Immigration policies in America

Immigration...In old warehouses, hundreds of children wait in metal cages. Clutching pictures of their parents, as many as twenty children per cage lie on foil sheets intended to serve as blankets. This is the situation in America right now. 

Public outrage and backlash has been sparked throughout the world as news of the recent zero-tolerance immigration policy has surfaced. More and more reports of crying children ripped away from their parents and kept in cages have been released, causing many to protest and condemn the methods used by the US government. In one such report, Michelle Brane, director of migrant rights at the Women’s Refugee Commission, said:”The Government is literally taking kids away from their parents and leaving them in inappropriate conditions. If a parent left a child in a cage with no supervision with other 5-year-olds, they’d be held accountable.” Indeed, her words ring with truth and no doubt cast light over this particular situation.

One victim of these immigration laws is Rómulo González, who had his right eye torn out during a kidnapping which cost his family $13,500 to free him. Fearing another attack he decided to seek asylum in the US.González was detained and his three-year-old daughter Genesis was taken away from him.

Thousands of people have rallied in the U.S. capital and in cities across the United States in protest of these immigration policies. Hundreds of demonstrations were scheduled across the country, amid mounting anger about the policy which has resulted in thousands of migrant children being separated from their parents. In a square opposite the White House, protesters chanted “Shame! Shame!” Some carried signs saying “Where are the children?” and “Stop cruelty” and “We are America.”

Personally, I am torn between two perspectives in this case. On the one hand, illegal immigration undermines legal immigration. There are several million people who have been waiting a long time to be granted American citizenships, and illegal immigration is unfair towards them. It is somewhat like some people cutting queues when other people have already been standing in line a long time However, one the other hand, illegal immigrants are simply trying to create a better future for themselves and their children. They may have been in danger in their own country and not have the time to wait for citizenship. They are ordinary people that were in a bad situation and tried to get out of it to protect their families. It seems that in these situations, there is no right answer.

On another note, many admirable American citizens have emerged in light of the recent affairs. The protests and marches held no doubt took hours of planning, and show their ability to work together and stand up for what is right. It also exemplifies their ability to empathise with other human beings, and I am filled with respect for their attitude.

In conclusion, I feel that there is simply no easy fix in this case. However, I hope that these young children receive adequate care and are returned to their parents soon, so that they can face whatever will happen to them together.

Ashley Sia

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