREAMERS because they cannot pass a single issue bill, and our President raising tariffs, alienating allies and cavorting with White Supremacists I am reminded strongly of that time.

        Also, to your last point Cup of Jo is certainly not a news outlet anymore than this blog is, but I do appreciate that Joanna and her team research and cite multiple sources to (for readers to review themselves) in their articles.

        1. Could Caroline have meant to say, “Morning Joe,” meaning the news program, instead of “Cup of Jo”, which is a blog?

  16. Unfortunately, this administration is not the only one using immigrant children as political pawns. With our country’s checks and balances, it takes two to play games with people’s lives. If you look to our other elected representatives, many are choosing to do nothing so they can continue passing blame and working on their campaigns for re-election. Demand better, arm yourself with knowledge, and prepare to vote against incumbents in upcoming elections.

    1. Your comment is overly simplistic and therefore completely evades the facts. This administration and the Republicans who support it are the only ones using immigrant children as pawns in a game. The idea that it takes two to play is absurd. This was a problem created entirely by the President and his advisors including John Kelly, Stephen Miller, and Jeff Sessions in April. The Democrats have introduced several bills that would stop it but the Republicans have refused to join them. The Republicans control Congress and therefore if they wanted to stop this madness they could. All by themselves. But not even the bare minimum who would need to in the Senate have the guts to step forward. This is not an incumbency problem, it is a Republican Party problem. (Not to say that there aren’t individual Republican citizens who aren’t horrified also. But they should know this is the official stance of their Party). The only way to solve it is to vote out Republicans in the fall. My blood is boiling over this week and I can’t stop crying thinking about these families. Both-sides-ism is classic deflection and under these circumstances I simply cannot let your comment stand.

      1. The Republicans in Congress could not stop it all by themselves, they need 60 votes in the Senate. They currently only have 51 Senators and McCain isn’t present to vote. The Democrats are not the only ones who have introduced bills. Is there a reason you are dismissing the Republican Senators who have introduced bills? I am extremely frustrated with the entire situation, but I don’t understand how you can present your own deflections while calling out someone else’s. It is true that the president created this mess all on his own and can end it, but we have a Congress that can pass laws to fix it as well, and it’s not just Republicans who are needed to do that.

    2. I agree with you, Concerned, and I find the above reactions to be very interesting. For a nonpartisan comment, you get partisaned bucking from both sides of the coin. If that’s not proof that our country is broken, I don’t know what is.

  17. I have to admit that I have been waiting for you to comment on this too but not because I feel like it is an obligation of yours, but because you always manage to perfectly verbalize MY feelings and frustrations on these topics. Thank you for your strong voice and continued support of open, positive dialogue in an effort to make this a better country.

  18. Thanks for taking the time and energy to write this. It is truly awful.

  19. 1. This is virtue signaling. consider the whole story before feeling sad.
    2. parents can go to port of entries officially to not have their children detained
    3. or patents can not put their kids in that position by not entering the country illegally or following proper channels.
    4. not to mention adults who are USING kids to get across…that shouldn’t be stopped?

    this law was created during prior administrations…why create laws to not enforce them…sounds like a waste of time and creation of beurocracy that ultimately causes division and conflict.

    someone decided to make this an anti-trump issue in the media…and now that he has reversed the order, he is still getting grief in the media. there is nothing trump can do in which people call continue to call him racist hateful unamerican nazi. that is what saddens me.

    1. Nancy – I’m curious, do you think that any action by ICE would be justified as long as it’s directed at people coming through improper channels?

      1. nora,

        i’m curious…if you knew i was white would you assume i get pleasure in keeping down *brown* people? seems a bit presumptuous and unhelpful not to mention hardly open minded.

        also to other commenters i did read the cup of jo articles and the snopes fact checking—prior to commenting. but just as there are those resources on the internet, there are others that point out other sides…this includes resources quoting the new york times as reporting an increase in child smuggling and migrants admitting to bringing children over because they think it will help their cases.

        i appreciate that others have different opinions than mine and respect it. and laura, the media does not hide their disdain for trump and the media does choose what to report and what not to. both liberal and conservative outlets. so calling me shameful? is naive. i don’t automatically think that you are inhumane or uncaring because you have a diffrent opinion. however i do find the constant barrage of personal attacks from those who are so supposedly so supportive and caring of people and children hypocritical. are any going to comment on the above personal experiences of christina and her observations? please do i’m interested in reading them.

        1. Christina provided an anecdote about friends of hers who are immigrants. The thing is, our friends are likely to share similar views to our own. I am guessing that Christina and I differ in political views. Correspondingly, the friends I have whose families immigrated here legally also differ from Christina in their thoughts about immigration policy. One of my good friends in college literally couldn’t visit her family in Mexico because the risk of kidnapping was too high. She grew up in a border state and has found Trump’s rhetoric surrounding immigration pretty offensive.

          Personally, I am most upset that the administration chose to enact this policy without putting any procedure in place to facilitate family reunification. I am also frustrated that so much of my tax dollars are going toward detaining people for a misdemeanor offense and enriching for-profit prison companies.

    2. It’s odd that you can look at those children and claim that it’s the fault of the media for making Trump look bad… Sorry I said odd – I meant shameful.

    3. Nancy, to your 3rd point, I can’t help but think (as a mother myself) of the absolutely horrific conditions that would force me to make a decision to leave my home, travel a long distance with my children, and risk entering a country not knowing what awaits. It’s honestly unimaginable to me, so I have to believe that these families feel they have no other choice.

      As for the 2nd point, there are several reports of families being turned away even when seeking asylum as legal points of entry. As Emily noted, it may be difficult to know all the facts, but I think the overarching question is how we navigate a difficult policy situation with basic human decency.

      1. excellent thank you
        i agree totally and get all the facts out there.

    4. Hi there. I would encourage you to read this post on Cup of Jo for a more thorough understanding of what happens when families seeking asylum try to enter the US the proper way:

    5. you know what’s a waste of time and a unnecessary creation of bureaucracy? jailing them in the first place. People could just be turned away, if that’s the rule, but no, *someone* is making money (our money, as taxpayers) by having people jailed for who knows how long.

      FWIW there was no law saying kids should be separated from their parents; just that kids couldn’t be jailed, nor detained for over a certain period of time. If I read this correctly () if the admin./government/we wanted to, families could be detained together for under that period of time, but it’d take more efficiency (and political will) for the paperwork or whatever to be completed that fast.

      1. if you detain people in jail, then what do we do with the child of that adult?should we jail him or her to with the parent? how do you solve that. you just said that was the prior law…i guess the past administrations didn’t really think it through…
        nancy

      2. according to snopes in august 2015 families were rarely separated…that means they were separated. this is before trump.

    6. Hi. Just want to fact check one of your comments. The law was not put into effect in prior administrations. It was instituted on 4/6/2018 by the TRUMP administration. It was approved by TRUMP.

    7. This is not the law. That is a lie.
      Most desperate immigrants are NOT using kids to try to enter country. Nonsense

    8. Nancy, I pledge that the minute that he stops acting like a “racist hateful unamerican Nazi” sexist privileged warmongering narcissistic liar, I’ll stop calling him that. In fact, I would LOVE him to give me the opportunity to never speak or think of him again.

      1. i’m trying to establish facts and points of argument. name calling and exaggeration is of no help.

    9. -Actually, people who have been coming into the ports have been detained and had their children taken from them as well.
      -Also, if it’s hard for us, who have access to countless news sources, to keep up with how policies are enforced, imagine how difficult/impossible it would be when you are fleeing in fear for your or your children’s lives, often on foot, through dangerous territories that are not your own? The way most are entering was generally accepted practice until weeks ago; these aren’t necessarily people who are getting text alerts about the latest immigration policies or understand the most up-to-date nuances of the current administration. In many cases when families are fleeing gang violence, the risk of crossing wherever they are able is still better for their kids than to stay where gangs threaten to murder and rape kids that are 7 and 8 years old to extort/control their families.
      -I don’t know that it’s been shown that even a single person has used a kid to get across, but if so, it’s certainly less than 1%. This argument, which the administration has been emphasizing, reminds me of the Japanese internment camps, where not a single person was ever proven to be a spy, and yet thousands were locked up. The idea recently posited by the administration that DNA tests would be used to determine if kids can stay with their parents is just as scary – not all kids are biological; if someone is crossing with their biological aunt because their parents were murdered, that doesn’t make it any more acceptable to separate them.
      -No one ‘made’ this an anti-Trump issue – the problem is that with a change in policy should come well-thought-out ways to properly enforce it. That didn’t happen with the zero tolerance or with its reversal. The reason he is ‘still getting grief’ is because there is now no organized means of reuniting thousands of traumatized children with their parents. That’s what saddens me.

      1. ok that’s great. give me the citation that it’s less than 1 percent. because i don’t know that, and i’ve read much different numbers. in fact, please cite all of the references you are using to say how many are coming do to gang violence etc. it would be helpful to know for this discussion. thanks!

        1. Less than 1%.

    10. 1. Emily casting as wide a net for shared values (values that according to polls the vast majority of Americans share) in her audience is not what I would describe as virtue signaling.
      2. Seeking Asylum at a port of entry is legal
      3, See above. And as you’ve expressed dislike of supposed “virtue signaling” I’ll spare you any appeal to emotion. For a more nuanced look into the whys of “illegal” immigration, consider researching the “Mexican Migration Project” and how the Per-Country limit impacts highly populated nations
      4. In only 6 of 1,000 cases were the adults accompanying a child not his or her parents. The welfare of kids in smugglers can’t be adressed effectively under this zero-tolerance policy.

      This Is not a law, as repeated by the Trump administration, but a policy. It is being made into an “anti-Trump” issue because the Trump administration is enforcing said policy.
      Additionally, I don’t actually think family separation makes Trump un-american as this has been a common occurrence in American history from slavery to internet camps to ‘boarding schools’ for native children

      1. I was literally just about to say this. Seeking asylum is not, nor has it ever been a crime, and illegally entering the country has been traditionally treated as a misdemeanor offense. Many families seeking asylum have repeatedly been turned away from our borders and are faced with the option of either returning to the danger of their former lives, or attempting to illegally enter the country through any means necessary JUST to keep their families safe. I can’t imagine the fear these families must be facing to make that choice.

      2. So perhaps Emily wrote a blog post about these immigrant children under the Obama administration? Cup of Jo? Any reference to this in their comments about Trump and his horrendous immoral actions? Letters about these particular kids? Policies that caused this? I mean, how can we live in a country that allows this…outrageous right? Or am I incorrect? Or are you not sad about this too.

    11. Hey Nancy, I appreciate your comment. I think such a huge problem is not knowing the facts and just getting testimonials that fit our view. If Trump didn’t lie so frequently things might be different but he does and getting accurate statistics on this issue is impossible. I just want real facts because how can we possibly brainstorm solutions without knowing what we are really dealing with? We have no trust in this country and that is terrifying.

      1. Emily,

        Please read the following and if you would like please share your comments about it on the next feelings about immigration blog post…including do you think the media did an adequate job covering this report.

        thanks for being open minded and inviting my opinions.

    12. Absolutely! Where was the outrage when Obama advocated for separating migrant “parents” from their children. Where was your outrage then? I sense this current outrage is very selective and based entirely on the 99% negative press Trump had received since day 1.
      The activist press was totally silent when Obama was doing this very same thing to migrants trying to enter the country illegally at the southern border of the USA.

      1. This is a false equivalence. Trump’s new “zero tolerance” policy has resulted in more than 2,000 children separated from their parents in a matter of weeks. I would certainly have been outraged if that happened under Obama, especially if he used disturbing language like “infestation” to refer to the immigrants and asylum seekers.

      2. At least the Trump Admin provides water, food & a clean environment. The Border Patrol reports that the Obama Admin didn’t even provide water. Now, who’s humane?

    13. Nancy,

      1. Caring about the well-being of others – specifically, children – is not “virtue signaling”. It’s called empathy.
      2. There are documented reports of children that have been separated from their parents at legal ports of entry
      3. Parents that are fleeing from fear of drug cartels and sex traffickers are not likely turning on CNN and getting updates about the family separation “deterrent”. If you had a child and feared he or she would be abused or taken from you, you’re saying you wouldn’t flee?
      4. Absolutely this should be stopped. Every administration has tried to stop this problem. No other administration has used the separation of children from their parents as a means to an end.

      **IT IS NOT THE LAW to separate children from their parents upon seeking asylum.

      Please, please diversify your news sources. Emily is right, it’s hard to know what is true. So, nobody should just be watching Fox news, or just read the New Yorker. The deeper we divide ourselves, the worse this is all going to get. We have got to find a way to communicate thoughtfully and with empathy.

      1. yes. please diversify you news sources.

        thanks
        nancy

      2. 1. selective caring about children is virtue signaling. not empathy.

        1. Nancy,

          I’m curious why you think Emily is selectively caring about these children? As a longtime reader, I’ve seen her contribute to a number of other organizations that aim to help both domestic and immigrant children.

          I appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts. Would love a little more insight into this particular viewpoint.

          Grace

          1. i personally believe that calling this issue out after the number of misleading media references and pictures that have been published, without publishing a thorough review of the history of the laws under previous administrations not to mention without publishing links to those articles that dicscuss the history of those laws and practices. and no links to numerous articles that report the truth behind some immigration propaganda photos…all with an undercurrent of trump not caring about kids and morality this and that is virtue signaling.

            of course emily cares about children, and of course she contributes to society and charities. and she has a right to her opinions and her blog…of course.. but she also invited opinions. it is my opinion that this blog post is from a standpoint of virtue signaling whether conscious or subconscious for the above reasons.

            another commenter said it was empathy not virtue signaling. okay. i don’t know if that implies i personally am not empathetic or it was just a general debate comment…i know i am empathetic. of course i don’t want children hurt, taken away unnecessarily…just like emily and the other commenters on this forum. but i also want some common sense including that we need to expect some personal responsibility from any parent illegal or legal, and if we keep expecting the government to give us something for free without any side effects or else the government is racist and uncaring then there is no hope for us as a nation.

            that is what i believe.
            suggestion
            read mollie hemingway.

            sorry for misspelling of anything.

      3. The officials in his administration have been on record to say that this is being done as a deterrent. Inflicting mental, emotional, physical harm on children as a means to discourage people from coming to the border is unjustifiable. Families being separated under Obama was the EXCEPTION, not the rule as with this administration. Crossing the border is a misdemeanor, what other misdemeanors are prosecuted 100% of the time. With everything this administration has said and done, it’s really hard to just categorize it as coincidence and not a strategy to hurt marginalized people.

    14. Completely agree with all your points! Media sensationalists have divided this nation, not Trump. He is merely enforcing law enacted by Congress.

      1. Completely agree! Media created this. They did this with Ebola and now with these photos (many from 2014!).

    15. Hi Nancy,
      First, thank you for articulating a different viewpoint. It’s not an easy thing to do.
      Second, to your point that this law was created by another administration, do you feel it was the right decision for the current administration to begin its policy of enforcing it last month? If yes, could you explain why?

      1. Nancy – do you also agree with the use of the “zero tolerance” policy to criminally prosecute asylum seekers, i.e. persons or families presenting themselves to border control agents and seeking to enter the U.S. on grounds of asylum that are now automatically prosecuted as criminals even though (1) a predicate of an asylum claim is presence on U.S. soil, and (2) there is nothing inherently illegal about coming to the U.S. to seek asylum. In short, the zero tolerance policy is trying to coerce asylum seekers and refugees to give up their asylum claims by treating them like criminals, in contravention of long-standing U.S. law and international law regarding asylum and the treatment of refugees.

        Further, prior to Trump’s recent executive orders asylum seekers with children were separated from their children and criminally prosecuted. Do you agree with that approach? If so, why?

        A separate question – do you agree with the unilateral decision by Jeff Sessions on June 11 (presumably with the support of the Trump administration) to order immigration judges to stop granting asylum claims to victims of of domestic abuse and gang violence That decision goes against the entire history of country’s asylum policy, and international law. In short, persons and families that had valid claims for asylum on that basis can now be prosecuted as illegal entrants – asylum claim valid on June 10, invalid on June 11.

        1. hi courtney,

          thanks for your questions. i can’t say that i know the answers to your insightful questions and i don’t have the time time to research them all. but regarding t he third issue..sessions and domestic abuse…i don’t know that it is so simple. my understanding of asylum is that it was enacted originally to protect those persecuted for political opinions (oversimplification i know). domestic abuse is a hard one. how do we know who is telling the truth? our own citizens of this country have trouble combating domestic abuse. we have not solved the problem for already legal US inhabitants., how do we solve it for every woman in the world? sure i think it would be great for america to say, you suffer from domestic abuse? come on over we will protect you,
          …no need to prove anything or say anything more.

          how will that work? how can we make that work when we can’t already protect our own who go to the police with warnings of threats from domestic partners?

          my answer would be when domestic abuse in our own country is prevented then by all means share our resources with the rest of the world.

          this is my point…we want the government to do everything for everyone, without consequences, without personal responsibility/or even other country responsibility…and if it doesn’t it is heartless and racist.. i don’t agree. i think that is a scary way to think. thanks for hearing me out.
          ps…
          what do you think of the time cover that was proven to be false and the lack of headlines surrounding it? those ends justify the means? not shameful?

    16. I just want to throw in as an individual who has first hand experience with children who are separated from parents. I am a foster parent and my youngest daughter we adopted. She had been with us since she was 4 weeks old. She is now 4. There is daily trauma impact on her life, due to separation and the fall out. We have fostered countless others over the years and bore witness to children with RAD, and countless other disorders due to their separation from their parents. Children are not responsible for the actions of their parents. Never. The impact of their parents behavior and in this case our government (which in this case I personally believe their parents desire their children’s best, but we do not need to agree) can change the trajectory of their life and mental health. This is unacceptable .

  20. AMEN. I feel absolutely heartbroken. I’m working as hard as I can to get voters in my county organized this year for the midterms, but it’s hard to stay focused and stay positive when there’s one dumpster fire after another. It’s hard to do something about each dumpster fire when everything else is on fire, too.

  21. i’ve been waiting for this post to come out on your blog. i considered writing about it on my own blog. i’ve been absolutely HORRIFIED at what has been happening because i have personal experience with child separation, so this whole thing has been a major trigger emotionally for me.
    as i toddler, i was separated from my parents for several months, not for political/immigration reasons, but for reasons within the family, and left with strangers to care for me (like the kids at the border now). i had good parents, but one of them made a bad decision because they didn’t realize how absolutely damaging it is to a child to leave them for a “short” (months isn’t really short when you’re a kid going thru it) time for what you think are good reasons. well, a child doesn’t understand any possible reason for being separated from their parents. all they know is that the only source of comfort they had is gone, and there is no way to process it because kids don’t have that ability yet. all there is is grief and trauma. so, though it happened at a young age and was eventually resolved and i was back with my parents within a few months, i was completely changed from that point. since then, there has been a complete and utter well of sadness that never goes away. as a kid, all the way to my late teens, if i was out with my parents and i lost sight of them, i would go into a sheer panic in my mind and my first priority was to find them again. i literally could not let them out of my sight if we were out. there is NO way to “fix” it because when you’re a child and your brain is still developing and this level of trauma happens, your brain develops with that event and adjusts your entire world and life perspective based on that. the best you can do is just to accept the event and try to work around it. but i’m almost 40 and still coping with this. my whole life i’ve had a wall between myself and my parents (without realizing it until a few days ago because all of these events have brought everything to the surface and i’ve been doing a lot of self analyzing). i only let myself get to a certain level of closeness with any friends/family in my life. i realize now it’s because in my child’s mind, anyone you depend on/care about/love can disappear in an instant. i’m known as a worrier, even by my small kids. i have a lot of anxiety even though i have what looks like a perfect life on the outside because my brain is wired to think that when things are good, the bottom could drop out unexpectedly at any time, so really, i never can enjoy a good moment. i’m only saying all of this because people that haven’t gone thru it can’t imagine just the depth of how damaging this is. those thousands of kids are never going to get over this, even if they think they have. i still can’t think about/talk about this without crying hard for that loss. so, anyone that actually thought/thinks this is okay for ANY POSSIBLE REASON, in my opinion, has no heart. no political reason makes this okay. if you really believe those parents need to be prosecuted, or whatever, then at least those kids should be kept with their parents. the kids should never suffer. they are already in a terrifying and unfamiliar situation, so the ONLY source of comfort they have is their parent, and if you take that away, the damage is irreparable.

    1. Thank you for sharing. I’m so sorry you went through that and I hope that you can find some more healing, however small.

    2. Thanks you so much for your comment.

      I was only separated from my parents as 4 year old (with my sister who was 3) for a weekend when they went skiing. We were looked after by a neighbor whose daughter was a friend. But the mother wasn’t very kind to my sister when she cried for my mum that night and slapped her. (This is back in the early 70s).

      To this day my sister and I talk about how awful and traumatic that weekend was – and it was only one night! (My Mum came home early when she found out what had happened!!)

      I cannot begin to imagine the pain you must have gone through and continue to experience. I am so sorry you went through this.

    3. Lovely thank you so much for this. I’m so sorry. I think that many people (mostly men) don’t truly understand this damage. It’s scientific, its not just an opinion. When children feel unsafe or unsecure their brain triggers hormones that can do long term damage (exactly like you are speaking of). I’m so sorry that happened to you. Thank you for sharing. xx

    4. Thank you so much for sharing this. I am so so sorry for this experience. I hope you have the support you need to process all of these triggering events. I can completely understand your response to what happened to you! I’m so sorry.

  22. Thank you for your post. Your list of fears mirrors mine. For America to be great, we not only have to be economically great, we also have to be socially and morally great and this administration seems to have forgotten the last two parts of that equation.

  23. For anyone reading this that might want to help hands-on, it’s possible to BECOME A CHILD ADVOCATE. The Young Center will pair you with an individual child and you can help them navigate this system so they aren’t alone in the process and hopefully get them back to their parents. I was really grateful when someone posted this link – I was feeling pretty helpless. Regardless of the politics, these are BABIES and they are TERRIFIED and TRAUMATIZED and they are counting on us to make it at least a little bit better

    1. GREAT. thank you so much. We’ll put that in the post (and i’ll sign up). xx

      1. Hi Emily – Yay! To make you smile (which we all need right now) – 5 people I don’t know personally have signed up to be advocates and one to foster just from posting this information to my favorite lifestyle blogs and accounts. That 6 kids helped. there are 2,300 kids affected by this and so many more than that who want to help. Maybe, just maybe we have a chance to make this a little better for these kids. It will never be right, but better.

        There is so much power in the sharing of information. Sounds like CASA has a similar program.

        Thank you for everything you do – I learn something new from this blog at least once a week design or political. I find it so interesting that so many readers want such a clear separation between political content and other content on what we recognize as “lifestyle” blogs. We are round human beings “lifestyle” includes all of it – the good and the bad – or at least it should. When I hold my 12 week old little girl – I know that for sure. Bravo to you and your team. xx

  24. Very well put, thank you. I appreciate you really making the effort to break down the divisive political rhetoric that keeps the two sides from engaging and actually coming to a place of dialogue instead of name-calling. It’s so true that “most of this is about the stories that we tell ourselves, crucial to our own self-preservation to adjust our own moral compass.” The only way we can save both sides from their fears is through talking and understanding and recognizing what the other is going through….it is there where we can establish our morals. But man, it’s tough not to get overwhelmed and feel utterly helpless

  25. I’m glad you’re raising this. Though I think you underestimate how much *pleasure* some people experience when seeing brown parents and brown children suffer. These immigrants have been so successfully dehumanized, most recently by Trump’s “animal” rhetoric, that inflicting trauma on them seems to be part of the natural order. White Americans who have bought into this rhetoric see their pain, realize that it is part and parcel of keeping white people on top, and I believe experience a tremendous surge of power and self worth. They may have been raised with good morals, as you say, but all of us are at risk of confining the scope of those morals to people in the “in” group when we’re not vigilant about maintaining solidarity with all. The result is that it’s no holds barred for those on the “out.”

    I hope everyone on this thread donates to some of the organizations you list. But I hope we all work to move beyond “charitable benefactor,” and towards developing bonds of real solidarity and equality with people who are being persecuted and traumatized right now. Otherwise we are just reproducing the same hierarchy, in our liberal and more palatable way.

