What a fine way to celebrate Father’s Day! Rip a few hundred immigrant families apart!
The heat is rising on the Trump administration’s policy of separating parents from their children at the border, and not just because of the large, canvas tents in the 100-degree South Texas sun. Democrats are howling. Texans are howling. Many Republicans are howling, too. But Donald Trump, who could change the zero tolerance policy with a poke of his Twitter finger or a stroke of his pen, is still refusing to budge, pandering to the narrow swath of Americans who judge a national immigrant policy by how much pain its afflicts on the most vulnerable immigrants.
Mike Pence had better find a new Bible verse to defend this latest abomination, and it won’t be Matthew 25:40: “Whatever you do to the least of my brothers, that you do unto me.”
Even some knee-jerk Trump defenders are distancing themselves. “As a mother, as a Catholic, as someone with a conscience,” White House counselor Kellyanne Conway said to Chuck Todd on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” “I will tell you that nobody likes this policy.” Still, Conway, echoing others in the White House, continued to duck responsibility, blaming Democrats for a Trump administration policy announced by Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
But the pictures coming out of Texas were so harsh — 20 kids to a tent in the desert, their parents who knows where — that even first lady Melania Trump, who rarely contradicts her husband, felt pressure to weigh in. “Mrs. Trump hates to see children separated from their families, spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham told CNN, “She believes we need to be a country that follows all laws, but also a country that governs with heart.”
Taking kids away from their moms and dads, of course, is not going to stop drugs from entering the country and protect us against ISIS terrorists. It won’t even secure the border from the next wave of desperate Central American asylum-seekers. It certainly won’t get Trump’s wall built.
What it will do is hurt a bunch of parents and children.
Hope you had a nice Father’s Day.
Metro columnist Ellis Henican is the author of a dozen books including “TRUMPITUDE: The Secret Confessions of Donald’s Brain.” Join Ellis on Twitter @henican.