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Crosses memorializing immigrants who died while in custody of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) sit across from the Marriott Marquis hotel in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Crosses memorializing immigrants who died while in custody of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) sit across from the Marriott Marquis hotel in Chicago, Illinois.  (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Cruelty and Immigration

The historical parallel is frightening.

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“Terrible things are happening outside. At any time of night and day, poor helpless people are being dragged out of their homes … Families are torn apart: men, women and children are separated. Children come home from school to find their parents have disappeared.”

An eerily accurate description of the terrible reality of immigrant families under Donald Trump’s regime.

 Yet, these words were written by Anne Frank in her diary on Jan. 13,1943. Frank, of course, was the teenager whose Dutch Jewish family hid from the Nazis in a secret attic in Amsterdam for two years. Eventually discovered and captured by the Gestapo, they were sent to a concentration camp where Anne and most of her family perished. She was 15. 

The historical parallel is frightening. 

A few days after two white terrorists perpetrated horrible massacres in El Paso and Dayton, ICE rounded up more than 650 hard working immigrants in Mississippi. Their children were left exactly in the same situation Anne Frank described. Even though one of the murderers declared that his purpose was to kill as many Mexicans as possible to “stop the invasion” (Trump’s words), the president was beaming.

 “I want people to know that if they come into the United States illegally, they’re getting out, they’re going to be brought out, Trump said at the White House. “And this serves as a very good deterrent.”

 The cruelty is astounding. As the ACLU reports, at least seven children, many of them younger than Anne, have either died in custody or after being detained by federal immigration agencies at the border in recent months. 

“The government may argue that their hands are tied by a lack of resources, but the truth is that these horrors are simply the latest attempt to dehumanize asylum-seekers and migrants,” the ACLU has said. 

For Trump and his minions, cruelty is the name of the game. z

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