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The "zero tolerance" policy of the US government has transformed children into negotiation currencies, tearing them out of their parents' arms and arguing, "it’s the law". Photo: John Moore / Getty Images
The "zero tolerance" policy of the U.S. government has transformed children into negotiation currencies, tearing them out of their parents' arms and arguing "it’s the law". Photo: John Moore / Getty Images

When politics are made with the cry of a child

After the audio of immigrant children crying when separated from their parents at the border was made public, U.S. politics has once again spiraled into games…

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Making politics with children is a sensitive issue, but in the 21st century, with a hypermediated world and a political struggle ahead, losing focus can be a double-edged sword.

On Monday, the ProPublica research news platform revealed audio in which children can be heard crying desperately when being separated from their parents by U.S. immigration authorities.

A six-year-old girl identified as Alison Jimena Valencia Madrid, along with other minors, can be heard crying out for her parents in front of Border Patrol agents who make jokes to try to distract newly separated children from their families.

There is not a person who can listen to the full seven minutes of recording without feeling the bristling skin.

Is this really necessary?

Is it really necessary to make public the cry of a child so that someone will do something about it?

Looks like it.

Only two months after the enforcement of the new "zero tolerance" policy by Attorney General Jeff Sessions and the Department of Homeland Security, the separation of families and the detention of minors in prison facilities have been all over the media, in a desperate attempt to claim what is fair before a government that turns a deaf ear to cruelty.

The Trump administration has reached the point of incorporating family separation in its legislative negotiations in the House of Representatives, an attempt to get presidential demands - wall, end of the visa lottery, etc. - in exchange for a path to citizenship for undocumented youth who arrived in the country as children and, now, for the modification of procedures that separate children from their parents at the border.

Since April, more than 2,000 children have been separated from their parents, housed in makeshift detention centers - tents, in most cases - and have been prosecuted as "unaccompanied children," even when they arrived in the country by the hand of their parents.

Despite the images, the demonstrations and, now, the audios, Sessions defended on Monday the measures, ensuring that "it’s the rule of law." 

"We cannot and we will not encourage people to bring children by giving them blanket immunity from our laws," he insisted.

However, those who continue to pay the crude price of politics are precisely the children who had no say in the matter, who have been subjected to innumerable torments from their countries of origin to the border, and now come to be transformed into a currency, and a newspaper headline.

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