  26. Emily, I appreciate your trying to address this issue, but I’m not sure that you HAVE to in a blog that is primarily about decor.
    Although I agree with almost everything you say, I would like to point out out one thing: The government’s lies and the media’s reporting are not equal. There should be none of this nonsense that “we don’t know who to believe.”
    We know who to not believe, and that is the Trump administration. In this issue in particular they have been caught in lies over and over.
    The media may get small facts wrong, but important ones (Times, Post, etc.) correct their errors.
    Don’t set up a false equivalence between the lies from the White House and the conscientious reporting from reputable media. (And turn off Fox news, etc. Read a reputable newspaper.)

    1. Well-said!

    2. I agree with what Dale brings up here. There are still reputable established news sources in our country.

  27. “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your shores.”

    I feel we should all be humble and remember that in the past it was never the creme de la creme that decided to roll the dice and come to a new country. We all have the blood of immigrants in our veins, and we need true immigration reform that opens our doors wide once again to the hard working striving adventurers who are willing to risk everything for the chance to come to the US to work so someday their great grandchildren can live comfortably and safely in a free land.

    Desperate people immigrate illegally only because our current system doesn’t allow them to do so legally.

  28. Frankly, Trump needs to be dragged to The Hague Convention!! These people were from Honduras, Guatemala and Venezuela and were seeking asylum! They started documentation as refugees and as such, they cannot be thrown in prison and their children taken from them. Let’s not forget that these poor people were NOT ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS!! What Trump and his cronies (Sessions, Miller, etc.) have done is incomprehensible, they acted in the most inhumane way to punish refugees that were already battered through the hands of their own regimes. Then they come to Trump-land and are violated in the worst way imaginable. I am so disgusted with this administration and its enablers, it’s hard to imagine that this is 2018.

  29. Just wanted to commend you on the discussions you continue to foster when it comes to politics. I see how so many others are attacked when speaking their mind on their platforms, especially when they are told to “stick to what they know” and keep entertaining the masses. It’s so encouraging to see you speak your mind while still wanting to hear from those who think differently from you. Keep it up!

  30. That’s more like it Emily
    You have a responsibility to use your voice.
    Thank you Thank you

  31. Gosh, Emily, I follow your blog, but find you so biased. Trump was elected, not because he was a good guy, but because he promised to improve our economy and deal with our border problem. We had a problem long before this week. Thousands and thousands of immigrants came through our southern border and were released (catch and release), but almost all never returned to court for their hearing. They are just lost in our country. The problem exists because a court in California (your state) has said that the children cannot remain in custody with their parent for more than 20 days. Yesterday they asked the judge to change this ruling, but last night I heard that some groups are fighting the change. I have asked many people what they would do. differently, and I have not received one answer. Like Melania, I hate to see children separated, but I have no answer. Democrats complain and complain, but never seem to give any answers. They obstruct and did not vote for the immigration bill yesterday. We will see if they vote yes this week for the more moderate one, but my guess is that they want to keep it as a problem in November. I guess I am being brave to write this, but I really am interested in how you think we should solve this problem.

    1. Hey Gail, You are right, I am biased – we all are. I live in my bubble (thus the post asking for different viewpoints). I’m also biased because its hard to find the truth and facts. I definitely don’t have an answer and if Obama were the one to have done this then reversed it I think many of us would have had a different reaction. We are all biased, but we do need to know that, look at ourselves and try to see beyond our own bias (which I truly try to do). I recognize our lack of border control as a huge problem. I just worry that major decisions made without morality and humanity considered is perhaps a bigger problem… and it always has been in large governments but this administration seems to care less about individual people and more about achieving macro goals. Maybe in the long run this will be seen as a ‘success’, but at what cost? xx

    2. She is biased. This is a personal blog from her point of view, not a public funded news source. Even then bias is inevitable and just needs to be called out. Which Emily has done.

      Thank you for your voice on this Emily. Agree that you have a responsibility to use your platform and you have done a wonderful job. Thank you thank you.

    3. I think the facts about the “border problem” need to be more widely distributed. There is fear and panic and a sense that our nation is facing a huge crisis due to this border problem, and in many cases, there are no facts to back that up. Most research shows that the number of low skilled jobs for native born people is NOT affected by illegal immigration. Also, crime rates are at historical lows in cities that have the highest immigration policies. Immigrants, legal and illegal, are less likely to commit crimes than native born citizens.

      Basically, the facts show that having people enter our southern borders is not actually hurting our country.

      What is actually happening in our country is that myths and propaganda are being used to justify racist and inhumane treatment of vulnerable people who need help and are only trying to find places to exist in safety, and yes, where they might be able to provide a better life for their children.

      This opinion article in The NY Times has some helpful information:

      1. LOVE this comment, thank you

      2. Thank you for this contribution to the discussion Lauren. Excellent points.

      3. Lauren Ahumada, thank you so much for this information – it is truly helpful. There is so much propaganda out there, facts really need to be emphasized. Certain ‘news’ outlets gain viewers and ratings by fomenting fear, particularly fear of brown people (Norwegians are welcome!). Thank you for pointing out that the reality is quite different than those outlets are portraying.

    4. excellent! you should get no hate for writing this and it’s sad that some are scared to express this sentiment.

    5. You are not brave. You are repeating misinformation as a semi-anonymous poster on the internet. Please don’t confuse that with actual bravery; it insults our servicemen and women, among others.

      Emily is not biased. She researched this and found the truth and presented it in a relatively unbiased way. In fact, for me, far too unbiased. What she should say is that this policy is akin to Nazi-ism. (Indeed, many of the methods here to take the children away were straight out of the Nazi handbook. ) That ripping children from their parents as punishment for what AT WORST is a misdemeanor is unconscionable. That there is absolutely no reason for this policy other than hatred of people whose skin is brown rather than white. Those are facts. We know they are because the architects of the policy have admitted that. We don’t have an immigration problem. We don’t have an open border problem. Those are lies Fox News has told you. Please find it in yourself to learn the truth from fact checked sources. (Also, “catch and release” is a fishing term and is incredibly derogatory. These are human beings, please find the language to speak about them that way. You are well-spoken enough in your comment to ask that of you.)

      This problem does not exist because of a court decision out of California. This problem exists because in April, the President’s advisers decided that by terrorizing children they could get the Democrats to bend and say yes to further unconscionable immigration policies. They used these small children (some of them so young that they are non-verbal and CAN NOT IDENTIFY THEIR PARENTS) as pawns in their game. The court decision exists because it is unimaginable that children would be held locked up when they have committed no crime and their parents have done nothing more than ask this country to grant them mercy from the horrors from which they came. If you agree with this policy, do you also believe that people charged with (not even convicted of) other misdemeanors should also lose their children? If not, then your opinion is unquestionably biased and likely motivated by at least implicit racism (which we all have due to the society in which we live). Do not forget that people do not leave their homes when their homes are safe. They do not put themselves and their children in this situation unless they are terrified they will not survive if they stay where they are.

      And as for an answer, the Democrats have provided many. But they do not currently control any branch of the federal government. This is a Republican created and sustained problem. The Republicans have not put forth any “moderate” bill. The Democrats have put forward several, but the Republicans refuse to join. The answer is this: a sensible path to citizenship, a following of procedures for those seeking asylum, and, above all, treating people like humans.

      If this week doesn’t make you cry, if it doesn’t make you grip your own children and other loved ones tightly and thank God you were lucky enough to be born who you are and where you are, then you need to search within.

      1. Meghan–you are so very right!

      2. This comment should have been removed. It’s rude and degrading and breaks down any chance of discussion and understanding. I was completely on Emily’s side until reading through the comments. Now I’m back to thinking both republicans and democrats are to blame. Such a hateful people on both sides.

    6. Gail — yes, we are all biased. That is why this kind of discussion (while difficult) is valuable. And I would feel uncomfortable as well posting as a conservative on a blog where the host is so openly liberal — so you have my gratitude.

      As to your question about how to solve the problem: We need more administrative law judges and we need state-appointed attorney advocates (for both criminal and civil hearings). I know how most people feel about lawyers, but if we want everyone prosecuted swiftly AND fairly, and if we want people’s asylum claims to be fully considered, then we need the infrastructure. A rigorous but fair screening seems more effective (and more just) than a wall. My two cents. 🙂

    7. There is no border problem. We’re a nation of immigrants. We’ve always been a nation of immigrants. It’s only our long history of nativism and racism that makes people like you inflate this into a “problem” that requires separating families.

      There are so many actual serious problems that this country needs to focus on — better schools, better roads, better healthcare for all. Inflating a minor issue — the “border problem” — into a major issue is a waste of national time and energy. I doubt anyone would be concerned about “the border problem” if it was white people coming over the border.

    8. You’re right that only 60% of people who are let go before their court date actually show up to their court date. At the same time all people are considered innocent until proven guilty. If we’re so concerned about people not returning for a court date, we could simply use an ankle tracking bracelet on the parents. This way they can be with their kids and we can ensure their whereabouts. Now maybe there’s an issue with how far you can track someone and what not, but I think there are solutions that can address the major concerns on both sides.

    9. I kind of agree with you Gail. We should all take a step back and see that our entire government has failed us. You can point to President Trump right now and spread hate to all of those who voted for him, but why don’t we ask ourselves why was this ever an option? Why did we allow our government to put this in place? Why do we have laws we all agree are wrong? Regardless of party we agree this needs to end now, that is very clear, and yet our elected officials won’t do it. They will say its shameful and deflect the fault, but they won’t actually fix it. We are hurting ourselves when we point to Trump and his administration and say “its their fault”. Its our fault. And if we keep voting for people who have the power to fix the problem but only scream about the injustice, we fail ourselves.

    10. The Democrats put together a bill and lined up every single senator in their caucus from most liberal to most conservative behind it in days, every one signed on (“Keep Families Together Act”). That was a proposal of an answer. But no Republican would join them and they are a minority so their solution was not implemented. More comprehensive immigration reform efforts have been killed in the past by the conservative anti-immigration wing of the Republican Party. I don’t understand how you think the Democrats are not offering solutions.

      “Almost all never returned for their hearing” – where are you getting this from? Caregivers of young children almost never commit crimes and try to show up religiously to court hearings. That’s because caregivers of young children are exhausted and terrified. Having a lawyer also ups the chances of an immigrant showing up at Court hearings.

      Ankle monitors are another effective way to make sure people don’t “disappear.”

      Taking a breastfeeding child away from their mother and not even tracking where they are being sent is the kind of cruelty I’m not sure I could support by someone who was fighting for their life. Fighting to make sure not a single refuge gets into the country illegally (where they are less likely to commit crime than native born citizens) – fighting to make sure a misdemeanor is punished by one of the worst things I can imagine happening to a mother or a child? I don’t understand it at all. Everyone must have lines in the sand. Not everyone does. But everyone should. We are crippling these children for life.

      There is no immigration crisis. Our large country has a relatively small number of people seeking to enter. You want to not let them – fine, we can discuss it and debate it and I’ll try to convince you otherwise and if you have the votes for various reasonable enforcement mechanism you win. You rip 2 year olds from their parent’s arms because you can’t get the laws you want passed and I will condemn you and march in the streets and riot if I have to. I’d rather have a civil war than have our country torturing children. For any reason. A country that does that doesn’t deserve to exist.

    11. Hey Gail,

      I’m truly interested to know what you think our “border problem” is. Is it that more people are coming into the US? Is it that CERTAIN people are coming to the US? Is it that they stay and mooch off our services? I see a lot of people talking about “how many” people are coming in illegally, even though we’re seeing *drastically* fewer people attempt to immigrate to the US – from more than 1.6 million in 2000 to ~100k in 2016.

      The facts just don’t back up the claim that we have a huge influx of immigrants. That makes me wonder if it’s really about the KIND of people entering (from certain countries, with criminal backgrounds) or that they’re taking jobs/on welfare. Would love to hear your perspective on this.

    12. Thank you, Gail. Well said!
      I’d like to add that Obama had over 90,000 children detained at the border, and the left was fine with it. Why is it only an issue to the left now? Thankfully, Trump wants to fix it!

      1. Taylor, do you have any factual data to back up your claim about 90,000 children?

      2. Hi Taylor!

        Wanted to chime in and say that statement is factually inaccurate. It’s true, children were detained during the Obama administration but these were children who ARRIVED AT THE BORDER UNACCOMPANIED. AKA they came ALONE! They were not taken from their parents like was done for about 2,300 kids under the Trump administration. And to echo many sentiments in these comments, everyone please diversify your news sources!

        “The claim, published on a conservative website, was repeated on social media throughout the week as President Donald Trump faced criticism over his administration’s “zero tolerance” immigration policy, which has left more than 2,300 children separated from their parents at the U.S. border since May.

        The false claim appears to stem from a January 2016 Senate subcommittee report that investigated how the Department of Health and Human Services, under the Obama administration, placed thousands of unaccompanied children illegally entering the country.

        The subcommittee report found that from October 2013 through 2015 the federal agency placed nearly 90,000 children with a sponsor, after they were detained at the border without a legal guardian”

        Some were separated that is true, but ONLY if there was suspicion of human trafficking.
        “Past administrations, Nielsen said, separated families at the border when federal agents suspected the adult of human trafficking, smuggling, posing a national security risk or when the adult’s relationship to the child could not be verified. ”

        Here is a link to the story which I hope you’ll read:

  32. Thank you for the thoughtful post. I regret that you felt that you needed to post about this topic. While I value your opinion, I loved the fact that your blog was “merely” a design blog. It serves me as a fantastic escape from the big issues that we are surrounded with on a daily basis.

    1. Elizabeth, you may choose what you read.

  33. I think the biggest problem with trying to solve this situation is the us vs. them that is perpetuated by both sides. There can’t be one American who thinks parent/child separation is good policy, but somehow the media, the general tone of the internet, everyone says, “Pick a side. If you’re not with us, you’re against us. How could you vote for Trump? If you didn’t vote for Hilary, you hate your vagina. How could you possibly feel the exact opposite that I do?” In this time where you’re forced to speak in hyperboles or no one will listen and where you must use three exclamation points and two emojis or you’re seen as bitchy, it seems absolutely impossible to meet in the middle.

    Even in writing this now, I am certain that someone will comment that I am heartless, a racist, a child hater only because I am not outright crying for the impeachment and destruction of the Trump family. This is the real problem with America. In every issue we face (whether gun control, immigration, health care, etc.) no Republican or Democrat is willing to meet in the middle. (To which someone will say, there is no middle ground on parent/child separation. And I would reply, true, but there is a middle ground on immigration.)

    In the book “The Audacity of Hope,” I found that former President Obama gives a a really great explanation of how our country reached this point, how years ago Democrats and Republicans sought the same outcome and how our current political system only works to perpetuate the problem.

    My goal in commenting at all is to offer the slight suggestion that we all think before we write, that we seek to become a country full of Americans instead of Democrats or Republicans, that we use our time and energy to offer solutions instead of outcries against “the other side”.

    Emily, I feel that you more than any other blogger do a good job in using your platform as a safe place for both sides. But unfortunately, it’s still seen as “sides”. In using this verbiage, people who are moderate feel forced to choose. When that happens, the divide only becomes deeper.

    1. Thanks, C. I totally agree with you. 100%. Even amongst my own community I feel like when I broach the subject of trying to understand the ‘other side’ there’s a slightly look of horror. I think that Trump being the way he is – mean and unkind, provokes the situation. I’d love to see an alternative reality where Obama created the exact same policies, but did it in HIS way. What would happen? How would we react?

      1. Yes, and as a true moderate and registered independent, many people just don’t like talking about politics. A lot of my family never talks about politics, but dutifully votes straight Republican in every election. I did too, and it wasn’t until my second or third presidential election that I really stopped to think about what issues I actually believed in, and whether they were more in line with the Republican or Democrat agenda. I’d always felt a bit “icky” about politics and just voted Republican because my family did – that was my “side.” The first time I voted Democrat it was honestly freeing because *in that particular case* my vote was much more in line with my values. I wish more people would vote for the candidate vs. the party.

  34. Thanks for writing this, Emily. I fear I’m about to write a book but here we go anyway.
    I think one of the biggest failures of leadership is the fact that no one has the courage to stand up to the truth about undocumented (illegal) immigration. About half (some estimates up to 70 percent) of domestic ag workers are undocumented. We are reliant on these workers to keep our food costs low (and building costs, and landscaping, etc.). So while we lack compassion for individuals seeking asylum, we also take no ownership that those who are not, and cross illegally, are also the individuals who are responsible for the food we still in our mouths each and every day. Some of these workers also did come legally but have expired working visas. We think of the farmer as the good midwestern white fella (and that’s true too) but we aren’t willing to really embrace the brown skinned man on his stomach picking tomatoes. Until there is political courage to embrace our reality around our dependence on undocumented workers, we continue to give the Trump base a pathway to lies on who these people are. (And to be clear, I view and value undocumented immigrants as more than just ag workers).
    I also want to (respectfully) challenge you on the point about the rich getting richer and not understanding the plight of poverty. I think in your position you might feel the need to say that but I think it’s less of a class issue. I am in my early 30s and live in a city now but grew up in a rural and all white town with wonderful Republican parents. I had an amazing childhood where we were not of means but all my needs were more than met, opportunities provided, and I felt safe and loved. Naturally, I became a Republican at voting age and voted Republican in the presidentials until this last election. I’ve since changed my registration, as I think I was holding on to some picture from my childhood but the party is not consistent with my values, and probably never was, I just only knew what I knew…until I didn’t. I say this all to try to give myself credibility that I am not going after Trumpsters because that was simply how I was raised or that I’m an elitist. I do think we have to, especially people who grew up and who look like me (I look like you, only less attractive), have to take ownership of the fact that much of all of this is racially fueled. If you look at the demographics of the folks who are most intolerant towards undocumented immigrants or BLM, etc – it is not those with financial means not understanding those less unfortunate. That’s why if I use “privilege” when I challenge someone I grew up with on they lose their MF minds. Because privilege when you grew up white in a white area and your family didn’t have money, means money. There is a total lack of understanding about privilege meaning so much more than that.
    But I don’t buy the narrative that we need to have compassion for white people who feel like they have been ignored or misunderstood for too long. Ignored by whom? Congress has represented them…forever. While Trump brought people on board (across political spectrums) that didn’t support George W. Bush, there is also a ton of people who did support Bush that are all-in on Trump. That was only 10 years ago that there was a man who people felt like they could “have a beer with”. So between the time of W and Trump there was 8 years of someone else. Let’s compare them. Obama was a man who was equal in his commitment to his family as George W, and surpasses the familial values of Trump. Obama had more education than W but both ivy league educated, but without the privilege of both W and Trump. Obama indicated he was a man of God, and I espouse was probably somewhere between W and Trump, closer to W. A man who was committed to public service and understood the weight of the office in the way that W did, but Trump lacks. Why is it OK for Trump to befriend North Korea but Obama is a dictator because he wanted EPA regs? Why were Michelle’s arms disrespectful but Melania’s outfits are just outfits? What’s different? Skin color.
    Trump tapped into the ugliest parts of people and gave them a permission slip to uncover their bias and perhaps fundamental beliefs in white supremacy. Not all white supremacists wear hoods. Not all white supremacists are mean or call names to people of color. You can be a white supremacists and go to church and donate to your local foodbank and support charities that serve people of color. But if you don’t truly believe that people of color are of equal value to your own life – that is white supremacy. And unless white people are willing to get out of their comfort zone where everything operates, looks like and is built for them, white supremacy will continue to grow. And so much of the narrative coming out of this Administration is rooted in those beliefs. And I do have some empathy for white people who don’t know what they don’t know, and have never been exposed to people who were different than them. But it’s also the responsibility of white people to dig deep and educate themselves and then do better.

    1. 100% yes to this comment.

    2. I wish that we could have conversation about immigration that includes the fact that so many industries (not just agriculture, but also construction and restaurants, I am sure there are many others) currently depend on paying low wages to people from other countries. If our elected officials would propose solutions that involve working with hiring industries to provide their employees work visas, then we could ensure that the rights of all employees could be protected.

      I also wish that our conversation about immigration to the US would include a discussion of how to admit as many refugees as possible. It is shameful that we have admitted so few people displaced by the war in Syria. Despite much cruelty that has taken place here, we have been a symbol of freedom and opportunity for people from around the world and it is so frustrating to see Trump showing no understanding of how important it is for the democratic ideals to be supported by the country with the world’s most powerful military. A Salvadoran here in the US once told me how much he loved America since when he was a little boy because our country gave him cookies when he had nothing to eat. Trump’s actions disregard the importance soft power in helping us to have a positive reputation around the world (of course, the Iraq war and other military actions haven’t helped).

      To those who truly believe that Trump is taking actions that will secure a more peaceful, prosperous future for their communities and for the country as a whole, I ask this: are you not bothered by the fact that Trump does strive to bring out our best instincts but instead gives people an excuse to be led by their fears rather encouraging them to read and develop their own understanding of the issues we need to face? Trump’s willingness to ignore the cruelty inherent in the separation of children from parents is evidence that he would do anything no matter how morally appalling if he sees it as furthering his political goals. We need leaders who challenge us to see the parallels between our own suffering and that of others, and who focus on addressing unmet needs both at home and in the wider world.

    3. Well said, M. Very well said. Thanks for sharing your unique point of view. “Not all white supremacists wear hoods.” Indeed.

    4. 100% yes to this

  35. While I appreciate your attempt to provide people who disagree a platform to rationalize their position, I’m disappointed you waited so long to put up this post and then didn’t take time to write a more informed post. People on the other side of the issue might feel that there is a massive immigration crisis where criminals are coming into their communities – but the evidence unequivocally says otherwise and I’m frustrated by trying to let people perpetuate misinformation. We don’t need to also accept the BS about fake news – there are actual truths and lies that I think a person with a platform should acknowledge. I know its so hard not to be paralyzed by the horror and sadness, and trust me I feel that way too, but I just had some comments to add.
    – Trump’s family seperation crisis is a real emergency. But there is not an immigration crisis that he claims (and therefore stokes racial anger). Apprehensions of people entering illegally at the Southwest border have hit there lowest level in 46 years.
    – Undocumented immigrants commit less crime then native-born citizens. They do not take people’s jobs and lower wages, massive trends in globalization that have very little to do with immigration account for this economic trend. Immigrants are less likely to use public assistance and the barriers our government places on immigrants who can legally access services deters many people who have every right to take advantage of these programs.
    – This article is a great place to start to see links to studies and research on the issue, in addition Vox provides great explainer articles.
    – We also need to reckon with the disgusting truth that what is happening is “american” and still push and strive and fight like hell to change that truth. It was American when we ripped apart slave families. We separated Native American children from their parents and housed them in horrific Indian Residential Schools. We turned away boatloads of Jewish children fleeing the Holocaust and placed Japanese families in internment camps. Segregation and Jim Crow laws! We ignored and still ignore the Syrian refugee crisis. And everyday mass incarceration continues to rip apart families of color. We jail POC and have a system where a lack of access to bail money keeps parents from their kids disproportionately along racial lines.
    – It is a PROFOUND privilege to look at all this without an understanding of historical marginalization and to hold the belief that people on the other side of the issue are still good people. I would encourage you to do a follow up post that includes viewpoints from activists, members of marginalized communities and more education. I’m really sick of people with privilege not having the courage to call our racist politics, educate themselves and the people around them and keep trying to find out how the other side “feel” because they are sure there are “good people.” Sometimes there is just a right and wrong side.

    1. Thank you. This is not a situation in which there is a good reason, a valid reason, on the other side. Separating children from their parents–ripping breastfeeding babies from their mothers, caging five year olds and forbidding them from playing, detaining an 8 year old boy and deporting his mother so that their ability to be reunited is forever threatened–there is no justification for this. Depriving children of their parents’ and loved ones’ affection and touch has profound developmental consequences that can be irreparable. I do not know how anyone could listen to the screams of children in detainment centers and remain unmoved.

      Trump did this. His administration did this. His executive order was not intended to affect the thousands of children already separated from their parents and detained. What is going to happen to these children? We do not know, and I do not have faith that this president is going to help them.

    2. I agree – I wish I had more time to do more research. If I were an actual journalist, not a design blogger I would LOVE to have had the time to find and interview activists on the ground and to go through all those statistics, evidence and facts. Many people are saying the exact opposite, that the immigration crisis is at an ultimate high, so I’m SO happy you linked up that article. I do however, not even trust most studies these days because typically there is a goal of the research (not all, obviously) and therefore there is an inherent bias to that study. And while I appreciated the beginning of the last paragraph, labeling ‘right and wrong’ on a macro level doesn’t lead to any progress or change. I’m not sayng you are wrong, just saying that on my platform that would get us no where.

