The Trump administration’s policies on immigration have fired up local activists, with protests set for Escondido, San Ysidro, and downtown San Diego this weekend.
I signed a very good executive order yesterday, but that’s only limited. No matter how you cut it, it leads to separation, ultimately.” — Donald Trump, June 21, 2018
Another round of demonstrations is in the works for next weekend, coinciding with actions in over 400 cities being organized by Move-On. See calendar further down in the story for details.
And while a substantial part of the U.S. looks on in horror at the cruelty and chaos within the administration, the rest of the world is taking notice.
From the Washington Post:
Leaders from London to Ottawa to Tehran described the separations as unjust and cruel. In pointed comments before lawmakers in Parliament, British Prime Minister Theresa May described photos she had seen of children “being held in what appear to be cages.”
“This is wrong,” she said. “This is not something we agree with.”
The pope, who has placed the issues facing migrants at the center of his papacy, also stepped into the issue, saying in an interview with the Reuters news agency that he agreed with statements by U.S. Catholic bishops, who called the separations “immoral” and “contrary to our Catholic values.” He added that “populism” and “creating psychosis” are not the way to resolve migration problems.
Doug Sanders, writing in the Globe and Mail, points to crime statistics showing immigrants – including illegal immigrants and refugees from Latin America – have considerably lower rates of criminality, including violent crime, than Americans do.
To be clear: There is no immigration crisis in 2018. Not in the United States, not in Europe, not in Canada.
“It is not a migration emergency – it’s a political emergency,” William Lacy Swing, the American director-general of the International Organization for Migration, said this week. The IOM’s 8,400 staff monitor the movement of people around the world, and while they’ve identified plenty of challenges, there aren’t any overwhelming or unmanageable movements of people this year. “The overwhelming majority of migration is taking place in a regular, safe and orderly fashion,” he said.
“There is a very serious problem of communication, but what we’re seeing is that the numbers are pretty modest,” said Angel Gurria, secretary-general of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. The OECD, which advises 34 countries (including the United States and Canada) on immigration policy, this week released its annual report on migration levels in OECD countries. It showed a fall in numbers to ordinary, non-crisis levels.
Refugees International marked World Refugee Day by issuing a report card giving the Trump administration an “F” on performance concerning refugee and humanitarian protections.
We have evaluated the Trump administration in six critical areas, involving performance both at home in the United States and overseas. Regrettably, as described in detail in the sections that follow, the Trump administration has received an overall failing grade for its policies and performance.
Unfortunately, over the past 17 months, the Trump administration has weakened U.S. domestic refugee law and humanitarian policy significantly. This of course includes the inhumane separation of families seeking asylum at the southwest border of the United States. But there are many other examples of this erosion of basic protection principles, including the dramatic weakening of the U.S. political asylum process generally, the crippling of the U.S. Refugee Admissions program, and the disregard of humanitarian imperatives in the application of Temporary Protected Status. In humanitarian activities overseas, President Trump has sought to roll back U.S. leadership in financial support for lifesaving assistance based on need, imposed policies that adversely impact women and girls, and failed to assert leadership in efforts to end conflicts that continue to inflict horrific humanitarian suffering
As the President’s push to get an immigration bill out of Congress failed, he pivoted again to blaming Democrats, saying stories about immigrant detention were “phony.”
As Republicans in Congress struggled to reach consensus on immigration legislation, the White House has grappled with fierce criticism in recent weeks over the policy that has separated more than 2,300 children from their families.
Despite his concession on Wednesday, Trump suggested on Friday that some of the wrenching tales that have emerged from the border were fabricated by Democrats, tweeting, “We cannot allow our Country to be overrun by illegal immigrants as the Democrats tell their phony stories of sadness and grief, hoping it will help them in the elections.”
Following the president’s order to keep families together in detention during immigration proceedings, it remained unclear how and when those children would be reunited with their parents, and where families would be held while the parents face criminal charges.
This piece originally appeared here