Letter to the Editor: A ‘distaste for immigrants’

It seems like only yesterday, although the year was 1980, when my Army Civil Affairs Reserve Unit was given the mission of processing and locating sponsors for the Cuban refugees at Fort Dix after the Mariel boatlift. They came over barefooted and in a few days, everyone of us had the whooping cough.

When we visited their barracks, more than a few Cubans were painting religious pictures. It was quite impressive. Many of them were given sponsors, usually a relative to live with in the United States. Those with criminal records were sent back as well as those who were not able to get a sponsor.

Former senior adviser to Jeb Bush, Al Cardenas, was on the Andrea Mitchell noontime show on MSNBC. He advised that the recent drowning of two immigrants trying to swim across the Rio Grande river “begs for action” to remedy our immigration problems.

He further advised that Canada has one-tenth the population of the United States. However, they took in more refugees than the United States last year. He lamented the current administration’s distaste for immigrants. Steven Miller, the 36-year-old immigration adviser for the president, outwardly advocates against further immigration. He has been getting his way in his “viewpoint” to make America great again.

Presently, there are approximately 11,000 unaccompanied children being lodged at the border in very unsanitary conditions. Mr. Cardenas advised that many of these children have relatives living legally here in the United States. There does not seem to be any apparent reason their relatives could not be sponsors other than the administration’s unwillingness to do anything but take an incalcitrant hard line on immigration.

Jake Tapper, CNN anchor, delivered a passionate plea for immigration reform by citing Matthew 25-45. “When you refuse to help the least of these my brothers and sisters, you are refusing to help me.” Our American values used to be in full accord with this biblical passage. We need to retrieve our moral compass.

Bill Clemens

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