    3. AMEN!

    4. Thank you thank you thank you.

  36. Hi Emily,

    I have read your blog for years but almost never comment (here or on other blogs)–but felt it was important to reinforce the other voices here to say: thank you.

    Thank you for using your platform for good. I know there are folks who feel that since this is not the main thrust of your blog, there is no ‘obligation’ for you to say anything…but I think that in times like these, speaking up is essential. We cannot let what is happening pass by without comment, as though it is acceptable or normal. And while each individual voice is important, those of you who have a platform can be even more impactful.

    Thank you for your kindness and your consideration. And thank you for speaking up.

    Cheers,
    Julia

    1. thanks, Julia 🙂

  37. Thank you for using your platform for good, Emily. I appreciate you taking a stand. I grew up in Central California with a lot of of people who support(ed?) Trump (I assume they still support them because I cut them out of my life post election – this wasn’t political for me, it was moral and I can’t be friends with people I don’t share values with).

    I can’t imagine any “justification” that makes tearing children apart from their families ok. Some of these kids will likely never be reunited with their families again, their parents have already been deported and they’ll now be part of our severely stressed and broken foster care system. We essentially kidnapped and trafficked those kids ourselves, held them hostage. It’s the vilest thing I can imagine to have my 5 year old son taken from me.

    Thank you for finding your voice.

  38. Emily, thank you so much for using your large platform to raise awareness, to foster more productive dialogue, and especially to add a voice to the call for what should be a knee-jerk reaction: humanity, compassion. I think what many of us find even scarier than Trump and what he’s doing with his power is that everywhere we turn, even design blogs, we see commenters whose knee-jerk reactions are cold, filled with deflection or ignorance. Who knew you could just turn empathy off with a switch? Who knew there were so many willing to turn a blind eye or come up with the most obviously simplistic rationalizations to justify cruelty? I hate what we must be teaching our children by example. I no longer have any hope for this country (or possibly the world), but I so appreciate those who do, and those who speak out.

  39. Thank you, Emily.

    I am an ESL teacher at a high school and most of my students are undocumented immigrants, primarily from El Salvador and other Central American countries. Most of my students crossed the border illegally, and most are in the process of trying to get asylum or legal status through other avenues.

    The stories I have heard from my students over the past three years are harrowing. They describe a fear and a state of being that is so out of the ordinary for most Americans, it’s almost hard to believe. My students have been recruited to join gangs since they were preteens. My students have been threatened, raped, assaulted and have lost family members and friends to the never-ending violence that plagues their home nations. My students are, most importantly, children. They are children who do not know anything but constant fear and trauma – and their resiliency is something I am in awe of every single day.

    My students also frequently talk to me about their journeys to the United States. Most of them walk, at least part of the way, from El Salvador, through Guatemala, Mexico, and eventually, into the United States. Many have spent time in detention centers, often alone (because they traveled here alone, NOT because of forced separation). Again, their resiliency and their view of what is “normal” is astounding to me. My students and their families are the bravest people I know.

    Their parents simply want their children to be safe. To be loved. To be educated. To have a chance at a life that is not surrounded by and absorbed by violence. To have a future that is free from further trauma. I am not a mother yet, but I already know I would do absolutely anything to save my child – I would break any law, no matter how severe.

    I also want to add that my immigrant students are unfailingly polite, hard working, and dedicated. They pursue learning English with unmatched perseverance. They take in and adore American culture, food, and society. They love this country, even when they know it does not love them back. The ESL students at my school are, without a doubt, better behaved, more studious, and more ambitious than their average, American-born peers (obviously there are exceptions on both sides). My students also work, some of them full-time. They work until 11 or 12 at night, travel home via public transportation, do homework, and get a few hours of sleep before getting up to do it all over again.

    Knowing these kids and their families over the last few years of my life has been an honor. Whether they came here with or without papers, their hearts and minds are the same. Their love of life and their excitement at the opportunities they hope to have in the United States is contagious. They are kind. They are good. They are the kind of American I hope to be one day.

    1. Thank you for sharing this story, Natalie.

    2. Yes. 100% this.

    3. Wow, thank you Natalie. “They love this country, even when they know it does not love them back. ” gave me chills and my eyes teared up. THANK YOU for sharing that. Yes, I would break every law for my kids health and safety. I’m also so impressed with their resiliency. Thank you for doing good work and speaking freely about your students. xx

    4. Natalie, THANK YOU. I have tears in my eyes because I can feel your heart and respect for your students. Thank you for using your profession to serve them. I only WISH that the rest of our country would have the same kind of eyes for immigrants that you do. If so, this issue would be entirely different.

      Also, I suspect that most of us do not have regular interaction with immigrants, documented or undocumented. Everyone is entitled to an opinion, but it is refreshing to hear an opinion that comes from first-hand interaction with the very lives that we are all talking about.

    5. Yes, thank you for sharing your story Natalie. It’s a very important voice to be heard right now.

    6. Thank you for sharing and thank you for the work you do. You are a light for these kids, I just know it. x

    7. Natalie, your comment gave me chills and tears. This is what we need more of: true humanizing of people where we remember that they have hopes dreams hurts fears too. Thank you for being a lighthouse in the darkness. Thank you for showing up for these kids and families. Thank you for sharing your experience and point of view. Thank you for obviously being attuned to your students and for your emotional intelligence (the main attribute our current president lacks among many others).

      Despite my heartbreak which has to be a drop in the bucket compared to the separated families and kids, your comment and the work you’re doing brings me hope.

      With deep appreciation,
      Sara

  40. The policy is simply cruel, which is a feature not a bug of the policy change.

  41. Emily, THANK YOU for this post. Your words are eloquent and sensitive and express beautifully all the thoughts swarming around in my head.

    With that said, I don’t think you should feel obligated to write on these matters. I think it’s great that you’re able to/comfortable with using your platform for these topics, but I don’t like that you might be feeling pressured to do so.

  42. Excellent work, Emily. Well-done.

  43. Thank you for this! I saw something this morning that is really disheartening – the growth of the ‘for profit’ prison system is making millions of $$$ on this policy. There are 3 major players – all of whom donated millions of dollars to Trump and GOP candidates. Now they’re sitting back and reaping the benefits of their lobbying with 12-25% business increases. And of course, this all comes back for us to pay for.

    1. I haven’t fact checked that but NOT SURPRISED. Everything is privatized now and no prison should be for-profit. Don’t get me started with how we discard people who care ‘criminals’.

  44. I do not agree with what has happened to families being separated. Their does need to be a legal way for people to enter our country. Otherwise our economic system, health care and education will not be able to handle the situation to allow people to become a part of the American dream they desire.
    I do not think a wall is an answer. There has to be a better way.
    I don’t think any party is ever totally in agreement with all the policies their candidate may stand for.
    I do not think this has been handled correctly. I think Mike Pence would have handled the situation differently or at least I hope he would have.
    We do have to stand up for those that have no voice no matter our political ties.

    1. Thanks, Barbara.

  45. Its all heartbreaking and unfathomable. I posted this quote from Elie Wiesel on social media a few days ago. His words sum up the whole issue for me. “The opposite of love is not hate, it’s indifference.”

    The most interesting thing to me is the trade and business groups that are completely silent on this issue. Yes, big companies have spoken up (Apple, American Airlines) but as long as entire industries (meat packing, for one) are willing to profit off of the pain of others, illegal immigration will continue.

    Imagine what would happen if those trade groups lobbied for more work visas and a more efficient system? I don’t ever see it happening — not unless ICE goes after the corporations with the same fervor they go after the individual workers — but safety and wages would improve and people would no longer have to live in fear of roundups while the companies pay a small fine and turn around and do it again and again and again.

    The bottom line is that many are indifferent to the sufferings of others. Either they don’t care or they are profiting from it — politically and financially.

  46. A few more organizations that are worth supporting:

    -The Fronterizo Fianza Fund ( ) works with the families of migrants detained in an ICE detention center to assist them in coming up with the bond amount and going through the processes for bonding someone out
    – The CARA Family Detention Pro Bono Project ( ): the volunteers of the Catholic Legal Immigration Network, the American Immigration Council, the Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services, and the American Immigration Lawyers Association working together to represent detained families and advocate and litigate against unlawful, inhumane asylum, detention, and deportation practices
    – Annunciation House ( ) is an organization that serves the poorest and most vulnerable people of the El Paso-Juarez Border since 1976, particularly working with the migrant and refugee populations and offering hospitality, advocacy, and education. One thing I find especially interesting that they do is a Border Awareness Experience, which immerses participants in the conditions and culture of the US-Mexican border for 5-10 days.

    I’m sure there are more, but these are three that I’m aware of that are doing good work.

  47. I agree that this latest crisis in inhumane and completely against the Christian values that so many in the right claim to live by. Love your neighbor, above all else? These are our neighbors!

    Most baffling to me is the economic reality that republicans refuse to see — we are quickly becoming an elderly society with not enough young people to support the retirees. These people could become productive taxpayers.

    I just don’t see a good argument for keeping most immigrants out. Or alienating them once they are here. I do understand that we should have a screening process in place, so that we are not admitting felons and terrorists, but that’s got to be cheaper to implement than the system we have now.

    I am an independent—who was a republican years ago. I didn’t vote for trump and I’m ashamed at what our country is becoming.

  48. This whole ordeal has been heartbreaking to watch as a mom. I have the hardest time understanding how people can say just don’t come illegally and put your family at risk. I don’t know any moms who would purposely put their kids at risk they are doing this to protect them from something so much worse. And we need to think about it from That perspective, from their shoes, they are trying to get here because their circumstances are dire. We all only get this one life and we should be helping people not judging them because they were born in a different location and don’t have the privileges we do. Looking back at my schooling I remember being traumatized learning about the holocaust and Manzanar and thinking why didn’t anyone step up and stop this? Their are horrors happening all over the world, from Central American flavellas to Syria. We should be helping because all people should have a safe and happy life.

  49. Emotional responses should always be backed up by facts. Studies show immigrant communities are LESS violent than others.

    “In any case, the important thing to understand is that the atrocities our nation is now committing at the border don’t represent an overreaction or poorly implemented response to some actual problem that needs solving. There is no immigration crisis; there is no crisis of immigrant crime.

    “No, the real crisis is an upsurge in hatred — unreasoning hatred that bears no relationship to anything the victims have done. And anyone making excuses for that hatred — who tries, for example, to turn it into a “both sides” story — is, in effect, an apologist for crimes against humanity.”

    From

    1. No offense fran, truly, but quoting an op-ed doesn’t mean much to me. Again, i’m desperate for more facts less opinions. I can write really rhetorically, too. I’m also not saying there are two equal sides that have valid points. I’m just trying to understand what the points are and to inquire whether they are happy with the results or what would exactly make them happy when it pertains to immigration . To ask that question is not being an apologist, its being a communicator. But I don’t necessarily disagree with that op-ed by the way, I Just try to not source an op-ed even from the Times. I trust most of their articles, but if its an op-ed then it automatically has less trust from me. But i’m a big new pessimist right now, obviously. thanks for your comment 🙂

      1. Actually that “op-ed” is by a Nobel Prize-winning economist. He refers to actual data to back up his statement that there is no crisis with immigration or with crime by immigrants.
        Other commenters here, too, have pointed to data showing those facts.
        He was not writing “rhetorically” but was expressing an opinion, only one backed by facts.

  50. Emily:
    Thank you for giving a platform to speak to each other.
    As a LEGAL latino immigrant (but who looks clearly ‘mexican’) I have been fortunate to know and talk to illegal immigrants. Of course this is my very limited experience, but most of them would never ‘bring a child’ just to ‘get in’ (which is the claim that many people who agree w the executive order mention when defending the policy).
    And even so, suppose a number of them are doing that. My question to all of them is: ‘should we allow some children to be separated from their parents to STOP some possible bad people?’.
    My 2-cent confession. For the longest time I was very conflicted on the issue of gay adoption. I kept feeling that something was not right (very conservative minded), but it was my pastor who gave me some clarity after asking me the following ‘what’s the ALTERNATIVE?’.
    On that sense I ask each one of you who support the executive order: are children separated from their parents better for the country? are we going to solve the problem this way? and how’re this children going to react when they grow older to this injustice?
    Thanks for reading and PLEASE answer me if you don’t agree and want to chat. I have always believed that people hold ideas, not the opposite.
    Bless y’all.

  51. For non-immigrant families: I’ve always been sad about kids being taken away from their parents by the Department of Family Services (DFS). DFS gets called to a home (or an apartment) because they’re suspicious the parents aren’t taking good care of their children. The government decides that the kids are better off elsewhere. I’ve always wondered if it is worse for a child’s life and psyche to be taken away from their imperfect parents or just to stay with their parents in their imperfect state/environment. Wondering how imperfect a jail environment would be.

  52. Emily, I love your blog particularly for the decor on which we agree mostly all the time. I read these posts that are on subjects outside of decorating and while I don’t agree with your politics most of the time it’s your right to post and I read with interest and go from there. As to the situation at the border, I was also horrified by these children being separated from their parents. Someone commenting earlier fact checked that this was done only by the Trump administration and that is totally wrong. This was a law on the books that had not been enforced. When the President (duly elected) realized the harm it was doing he signed an executive order to stop the separation. I am so grateful that happened. You had people asking why you didn’t comment on this situation, which is really none of their business what you write about but seems to me you have created a place for the Trump haters to voice their hate for anything the president does while talking about more love, compassion, and understanding. I have lived for 65 years and never seen such hate filled actions and vitriol by democratic liberals. I am anxiously awaiting your post on reports every day that talk about abortion and because of your sanctity of life stand you should be against. Let’s see if all of your readers that are raking Trump over the coals here would agree with you. He certainly believes in the sanctity if life beginning at conception. And I know if anyone reads my comment the majority will think I am just an ignoramous. Since this country has had immigration it has been legal immigration. Obama opened the gates for children to come in. They were bused into hospital tents to get a medical examination and then sent away to who knows where. That didn’t work either. It’s a huge mess that neither side wanted to deal with. President Trump and AG Sessions were following the law. It’s just more complicated than that and the president saw that because he is a humanitarian, he stopped it. The Congress does not want to work together to get anything done. The problem does not just lie with the President. I am grateful we don’t have open borders. We have enough homelessness in the US as it is. Look at California. Maybe as you said folks should put their money and their time where their mouth is. But guaranteed the situation will not be improved if Democrats took control. Sorry but I have seen how little love so many liberals have for anyone who doesn’t agree with them. The media is also the problem. Everyone should watch several media outlets (including Fox News) to get information and try to hear the words coming out of an individuals mouth and not listen to what some reporter tells you they said. Can be very misleading. Thanks.

    1. Hi BMC, as a fellow conservative I can understand where you’re coming from on many of your points. I agree that this is a law that has been on the books but was left unenforced until recently. It wasn’t Trump’s imagination that thought up this act, he just put action behind the words.
      But can I just push back (presumably in-party) on how closed borders comply with a conservative world view? I believe is smaller government giving residents of the US freedom to pursue the life we want. I believe that freedom bolsters our economy, gives dignity and allows states to govern the individual needs of their area. We are a huge country with diverse challenges and viewpoints – a smaller federal government makes sense to me and many conservatives. So how does this translate into keeping people out and having heavy policing? Saying everyone deserves freedom of choice BUT it only applies to those who were here to begin with does not reconcile. If we all should have the liberty to choose the life we want, let’s allow people to join us. It shouldn’t be threatening.
      Additionally, calling a man who describes third world nations as “shithole countries” as a “humanitarian” feels really off. He may not have written the policies, but he made a conscious decision to enforce them. I think we need to be very careful in defending a man like this, even if some of his policies on paper align with our views.

      1. It is not a law that was on the books. That is legally and factually inaccurate, unless you want to say that the law left room or a “loophole” for an abhorrent policy to be put in place. And that would be Trump’s Zero Tolerance Policy. It does not belong to both sides but squarely with him.

        1. Nope! Obama detained and deported so many people it would make your head spin! Finally, we have a President who will work tirelessly to make things right:)

          1. If by make things right you mean cage children and lose them in the process, then I guess that is your definition of right.

            President Obama detained and deported people under his watch. That’s part of the job.

            Cruelty and indifference are not. At least not until this admin.

      2. Kari, can we be besties? I agree completely, very well said.

    2. Hi BMC,
      I just wanted to say that if Emily were to post about abortion, you would find me commenting that I’m completely anti-abortion. Yet i agree with liberals (which for the most part i guess makes me a liberal) on every other issue. I believe in love and compassion. Yes, that starts at conception, but it doesn’t end at birth. Love and compassion needs to extend for the rest of that person’s life. And, as a Christian, i find the conservative side doesn’t use love, compassion, acceptance, and mercy on every other issue except abortion. So, I don’t think it’s fair to say that everyone raking Trump over the coals would not agree with you on that issue. There are those of use that actually believe in WWJD.

  53. Trump is a hateful racist, Nazi, bigot. So many of Trump’s past and present advisers are avowed RACISTS or White Supremacists – Steve Bannon, Jeff Sessions, Michael Flynn, Stephen Miller – just to name a few. When people show you who they are – believe them. This administration is evil, corrupt, devoid of morality and frankly unAmerican.

    That said, instead of locking up families and children for seeking asylum, let’s invest in more immigration courts, immigration attorneys and use tracking devices. That would be less expensive, more effective and less traumatizing. These families want a legal path to citizenship. When they have an attorney and court date assigned, their appearance rate is incredibly high.

  54. I am a Conservative who has been horrified by Trump from day one. This whole policy is agonizing and dehumanizing. It’s clearly disgusting. I have wept for these families and cannot believe it is a policy that was ever enforced.
    Here’s where I feel conflicted: as a conservative who believes in fairly open borders, I have been aware of the policies former presidents have put in place for years. Before Trump, Obama was the strictest enforcer of the border of any administration before him. My fellow conservatives have chided Obama for his loose dealings – it was quite the opposite in reality! I was frustrated with the Obama administration for appearing sympathetic to immigrants but not bringing actual support. With Trump, I am beside myself.
    Trump has brought a much higher level of scrutiny to common political dealings that are devoid of morality. He is in no way the first politician to do some of things he’s doing (which is why I could not bring myself to vote for Clinton or Trump), but he has brought in a toxic element (ahem…. many toxic elements) and multiplied the visibility by 1000.
    I do think Trump is getting blamed for policies that were in place before, but I don’t think it’s necessarily undue. He’s the first to enforce these horrific policies this way and should have to answer for his actions.

    1. Kari, this really makes sense to me. Slightly off topic, but I’m curious: hindsight 20/20, would you have voted for Clinton if it would stopped Trump? Clinton isn’t perfect, but she’s predictable. But would that have been enough for you?

      1. Meghan, that’s a great question and not one that I think I can fully answer. In short, I don’t think I would have voted differently (full disclosure – third party), but the reasons are varied.
        I felt increasingly hopeless with the state of the government following Obama’s 8 years. I agreed with many of his ideals but strongly disagreed with his policy. Clinton has been such a consistent player in politics that there wasn’t any question where she would continue to take the country – more, more, more of the proceeding 8 years without the freshness of perspective Obama, add in some pretty deep rooted corrupt dealings.
        The only upside to a Clinton round 2 presidency is that policies are reversible. There is ground to be gained and lost in a political system like that. The type of bridges Trump is burning are almost impossible to rebuild (particularly the international kind).
        However, the anger is this country was not started by Trump, it was given a platform by him. After the campaign process, I don’t think our country would have ever recovered no matter who was president. The right would be holding the protests against Clinton at the same rate the left is doing for Trump, but perhaps with less class. Race relations might look better on TV, but they wouldn’t be changing on our streets. I think the unrest in the nation has as much to do with social media as it does with political platforms. Institutionalized racism, hate, violence, police brutality – these are all things that existed far before the election.
        I honestly (HONESTLY) wish that I didn’t get so hung up in feeling like I cannot move past my conscience on a vote like this. I don’t think I would have voted differently because it felt so violating to have to choose between two evils to run the country I love living in. I honestly do wish that Trump had lost, but I can’t say that I wish Clinton won. I just wish our nation was at peace.

        1. Kari I’m so thrilled to learn about conservatives like you – I hope you’re the future of the republican party. I know there are a lot of folks disenchanted with the current parties but I have to believe basic human decency will push us in the right direction.

        2. Kari, I’m sorry, but Trump is president because of people like you who voted third party. Clinton had faults, but she was in no way an evil person. It was obvious throughout the campaign that Trump was dangerously unfit to be president. Whatever you thought of Clinton, she was better than him, and voting third party was just irresponsible. I’m sorry to say that, but it’s true. Everything that has happened since his election was completely foreseeable.

          1. Sarah, I understand the frustration with the third party vote, but I disagree. I hesitate to respond to your comment at all because now is the time to deal with the problems at hand, not rehash the past endlessly. However, I do think third party votes are important.
            In the polls before the election, a third party looked like it had a real chance at getting over the 5% mark that would secure equal funding in future elections. Third parties have changed up the American system in the past, it’s not a lost cause. Clearly the polls were wrong in sooo many respects, but none of us saw that coming.
            On a more personal note for my particular vote: I live in a coastal state that went to Clinton no matter what. I cast my vote that sat well with my conscience, was counted in a percentage (not an electoral) and made a statement I believe in.
            So I want to kindly say, no, I don’t buy your argument. I’m not going to be shamed into a two party system that’s clearly broken. Someone has to cast those third party votes to give our future a chance and mine was a safe one to cast.

          2. Wrong. Trump is president because the DNC forced Clinton on us despite the fact that so many did not want her. We were cheated out of a great candidate, Bernie Sanders, and Clinton and the DNC used their media cronies to “elevate” Trump in the hope that the unpopular Clinton would at least be able to beat a reality star con artist. Our country is worse than ever because the DNC couldn’t let us have any type of Democracy and no, Hillary is no better – just sneakier – and blaming voters, any of them, not just third-party, is illogical and condescending.

        3. Thanks, Kari. You’ve clearly put a lot of thought into this. Whole heartedly agree with Jess. 🙂

  55. I agree that this “problem” isn’t really the biggest issue that needs to be addressed. It’s dog whistling at it’s worst.

    1. I agree Paul.

  56. This is such a mind numbing, heartbreaking situation. Everyone wants people everywhere to be able to have a safe life available to them. And no child should ever be separated from their parents. Ever. I don’t know what the solution is. In a fairytale world we would be able to take in everyone that was in a horrible situation. In a realistic world, all of these people have to be housed, fed, educated and given health care. It seems heartless to talk about money at a time like this , I know. But that is the reality. Where I live, there are some immigrants who are truly working to try to succeed here. There are others who have learned to live within our systems… welfare., etc. Providing health care and housing for all of them is a real financial hardship in our county. Also, my niece and nephew were severely injured by an illegal immigrant who was driving drunk with no license. I am very resentful of that, as I think anyone would be.
    So I am very conflicted. I know it is the compassionate thing, to do the most we can to help hurting people. It is the Christian thing to do. I feel that constantly. But there is another side to it too. A realistic side. So l don’t know what the answer is.

    1. This reads to me as “we should do the Christian thing, unless it’s unrealistic.” That is absolutely perfect. Thank you for capturing the conservative stance so succinctly.

      “The only truth is love beyond reason.” – de Musset

      Just so we’re clear, I’m pretty sure JC was considered radical and “unrealistic” in his day, and that was kind of the point. Together, let’s be radically, unrealistically loving like he was, and see what happens.

  57. My biggest fear with illegal immigrants, or immigrants receiving safety in certain cities is crime. A girl was shot dead in San Francisco a few years back from someone who had been arrested and deported multiple times. A friend of mine is a border patrol officer and he says the people being separated are people purposely avoiding the proper channels for entry, which usually means something to hide. They want to come in illegally. They put their children at risk, or fake children walking through desserts for weeks with barely enough water for survival. I don’t agree with separating families but what they have done is a crime, just like if something happened here. If I brought my kids to a bank robbery they would be separated. I really appreciate your post as I’m finding it incredibly hard to believe certain news channels, videos or clips. I’m scared what’s happening is also overshadowing other news events so that we as a nation continue to be distracted and tear at one another. My parents came to this country, however legally. It took months and months of sponsorship in the 60s. I am sympathetic to people needing help, but america cannot continue to be a door mat either? I think there has to be a solution. More funding is definitely needed at border control.

