Sunday, August 11, 2019

I'm just trying to right a terrible wrong

Rabbi Leslie Bergson and I spent this morning in Newark protesting the inhumane treatment of immigrants in the detention centers. The event was organized by Bend The Arc.  Twenty-Four immigrants have died in ICE custody.  That is 24 too many deaths.
Part of today's program featured readings from testimonials written by interred children:
"About three days ago I got a fever.  They moved me along to a flu cell.  There is no one to take care of you there.  They just give you pills twice a day.  I also am having an allergic reaction all over my skin.  My skin is itchy and red and my nose is stuffed up.  Two times they gave me a pill for it but not anymore."  Written by an 11 year old boy.
"I'm hungry here at Clint (detention center) all the time.  I'm so hungry that I have woken p in the middle of the night with hunger.  Sometimes I wake up from hunger at 4:00 AM., sometimes at other hours.  I'm too scared to ask the officials here for any more food, even though there is not enough food here for me." Written by a 12 year old boy.
"We are in a metal cage with 20 other teenagers with babies and young children.  We have one mat we need to share with each other.  it is very cold.  We each got a mylar blanket, but it is not enough to warm up.  There are benches but we cannot sleep here.  Sometimes it is so crowded we cannot find a place to sleep, so they allow a few of us to sleep outside the fenced area.  The lights are (on) all of the time." Written by a 16 year old girl.
"They took us away from our grandmother and now we are all alone.  They have not given us to our mother.  We have been here for a long time.  I have to take care of my little sister.  She is very sad because she misses our mother and grandmother very much.  We sleep on a cement bench.  There are two mats in the room, but the big kids sleep on the mats so we have to sleep on the cement bench."
Written by an 8 year old boy.
This cannot be just a political issue.  This is about how we treat people who have come here to escape the terrors of their homelands.


Anonymous said...

I see the remarkable light that shines from your faces and from the faces around you as you stand for injustice of immigrants and particularly of immigrant children. I see the fear, pain and irreparable harm being done to so many in the name of the United States and on July 12 I saw the smug, self satisfied, hardened face of a "Christian" man who felt that what he saw was satifactory. My adopted father's family fled Russia during the revolution to find sanctuary in China and after several years came to the United States. If today was then I do believe my family would quite likely have behaved as immigrants do today if presented with the same obstacles. I am grateful for their opportunities and I am ashamed that we are led by people who would deny those same opportunities to people in peril.

Unknown said...

Thank you Anonymous for your powerful testimony.