    1. There is no evidence to support the idea that immigrants commit more crimes. Take a look at this:

      Also, “fake children” is kind of a weird way to put this. Remember that these are actual children–actual humans.

      1. Jenny, I apologize for the way this was worded. It was the middle of the night and I couldn’t sleep. What I meant by ‘fake children’, are traffickers, or smugglers claiming children as their own when in reality they are not their children. Thank you for the article, I will read this! The article regarding the case I was referring to can be found here as well:

    2. It is so untrue that “people purposely avoiding the proper channels for entry, which usually means something to hide.” It is is virtually impossible for most of the vulnerable, impoverished families to immigrate legally due to the costs and visa limits. That is why they are immigrating illegally.

      1. thank you for pointing this out. only people with money can really immigrate legally.

      2. Isabella,

        If it is virtually impossible for impoverished families to immigrate legally, does that mean you support the means/ways it is done ‘illegally’? If so, do you think there will ever reach a breaking point, or we as a nation can no longer continue to support the influx of people joining our country?
        I truly am interested in hearing your point of view, and others who are in an uproar, because I just can’t fathom the thought of what is going to continue to happen? When does it end? Like any business, or any other country it cannot be sustainable. If it were sustainable, if we had millions of dollars at our disposal, if we could help every single person in the entire world, I would be all for it. But the truth is, we cant. America is no longer the same country it was when everyone was coming here for opportunities. It just isn’t. My family from Europe has tried for years and years to get visas to move, and they cannot.

        Don’t get me wrong, my heart is broken for families who are so scared of where they live they are seeking refuge. I completely get it. It’s awful. But, from an outsiders perspective, looking at our country I just don’t know how long it can go on, and what everyone on the right side is imagining as the fix? the fix certainly isn’t to continue to come in. Does America need to go to these countries and start a war to fix the problem where it starts? Is that our business? When does it end? We have to remember the world and the country we live in has changed and evolved and grown by numbers that have far exceeded the past historically. We cannot always continue to be the way we once were. It’s awful, but we can’t. (I’m trying to look at it very very realistically). I hope nobody takes my comments hurtful. I am really looking forward to the conversations on here and having an honest dialog to see things from other peoples perspectives.

        1. Wonderfully thought out as those are my exact worries also. Another thought of mine is many people are escaping many things, even Americans – poverty, hunger, abuse. If they steal, rob or sell drugs (for example)to get what they need to sustain themselves is this okay also? If it is illegal but we know they have impoverished or dangerous circumstances, is it cruel if they must be sentenced or punished for a crime? Where do we draw the line about following rules? That is one of my fears in addition to our country not being able to sustain itself by helping those who do not follow rules…will that also feed the theory that rules don’t apply, because there is a sad situation that someone is going through?

    3. Millie and Kate, I agree with you both.
      This has to stop being about opinions and emotions an de more about what this country truly needs.
      I am a legal resident of the United States and had to go through all the legal hoops to be here.
      So I personally don’t agree with illegal entry. If you have nothing to hide, then you should have no problems applying the correct way.
      As a resident, I am not allowed to vote, and I was glad of it because it meant I didn’t have to choose between two evils.
      Trump is special, and my country has been abused by the clintons.
      SO, just using logic and common sense is what this country needs.
      No taking sides.

  58. It’s just cruel and nothing else

  59. Thank you for this post. I would like to begin by saying that you really don’t have anything to apologize for delaying a public response. I have been avoiding the news of the separations all week, and have gone so far as to unsubscribe from news pages so that wouldn’t have to see the horror. In fact, I almost didn’t read this post for that very reason. But I am glad that I did.

    The fear we are all feeling every day for any number of reasons is unsustainable, and without careful, thoughtful, and measured responses we risk falling even further into our respective echo chamber pits. So thank you for taking the time, thinking carefully, and providing yet another excellent personal post.

  60. Malcolm Gladwell’s podcast Revisionist History has a very interesting episode called “General Chapman’s Last Stand.” He talks about how when the US border with Mexico was porous, we didn’t have much of an immigration “problem” because many people came and went. It was Genera Chapman, returned from Vietnam, who decided to make the border “secure” and in effect created much of the current problem.

    It is a very interesting take on the subject of border “security”.

    Personally I am completely horrified by the Trump Administration in many many levels but this is a low beyond anything I could imagine. We are putting kids in cages. KIDS IN CAGES.

    1. Thanks for the podcast recommendation. I have college age kids so I have paid attention to Spring Break coverage the past few years and much to my surprise I found out that we also put misbehaving teenagers in cages. Rather than go back and forth to the police station which takes too long they have created mobile detention facilities.

  61. Thank you!

  62. Just trying to understand why immigrants from South America aren’t applying for asylum in Mexico?

    Why are they traveling all through Mexico to get to the USA instead of staying in Mexico?

    Are they afraid that the gangs that targeted them in South America can and do still follow them if they applied for asylum in Mexico?

    Mexico is huge, are there really no safe place in Mexico to immigrate to? At least the similar language and culture in Mexico should be an easier transition to trying for asylum in the USA?

    Just trying to understand why asylum in Mexico isn’t good enough for immigrants fleeing from local gang violence in South American countries.

  63. Emily, thank you so much, as always, for being so thoughtful and genuine. I sobbed last night listening to the recordings of ten Central American children who were taped their first night in a center helplessly crying for their parents, and have felt so helpless. Donating to organizations like Together Raising and RAICES and ActBlue, and then seeing dozens of friends sharing the RAICES fundraiser as it slowly continues ticking towards $20MM, is one small flicker of light in what feels like darkness.

    I have no good answers myself and personally couldn’t be more horrified and ashamed by any of this, but I will always stand by the fact that it is impossible to hate anyone whose story you know (meaning I work my hardest to not feel anger towards those who disagree with me on this or any other issue).

    I’ve always found comfort in reading as the simplest way to learn someone’s story and feel a different life. For this, we can’t argue over ‘facts.’ It’s simply feeling what another has felt.

    So for anyone who has thought– aloud, in the comments here, or otherwise– why parents wouldn’t stay where they are and/or why they wouldn’t wait or attempt more legal channels, reading this poem took my breath away (it is a little bit graphic, but I wanted to share it in its entirety).

    Home by Warsan Shire

    “no one leaves home unless
    home is the mouth of a shark
    you only run for the border
    when you see the whole city running as well

    your neighbors running faster than you
    breath bloody in their throats
    the boy you went to school with
    who kissed you dizzy behind the old tin factory
    is holding a gun bigger than his body
    you only leave home
    when home won’t let you stay.

    no one leaves home unless home chases you
    fire under feet
    hot blood in your belly
    it’s not something you ever thought of doing
    until the blade burnt threats into
    your neck
    and even then you carried the anthem under
    your breath
    only tearing up your passport in an airport toilets
    sobbing as each mouthful of paper
    made it clear that you wouldn’t be going back.

    you have to understand,
    that no one puts their children in a boat
    unless the water is safer than the land
    no one burns their palms
    under trains
    beneath carriages
    no one spends days and nights in the stomach of a truck
    feeding on newspaper unless the miles travelled
    means something more than journey.
    no one crawls under fences
    no one wants to be beaten
    pitied

    no one chooses refugee camps
    or strip searches where your
    body is left aching
    or prison,
    because prison is safer
    than a city of fire
    and one prison guard
    in the night
    is better than a truckload
    of men who look like your father
    no one could take it
    no one could stomach it
    no one skin would be tough enough

    the
    go home blacks
    refugees
    dirty immigrants
    asylum seekers
    sucking our country dry
    n****** with their hands out
    they smell strange
    savage
    messed up their country and now they want
    to mess ours up
    how do the words
    the dirty looks
    roll off your backs
    maybe because the blow is softer
    than a limb torn off

    or the words are more tender
    than fourteen men between
    your legs
    or the insults are easier
    to swallow
    than rubble
    than bone
    than your child body
    in pieces.
    i want to go home,
    but home is the mouth of a shark
    home is the barrel of the gun
    and no one would leave home
    unless home chased you to the shore
    unless home told you
    to quicken your legs
    leave your clothes behind
    crawl through the desert
    wade through the oceans
    drown
    save
    be hunger
    beg
    forget pride
    your survival is more important

    no one leaves home until home is a sweaty voice in your ear
    saying-
    leave,
    run away from me now
    i dont know what i’ve become
    but i know that anywhere
    is safer than here”

    1. J. That peom is incredible.

  64. I did vote for Trump and am still thankful he is in office as opposed to Hillary Clinton.
    I know we have immigration issues and feel strongly that there should be a crack down on illegal immigration but also a faster and more efficient way to achieve legal immigration.
    I am horrified, and I mean HORRIFIED, by the separation of families. It is heartbreaking and wrong and I feel so sure this is going to be something in our history that, as a nation, we are profusely ashamed of and apologetic for. It makes me sad and I have been ing my Texas senators and supporting NPOs that are on the ground here.
    To answer another of your questions, I guess what I fear about illegal immigration is crime and the injustice of illegal immigrants not paying taxes, receiving scholarships and other resources (like welfare, Medicaid, etc.) simply because they are illegal immigrants and just generally what comes with “flying under the radar.”
    I love that the US is diverse and I love and celebrate our differences, I just don’t like the “illegal” part of the equation.
    Regardless of politics, I’m so sad that there are children feeling sad and scared right now when that could be completely avoided. I don’t think Jesus is being honored in this and that is my hope- that we could honor Jesus as a nation.

    1. Hi Hannah, can I ask you something, one Christian to another – why should we be fearful of more crime coming from illegal immigrants? Statistically, they don’t actually raise crime in our country. I am so in line with you in a desire that our country would reflect the life and love of Jesus. What I worry about is that when we say that and then raise the flag of “crack down on illegal immigration” we are directly going against the values Jesus showed on the earth. Love your neighbor, if someone asks for your shirt give your coat as well (I’m thinking of scholarships and welfare here), lay down your life for a brother… not to mention Jesus’ relationship with Samaritans.
      There are a lot of people who would want to scare Americans with the “otherness” of the crimes illegal immigration brings. It can sound reasonable on the scare tactic surface, but it’s racism underneath. Can I encourage you to be careful to attach the name of Jesus to issues of immigration and especially (especially, especially) the name of Donald Trump.

    2. Hannah – ever heard of a thing called SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE?
      Your desire to inflict the honor of Jesus on those (Americans) who don’t believe in Jesus is un-American.

    3. Are you aware that undocumented workers DO pay taxes? They use fake Social Security numbers and the same types of taxes that are withheld from your paychecks are withheld from theirs. Their employers allow themselves to be fooled.

      But these undocumented workers do not file tax returns, and will never receive benefits from Social Security and Medicare systems they are helping to fund. Instead, their contributions help strengthen Social Security.

      I point this out because while you are certainly entitled to your own opinions, you are not entitled to your own facts. Your heart is in the right place but you are assuming things about undocumented families that just are not true.

      1. God forbid that they have your stolen SS# and file for claims before you – then you are screwed.

        Plus – why is it the responsibility of the US Tax Payers to cover the cost of ILLEGALS?

  65. While I honestly believe that no one on either side of the aisle agrees with separating children from their families what seems to be lost in your analysis is the point that if you as a legal resident commit a crime in this country and are arrested or convicted you will be separated from your children. If you come into this country illegally you are putting your children at risk. What happens if you enter another country illegally?

    I love your blog and have learned so much from you about design, etc. But I am not among those who believe you should address this issue here. While I believe you have cultivated an audience who cares about your thoughts and you certainly have a right to express your feelings. It just seems like a breach of good etiquette to use this forum for this discussion without asking people to opt in or opt out of the discussion. If you had told me that I was going to get more political commentary than I am already getting from people who don’t know the facts and are feeding on a lot of misinformation done by irresponsible journalism, a sound bite society, extreme partisanship, etc. then I wouldn’t have signed up.

    1. I wrote a really long comment and thoughtfully addressed each issue. From an Independent’s standpoint.
      Then it dawned on me, that what would follow is more hatred comments and no one would really read it.
      Pretty much the state of the world today.

      Emily, you may or may not read this as you are probably even more ‘sad’ than when you wrote it.
      I unfollowed you on Insta because of your personal political stance and now walking away from this as well.

      I followed you to see beauty. Plain and simple.
      If I wanted negative I’d watch the news. If I wanted visceral I’d go to /.

      So long…

  66. Thank you Emely for always wanted to learn more about the issues.

    I am American Citizen originally from Honduras. Most of my family still live in Honduras. I am also conservative that 100% disagrees in the separation of families at the border. Whith that said I get really annoyed with the way liberal media cover the immigration issue. 1. The way they talk about my home country, yes! Is danger, but you can still leave there and have a normal life. 2. Most of the people that leave Honduras is for economic reasons. But ones here they learn that if you claim violence against you in your home country you can claim asylums. I personally picked one family friends that got detained in the border and them sent to a immigration detention center. Ones she was there she learned to said that her husband abused her in Honduras, but guess where her husband was? Right here in the USA. Her family paid the bond for her to leave the detention center while she wait for her asylum court date. Them she move to another state and never came back. By the way she left her 3 years old in Honduras whith his grandparents. I do know that there has to be legitimate cases of asylum too, but it’s not easy for authorities to find the true. Another example, my mom next door neighbor in Honduras was deported twice, but just last month he decided to send his wife with two kids to make the same journey, because he learned that if you bring your kids you have more possibilities to enter. Have you read the article about the Honduran girl in the time magazine cover? His father in Honduras talked about how her mom took the little girl here looking for the “American dream” while leaving him with three more kids in Honduras. I actually first saw his interview in a Honduran newspaper, but now you can find the English version too.
    3. I personally apply for my brother and his family to come to USA. They have to wait around 10 years in line before they can get her Residence approved. ( I think is not fair for them to wait while other people just get here lying about their condition)
    4. I know so many friends and family that are here illegally that will be completely happy if they approved them a pat to work legallly and be out the shadows, but Democrat always talk about pat to a citezen ship. My friends didn’t get here looking for that! they came here looking for better conditions of life. I will love for politicians to really think about helping them not just think about what can I get in return (in these case they are thinking about future votes)

    1. Thank you for weighing in on this topic. Very important!

  67. After reading about the issue ad nauseum and trying to see things from an impartial lens, I’ve come to see it really comes down to two basic issues: misinformation and xenophobia. Trump fires up his base by feeding into their belief that this country is being infested (his word) by brown people who are starting to outnumber white people. Thus the rhetoric has been we need to take back OUR country for OUR people. As if there is such thing as “white culture” that needs to be preserved at all costs.

    You can talk about “crime” and “taxpayer dollars” and “working class jobs” all you want, but at the heart of the immigration issue is tribalism. Full stop.

  68. One thing I wish was being discussed more is *why* these people are fleeing, and what can we do to stop the refugee problem before it starts. People are fleeing violent gangs – gangs that have largely been created by our own county’s drug laws. I would love to see a national debate about ending the war on drugs, which would take away the need for these drug cartels in Central & South America and minimize mass incarceration in the US. “Chasing the Scream” by Johann Hari is amazing book on this topic. Wishing love to all. xo

    1. Yes, Tess, we need to know the background story behind these people’s history and reason for coming to the U.S.A. Could people fleeing violent gangs have moved to another part of Mexico? I have great empathy for Americans living in neighborhoods with violent gangs. I’ve been thinking about moving and for the past year, I’ve been looking at on-line crime statistics in small cities all over America. It is horrendous. People would be shocked if they saw the truth of what is going on here. To say nothing of the extreme poverty, lack of education and history of incarciration in areas of Chicago, Milwaukee, etc. And then there is Appalachia. I used to work at a community college and 85% of the free- tuition students were illegal immigrants. People have jobs that required that the spaces be filled by and fill them they did. We have so many people, the working poor, who will never be able to go to college. Don’t say any American can get ahead in America, if one’s entire adult family is incarcirated currently and routinely and many relatives have been murdered, those people live in a different world than we do. I want the government to help poor Americans get on their feet. When they are on their feet, we can help others. As far as these poor Mexican people are concerned, we need to encourage their government to help them. That is probably wrong, as we don’t help ours, so why would they help theirs?
      ~Discouraged

  69. I am very disappointed that you felt the need to dive into this topic, here. We are bombarded with this story and real/fake news. When I go to your blog and website….I don’t want to see it or read it. I want your great insight into décor. I know this is your personal space and you can do with it what you like, but I am going to have to leave as a subscriber. Nothing was solved in the comments below, nothing was solved with your article…except a lot of people being upset. I do not need this here, or want it. I am sorry. I almost left when you wrote the article on Guns but decided to give you a second chance. Sorry. I wish you continued success in your career.

    1. Same. As if we haven’t seen a billion other people’s thoughts on this issue all over the news and our feeds. I signed up for a design and decor blog. Not this. Over it.

  70. I am saddened that you felt the need to use this forum for political discussion. If the country is split political in half you might assume so are your followers. I didn’t sign up for more political commentary on issues that are extremely complicated and require a lot more discussion than our current sound bite society is willing to contemplate or participate in without lighting their hair on fire. Yes, it is tragic that children are being separated from their parents and no one in their right mind would think this won’t leave a lasting imprint but what on earth do you think happens if you commit a crime in this country as a legal resident? Your children don’t go to jail with you. I worked in law enforcement and the collateral damage of committing crimes (and entering the country illegally is a crime) touches a lot of innocent people. I really really love your work and you are an amazing and creative person from all appearances. I just want to have some part of my daily life not become a forum for more political polarization so you took me by surprise with your post. You have the right to post and I have the right to follow.

  71. I can’t even handle the arguments against immigration, such as “taking out jobs” or “taxpayer money” or “crime and drugs”. As if it’s all caused by immigrants. I’m an immigrant, my family is all immigrants, all my friends are immigrants, most of them achieved their legal status through illegal ways, yet all are successful professionals or business owners, no crime or drugs here. People who choose to immigrate, to leave all their loved ones behind, to leave their country, language, culture, everything they have ever known, they’re not doing it for fun, they’re not doing it because they want a nice house or a fancy car. They take whatever they can carry on their backs, pay someone ALL their life’s savings, and take the biggest scariest risk in their lives to cross that border. Just imagine how bad your situation has to be in order to make a life changing decision like that. Don’t even get me started on the whole separating children issue, there are just no words.

    1. So true.

  72. After I saw the videos a few weeks ago that the VOP, veterans on patrol organization posted about finding the child trafficking place in Arizona, and I saw the rape poles with handcuffs at various heights and a child’s skull with some skin still attached and human child bones, I set out to learn more about trafficking. One of the vets stated that the cartels make more money selling kids than they do selling drugs and that is why they do it. I read stories from people who work on the medi vac helicopters and have taken care of kids such as a 5 yr. old girl who had horrible injuries from being raped so many times on the way here with someone supposed to be a parent but was a trafficker. The ones who do this get paid by the cartels, and it is way more common that people think. I don’t know what to do about the whole situation but I think the DNA tests to prove they are really the parent is a good idea. I can’t imagine how it must be for a child to be handed back to a smuggler. Not telling how many kids have been brought through and sold in the last 12 years. I am going to donate money to the veterans on patrol group because they have found and stopped a lot of this trafficking. I read where there was a group of teens that were smuggled in and made to work at an egg factory long hours and very little if any pay. They were lucky. Some of the stories of what happens when they are sold to pedophiles and tortured and killed are horrible.

  73. I feel compelled to respond as my step-son is a border patrol agent and the stories he has are unbelievable. There is a big difference between the illegals we see cross the border every single day in the border towns of Texas, Arizona and California and those crossing and seeking asylum. The word is out that all you have to do is raise your hands in the air, claim asylum and you are in America forever. And without reform that is exactly what will happen and, in fact, has been happening for years. They were given an order to appear a year down the road, of course never appeared and just moved to wherever they wanted in this country. We are the only country in the world that allows people to just enter the country, provide free education and healthcare and financial aid to them and give them full rights as a citizen. Check out California who wants to provide (and does provide) free college education, drivers licenses and even the right to vote to illegals…I am so curious as to why anyone thinks this is a good idea for the country and for future citizens i.e. our children and grandchildren. This help costs money, money most states and counties do not have, and therefore true and deserving and tax paying American citizens who need help are over-looked. While a design blog is not the vest outlet for these types of discussions, you are correct when you say that we are all fearful about the future of our country. The political division is, IMHO, irreparable until something drastic happens and none of us want something drastic to happen so the future does look scary and bleak. I do want to thank you for expressing your opinion in a respectful way that was inclusive of both sides and not rant and rave about the current administration etc….it does open the door for a discussion and I appreciate that.

    1. A couple of facts ~ 96% of those people who are ‘released’ and ordered to appear DO.

      People crossing the border to better their lives are not *Illegals*, they are people.

      Every single one of us who are citizens today came here by someone being an immigrant, in one way, shape or form.

      Immigrants are LESS likely to commit a crime than US citizens.
      Immigrants take jobs that US citizens are unwilling to do; they are not taking the jobs that you already have.

      Who is being overlooked as citizens? And why? The people who are in the same boat as immigrants, the poor of this country. They would be so much better off with universal healthcare and free education, including higher education, as is the case is many other countries. But one party will not allow the poor to be taken care of, because they feel they are somehow not worthy. This is how you get a TAX BILL that is taking money out of poor people’s pockets and giving it to the RICHEST among us.

      I don’t know how people sleep at night, or call themselves Christian (or any faith), while believing that others who are less fortunate are also undeserving.

  74. Thank you – and, bless you.

  75. I spent a lot of time questioning my faith and my moral compass during the last presidential election. I didn’t want to vote for either of the candidates, but I ended up voting for Clinton because of the immigration issue. I experienced what happened in Wausau, Wisconsin when the Hmong people were brought here from Vietnam by a local church who planned to employ the adults in shoe manufacturing. It turned into a nightmare of culture wars. Rural Wisconsin is a laid back place and leaving doors and cars unlock was normal when I lived there. I am a witness that many, many family dogs were stolen and eaten by Hmong people in town. Gangs formed, the value of homes plummeted, blocks of Victorian homes were destroyed. Understanding the cultural and economical differences of immigrants, running from serious homeland crisis, to America, does not come without problems. I also remember tears running down my face while I watch a dance recital of beautiful Hmong little girls dressed in red, white and blue, tap-dancing to I’m A Yankee Doodle Dandy. It’s complicated. But, it all goes back to staying true to your moral compass.

    1. so interesting. that’s where i grew up. wausau, wisconsin. before the hmong arrived. i’m sorry to hear what happened to the town. you make good points. i hope the next generation of children come to value their city. it is a wonderful place.

  76. Unsubscribing from the blog. I cannot get past this headline. This ‘both-sides-ism’ is so damaging it infuriates me. I think you should only write these off-topic posts if they are very well researched and intelligent (eg Cup of Jo’s post on this topic) It would be appropriate to spend more energy empathizing with the victims than with the perpetrators.

    1. You must not have read the post.

    2. the tolerant left

  77. Thank you for this post and the conversation (I hope) it brings. Just wanted to note that most, if not all, of the people who have come to this country while this has been happening have come seeking asylum. That is legal. They are legally entitled to ask for asylum if they fear for their lives and the lives of their children in their own country. They are legally entitled to a hearing to ascertain their right to asylum in the U.S. They know they are unwanted (by most) here. Can you imagine how awful their lives at home must be to make the trip by whatever means possible to a country that treats them as badly as we do? What can we do? I don’t have an answer, but I know the entire western world will have to tackle it together. With the rise of nationalism, not just in the U.S. but in Europe as well, I am not certain we’ll be doing that any time soon. Thank you.

  78. I think your careful words go beyond what you need to do as a lifestyle blogger, but as a human, living on this planet, I love that you are so upset about the situation. I know you would never wear a jacket that says “I don’t care”. I can’t understand the dt supporters and how anyone can continue to support this regime that’s filled with hate. I see every appointee as an ignorant crony and not advancing the America written about on the Statue of Liberty. Seriously, these TrumpKamps are not “summer camps” as the government is calling them…I went to camp for 10 years and we did not sleep in a cage with a foil blanket. These kids are traumatized for the rest of their lives. There’s no question that they will never recover from this fear. The president and his wife wouldn’t take their son out of his cushy private school a couple months early to move to another cushy private school because they didn’t want to upset him. This cost the taxpayers 50-100 million dollars and they thought that was a good idea. Ripping immigrant kids away from their parents who are seeking asylum from torture or danger and possibly never re-uniting them is ok with this regime though. Hey, it’s not their kids. The only reason the president temporarily stopped this instant separation is because of bad publicity (he said so) –not because he felt it was wrong. He created the practice. It’s NOT A LAW. its like he set a fire, and became a fireman for a day so that he could put out his fire and then delighted in setting more small fires that he thought wouldn’t be seen too much. And by the way, the next day his GOP cut Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid by 100s of millions….that’s not a caring group of people. Meanwhile, his friends are running some of these detention centers and making a profit. Someone on this thread said that you shouldn’t call the president a liar. It”s a wall documented fact that he’s a liar, so you can. I can say he has no morals–which might not be a fact, but I haven’t seen anything to the contrary, so I’ll say it as my opinion. This episode shook so many people to the core because we saw and heard kids crying as they were ripped from their parents and we could clearly see the horror. I’ve been seeing the horror of this orange man since I lived in New York and he was hitting on every blonde in the club and commenting on her body, making racial slurs about anyone not white, denying housing to anyone not white, and accusing people of crimes they didn’t commit just because they were Black. Thanks for letting me vent and thanks for having a big heart.

  79. I HATE POLITICS! Why oh why did you have to bring such a divisive and negative topic to your beautiful happy website. I go to your website to escape all the dirty sad depressing news and politics of the day. But now I seen that it has followed me here. I guess, I just need to completely unplug – no tv, no ipad, no iphone and go outside and walk my dogs. There’s no escaping politics on the internet anymore. Its like a giant cancer that has infested everything — so sad, so sad, so sad.

    1. You can run, but you cannot hide. This is your/our country, and we can’t ignore what is happening, lest it continues and even WORSE things occur.

    2. How terrible for you. Truly heartbreaking. So sorry for your loss.

    3. I totally agree with you Greta. This was a place where we could avoid this crap, but no longer. Everyone spewing their own “facts”….Trump lies, is not a fact. It is an opinion. Obviously, a strong one of Emily which she is entitled to but I don’t have to read about it hear or buy anything she links up so that she receives more of my money. No one has mentioned the children separated from their military parents while they serve this country so that people can sit around on blogs and trash the current admistrarion. It’s pathetic.

      1. Whaaaaa? It’s not an opinion, it’s a fact. He lies over and over and over and over and over. It started on day one with the “biggest crowd ever at an inauguration” lie, and has got more and more dangerous with each passing day. How can you not see it?

  80. Thank you so much for writing this. More people with a platform need to take a stand. Before I only knew your style, now I know your heart. And I am here with and for you and your community.

  81. I am thankful that other commenters have acknowledged that “legal channels” for immigration are not viable pathways for most families. If it was even remotely doable and/or timely for Central Americans to get US Visas, we would not have such an issue with illegal immigration. In my personal experience, I have spent more than 3 years and upwards of $15,000 to change my husband’s immigration status. (His visa was denied and my family is currently separated). Life is tough for us right now, but nothing compared to those who are suffering and risking e.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g. when they try cross the border for a better life. If these people had thousands of dollars and a decade of their life to spare, they would immigrate legally. But it is just not a real option for the most vulnerable families who are fleeing poverty and/or violence. Like you, I am so sad and anxious because of life in America right now.

  82. I think intentions here are good Emily…I actually think you are a person of good intentions, I just get that vibe. However, I have to think if your children or anyone’s children reading this, were taken from them and put in a cage, you would not want to ask a series of questions to understand why. There is no understanding this and never will be. This is a monstrous act and damage is done that can’t be taken back.

  83. Emily, thank you for being open to discussion. I voted for Trump. Why? I can’t stand the guy. Never trusted him. Trusted Hillary less. Sorry, I don’t go with the popular crowd always. I felt like if Hillary were in office, everyone would turn a blind eye on the sketchy things she does. But with trump, he would be held accountable. And he is being held accountable as every. single. president should be. Does this make me immoral? I try and be a good person. I love people that hurt me. I help people I don’t know. I don’t talk about people behind their backs and I want the best for others. I volunteer and donate. I contribute. But my morals don’t always line up with political agendas; trump or liberal agendas included. So it’s a catch 22. I was appalled to hear about the border crisis and I wrote letters to my representatives demanding action. I did not vote for trump so I could sit back and relax. I voted as best as I knew in the moment with the limited information I had. And now I’m divided from what seems the rest of the country. There’s an immigration issue- and firstly it’s what we are seeing with these children and families and the systems that are creating this crisis. It has to be fixed. I don’t support a wall but I’m also not at the border day in and day out and I don’t really have all of the information on what to suggest. I don’t know what to do. But opening the borders is not sustainable. I’m not an expert. Voting for trump didn’t make me an expert but it apparently made me an enemy of the state and I apologize it pisses everyone off. But I could not, in good conscious, vote for Hillary either. Wow, politics. they’ve got us under their thumb one way to another. I don’t have answers to your questions. But I, like everyone else, is not okay with children in cages. I, like everyone else, demands action. I, like everyone else, wants the best for our country and doesn’t always know what to do except do the right thing as best you know how in the moment.

  84. Thank you for speaking out about this travesty. Your questions for the Trump voters are good ones. I did not vote for him and am really having a hard time getting over the fact that so many of my friends still support him and think he is doing a good job. I have never seen party loyalists so blind. I am appalled every day by what he says and does that I just can’t even talk about it. And how about that coat that Melania wore to visit the children. Did she not think that was inappropriate? I have a “Free Melania TShirt” but now I’m not so sure she isn’t right where she deserves to be.

  85. I have watched aghast from the UK at what has been happening in the US. Having worked for an American company for many years, spent a huge amount of time in the US and with many American friends, I’ve always been struck by the kindness, generosity and decency of the US and its people. I know the US is better than we’ve seen this week, it should be and must be.

  86. Im someone who identifies as a republican, but I want open borders. As a rational human being with a degree in economics, open borders are the most efficient means of increasing global productivity, and therefore increasing global welfare. I do think that once you reach America, you should have to gain citizenship (through an easier and faster process than we currently have) before you receive federal or state aid, simply to show that you are contributing to society rather than merely leaching off of it, but i would have no problem with private organizations filling that gap with donor funds.

    I do struggle with whether separating children from families is awful or humane. On the one hand, I hate the idea that these parents are bringing their children into a dangerous, illegal situation knowingly, and we typically DO separate children from parent in other situations that fit that description – criminals often do not get to raise their children. On the other hand, I understand why these parents do it – in desperation to save your child from the poverty and danger of your current situation, what do you have to lose? Even if they’re taken away from you, you might believe they’d still be safer and have a better future, so why not try?

    The real horror to me is that our options for solving the root problem – poverty, corruption, and violence in Mexico – are so limited.

  87. Sad to say good-bye, Youxi988. I came to your blog for decor inspiration, not a left-wing lecture on what’s happening at the border. Did you include that Obama separated families for 8 years? Did you lecture your readers then? Did you include that the law being upheld is a Bill Clinton era law? To get it changed, Congress has to change it. But….Oh no. This (and your other anti-Trump posts) are just a smack down of a President and an administration trying to get a dangerous situation at the border under control. Thanks for all the decor inspiration you’ve delivered all these months. I’ve truly enjoyed your posts. But now, it’s time to unsubscribe. And P.S…… I hold a doctorate with a clinical residency in infectious diseases and pharmacokinetics… not bad for a “deplorable” from a fly-over state who is…according to Hillary and a liberal writer…. “lazy and expects Trump to hand me a job.”

  88. I am the wife of a border patrol agent stationed in Texas. To be clear, I did not vote for Trump, not because of political reasons, but because I cannot support a person who I believe lacks moral values. I work in public health and I am a humanitarian at heart. That being said, I can tell you that most of what the media is reporting is false. My husband has been an agent for over 10 years and has been separating children from the adults that they cross the border with for years. Most (but not all of the time) these children are not with their parents. The children are told to lie and claim they are their parents. If they can’t keep up they are left behind to die. They are often raped and violated on the journey. It is a very, very sad situation. Of course these children are crying for their parents. They have endured countless days of walking in the heat with little food and if not caught at the border they are stuffed into stash houses with hundreds of other people in extremely poor conditions (much worse conditions than the holding centers you are seeing in the news). I am so happy that the media finally cares about these children, however they are severely misinformed. No, I do not want to build a wall. I don’t believe it will work as there are already numerous places along the southern border that have high fences. They use drones to drop drugs over them, and they make underground tunnels to go under them. I do wish that those who are truly coming to the U.S. to build a better life for themselves could come freely. I do not think one should be bound by the land where they were or weren’t born. My husband has apprehended gang members, rapists, and murders all crossing the border illegally. My husband’s colleagues have been shot and murdered in cold blood while trying to keep these criminals out of the US. Instead of blaming the border patrol agents that are putting their life in danger to keep “true” criminals from crossing into the U.S., we should be blaming the criminals that make it necessary for us to have closed borders. I have lived on the Southern border most of my adult life. Although I live in a “nice” middle class neighborhood, I have had my Christmas decorations, ice chests, bikes, toys, and even my dog stollen from my yard. I wouldn’t even think about walking alone at night or letting my kids walk alone. It’s easy for people that have never lived in a border town or don’t know what it’s really like to be a border patrol agent to judge. These are not new issues, they have been going on for far too long. I agree with the outrage, but please direct your outrage somewhere else. Please don’t blame the men and women who are keeping our borders as safe as they possibility can in these unfortunate circumstances.

    1. Thank you for giving some perspective.

    2. Thank you, Amber, this is the kind of information we should all know about.

    3. Thank you for your insight Amber. I have found that often times people who have a lot of opinions on how things should go down actually have no idea what it is like to be on the front lines, nor would they ever put themselves in such a position.

  89. Es un abuso lo que esta haciendo el Presidente de los EEUU. , las familias deben de estar unidas, nadie tiene el derecho de separar padres de hijos.
    Todos tenemos derecho a trabajar para vivir dignamente y proveer a nuestra familias de lo esencial , somos todos americanos, si hay personas que están en ese país es porque lo necesitan, además ellos están dando un granito de arena para la economía con la mano de obra que ofrecen.
    No deben ser tratados de esa manera , recapacite y enmiéndese Sr. Presidente.

    1. It is an abuse what the President of the United States is doing. , families must be united, nobody has the right to separate parents from children.
      We all have the right to work to live with dignity and provide our families with the essentials, we are all Americans, if there are people who are in that country it is because they need it, they are also giving a grain of sand for the economy with the workforce what are you offering.
      They should not be treated that way, reconsider and amend Mr. President.

      1. The above is Maria’s comment translated to English so we can all read it.

  90. thank you for posting on this shameful situation in our country and i am heart sick over it. i am sure many others feel the same.

  91. I appreciate your blogging about your family and decorating, and look forward to sitting down to read it everyday. And while I respect that there are many opinions out there, I do not need to read more politics. There is enough about that everywhere else. Thank you

  92. emily, this is a wonderful thing you’re doing. the responses are so thoughtfully written.

    i can’t stop crying for the border children and parents. it’s a gordian knot. i pray, i my representatives, i tweet to anderson cooper, i give money, i march for our lives and if i’m up to it, i’m going to march on june 30. i feel like i’m running through mud and getting nowhere.

    i feel that as a country, we’ve betrayed the ideals of our founders, soldiers, lgbt, feminists and civil rights marchers of the 1960s, by hanging on to outdated class and racial stereotypes and fearing change. we’re all close-minded about something and we need to identify and shake off the cobwebs. it’s a new world. i want better schools, not walls.

    congress has many older incumbents and it’s time for a fresh crop of younger congressmen/women and senators without polarizing baggage. i believe president trump was not prepared for his job and doesn’t have any desire to learn or adapt. he likes the title but has contempt for day to day operations of the government. it’s just not a good fit. i hope we impeach him or he resigns and takes the corrupt cabinet when he leaves. i am confused and hurt by melania trump’s coat yesterday. we have sunk so low.

    i live in a beach suburb of LA. on my street we are the only caucasian, american-born family. (my 65 year-old skin is as white as a piece of paper, wrinkled and freckled by the sun). we have first-generation ecuadorian, chinese, japanese, vietnamese, korean, indian, persian, german, mexican and i’m sure i’m leaving someone out. they are doctors, lawyers, tesla engineers, film makers, entrepreneurs, teachers, writers and an amazing watchmaker (the german). to me, they are all americans, because they live here. i would like to be friends with everyone. simplistic, i know. (what am i, a golden retriever?)

    but not everyone feels that way. one day, my husband and i were walking in a park near our house. as we walked past a family, i heard one say “oh god, here come the americans.” now that is funny, but also sad. i thought we were all americans. not a melting pot, but a hearty stew. i want to reach out to them but they don’t trust me. parallel lives.

    i don’t like this time of suspicion and fear; of crimes and collusion at the highest levels of our government — republican and democrat. i do believe america has lost the moral high ground. it will take work and soul searching to get back what we’ve lost, and get to where we want to be — someplace better than this.

    thanks for this opportunity to let out my thoughts. this is a great thing you’re doing, emily. good job.

  93. A poll that came out today said that 55% of Republicans support the separation of children at the border. What else needs to be said about people who support this? If strangers showed up to your house, would you immediately put a child in a separate room from their parents?

  94. I admire your bravery, Emily. Of course, it doesn’t matter what you say or don’t say. Someone will always feel entitled to try and take you down to their low place. But, thank you for speaking up against a horrific situation, that never should have happened; it’s the right thing to do.

  95. Emily, I only want to say thank you (again and again) from the bottom of my heart for YOUR heart.
    Your blog and stories on IG are so much fun to read and watch. Your talent (and your crew, too) is smart and adventurous and always interesting. But I am a fickle follower and I tend to move on to the next great blog or feed when I find it.
    Not so with you PRECISELY because you choose to use your platform to inform and open dialog about difficult subjects we are all confronting now. I feel we are living through a dark period in history right now and you have chosen to use your platform to shine a little light.
    You never claim to have the answers but encourage all of us to TRY to figure it out together.
    And, above all, you show that listening to each other is more important than choosing a paint color. And that empathy is far more important than the size of a couch. Your willingness to “go there” is the reason I stay here. xxx

  96. Racism. Period. The country is getting browner, women are inching towards more power – and it freaks people out. When president is using words like ‘vermin’ and ‘infest’ — to dehumanize brown people. It’s clear as the message on Melania’s FU jacket.

    The irony is for all the ‘forgotten poor white people’ stories, the bulk of Trump voters, were middle class and wealthy white people. They have not lost income, status, but they fear they might bc Fox News tells them and they hear more Spanish on Customer Service calls and lose their damn minds.

    Other irony – birthrate is down and dropping – we need more immigrants for economy -to pay more taxes to support the aging boomers – to pay for SSN and medicare – and nursing home workers to take care of their old racist asses. Middle class white kids ain’t doing those jobs. Or poor kids.

    They’re also not picking their own produce, working in restaurants, chicken factories, building houses, cleaning hotels and offices – and every other back-breaking job immigrants do for cheap that citizens refuse to do.

    We can have secure borders and be smart w/o being cruel. But people have to be willing to deal with a complicated issue and compromise for the greater good. But too many Americans refuse. Sad. But our country is worth fighting for.

    1. “They’re also not picking their own produce, working in restaurants, chicken factories, building houses, cleaning hotels and offices – and every other back-breaking job immigrants do for cheap that citizens refuse to do.” Good to know that you are down with exploiting brown people to do these jobs FOR CHEAP. You, unlike others, have most definitely done your homework with regard to supply and demand. Your idea to bring over more and more desperate people to flood the job market so that the supply of labor goes up while your prices go down is truly brilliant. Bravo, you are indeed a compassionate and caring individual.

      And, of course, by shrieking “racist” at the middle class and wealthy white people, you are lumping that class all together by attributing to them feelings you really have no idea they share. Calling out all white people and painting them with the same brush is just as racist, but of course, since you are on the “right side” of this issue, no one will take you to task for that.

      However, you are correct. I am scared and threatened — but not of “brown” people. I’m absolutely terrified of people who can’t think critically or rationally about complex issues and just want to govern by their emotions and use my tax money to do it.

    2. You must live in a city, SC, and have had some hard times. Please try to remember that a lot of us white middle-class Americans did a lot to support civil rights in our lifetimes. I know white people who do or have done all of the back-breaking work you listed. Yes, our asses are old, but they aren’t all racist.

  97. Does anyone think this is more sad than children getting taken away from their parents by DFS/Department of Social Services? The tears those kids cry are real, too. My heart breaks for them, too. They are being separated from their parents for nothing they did wrong.

    Do you think DFS should separate children from parents?

    1. Yes. Because the procedures that DCFS must follow when it takes children from their parents are stringent. And purposefully so. They are intended to protect children and paramount is the child’s best interests. DCFS is also tasked with tracking children through their temporary and/or permanent placements. None of those procedures were followed here. The best interests of the children were never considered. The two situations are not remotely comparable.

      1. Maybe the best solution is following DCFS-like procedures to determine where the kids would really be best off?

        It doesn’t seem like jail is a very positive environment.

  98. You should never be forced or intimidated enough to feel you must share your thoughts or stance on any matter or discussion, ever! It’s personal period. As for myself I have very mixed feelings. On one hand my heart deeply goes out to the children, obviously, and on the other hand we have children here that also need care and homes. Where do we draw the line? I also worry that the children coming in do not have ANY type of medical care…i.e. immunization shots etc. and that needs to be of big concern to every-one as well as the obvious, support.
    All I do know is my own Heart and Head aren’t even in agreement.
    As for our government, No Comment -Sigh…..

  99. Thank You!! We all have a moral responsibility to stand up for those who can not speak for themselves. I don’t know where our collective humanity has gone. I stand with other American who are outraged at the current Executive and Legislative Branches of our government who have let this happen. Vote America!!

  100. I stand behind President Trump. We are all descendants of immigrants, but my ancestors followed US laws and went through the process. We need the wall built to protect our citizens. President Trump made the change to end separation of children from their families. He did not start this practice, but all of a sudden liberals put the blame on him! Also, how can there be so many unaccompanied children trying to cross on their own? Liberals don’t care, they started this revolting game and are causing more trouble just in time for the Primaries! Build the wall and vet the illegals! No American should be forced to pay their living expenses! No more free rides! Look at the disasters in Europe! Thank God we have President Trump!

    1. There aren’t disasters in Europe. Read magazines that are unbiased, like Foreign Policy, and you will see that the “disasters” don’t exist.

      I have family in Sweden, BTW, so I am not relying only on publications.

      There have been rough patches, but, no disasters.

  101. Thanks for writing this from the heart, Emily. As the daughter of immigrant parents and growing up in an immigrant community, those I know love this country, and they give as much as they receive. It truly hurts to see how those in government are demonizing immigrants.

  102. What can I say that will inspire paused reflexes, broader learning, and deeper reflection? You tell me. TELL ME. Trump supporters, can anything tilt your axis? If you said yes, and that yes came to be, and then Trump said that yes meant no… would the yes stick?

    Remember in the Matrix, the woman in the red dress? That was Melania’s jacket yesterday. It was so extremely deliberate and tasteless, an expert troll move. It said, you “be best,” but I’ll pass. How many webpage refreshes do you think her team did to witness the liberal outrage?

    When the truth is out there, so abundantly, so graphically, what can I say to get Trump supporters to absorb it? They deflect it like slow pitches in a batting cage. I’ve learned I can’t get a loved one to read a self-help book I think would positively inspire them, and I can’t undo racism and cruelty with logic and appeals to the heart.

    Patience, hope, and “being best,” don’t leave me now.

  103. Hello! I am from a Central American country. I want to say that I don’t like that people have to migrate to find better opportunities in the United States. I wish there were opportunities for them here, but our governments have been so corrupt that things have gotten out of hand. We have a lacking education, and health care system. Most people that leave are hard working people, they send money to their families to provide better lives. It is sad to see what they go through to escape the lack of opportunities here.

    I just wanted to comment one more thing, last year, my family and I went on a road trip through Florida, I could feel some people judging us because we spoke spanish. I have felt racism towards me and my family since Trump became president. We don’t even look hispanic… but the judgment was there in certain cities we visited. I had never felt this. Trump supporters now think it is OK to be racist! The US is a nation of immigrants.

  104. Thank you, Emily, for caring and speaking up.

  105. I have questions of my own. And I have never been a Trump lover, so these questions aren’t asked rhetorically for his benefit. They are asked in all seriousness because it seems to me there is a whole lot of emotional thinking going on without any application of logic.
    1. Why did no one care that this happened in previous administrations?
    2. When American citizens break laws, especially with their children present, they are often separated from their children. Why does this not bother the citzenry? Why when the same thing happens to people breaking immigration laws it’s a travesty?
    3. Why is the media being so very dishonest in their reporting of this issue? Showing pictures of detained children from previous administrations and attributing them to the current President, using crying pictures if children who were never separated from their parents, etc?
    I really want to know the answers to *these* questions. I will, however, somewhat answer some of Emily’s questions. Yes, I do support enforcement of our immigration laws, even strict enforcement. Why? I don’t have hate for anyone wanting to come to this country. Since this debate is centering around Hispanic countries, I will add that I adore many aspects of various Hispanic cultures. I don’t mind immigrants speaking Spanish. I have no issue with people looking different than me. I like variety. It’s the spice of life! My primary reason for wanting our borders secure is to discourage illegal entry and promote the legal paths that exist. I am among those in the very lower middle class. It’s people like me who are suffering when jobs are given under-the-table to illegal immigrants because they don’t have to pay taxes or be provided insurance. It’s people like me who disproportionally foot the bill for the services and benefits offered to illegal immigrants by our government either willingly or through scams. Additionally, many criminals use illegal border crossing as a means to enter this country and engage in drug and gun trafficking, among breaking other laws. That is in no way meant to imply that most or many immigrants will do thise things, but some will. Shouldn’t we have some idea of who is coming into this country and what their intentions are? That just seems prudent. In short, laws have to be enforced or this country will crumble. That is true of any country, not just the United States.

  106. have questions of my own. And I have never been a Trump lover, so these questions aren’t asked rhetorically for his benefit. They are asked in all seriousness because it seems to me there is a whole lot of emotional thinking going on without any application of logic.
    1. Why did no one care that this happened in previous administrations?
    2. When American citizens break laws, especially with their children present, they are often separated from their children. Why does this not bother the citzenry? Why when the same thing happens to people breaking immigration laws it’s a travesty?
    3. Why is the media being so very dishonest in their reporting of this issue? Showing pictures of detained children from previous administrations and attributing them to the current President, using crying pictures if children who were never separated from their parents, etc?
    I really want to know the answers to *these* questions.

  107. I’ve read though about 3/4 of the comments. I hear the Trump supporters, and I am familiar with most of these arguments from following a set of conservative and far-right people on Twitter. Which I do to hear both sides, BTW.

    I think back to when Bill Clinton was being impeached. I remember how much I hated believe he’d done anything. But in those days we had to believe the network news, it was all we had, so I finally had to admit he was guilty. Also, in those days I didn’t have thousands of online voices telling me it was OK to believe what I wanted to believe in despite of the facts. As I said, I had to face his guilt.

    These days we can read what we want to read, and give ourselves permission to cherry-pick for our beliefs. So I think the best thing we can do for the country is to be our own psychoanalysts. Step back, look at yourself, look at your upbringing, look at the temperament you inherited and think, “Why do I want to believe as I do?”

    Question your beliefs. Open your mind and heart to facts that actually make your change your mind about something. All of us, on both sides, because 2018 makes it very hard to do.

  108. Emily, I found the taking of your “design” site to a political level unfortunate, because it
    made me question what did you do to get responsibly informed on both sides of this issue?

    I do thank you for your information list & “involvement” list. I will be sure to let my voice be heard. But, I must ask, where is your list on how everyone can be informed of the facts from the Conservative side? Like listing the EIB radio network, and other conservative news/magazines/etc. in order to have some factual knowledge of the other side? Particularly before one side is demonized and attacked, would this not be the responsible thing to do? Did you perhaps consider that your list is providing just the outlets of distorted news hype intended only to attack President Trump, like the distorted Russian Collusion narrative presented as the truth, but proven anything but the truth?

    Emily, in the true spirit of practicing what you preach, perhaps you and all the other celebrities, and VIP Liberals can join together to create a roster of caring, outraged people who will:
    1.) Sponsor and provide private financial support for these poor families until such time as they can fully provide for themselves and contributing citizens to our country and
    2.) 2.) Be responsible for any trouble they get into? Let the people who want them, pay for them. Goodness, there are so many caring people, this should take care of immigrants….only while there is enough Liberal sponsors and money to do so.

    Let Conservatives pay for the wall. Everyone puts their money where their mouth is. Yes, I will contribute to “The Wall.” it will not keep LEGAL immigrants out.

    As for me, I am a 63 year old woman who proudly voted for President Trump. I have worked tremendously hard my whole life, because it is the only way we’ve made ends meet. I could not afford to send my two children to college and the government did not help us do so. Our state, that already has strapped its’ residents with outrageously high real estate & sales taxes, the 3rd highest in the country, now has a Liberal/Democrat Governor who is going to provide college free of charge to immigrants, legal or not. Well isn’t that so nice of this wonderfully caring Liberal….Immigrants are going to have an advantage over my American children, who have taken nothing from our country, yet our families have contributed to it for generations?

    I’ve lived by President Kennedy’s words, “Ask not what your country can do for you –ask what you can do for your country. And a Christian book I read in the 80’s, “Don’t expect your country to take care of you. It makes you weak and it makes your country weak.

    You ask, “I know that you value the idea of family so much and likely didn’t predict this outcome. I honestly just want to know what the expectations were when you supported him or the current government’s immigration tactics.”

    I just honestly want to know why your don’t care you/we were never told of the previous immigration’s tactics?
    How interesting that no one cared what Clinton and Obama did with separating families due to the laws and court decisions THEY put in place. NO outrage from the Left at the children in cages during Obama’s tenure?? Interesting. NO outrage from the Left about the 25,000 separated children under Obama as opposed the 10,000, now down to 2,000 today? Interesting. NO reporting from the Left about the parents themselves who sent their children ALONE to cross our border illegally. Interesting.

    The Left Liberal Democrats don’t really all-of-the-sudden care about the children. They are just exploiting a situation to fuel a hateful narrative. Obama & Hillary got a free pass to destroy our country for the sake of liberal power. WHY were no questions asked, Why was NO outrage expressed? In all too many situations, Why were NO actual facts divulged to the American people by our leftist media? Now that so much has been factually exposed, WHY are no Liberals/Democrats outraged?

    It’s enlightening how this narrative snuffed out the historic talk with North Korea. It’s enlightening that they can Never let President Trump get any credit where credit is certainly due.

    The liberals want open borders to illegal— ILLEGAL, MEANS ILLEGAL—-immigrants who reap benefits at the expense of us hard working American citizens SOLELY because statistics prove they are future Democrat voters, thereby keeping Liberals in power. We Americans who do something illegal would have a very real price to pay. No so for illegal immigrants. Perhaps anyone convicted of an illegal activity can sue our government for this double standard?

    Has everyone educated themselves as to our early immigration policy when they say our country was founded on being open to immigrants? There were strict requirements. An early German immigrant told me he had to have a sponsor, be able to speak English, have a job, have $10,000 cash, and more, in order to come to the United States. They did not come here to be given benefits, as so many do today. Immigrants did not come with a deep hatred for America & wanting to destroy us, as many do today. Is everyone knowledgeable of Canada’s immigration policy?….and other countries policies? ….before judging ours?

    President Trump won the election with his immigration promises because enough Americans did not want our county crippled with immigrants and ensuing entitlement benefits. .

    Actual facts have proven, time & time again, the left and mainstream media has operated in the most corrupt, illegal, immoral & unethical manner. Typical of “abuser behavior” the Left/Liberals actually do and have done exactly what they are accusing Trump and us Conservatives of doing.

    It’s shocking that any moral, intelligent person can look at such behavior and feel good about being in the same “camp.” Every time I see, hear and read about this abhorrent behavior, I say “Thank You God, that I’m not with them!” More and more Americans are realizing the same.

    President Trump won the election with his immigration platform, with enough Americans who did not want our county crippled with immigrant entitlement benefits, harming the welfare of Americans citizens who get stuck with the cost, who do not want to put our citizens and way of life at risk. Educate yourselves by looking into what is happening in European countries and how they are being destroyed by immigration problems.

    President Trump also won because Americans basically don’t like cheaters, such as Hillary proved herself and the DNC to be time & time again. Now we know it was just the tip of the iceberg of deception & illegal behavior.

    It was shocking to me that intelligent people don’t connect the dots and see how the Liberal Left have done nothing but attack Trump incessantly with whatever narrative they make up to further their agenda. That was, until I read a book about how the brain works. It is lazy. Even if something is known to be wrong, the brain will come to accept the known lie as the truth if it hears the lie enough.

    As my husband reminds; fooled by his false news & narratives, the Jews loved Hitler, until it was too late. No one checked the facts on what was being told to them, until it was too late.

    Sadly, I know I will fact much hatred for my honesty with you as you asked. Sadly, the Liberals who so embrace diversity, only so if you are one of them.

    God Bless America

    1. Well said, thank you

    2. Thank you so much for your thoughtful post. I live in Texas and am appalled and disgusted by this administration on a daily basis. I keep thinking they cannot sink any lower and they continue to prove me wrong. I am very worried about our country and about our democracy. I find it hard to understand how we could go from an amazing, compassionate, thoughtful president to the vile creature we have now. Truly vile. But what worries me even more, is the complicit Republicans that do not put any checks and balances on this president. I know they must know he is awful and crazy but yet they will do anything to stay in power. I my two Texas Senators almost daily and they literally do not care what I say. Texas is a non voting state and they feel pretty comfortable in their “red” power. I am also disgusted with all the corruption in this administration. Reading these comments about well they all lie and Hillary Clinton would have been worse are so crazy. No, she would have been amazing. And almost anyone would have been better than the narcissist we have now. I feel like we are being punked and I keep waiting for Ashton Kutcher to show up.

    3. I took out loans to go to college as my parents couldn’t (nor would I expect) afford the tuition. Your kids could’ve done the same.

      I address this point specifically bc it seems to be at the crux of your fear of others ‘taking for free’ what you’ve worked so hard for.

  109. I am a big fan of EH and I mean no disrespect but If I wanted to engage in political conversations there are other sites. While the news cycle has been churning and pundits on both sides of the aisle are blaring their opinions on the Trump administration, it is easy to want everyone know how we each feel. My suggestion, stop ranting and do something! Sadly, this situation (along with many others we face as a nation) did not happen overnight or with this administration, it’s been YEARS in the making, educate yourself. So you hate Trump – I get it, but move on. If you are passionate about this issue, DO something. For one day stop using your computer to vent and use it to be resourceful. Almost every community has numerous groups who are helping these refugees, along with local homeless, or disadvantaged and they would welcome your financial assistance and your time. Put down your phone, leave your curated home and get involved in making a difference – talk is cheap. What better example could we set for our children?

    1. Emily IS working to help what she believes in, the computer, the Internet, are her tools.

  110. Your post was very well written. One particular section caught my eye which I feel is very important. So important, that earlier today I wrote a post on my blog. Our experiences are different according to where we live and our experience with legal and illegal aliens. I live in the South and our state has more than its fair share of illegals. I take the time to read the comments on posts and what I’m hearing is how our good American families living in border towns no longer feel safe. Where once they left food and water for workers crossing the border to work, they no longer do. They lock their doors because people have entered their houses uninvited. The people I see screaming about the border situation live farther north and do not deal with this very issue on a daily basis. I ask why aren’t you adopting a child, a family, volunteering at a shelter if you are so hell bent on what is happening. Instead of beating people up with words, why aren’t you trying to figure out a better way? The border is a mess and as we know with messes, they get messier before they get better. If previous presidents had not allowed our borders to go unchecked, the mess might not be what it is today. Those pushing for open borders need to realize the reality of an open border – uncontrolled drug trafficking, uncontrolled sex trafficking, weapons, drug cartels going unchecked. We do need a wall and strick policies so there is a controlled process of allowing people to come in to our country and perhaps becoming citizens. Thank you for the opportunity to speak and I will use my real name as I believe in owning my words. Thank you for your article.

  111. I would like to suggest that everyone read what the leading candidate running for President in Mexico had to say today. Please read it, think about it, and then decide if and when you think we need to secure our borders.
    If you think things are bad now just imagine if this person wins in Mexico and follows through with his statement.

  112. I’m a longtime reader and fan but I feel really, REALLY icky about the “explain to me why you think racism is okay” that is the tone here. Emily, I see how thoughtful and conscientious you are on most things, and really respect your judgement, but to have a debate (your word) over this issue is just…..it’s awful to me. Those of us with loud platforms and privilege need to be very clear here, and it feels like this really missed the mark. (And, that’s okay, I think there’s lots of learning for all of us. I’m a small business owner who feels like i’m learning a lot too.) I say this with a lot of respect, this feels bad and like your platform went to the wrong voice. I want to hear from female POC, from immigrants, from activists, not from trump supporters on this one. This was a big, sad, disappointing miss for me.

    1. This.

    2. Yes to all of this. As a female POC and an immigrant, it’s extremely disconcerting to witness the constant handwringing over the feelings of those who support racist and xenophobic policy and practices. I’m grateful for people like Emily who strive to be kind and inclusive, but I’m concerned certain types of inclusivity legitimize and encourage those who think they are more worthy of safety and care simply be virtue of which side of the boder they lucked into being born on.

    3. SAME.

    4. How about reading more about the issue from people that study the issue? Scholars, economists, policy makers? Just because they are not a victim of the situation doesn’t mean they can’t understand all the issues (maybe more fully?).

  113. As someone who lives with the daily depression and anxiety of what can happen to me, my family, and my kids because of these EO’s and administration- there is no middle ground – no understanding without looking at the whole picture.

    The US is part of North America. It was built by slaughter and slavery and make believe borders. We are indigenous to this land, this continent. We should be free to migrate across it as we please without European settlers imposing qualifications or laws.

    In addition to this, the US has had a hand in creating the political and economic violence and instability in much of central and South America. Just like in Syria. The least this country can do is accept asylum seekers from countries they’ve laid their imperial hands for money.

  114. Home, by Warsan Shire (British-Somali poet)

    no one leaves home unless
    home is the mouth of a shark.

    you only run for the border
    when you see the whole city
    running as well.

    your neighbours running faster
    than you, the boy you went to school with
    who kissed you dizzy behind
    the old tin factory is
    holding a gun bigger than his body,
    you only leave home
    when home won’t let you stay.

    no one would leave home unless home
    chased you, fire under feet,
    hot blood in your belly.

    it’s not something you ever thought about
    doing, and so when you did –
    you carried the anthem under your breath,
    waiting until the airport toilet
    to tear up the passport and swallow,
    each mouthful of paper making it clear that
    you would not be going back.

    you have to understand,
    no one puts their children in a boat
    unless the water is safer than the land.

    who would choose to spend days
    and nights in the stomach of a truck
    unless the miles travelled
    meant something more than journey.

    no one would choose to crawl under fences,
    be beaten until your shadow leaves you,
    raped, then drowned, forced to the bottom of
    the boat because you are darker, be sold,
    starved, shot at the border like a sick animal,
    be pitied, lose your name, lose your family,
    make a refugee camp a home for a year or two or ten,
    stripped and searched, find prison everywhere
    and if you survive and you are greeted on the other side
    with go home blacks, refugees
    dirty immigrants, asylum seekers
    sucking our country dry of milk,
    dark, with their hands out
    smell strange, savage –
    look what they’ve done to their own countries,
    what will they do to ours?

    the dirty looks in the street
    softer than a limb torn off,
    the indignity of everyday life
    more tender than fourteen men who
    look like your father, between
    your legs, insults easier to swallow
    than rubble, than your child’s body
    in pieces – for now, forget about pride
    your survival is more important.

    i want to go home, but home is the mouth of a shark
    home is the barrel of the gun
    and no one would leave home
    unless home chased you to the shore
    unless home tells you to
    leave what you could not behind,
    even if it was human.

    no one leaves home until home
    is a damp voice in your ear saying
    leave, run now, i don’t know what
    i’ve become.

    but i know that anywhere
    is safer than here.

  115. I thank you for your post. Here are my answers to your questions:
    1. I am a Trump voter, and have absolutely no regrets in voting for him. One of the reasons I voted for him was to ensure that our borders become secure. I support the laws being enforced, which did not happen under the previous administration.
    2. My expectations are that we need someone in the White House who is smart, sharp, and outside the Beltway! The politicians on both sides of the aisle are the cause of so much discord, red tape, and separation in our country for the mere purpose of getting votes and holding power. Frankly, I am for Americans. I am not now, nor have ever been anti-immigration (my daughter-in-law is from China; my ex-husband is from Mexico). I AM for legal immigration.
    3. Yes, I absolutely want the wall built.
    4. Asylum seekers are NOT turned away! This is a myth. Actual asylum seekers should never be turned away, and America as a country doesn’t do this. They should be properly vetted, but never turned away.
    5. First and foremost, they are illegal. The only way to change the law is for Congress to take action. Congress doesn’t want to change things no matter what they scream and shout, and this is on both sides, because of the benefits they receive (Democrats: additional voters; Democrats & Republicans: cheap labor for Corporations that have strong ties with politicians in congressional puppets). Did you know that 1.2 Million Americans have been victims of Identity Fraud due to illegals during the Obama administration? This was never reported on, as many other things weren’t. Anyone who’s had their identity stolen knows that it can take multiple years, if ever, to full recover from that. Crime, resources and funding, jobs for Americans…yes, all of these are major concerns of mine as to why I have a problem with illegals entering our great country.
    6. What I would like to see are the laws that Congress enacted enforced. They are on the books, they just haven’t enforced them in so many years. Obama allowed children to be held in cages. It was disgusting in 2014 when I saw those now famous pictures (that weren’t circulated then unless you watched Fox News) that you see everywhere now. Those are from when he was in office. Children – people – should not be pawns for the governments. Period.
    I care about the livelihood and prosperity of Americans. This is my country. This is a great country. I am proud of our country, and I am thankful for our president to hold Congress accountable for doing their job.

    1. Thank you for this post.

    2. I feel sorry for you that the brainwashing has gotten to you. It is so difficult to understand how this man has had the power to dehumanize so many.

  116. Emily, I just wanted to say that I disagree that you owe your readers a post about current events or anything else. This is your style blog. It’s okay if you want to post about fashion or hair or current events or anything else you want to talk about, but it’s also perfectly okay if you don’t.

  117. I think as a society we need to come to terms with the reality that “both sides” don’t deserve equal platforms. I know, it feels icky, after all we’re socialized to be fair in all that we do as far back as we can remember. Be nice, share your toys, give everyone a chance to speak. But when we start describing literal tiki carrying nazis chanting “Jews will not replace us” as “good people on both sides”, it may be time to rethink why we feel the need to hold everyone’s opinions as valid. For those of you who voted for Trump, I sincerely and deeply want you to know that even if you don’t consider yourself a racist or a white supremescist, your unyielding support of one in face of incessant lies and cruelty at the very least makes you complicit in upholding these harmful systems. I want you to know you are in the minority, and that the time is coming where your voices will be drowned out. I know that’s scary. But if you some how managed to vote for or support trump through mocking disabled reporters, pussy grabbing, and Mexican “rapists” and everything that has happened since, your opinion is no longer worth hearing. The fact that even though German commenters here have taken the time to share the commonality of the gradual and insidious ways nazism began and our current state of affairs, you are still more concerned about him being referred to as a liar is…unfortunate. Best of luck with your economic anxiety.

    1. Yes yes yes (Emanuelle) ^

      1. YES! ^

    2. Emily, it isn’t about you owing anything. But it is certainly appreciated. And further confirms for me that your voice and opinion are valid. It is inexcusable that people cower from expressing that these circumstances continue in our country. What Trump supporters don’t understand is that the architect of these inhumane policies is Stephen Miller, an advisor within the Trump administration. Donald Trump is living out his greatest fantasy, to be a dictator like exists in North Korea and Russia.
      The facts have been so distorted and as always the Billy in the White House spins the truth to the point where those who are not capable of intelligent discernment buy the whole BS.
      We definitely have an immigrant crisis in this country: we don’t have ENOUGH immigrants. These folks who do the hard labor that our own picky workers don’t want to do are in such short suppply that we have crops dying in the fields.
      And crime, immigrants are the least likely group to commit crime. An increase of population of immigrants reduces crime in that area.
      People search for the truth.

    3. So you are for the suppression of free speech. You think anyone who is German is an expert on Nazi (Nazi like WW2 Nazi or Nazi like neo-Nazi…just wondering for clarification) ideology and how it relates or doesn’t relate to current American policies. And all Trump supporters are racist and/or complicit with racist hate mongering groups.

      It seems to me you are the very people you think you are attacking.

      1. The first amendment guarantees the government cannot limit our speech or expression. It does not guarantee consequence free expression, or that anyone is obligated to listen to anything you have to say Nancy. It’s important that you note that. Critical. So I am for all American people fully enjoying their first amendment rights…and ignoring everyone who uses those rights to support and uphold the “morals” of our current administration.

        And because you’ve (at best) been dismissive of anyone engaging you with facts, data sources, or differing view points, this is where I leave you Nance. Toodles.

        1. “as a society we need to come to terms with the reality that “both sides” don’t deserve equal platforms”

          limitation of free speech. not “im not really interested in your opinion”.

          all of society…we…

          i didn’t realize all of society hired you to speak for them emanuelle. you say im dismissive of facts, data sources, different view points…you don’t want people who think differently from you to have a platform.

          again i think, emanuelle, you are the very person you believe you are attacking. tootles is right–we agree on that.
          nancy

  118. I’m hoping that many of your readers know that most of the pictures of children in cages shown thus far were from when Obama was President. Those “cages” were not placed there by Trump. Google for video and you will hear and see Obama, both Clinton’s, Chuck Schumer, Nancy Pelosi and many others talk about the importance of securing our borders and that there is a difference between LEGAL immigration and ILLEGAL immigration! Many of these children are also NOT with family when they arrive at the border. They have been taken or sold to the drug cartel. I do not want America to become like Europe. They are having horrible problems because of their immigration practices. Big take away. DO NOT get your news from a single source and do your homework. Good example….Time Magazine cover – totally fake. That little girl was never separated from her Mother. Just disgraceful! One more thing…..our President is actually losing money being President. Ever wonder…maybe he is really doing it for the right reasons! Economy on fire! Black unemployment lowest ever! Actually making progress denuclearizing N Korea. Just give him a fair chance!

    1. A lot of the push back I’ve seen from the right involves this argument that the cages, policies and so on were put in place by Obama. Is the implication that Trump is continuing Obama’s good work by using the cages and enforcing the policies? Is it that Trump is powerless to stop what Obama put into motion? I’m not American, so I fear I may be lost on some nuance, but I’m genuinely curious!

  119. Emily I love your writing. Very intelligent and informative. Your words echo what I’ve been thinking sitting here at a safe distance in New Zealand. I am frightened for your countries morality. Thank you for speaking. Your dialogue is valuable.

  120. Parents being ripped apart
    From Their children is heartbreaking.
    Bad people using children as their own to gain access is heartbreaking.
    Human / children trafficking is heartbreaking.
    People lying and misinterpreting the truth is heartbreaking.
    Friendships breaking apart over politics is heartbreaking.
    People losing their humanity over a political party is heartbreaking.
    Eugenics is heartbreaking.
    Abortion, with all we know about human develop and science is heartbreaking.
    The foster care system is heartbreaking.
    The confusion between science and emotion is heartbreaking.
    The news is heartbreaking.
    We live in a broken world. The answers are not easy. The only hope is the fact that the Bible says God will use all the ugliness for His purpose and for good. We are called to love one another and not rip eachother apart. Write Letters, listen, help, be there. Stop hating. Grace, forgiveness, and love is what we all desire. Love one another.

  121. I am a centrist -which by US standards is a raging liberal- but when I see a Trump supporter I am counting down the days until I say “I told you so”.

    The funny thing is that this is the second time in my lifetime in which I have seen the rise of an authoritarian populist strongman. And as was the case in Venezuela, this won’t end well. When I was in college, I warned all my Chavez supporting friends: he will crush dissent and put his acolytes in positions of power, he will destroy the Venezuelan economy if his economic plan goes through, he will create the most corrupt political system in our history, we will end up worse than Cuba. Check, check and check. The lucky ones left the country when they had the chance. The unlucky ones are begging in Facebook for antibiotics and other essential medications, and look gaunt and pale for all the lack of food.

    Since I moved to the US 14 years ago I have believed that the election of a Trump-like character was inevitable. My love of interior design helped me realize that: just look at this trend of tiny house living shown on many design blogs: people making homes out of buses, sheds, shipping containers, RV’s – all in the effort to save money, and be able to gain some financial stability.

    What troubled me, was the disconnect between the online comments and the reality unfurling in front of them. People would be very complimentary of the beautiful tiny houses that were featured in those spreads, but for me, who came from a Third World country, I could not help but be horrified that people were now resorting to be living in places without running water or electricity because they could not make ends meet. In.freaking.America.

    When people young and old have to resort to this kind of living because they cannot make ends meet, that tells you that something is really wrong with our society. The surge of Bernie Sanders, and the election of Donald Trump are two sides of the same coin: The population is becoming more impoverished as time goes by. People in urban america can find work – but cannot pay to live there. People in rural america, have no jobs and no means to live as well. This is nothing but a recipe for disaster.

    Though I am heartened by the protests and the impact of consumer pressure in forcing corporations to revise their association with Trump, the reality is that this is a problem far deeper than just a single man.
    In Venezuela, we believed that Chavez was the problem. If only he was no longer in power, the system that he created would collapse on its own weight. Well, we were wrong. Nature was kind to us and got rid of the man. Yet the Chavista regime still exists and it is a strong as ever -even when it is run by a person with so little charisma and competence as Nicolas Maduro-. The system survived -and still survives – because a lot of people profits from the status quo, and perverted its institutions to protect their positions of power.
    The problems that the US has are not intractable -but to solve them, it requires that people in positions of power to stop profiting from the system. In particular, I see gerrymandering, lobbying and the two-party system as the top three reasons why people are so disenchanted by our democratic system. Gerrymandering in particular is terrible: If your representatives don’t represent your district, no matter how many people vote, why bother?.

    The two party system is a mess -because in reality under the banner of the GOP and the Dems are multiple mini parties: the tea partiers, the evangelicals, the libertarians, the Davos industrialists, the centrists, the green party, the progressives, the communists -are some of the groups that are poorly banded together within the mantle of just two parties. And what happens? That even if you are a moderate, you will need to vote for a person far more extreme than you -because that person needs to be so to gain the vote and confidence of the people in the far end of their party spectrum (who, by the way, are the ones that mostly vote in the primaries).
    What about creating a third party? Good luck with that. The thing is that our constitution tacitly enshrines our two party system with the electoral college system. To gain the presidency you need 270 electoral votes out of 538 (almost 50%). Add a third party and even with a successful independent candidate you will force the election to be decided by the house. And seeing how gerrymandering works -well, good luck putting there a president that properly represents the people-.

    So I will do what I did for my birth country: protest and take action. However, I am not heartened by how things are panning out to be frank. As long as the private incarceration complex can lobby to lock children and their parents and bill uncle Sam for every cent they spend, you will see all this propaganda labeling immigrants as rapists, criminals and such. And our human nature will ensure that some of us see them as such.

  122. Emilie,

    I look to you for great decorating tips, not for your political views and, quite frankly, am disappointed in this post. Let me make perfectly clear, I think President Trump is one of the best presidents of all time and also think that our country is so lucky to have him. As a mother of four, including two who didn’t want to be more than three feet away from me when they were young, I of course felt pangs of anguish when I saw photos of a young girl crying as she (apparently) was being separated from her mother. Remember, of the 2,000 children who were separated, we don’t know how many are of tender years – most of the photos show teenage boys, so that makes me feel (hope) that the number of young children separated is minimal. In any event, neither you nor anyone else should put the blame at Trump’s feet. Clinton passed the law and he and subsequent presidents enforced it – recall the photo of the young boy in a cage that the fake news tried to pawn off as a current photo when it was in fact from 2014-Obama era? The ONLY reason why we are just now hearing of this practice is because the liberal press and liberals themselves hate Trump so much they seize on anything they can to blame him for so as to distract from all the wins he has had for our country. I 100% think that we MUST have a wall. Why? Because back when you were perhaps not even born — 1986 — Congress passed a huge amnesty bill and PROMISED Americans that there would never again be amnesty and that our borders would be secured. Since then, upwards of 30 million additional people have crossed our borders illegally. And though many are hard-working, solid citizens, the net burden on our country of these illegal immigrants every year is over a billion dollars. We simply cannot sustain this with all the homelessness and our health care crisis. It is not fair to others who follow our immigration laws and wait in line when those who ignore our laws simply walk right in and disappear into sanctuary cities and then bellow for yet another amnesty bill. As far as asylum goes, 90%+ of those claims are fraudulent, scripted by unscrupulous lawyers who will do anything to get these people into our country. USA last year processed over 360,000 asylum claims, the most of any country in the world. Every other country — including Mexico — has much stricter immigration laws and policies. What do you think America would/should do if 10,000 Russians a week entered our country illegally? We would no doubt view it as an act of war and stop it. Though the country of origin differs, this is in fact a massive invasion of our country. 180 million have expressed a desire to immigrate here. Would you have us take them all? Why not help them make their countries a better place? WE NEED A WALL! Once we let them in, we are accused of being in humane if we don’t feed them, educate them, house them, and give them the healthcare for free that many working Americans cannot themselves afford. Once you and other liberals each volunteer to make room in your home for a family of illegal immigrants and agree to feed and otherwise support them, then perhaps we can have another discussion about how much we can and should afford.

  123. Thank you for writing about this

  124. It truly is a heartbreaking situation indeed, as these children need advocates – their parents – who didn’t follow the rules and have now caused so much emotional upset on all sides. Our programs have ramped up funding assistance for immigrants (whether illegal or not) and funding has gone down for the elderly, veterans, education, cultural arts (ironic). I am in total support of others if they respect and follow the rules. I’ve taught my children you don’t sneak, steal or lie NO MATTER the situation. If you want something bad enough you continuously work and try hard and If that doesn’t work you Trust in God, a higher power or know as a collective whole the truth of the matter and be accepting of it. If I went into another foreign country without following the rules, there is no way I would expect the citizens of that country to support me let alone sacrifice the well being of their own citizens. I know eventually there would be an end to the eventual situation. So we are sacrificing our standards and morals and well being of our own citizens for those who didn’t have any? That’s my confusion ? I have several Hispanic friends and they are bewildered as well because they “took the right steps” to be here a LEGALLY. Like you, the news makes me anxious, sad, confused. More importantly, whether we agree with the POTUS or not, I’ve always felt we should have our voices heard but be respectful and do it in a manner which has class, grace and sets an example for our future generations in what it means to take the high road. Thank you for this forum.

    1. Totally agree.

  125. Dearest Emily,

    Thanks for using your platform to spread good.
    On another note, honestly, I don’t think we need to hear opinions that justify this. We just don’t. On other issues, fine, but this – I really don’t need to know why someone feels kids should be taken from parents and exposed to inhumane suffering. There is no justification for that. Some happenings just don’t have two sides of the story. Some things are just wrong. And we should stop feeling the need to be open for different opinions when it comes to mistreatement of children. Period.

    Love from a longtime follower

    1. “There aren’t two sides to every story”. And there it is. Everything that has gone wrong with political discussion in America. Unless you swallow the doctrine whole without question or nuance you are a terrible person. If you believe in legal immigration you must hate children. If you voted for Trump you must be a racist. There is no room for critical thinking. I find it hilarious that those on the left will compare Trump supporters to fascists when the fact that so many liberals are willing to just accept the ideas espoused by the left as the ONLY moral option. That to me is the scariest thing about this entire discussion. It’s like terrorists who set up in neighborhoods and hospitals and then when attacked try to claim the moral high ground because innocent children are caught in the crossfire. So funny that you think Trump supporters have been brainwashed when it is you who live in an echo chamber.

  126. One of the many things I love about you is that you don’t shy away from these difficult conversations or from sharing your opinions and beliefs. So many people in positions similar to yours would never do that, for fear of the potential negative impact on their image or business. Thank you for speaking up for those that don’t have a voice and also for encouraging civilized discourse.

  127. Thank you for this post. I appreciate you trying to open the discussion to include opposing viewpoints. That being said I truly am struggling to see how anyone could think this policy is ok or Trump in general if I’m honest. Trump used these children as a bargaining chip by his own admission. He lied repeatedly about what caused this issue instead of owning the change in his administrations enforcement policy and when all else failed he used his usual tactics of lying, propoganda, gaslighting and stoking racial fears which are by and large the tools he effectively used to get elected. Immigration is a complicated issue and one that can’t be solved easily but Trump routinely obersimplyfies problems and solutions to pander to his base. Yes MS-13 is a problem and yes there are those few who use children to avoid being detained at the border but we as a country should never enact policy or legislation for the select few who break laws as opposed to the majority who don’t. Can you imagine if driving were outlawed because there are those that drive drunk? And before someone says these migrants are all criminals . They only become those by definition once they cross the border illegally and again this is a Trump created problem by his administrations policy of refusing to let migrants claim asylum at points of entry where it would be legal. I believe immigrants add to our country’s strength and diversity and I don’t believe the gaslighting message that they are the root of America’s crime or income desparities. I am open to people who disagree or have different policy viewpoints but I am challenged to understand anyone who doesn’t recognize the overt racism this president displays or the pandering he does to stoke racial fears. Immigrants aren’t the reason manufacturing jobs have been lost. Technology is. Immigrants commit crimes at a lower rate or depending on where you live ,commiserate with the general population . This latest heartbreaking fiasco is yet another reminder of how distorted our values have become. Whether it is valuing assault weapons over children’s lives, ignoring a president who describes human beings as those that will infest our country , or who calls the countries they originate from shitholes while praising Norwegian immigrants , blatantly aligning himself with white supremacists and rebranding it as white nationalism, openly courting Muslim fears while ignoring any terririst attack that doesn’t fit his propoganda . I could go on and on. Please vote people and for those who support truly conservative values , vote for someone who embodies the family values you claim to hold dear.

  128. Separating children from their parents is a scary and unnatural thought, in and of its self. However, what if you were separating them for their own safety? If children are now viewed as a free ticket into the US, could that cause them to become pawns? Would that be a good option? Cartel, sex traffickers, drug lords and an entire host of undesirables would be using these children as entry pawns, or cover….oh wait, they already are! Doesn’t that disturb you on a deep level? Would you put your child on a train or in the hands of a stranger to get to America for a better life, fully knowing that 1 in 6 girls will be raped during their journey.? What type of parent does that? There were 12,000 unaccompanied minors detained under Obama. In 2011 70,000 Americans were murdered by illegal aliens. Just let that sink in for a moment. In one year, 140,000 parents were PERMANENTLY separated from their children by MURDER, yet who cries for them? Where is their Time magazine cover? Where is the outrage that we allow 70,000 murderers in (and to remain) in our country? The general public has become a pawn of the media. The best you could recommend is turning off your TV!!! I’m sure you’ve read by now the little girl on the cover of Time was NOT separated from her family. The images with children in cages was a staged photo from Politico and had NOTHING to do with federal government. The images of children with “tinfoil blankets” was taken from the Obama years. The media manipulates on a daily basis to excite our rage. Amazing that they did not post the photo of Elio Gonzalez who Pres. Clinton had ripped from his uncles arms AT GUNPOINT. Why are you outraged now (and not then)? Or all along for that matter, it’s nothing new? You only got up in arms when the media told you too and then posted fake/altered photos to do so. Have you asked yourself how we are to take care of all the immigrants? I live in a sanctuary state where homelessness is a major and ever growing problem. Why would we, as a nation take in more people before looking after our own. You,as a mother would make sure your children are cared for first before taking care of others. Although you may not see the correlation, President Trump is focused on making sure Americans are safe first before taking care of others.

    1. thank you for your post, so well said, as are many here….I read a lot of the above responses yesterday and literally tossed and turned all night, I was so bothered by the hate and bias for Trump. I am so sick of this idea if you don’t agree with the left, you just don’t care or feel or love as much as them, the answers to these problems are very complex. Please liberals stop bashing FOX news (which is basically on their own), every democratic country needs different news outlets with more than one point of view being pushed. I don’t love everyone on FOX just as I don’t love everyone on CNN but both are very very necessary. Democrats USED to be for a wall and strong borders why not work with Trump on the wall while also pushing for an easier path for legal citizenship?

  129. Very nice blog post; didn’t vote for Trump but feel the need to contribute.

    Have read in NYT article, “There’s a Better, Cheaper Way to Handle Immigration.” (Sonia Nazario, June 22, 2018) that the pilot family case management program for family asylum seekers was a successful one that helped families to tap resources for legal services, housing and education. The program cost $36/family per day vs $900/family per day for incarceration/detention. Under the pilot program, 99% of immigrants attended their hearings. This program was cancelled by the current administration one year ago.

    Other programs were ICE programs that included electronic surveillance and tracking, unannounced visitations, and telephone reporting. Those practices cost between 36 cents to $8.04 per day. About 96% of asylum seekers attended their hearings; with 80% of those people compliant with removal when judged not qualified. Not sure what happened with that program.

    While it is true that our borders must be secured, asylum seekers have special needs. The programs mentioned above point to ways that don’t violate the family unit, and may help to integrate those who saw our country as a beacon of light, safety, opportunity where they could contribute to a positive American story. What they got instead was a brutal, dark, inhuman American nightmare that cannot be allowed to define our history, and with the help of all concerned Americans, will not be allowed to define our future.

  130. So many things to say- I agree with most everything you’ve written but here I sit with an anxious lump in the pit of my stomach. You wrote: “Some of us feel unsafe because we sense that our collective morals are being lost under this current administration.” The reality is the “other side,” (ME) felt this way about the last administration. The issues might have been different (maybe not ripping families apart- maybe ripping fetuses apart) but the feeling of losing our way is the same. I don’t say this to deflect. I care about those families just as I care for the unborn. I simply say this as a way for you and others to understand we are the same. We ask the same questions (how did we get here?) but about different issues. I listen to a very conservative Christian podcast weekly and long before this story was flooding my Facebook feed, they unequivocally denounced using children to punish parents as a cruel and bad idea. That made me breathe a sigh of relief. It’s wrong, it’s immoral, and there’s a better way. There must be.

  131. Very nice blog post, Emily; I didn’t vote for Trump but feel the need to contribute.

    Have read in NYT article, “There’s a Better, Cheaper Way to Handle Immigration.” (Sonia Nazario, June 22, 2018) that the pilot family case management program for family asylum seekers was a successful one that helped families to tap resources for legal services, housing and education. The program cost $36/family per day vs $900/family per day for incarceration/detention. Under the pilot program, 99% of immigrants attended their hearings. This program was cancelled by the current administration one year ago.

    Other programs were ICE programs that included electronic surveillance and tracking, unannounced visitations, and telephone reporting. Those practices cost between 36 cents to $8.04 per day. About 96% of asylum seekers attended their hearings; with 80% of those people compliant with removal when judged not qualified. Not sure what happened with that program.

    While it is true that our borders must be secured, asylum seekers have special needs. The programs mentioned above point to ways that don’t violate the family unit, and may help to integrate those who saw our country as a beacon of light, safety, opportunity where they could contribute to a positive American story. What they got instead was a brutal, dark, inhuman American nightmare that cannot be allowed to define our history, and with the help of all concerned Americans, will not be allowed to define our future.

  132. Just as I suspected. Emily’s thoughtful post asking for real dialogue on this issue has brought out “what about Hillary?”, deep state, “Snopes is librul”, Fox “news” propaganda taking points instead of any real explanation of why you would support this policy. Thank you for trying, Emily.

  133. I have always appreciated your willingness to engage in a civil, open discussion. A few of your remarks in this post, however, sting and don’t create a truly safe place for that dialogue.
    I am an unmarried 39 year old woman working in state public policy in a blue state. I pay for my own healthcare (not Obamacare because I cannot afford it), I pinched pennies for years to buy a house in a dodgy neighborhood for $133k (with no truckloads of free furniture) and I am a product of public education. I am not rich. I could never dream of affording to send children to private schools. Yet I do work to shape state laws. So how have earned your label of rich getting richer, living in a bubble of private schools and unconcerned about the needs of others? You’ve set people like me, who have devoted their lives to public service, as the enemy before we can even join your discussion, and that is very hurtful and destructive.
    I hope that each person who gives via Facebook to helping these sweet and deserving families separated at our borders will also find it in their heart to help the U.S. children who’ve been separated from their parents and now live in foster care. I frequently serve as a free babysitter for foster parents – something small to help the children in my local community. This is something those who aren’t “rich getting richer” can do, too.

  134. Well said Emily, and way to foster a healthy debate oriented to understanding and growth. Much respect to you to try to rise above and take a look on both sides.

  135. Emily,

    I subscribed to your blog for interior design ideas since I’m building a house.
    Was hoping your blog was an “escape” from all the noise of politics. I was obviously wrong. There is much propaganda on this political subject and past administrations were protected by the media.

    Thanks, but no thanks to your interior design blog.

  136. Emily, thank you for speaking out and also for reaching out to those that support this administration.
    My in-laws are hard working Mexican immigrants. They arrived in the US in the late 60s. The border was fluid then. People would grocery shop on the US side and go back to Mexico to prepare supper.
    My in-laws eventually became naturalized citizens and my FIL spent the majority of his career working for one of the big auto manufacturers. The US was good to them and they were good to the US. They are extremely patriotic and so proud of what they accomplished here. They both can from broken and abusive homes and vowed they would not do that to their children and they kept that promise. Their kids are all functioning members of society.
    Earlier this year we broke the news to my in-laws that we are leaving the U.S. and moving to Mexico next month. We do not see a future here for our children. We see a life of struggle and discrimination ahead. Will life in Mexico be perfect? No but we know we will be welcomed with open arms.
    My ancestors left their homelands hundreds of years ago for the U.S. because they wanted a better future for their family and I guess I’m following in their footsteps now but I’m turning my eyes to another country. I hope that when people begin to do “the right” (to borrow a term from the LDS) again that we will feel comfortable returning but until then, there is a big beautiful world out there and we intend to show our kids that the “other” isn’t scary but in fact they are our brothers and sisters.
    Cheering you on from Mexico and beyond!
    M

  137. While separating families is an awful thing these immigrants DO have the option of coming to America at legal points of entry. Instead they choose to subject themselves AND their children to be smuggled in dangerously by criminals. Choices. I voted for Trump and while I don’t agree with everything he does, nor is his personality likeable, he is making good strides in many ways. He deserves more support.
    By the way, my husband did not tell me to vote for Trump as Hilary said.
    Freedom of speech is real and I admire your fire, Emily, but I follow your decorating instead.

  138. I too will no longer be reading this blog. Was interested in your interior design expertise and experiences, not your political opinions. There’s no point in answering your questions as the conservative, Christian viewpoint is not welcome here nor is this the appropriate platform for addressing these issues.

    1. never go full retard.

  139. I’m just frustrated with this kind of dialog in general. Do we as liberals have to shoulder SO much guilt that we have to “understand” every backwards opinion? Every hateful, intolerant, bigoted opinion that is not based in fact, but is fueled by the non-stop Fox News loop? Do I have to understand why people support ripping children from the arms of their mothers? Do I have to understand why people want to spend billions on a wall to keep people out of our country? We are in the midst of a humanitarian crisis in this country right now, and all that this “help me understand this” brand of post does is give a platform to people who think that this is normal/justified. Just like the posts about Trump voters and gun supporters. It doesn’t further the discussion in a meaningful way, it just provides yet ANOTHER venue where backward opinions are published.

    I’m sorry, Emily, but I really hope you get away from this kind of post. As a liberal, I don’t think trying to find common ground on this kind of issue is what we need right now to make progress. Part of being tolerant doesn’t have to involve accepting intolerance. Yes, these issues divide us. They divide the hateful from the kind. And if someone voted for Trump, they can’t act surprised that this kind of nationalism has gone mainstream.

    Am I being intolerant? Yes. I am intolerant to hatred, to bigotry, to a blatant disregard of facts. I’m intolerant of a president who mocks the disabled, who brags about assaulting women, who refers to white nationalists as “good people.” I don’t need to understand why he does the things that he does any more than I need to understand why people rape or murder or abuse children. And I don’t think progressives need to “understand” his blind supporters. I’m just fed up with the liberal guilt.

    I truly appreciate that you provided links for people who want to take action. I just wish you stopped there instead of yet again opening the floor to Trump supporters.

    1. This is the best comment in this post, and succinctly wraps up how I feel about this kind of conversation. Thank you.

  140. Hi Emily,

    I appreciate you taking the time to create a dialogue around this issue and specifically seeking other people’s opinions. That can be difficult on a subject that seems so obviously wrong.

    I don’t have personal experience with immigrants, or borders. But I did grow up deep in the fundamental evangelicalism that makes up much of Trump’s base now. From that experience I can say that, as a whole, it is deeply nationalistic, judgemental of anything that looks different, devoid of empathy, and white supremacist. Most would deny that. But I lived it. I could fill a book with the lies I was told, the omissions from history, the racist propaganda that was regularly promoted. On top of all that, their main goal is control. And sadly, they are gaining more and more power in our country. My evangelical school’s motto was “Taking back the land”. Their express goal was to raise up militant Christians who would gain power in every sphere of culture and “Christianize” it. I share all that because, while I appreciate your empathy and trying to believe the best about those we disagree with, I believe that is part of why we are in the mess we are in right now. They are counting on us giving the benefit of the doubt. They are counting on us saying “oh maybe it was just me” when they gaslight us. When someone shows us who they are, we should believe them.

    Again, I appreciate the goal of the space you’ve created here. But I feel like you set up a false equivalency. You said, “Many people feel that their community will be threatened by these immigrants seeking asylum, potentially taking their jobs, weakening their economy, bringing drugs, poverty, and crime with them which could yes, endanger their children and families.”

    Those are, almost without exception, provably false and white nationalist talking points to maintain fear of the “other”. They are not valid concerns and certainly not equivalent with with the morally abhorrent practice of detaining children in cages. Immigrants, legal or not, are *less likely* to commit crimes than Americans. And rather than “stealing” American jobs, immigrants actually fill jobs that most Americans don’t want (as we can see from the current crisis certain farmers are facing not able to hire enough workers). Aside from that, research shows that immigration fuels innovation and economic growth. I believe it’s important that we share the truth and not perpetuate racist stereotypes about immigrants.

  141. Whenever anyone breaks the law (regardless of whether you agree with the law in place), they know it will lead to being separated from their family. If I steal a loaf of bread to feed my family and get caught, I will be separated from my family. I know this going in. My parents-in-law are immigrants. They are such proud Americans. They came into this country legally. They served in military and have worked hard and paid taxes for over 50 years. Having seen how they have flourished here, I really feel for these families that want to come to US too! I want them to all get here! But we have to keep US thriving so we can help others. In an airplane, i have to put oxygen on myself before I can help my child – no matter how hard that would instinctually be. I absolutely agree that It’s totally ridiculous that it takes years to enter this country legally…so that should be our mission. Let’s make coming in legally a quicker process. In the meantime, it’s not okay to break the law regardless of how messed up that particular law is. It’s a black and white issue.

    1. I don’t know how many times people can say this but, here goes again: The families that everyone is so upset about being separated at the border are seeking asylum, they are NOT UNDOCUMENTED IMMIGRANTS. (I also don’t believe undocumented immigrants who are apprehended trying to legally cross the border should have their children taken away, but that’s a different argument.) Seeking asylum is legal. Your comparison to anyone else breaking the law, like someone stealing a loaf of bread, does not hold up in this argument because the people we are discussing did not break a law. They came to this country, turned themselves into border patrol or another law enforcement agency, and said that they were seeking asylum because they feared for their lives in their home countries. They did not break a law.

    2. Lisa, Fair enough point, people should follow laws. Except you’re ignoring the fact that the actual criminal charge is a federal misdemeanor – you would not be sent to jail and separated from your family for an equivalent crime. So, in this case the punishment (taking your children away, and/or being detained indefinitely without due process) does not fit the crime (a federal misdemeanor).

  142. From 2 Timothy 3: “But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power…. “

    My hot sport opinion: Politics don’t affect culture, they reflect it. Ours is a money-loving, self-obsessed, what-about-me culture. Baby boomers down to Millenials, it appears to be an epidemic at this point. So I’ve made my business to be raising up my kids…I’m praying for the hearts of the next generation, and doing my best to steward the ones I’ve been given, to raise sons who value others more than themselves, who use the authority they are given to the benefit of others, because this is the culture of our Lord Jesus Christ. No administration can offer a solution, no matter how well-meaning. This is about the hearts of the people crying out to God our Father, and turning to the truth of His ways.

    1. Thank you Emily. Thanks for being who you are. Hopefully Trump has not done irreparable damage to our country and 2018 brings a wave of blue to at least stop any further destructive legislation. I have shared your post with a large liberal group I belong to. Some knew you, others not. But all were impressed with your genuine heart. I agree with those who question the necessity of trying to understand the alt right side of this. It doesn’t matter. Their hearts are evil. They use God to justify their worst impulses. You have a platform to express yourself and the courage to do so. I love you, sister.

  143. Emily,
    I think it’s great that you want to get to know the other side and are willing to ask questions however after reading through the comments it seems like there is a lot more arguing and less actual conversation. Theres a lot of off topic conversations like abortion and the only positive statements seem to be coming from others supporting those who share their same opinions. I really wish you would stay away from politics on this blog and use another platform for political discussions. If you really want to hear news that’s less biased (I mean let’s be real no one is Un biased ever) and learn what some of those who voted for Trump think/feel then Ruben Report has solid information and so do a lot of other more libertarian news outlets on YouTube.
    Again I personally want to see this blog political free because if there is one thing we all love here it’s good design.

  144. I’m not going to comment on this particular issue because my feelings have already been summed up so perfectly and so eloquently by so many. However as a Canadian who has always loved the US, since Trump’s election I now say “why can’t we have a wall too? Why just Mexico?” No fair!

    1. Hi Karen J, Just know that the majority of Americans do not agree with Trump or these practices (Hillary won the popular vote). Most of us are appalled, hence this blog post. Plus, I have friends in Montreal—how would I see them if we had a border wall? 🙂

  145. To those here that are say these refugees are acting illegally… the people who protected Anne Frank were breaking the law, the ones who killed her were obeying the law.

    This sentence sums up something that politics and law students debate considerably and my sister (a lawyer) remember trying to explain it to her 14 yr old son one hot summer a few years ago. There is a difference between a formal rule of law which is what those who killed Anne Frank were applying and a substantive rule of law which is what a representative democracy, has always applied.

    When Trump spokespersons talk about applying the “rule of law” to separate children from their parents they are applying a formal rule of law without any substance or sense of responsibility. These are the kind of people you should be very, very wary of.

  146. I did vote for Trump. I don’t like the man, but I do agree with SOME of his policies. I am more of a middle of the road person and I feel there needs to be balance in everything. Checks and balances. Even politics. Not to Liberal and not too Conservative. Judging each situation and case in their own merit and my personal values. I guess I would be considered priveliged. We werent always that way. There were times when we didn’t know how we would make rent or put food on the table for our kids. But we worked hard and now we have a comfortable life. That being said. I am not afraid to lose my house, my car my personal belongings. Those are just things. I do believe in following the law. I know so many people who have entered the US legally and became US citizens. They honored the law and our country. Does anyone have a solution? Other than letting thousands upon thousands of undocumented people pour into our country? Who’s going to take care of them? How will our schools (which are already overcrowded) take on even more children? What if they can’t find work? What about healthcare. Housing? Food? Who’s going to pay for this? The government? Where does the government get the money? What if the government said that every US family had to sponsor an undocumented family? Let them live with them. Feed them. Help them find s job? We need a solution!!

    1. People on the left want to paint all of us against illegal immigration as ethnocentric, racist, etc. NO, not true. I have lived around the world and my friends are expats who respected the U.S. enough to enter by legal means, often having to wait years to be processed and spending their personal money on fees, etc. It’s an insult to these law abiding immigrants when others ‘jump the line’ like this. The same people who are saying this is ok, would be ticked off if someone jumped in the line they spent camped out in all night for concert tickets. That’s just an analogy proving hypocritical thinking, obviously the stakes are bigger than this.

      If these people’s first act in coming to my country is to break the laws of my country, what other kinds of behavior can we expect from them?

      For those who think this ok, then have a percentage of YOUR income deducted to pay for these lawbreakers, don’t drag me into it then.

  147. There is a word for this fear…xenophobia

    1. Kristal – how about making a counterargument? The ‘whatever-phobe’ name calling for anyone who disagrees with open borders is boring

  148. great

  149. I don’t personally understand how you can be Pro-Life but also Pro-Ripping Families Apart? I feel as if the conservative viewpoint is full of contradictions and moral conveniences.

    Furthermore, I 1000% respect the fact that you (Emily) are using this platform to initiate a discussion constructively. True, it is a design blog/website – but also, there’s too much happening in this world to NOT address it. It would appear ignorant and frankly, insanely aloof.

    What really gets me though, is that conservatives are so angry at ‘liberal snowflakes’ but for whatever reason refuse to explain their beliefs? Someone is literally giving you an opportunity to speak and be heard, and conservatives (like Rose) just continue to spew more hate? Which is the very reason the left is so frustrated! Face palm.

    Now is the time to listen. More than ever. Listen to your neighbors, friends and loved ones. Lead with love and the rest will follow.

    1. What?! I’ve read every comment on this thread. Those who have expressed a conservative opinion without exception have been respectful and honest about their concerns. We have asked for solutions that don’t require just indiscriminately throwing our borders wide open to anyone and everyone. We have responded with reason instead of emotion and there has been no name calling. In contrast we have been called racist, bigots, xenophobes and compared to Nazis. Really WHO is spewing the hate?

      1. EXACTLY! Well said. The Left slander us when we have valid reasons to be concerned – then they wonder why Clinton lost, obviously lefties a large portion of the country doesn’t agree with YOU.

  150. We feel unsafe because when we have an opinion it still cannot be listened to or respected (which doesn’t mean one needs to agree). I thought this was design and could be a place where I can avoid politics. De-ming, unsubscribing, disappointed. Instead of starting dialogue DO SOMETHING!

  151. Not a duolicate comment.We feel unsafe because when we have an opinion it still cannot be listened to or respected (which doesn’t mean one needs to agree). I thought this was design and could be a place where I can avoid politics. De-ming, unsubscribing, disappointed. Instead of starting dialogue DO SOMETHING!

  152. Thank you for this post..

    1. I do support this administration and I had hoped that both sides wouldn’t have come to some agreement by now. I knew that immigration would be a uphill battle. And because the left hate Trump so much this and all his policies will be an issue. As a military member there are discussions about putting us on the border and I honestly think it’s a waste of time and resources.
    2. Not only am I active duty, I’m a black woman married to a white police officer. And we wanted Trump in office to make the hard choices that Obama and other skirted around. Other countries to include Mexico have strict immigration laws. We are not supposed to be an open border. And what is happening to the people of Mexico vs Slaves aren’t the same (I’ve heard that argument) Obama even stated when DACA was implemented, that it was a temporary policy and not a pathway to citizenship. And not all those jumping the border are seeking asylum. If you are, there are proper channels for that process. Also if I was breaking the law and need to be processed, my children would be separated from me as well. Why should this be any different for these people? Also the government is now going to house them military bases. This is such a over reach in support. What about outle ailing troops and our own homeless. But because of our loophole laws, these things are possible. If I go to jail I have to find a family member or trusted friend if that to takebmy chicken. And the government won’t be assisting me to care for them.
    3,4,5….Yes we need a wall, Italy is controlling their borders why not us. They are turning people away at sea. But America is getting the black eye. And we don’t realize that illegals send billions of dollars to Mexico a year. Money that isn’t taxed. That’s not right. I have friends that had to pay a lot to become citizens. It took some time but it’s possible.

    1. Thank you for posting. I hope the fact that a black woman and a member of our military is pointing out that other countries have strict immigration laws, I know as I have lived in many of them. Maybe the Left needs to do their homework and acknowledge that. They also need to explain how we can carry the huge costs involved with illegal immigration – what’s your plan on THAT?? What are the legal implications when an illegal immigrant kills a legal U.S. citizen as happened in San Francisco – can the father seek restitution from the Democratic Party?

  153. Yes, I’m supportive of President Trump. Open borders is bad. We need a wall to secure our border. People should not be traveling to our country to seek asylum, they should be applying at our consulates in their countries. I think young children should be kept with their parents. Yes, population control is important, many come here with disease and are uneducated and many American’s aren’t vaccinating their children. I think if bright minds come together they can come up with Americans who are willing to go to these countries and help them with getting rid of the gangs, helping to build their economy so drug trade isn’t the only employment option, etc.

    I wish you’d stop blaming President Trump for every problem in our country. He ran because America has become so leftist and our politicians in DC leave as multi-millionaires, working harder for themselves than putting the American people first. Trump has real world experience, made himself a fortune, lowered his personal standard of living to be President, is not keeping his paycheck, and is working to make our economy stronger and better. Do you remember President Obama telling us that our country would not be prosperous like it had been in the past? Many kids coming out of college couldn’t find jobs outside of retail? That’s changing now. To say Trump and the other Republicans are morally bankrupt is terribly untrue. The press is biased, pro-Democrat, leftists. They report news based solely on their agenda. When have they said anything good about our current President and what he’s been doing? They haven’t. The Stormy Daniels thing is pretty well dropped now. Before her there was another woman who claimed to have an affair with Mr. Trump. Turns out she picked the night of an anniversary where he was with his wife the whole evening. What about the outrage for Peter Fonda hoping someone would throw President Trumps minor son into a room of pedophiles? Or people saying F our President? Where is civility and decency amongst the people? I hated the policies of President Obama but have never said anything indecent about the man. I don’t understand why there was no outrage when they gave a large amount of plutonium to Russia? Or when Obama told Putin he could do more for him once he won his second term? Or what about the billions given in cash to Iran which was done because legally the banks could not do this? The whole Russia thing is revealing itself as rogue agents trying to take down Trump. And to say the rich only care about themselves is wrong. Yes, we should each take care of our own. But we donate to charities here and ministries working abroad to house, feed, clothe and educate young people. We do care about others.

    Please try getting your news from the “other” side, learn what both sides are saying! Rush is great, so is Mark Levin who talks about the Constitution, Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingram on Fox. If we weren’t talking about politics we’d probably get along. I hope in the future you’ll keep politics out of decorating. Isn’t that what brings us together, provides us each a little joy?

  154. I am going to try and answer as honestly as I can, sometimes sounding cold, which I’m not. I’m a mom and grandmother and I do feel for these children
    1. I expected laws of our land to be enforced. These laws were put into practice in 1996. The lawmakers at that time made them to protect us and our country. And while not talked about, these laws have been enforced since then by all administration at some point.
    2. I voted for Trump because we needed to take our country back from career politicians. The corruption in our gov’t has become more and more apparent by having an “outsider” in office. That is why he is so hated. He is putting America first and enforcing our laws, that are there fora reason. 5 of the top FBI officials are now gone due to, if not criminal, very questionable practices. That’s 1 example. This inflames those that have been having their way for many many years. Thus the Trump hatred. I also felt he would get tough on trade practices. We have been taken advantage of for too long. Our workers deserve a fair shake
    3. Building a wall will obliterate the need for practices such as what we are seeing now. We will force people who want asylum to do it the lawful way. That way they will not be criminals
    4.I have no problem with immigrants. I have a problem with illegals. We have children here that go without food and shelter, lets take care of our own first. Immigrants should follow the laws of our land. It is very unfair for someone who came here, paid their dues, did the right thing, for USA to put people who chose to break the law ahead of them.
    5.Crime is definitely a problem. There is a great amount of proof on that. Drain on our economy. These people should not be able to come here, get welfare, free healthcare etc. How would you feel if you had worked 3 jobs, followed the law, immigrated the proper way, then USA allow these people who did nothing except put their children in harms way receive the benefits of being here before you? Think about the legal immigrants
    6. Absolutely, I support zero tolerance, as I do for drinking and driving, robbing banks, and killing people. We are a land of laws. Without the enforcement of these laws we become a chaotic society. Is this what you want for your children. These people need to be turned back with their children and immigrate the proper way. They chose to put these children in this position.
    Also, don’t buy into the hype. These facilities were built during the Obama administration and have been used with no repercussions over the years. Children are being fed, watching cartoons, play outside etc. The fact that their parents cared so little about them to bring them here under the conditions they did, tells me they may be better off than they were before being separated.

    1. Why do Mexicans flee to the US? Because Mexico if full of violet crime, why is Mexico full of violent crime?Because the US is Mexico’s biggest drug market – end the drug problem, end the illegal immigration problem – this has been a known issue forever but it’s easier to put people in cages than it is to solve such a complex issue.

  155. Please stop talking about political issues. You are alienating a good chunk of your readership with your rich, LA-girl perspective, but perhaps you don’t care.

    The ignorance in the comments from your sycophants is truly discouraging.

  156. I’m a white southern Christian who did NOT vote for Trump (it’s a lonely crowd), but most of my family did. I couldn’t even get my mom to come out and denounce the misuse of scripture to justify this brutality. I had someone tell me that we have to “be careful with compassion” — I just don’t see how keeping families together could possibly be too compassionate. I feel like a lot of Christians are putting their political party over their faith since the Bible is clear on treating immigrants well. Most of my family has no interaction with immigrants, let alone friendships with them. My parents live completely surrounded by other white people and I grew up in an area that remained unofficially segregated through my childhood in the 90’s and 2000’s. People who aren’t used to diversity don’t value it. People who are comfortable don’t want to worry about those who are living in poverty and violence. What’s happening here is not biblical. It may be Conservative, but Conservative values are NOT equivalent to Christ’s values.

    I myself have a family member (through marriage) who lives in constant fear of being deported back to Central America. They have been here since the 70’s and all I can say without too much detail is that their legal status is a complicated situation. I can tell you that it is very hard to “milk the system” without a valid SS number. This family member will work until they die. They cannot collect Social Security or get Medicare. It’s a low quality of living, but yes, even with all this, things are better here than back home. One of my closest friends is Mexican, and until I met her in university, I had only heard the word “Mexican” used in a derogatory way. I hate that the South is still like this. I hate that Christians are absolutely failing to live out what the scripture tells us to do.

  157. Emily – I love your blog and not just for your design ideas. Please keep being honest and sharing your opinions. It is, after all, your blog. I think it’s important to speak up and hopefully some of your readers will see what reasonable people are feeling. And if they don’t like it, they can just read the decor posts.

  158. I feel so helpless. I don’t live in America and it makes me feel like theres nothing I can do to help. I know that I can donate money but i’m not in a place financially where I can do that. 🙁

  159. You asked, how did we let go this happen? Before I answer, please know that I am always #profamily and I don’t want this to be political. I know We all want what’s best for our family, a better life for our kids, a good future .. but does this mean going to a place where I am not legally allowed to go to and bringing everyone with me? Do I take the risk?? Is this really what’s best for my family? Let’s say you wanted to go to a vacation where you know you needed a visa for your self and your children. Will you go with out one? Let alone take your kids with you? And what if by some miracle you were able to go into the country and the kids didn’t? Who do you think you’re goinh to blame? Your self for taking everyone with you or the security for not letting your kids in even if you know they don’t have the proper documentation to be there? Again, we all want what’s best for our children and there’s no black and white on this. But what would you do?

  160. Why can’t you see that this is all propaganda to stir up hate. It is sad to see so many falling for this. This has been going on for decades, and just because the media has decided to ram it down our throats, now everyone seems concerned and outraged?? Where was the outrage when Obama was president Emily???

    1. Hi Eliza,
      It’s not propaganda; children were not separated from their parents under previous administrations. What’s sad is that here are still, according to HHS’s statement today, over 2,000 children still separated from their parents. I’m outraged because these children being taken from their parents, is a direct result of the Trump administration’s cruel “zero tolerance” policy.

  161. You’re a good lady, Youxi988.

  162. youxi988.info is a beautiful escape from all the bad that is happening in the world. I don’t want to hear about politics or world issues when I come to your website, even though I know these are important topics. I come to your website for design inspiration….today I was disappointed.

  163. We didn’t let this happen, the parents of these children did by choosing to break our laws. Bad parenting.

    Emily, you were my favorite Design Star and I loved your subsequent cancelled show, but please spare me your political views, I signed up to receive your posts to get design inspiration, not your personal politics. It’s disrespectful to those who signed up to your newsletter to have your views about politics imposed on me. If you want to speak on this issue, start a separate blog all about your personal views, but throwing such into a design blog is hoodwinking people.

  164. Thank you, Emily.

    My years teaching immigrants at a somewhat-urban high school softened my heart and changed my view of illegal immigration. Basically, they opened my eyes to the humanity of it. Previously, I had only seen the legality of it.

    One story I’ll never forget. A student wrote of attending a pro-immigration rally with her family in downtown Phoenix. It was, essentially, “crashed” by Sheriff Joe Arpaio (who is famously anti-immigration) and his deputies. The crowd scattered, as the lawmen began rounding people up, hoping to catch some illegal immigrants in the process. My student, her siblings, and her mother were separated from her father and uncle. While the women and children made it safely out, both of the men were arrested and later deported. It had been years since she had seen her father, and she was terrified of being deported herself–even though she was born and raised in the US.

    Once you have seen the faces of illegal immigration, it’s hard to accept the black-and-white regulations of any zero-tolerance policy.

  165. I fear many of those adoptable age children will never be reunited with their parents leading to a life of trauma, lack of trust and difficulty with bonding and anxiety. The separation, the speed with which children have been flown across country, involvement of money making agencies like Bethany adoption agency , and everyones idea that adoption is a win win all make me think that foster care and adoption of the youngest are part of the plan. But separation from your loved ones is a loss and a trauma, studies show with life long repercussion. Irregardless of the politics and which side you are on, this is a poorly though out policy leading to severe trauma for families. The only winners in this will be adoption agencies happy to charge a fee for their work.

  166. I think until you are willing to do what you are asking our country to do, you are just being hypocritical. Until you are willing to open up your home to anyone who wants to enter and even to live, then you are not being honest. You would never open up your home like this because it would be suicide, yet this is what you want for our country. You are biting the very hand that feeds you. It is not racist, selfish or mean to want to protect your home and family. To want to protect your freedom and culture. It doesn’t seem fair to label other people as racist who are doing the same thing you are. If someone came to your house and said they had a right to enter and take whatever they wanted, I don’t think you would let them in, yet this is what you are asking this country to do. I am sure you only let people in your house as well that you know and have your best interest at heart. You wouldn’t let just anyone in because you wouldn’t know thier motives or they might not have your homes best interest at heart. Yet you are asking our country to do this. I used to visit your blog daily, but find that I don’t visit it as often now. I find you extremely un-American and an actual enemy to this great country. Liberalism has become an uncurable sickness.

  167. Regardless of political affiliation, we are all humans.
    Separating children from parents is barbaric and inhumane.
    If you support such actions, you are a human whose moral compass has broken.

    1. The parents should not enter the country illegally and put their child in that position. Those who come to the country through a legal port of entry are not separated from their children.

      1. That’s not entirely true, Sam. Those entering the country through a legal port of entry are not *supposed* to be separated from their children, but it has been happening: (Go to the end of the article–there is a section on that question).

  168. THANK YOU for speaking up. THANK YOU for using your platform. It seems absurd that because you run a design/lifestyle blog you should stay silent about what is happening to this country.

    “In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.”
    -Martin Luther King Jr.

  169. Emily,

    Thanks for the post and thanks for all the great fashion/ style content. On the issue of immigration, while I agree wholeheartedly that policy should be driven by compassion and every person should have the right to be treated equally, there are a few important questions we need to consider on the topic of illegal immigration and it’s impact on the United States (and any country).

    Question 1: If we all agree that we should have a legal immigration process and should not allow individuals to enter the United States, what should be done with those that enter illegally? More specifically, if a child crosses the US/ Mexico border unaccompanied, what should our policy be?

    Caring for unaccompanied minors in shelters which provide clothing, food and safety until they can be connected with a family members strikes me as the best, and most compassionate options. The other options are to let them cross the border and enter the US illegally or turn then away and send them back into Mexico on foot — neither of those options seem appropriate.

    It is worth noting a few additional points:
    1) our compassion to house and care for these children comes at a price (but we do it anyone because that’s who we are as Americans) — many children would rather cross the border illegally knowing they will either a) enter the US or b) end up in a detention center than remain in economically struggling or war-torn countries; and
    2) the reason parents are children were originally separated was to keep children out of detention facilities with parents where conditions were worse. I agree it’s a good thing to keep families together, but I think an unintended consequence of this shift from prior administrations will no be that family units are deported faster — there is also the added complexity of determining if family units are even related in the first place. As you know, an undocumented immigrant without papers can claim to be a parent, but how do one be sure?

    My second question is straight forward: How many immigrants should the US allow in the country per year? This is important — immigration is what makes America the greatest country in the world, and we should continue to encourage immigrants from South America, Europe, The middle east, Africa, Asia to come to the US and apply for citizenship.

    Borders and laws are what makes a country a country. We need to decide if we care more about the citizens of the US or non-US citizens.

    1. Thank you Sam. Rational and kindly thought out post.

  170. How do I unsubscribe from your blog?

  171. Actually, Trump cabinet did not start the law to separate kids from their family’s, that was from long before. I do believe it was the Clintons.

    1. A large part of the issue is that people are having a hard time getting by as it is and when they see people showing up at the border and getting free hand outs, they feel resentful that the government is doing nothing to help them but is giving free support to people who aren’t even American. Secondly, while it is unfortunate that these migrants may come from disadvantaged areas of the world, it’s simply not possible for us to save them all and provide for the global population. You cannot have a society without laws and borders. If we just opened the borders and let the world enter the country, all those new mouths would have to be fed and clothed and housed and it comes out of the pockets of ordinary tax payers. It’s not fair to people to suddenly find their public facilities overwhelmed by newcomers who do not contribute to the tax base. Part of the reason the average American family doesn’t have 8 children is because it would be financially irresponsible and most people wouldn’t be able to support such a large family. If people are truly concerned about these migrants, the best efforts would be to help bring law and order to their original homelands and to educate the population on responsible family planning.

  172. Thank you, Emily, for using your platform for the greater good. I love your approach, because you are trying to bring the sides together, at the same time as you are advocating what is moral. I love that you’re a designer, one of my own passions. But maybe some day you will consider going into politics. We need people like you! I’m thrilled that a socialist woman in NY, Alexandria Ocasio Cortez, won the Dem primary for US House of Representatives last night, beating a well-established Dem whose campaign had many many times more funding than she had! So there is hope for a better, more compassionate and just world after all.

  173. Will cancel my subscription for your blog. This is not the place for politics. Also,do your homework. Obama

    did the same thing. My grandparents came in through Ellis Island and signed the guest book.

    1. Hi Pat – Politics is a discussion and votes on immigration. Separating 4 year olds from their moms and keeping children (or anyone) in cages is a crisis of morality. So grateful for all Americans – like Emily – for making that line very clear.
      In the homework vein, I would also recommend reading up on how Nazi Germany got started – racist justifications for state-sanctioned discrimination and suggestions that quieting down would make things better. Not an exaggeration.

      1. Hi Alison, I would recommend you read up on Nazi Germany before you make such comparisons. Controlling the borders and persecuting citizens of a specific ethnicity/religion are two wildly different things. You are mistaking the color of Latin American immigrants skin as the reason for the harshness at the border. The United States cannot be responsible for everyone who shows up at our border, despite the pleasantries plackarded beneath the Statue of Liberty, immigrants were forced to sink or swim 100 years ago. Today, they are thrown life lines and government handouts that are untenable with unlimited immigration. Charities should be focused on bringing law and order to the Latin American countries these people are fleeing from. It sounds lovely to help everyone in the world and to live in a fairy tale but the unfortunate truth is socialism won’t work in a country as large as ours and expanding our population with unlimited immigrants will only worsen the problem.

        The Nazis on the other hand literally had the exact opposite policy. They targeted German Jewish citizens and wouldn’t let them leave the country. Once the Nazis changed the laws to legalize robbing Jews, they legalized killing them. The US southern border issue is about economic migrants that have no skills and will be a burden on our tax base. It is not about racial animus and extermination.

      2. Allison, thank you for swiftly validating Godwin’s Law.

        1. You are right. Comparing to only the Nazis – and focusing primarily on the racial components – was a short cut. Recommending Fascism: A History by Madeleine Albright.

          ‘Adolf Hitler once explained: “I will tell you what has carried me to the position I have reached. Our political problems appeared complicated. The German people could make nothing of them. … I, on the other hand … reduced them to the simplest terms. The masses realized this and followed me.”’

  174. Hi Emily and Team!
    Thanks for the post and for the discussion. The outpouring of support for these people and for our democracy is inspiring and has to be fuel to keep going.
    One more amazing charity that provides showers, food, and support after people are released – Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley. They accept cash and donations, and they have an Amazon Wish List if it feels gratifying to send physical things to help people.

    Allison

  175. hi,

    i have first hand experience and have worked in immigration for the last 20 years. about 4 years ago, i was promoted and was assigned working back down at the border in a detention facility. everyday, every single hour of the day i had to field calls from the POE and BP because it was my responsibility to make room for the “bodies” (sounds horrible i know but for the sake of being real that is the term we used). I would get the email at 5am of the excel spreadsheet of anywhere 100 to 300 awaiting placement into our facility. most of the cases credible fear/asylum claims. people from all over the world, countries i’ve never even heard of…hundreds daily. the word was out seek asylum and the U.S. will let you gain entry into the U.S. it alarmed me to my core, there was really no way to keep track of everyone? laughable. this was happening years prior to my arrival to the detention center. so what was my job? to find room and the pressure was on. copious amounts of favors were asked to all the the detention facilities across the nation…can you make room? oh, you can take 20 females…great. you can take 50 males, non crim? great. then we would charter a plane. WEEKLY, magical chairs but only humans and we were using planes. it was nuts, i stepped down from management and found a niche working within immigration i enjoy. well somewhat enjoy, I’ve become more liberal in my later years and would like to bring joy in my next career endeavor. my whole point is that the news, either side NEVER gets it all right when it comes to immigration. what has been happening down at our borders is really sad from every aspect. its a human tragedy, but the U.S. has let everyone that has come knocking at the POEs door in. EVERYONE. rough estimate i’d say 40% of the people claiming asylum are mexican and central american. the first 10 years of my career i only saw mexicans and central americans. we can’t keep track. trump made a stupid, un-American decision to separate families. i think he was trying to prevent people from trying to enter….he just needs to have the asylum hearings down at the POEs, like they did years ago. the people can wait for the hearings in mexico. we have an open border. also my conspiracy theory is that lobbyist for the big business of detention centers created this problem. this is BIG money. it cost roughly and without medical cost 137 a day for someone at a detention center. multiple that by say 600 beds a day= millions then multiple that for all the detention centers across the country. big business especially when most of the detainees get released anyway because we have to make room. i have to laugh because the reality, which most people aren’t aware is just plain insanity. Emily, love your big big heart and style xoxoxox

  176. You are spreading lies. Ice does not separate children from adults at the border. Border patrol does and with good reason. They need to establish that the adult is really the parent. The majority of children were not separated from their families. They were separated from adults who were strangers. How could a caring adult leave a child with an illegal alien who is not their parent or even a family member? Is the child headed to a life of sex trafficking? Is he with an MS 13 member? Has she been raped on the journey? Probably. The child crying on the cover of Time Magazine was never separated from her mother. Time had to admit this. The mother, however, did separate the child from her family. Taking the child from her father and siblings, without even telling them. She wanted at least one kid to cross the border with illegally because it would increase her chances of being able to stay. The minority of families who were separated was appropriate. (did to object when Obama did the exact same thing in 2014?) Their parents broke the law. On top of that, the democrats passed a law forbidding children from being housed with adults. Maybe that’s a law you can advocate be changed. So that once an adult proves they are the parent, the child can be re-united and housed in a family detention unit until they are deported. Americans have the right to control our borders, just like every other country does. I was booted out of Canada, at the border, for not having enough money in my pocket. America is incredibly generous with aid to countries in need. We have accepted millions of those fleeing horrible conditions into our country. Do you really think that we can absorb entire populations of every third world country? At some point those citizens need to get a fire in their belly to save their own homeland from corruption and lawlessness. They are fleeing lawlessness which results in chaos and despots. We need to uphold our laws or we will meet the same fate and not be able to help anyone.

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