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First Amendment Phonies

Demagogue AOC: Trump Has an 'Active Desire' to Hurt Kids, and All Child Detentions Must Stop Immediately

She's still lying to spin away her morally obtuse and historically ignorant Holocaust comparison -- which was so blatant that the people who run the Holocaust Museum and Yad Vashem felt compelled to step forward and chide her -- but that isn't stopping AOC from lobbing additional under-informed and ugly rhetorical bombs.  Amidst House Democrats' debate over a funding bill to address the border crisis (even the New York Times editorial board has recommended fulfilling the Trump administration's request), Alexandria Ocasio Cortez is shouting about how all child detentions must end and accusing the Trump administration of actively wanting to harm kids.  This is dumb demagoguery, policy idiocy, and motive-impugning poison:


Going into the meeting, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., attacked the idea that Congress would provide billions of dollars in more funding to house unaccompanied children apprehended at the border. She cited numerous recent reports detailing poor conditions at U.S. facilities. "That's not due to a lack of resources, that's due to a desire – an active desire by this administration to hurt kids," she said.

On the plus side, we've finally identified a domestic spending priority to which leftists actually oppose funneling more 'resources.' The problem is that experts and officials, including former Obama administration officials, have strenuously been making the opposite case. Due in large part to our broken and bad incentives-laden current laws, the Southern border has been overrun by illegal immigrants and alleged asylum-seekers.  Huge numbers of these asylum claims aren't legitimate, many so-called asylum-seekers never show up for their court dates after their initial release, and various hardened criminals are deliberately trying to exploit our laws on handling 'family units' and children (not to mention those strategically shielding themselves under 'sanctuary' policies).  Here's what the situation on the ground looked like back in March and April of this year:


“The system is well beyond capacity, and remains at the breaking point,” Kevin K. McAleenan, commissioner of Customs and Border Protection, told reporters in announcing the new data on Tuesday. The nation’s top border enforcement officer painted a picture of processing centers filled to capacity, border agents struggling to meet medical needs and thousands of exhausted members of migrant families crammed into a detention system that was not built to house them — all while newcomers continue to arrive, sometimes by the busload, at the rate of 2,200 a day...More than 50,000 adults are currently in Immigration and Customs Enforcement custody, the highest number ever. Arrests along the southern border have increased 97 percent since last year...

Three months later, that crisis is ongoing and deepening.  It is simply a fact that more resources are needed to detain these unlawful migrants safely, as well as to expedite the adjudication of their claims (this due process is just one point that negates the current "concentration camps" blathering).  AOC and her crew oppose this additional funding, which is explicitly needed for humanitarian purposes.  This isn't money for The Wall, which would at least prevent some illegal immigrants from entering what they frame as the unimaginable hellscape of US detention in the first place.  This money is desperately needed to improve the circumstances on the ground, which have been strained beyond the breaking point, for months on end.  AOC is against this humanitarian aid, instead demanding that the detention of children be ended entirely.  Has she thought through the implications of this idea?  Probably not, but let's discuss a few of them: 


If children entering the US illegally cannot be detained by border patrol, there are two options: (1) Instant, unappealable deportations (I doubt this is even logistically possible, given the sheer volume of people -- plus, AOC certainly doesn't favor this outcome), or (2) releasing all children into the US, pending future court dates.  Option two would lead to all sorts of ripple effects, including powerfully incentivizing putting even more kids at risk by sending or accompanying them to the US border, as well as immediate family separation.  Or is the non-existent 'plan' to release the adults, too?  This would encourage using children as 'get into America free' cards, a policy that criminals, traffickers, and sex offenders would aggressively capitalize upon.  We couldn't hold the children, after all, and therefore vetting the adults' various claims would necessitate painful separations, or just waving everyone in -- effectively open borders.  Her posturing is unserious and reckless, and should be treated as such by the media.

Speaking of the media, many of our self-appointed Firefighters For Truth have developed a sudden interest in the conditions in US detention facilities at the border, having more or less ignored many of the same problems and practices during the previous administration.  It's almost as if journalists weren't motivated to make a big deal out of problematic conditions when an ideological ally was in office, whereas today, they're rushing to the two-pronged task of criticizing a Republican administration while filling in the gaps to try to justify unhinged Democratic rhetoric.  For example, viral videos being shared widely by 'blue checkmarks' on social media exclude inconvenient facts and key context:


The hearing in the video was related not to actions taken by the Trump administration, but to a challenge of a 2017 ruling that the CBP under the Obama administration had violated the Flores Settlement agreement with its treatment of children in custody...This incident has been reminiscent of the recent outrage over pictures of “kids in cages” at detention facilities that, after a period, were revealed to date from the Obama administration. And, like that one, it has done a great deal of damage to our institutions, not only because it seems to neutral observers that the media gauges newsworthiness based on who is in the White House, but because the selective coverage and focus on imagined motives rather than real structural problems permits members of Congress to deflect from their own inaction.

Along similar lines, Jim Geraghty recaps a lengthy PBS investigative report into abuses and conditions at migrant detention facilities:

The nearly hourlong report makes for harrowing viewers: Women who have been detained complaining about being harassed by guards for sexual favors, sexually assaulted by guards, and guards threatening to kill the women they are harassing if they talk. A single mom with two daughters who overstayed a visa gets deported back to Mexico just because she changed lanes without signaling. Cops describe patrolling neighborhoods with significant number of illegal immigrants, where people instinctively run from the sight of a police car. A mother of five American-born children being deported over a speeding ticket...The report describes, “a vast network of 250 detention centers, from county jails to large centers run by private prison companies, where immigrants facing deportation are held until they can be removed from the country. In the past decade, three million immigrants have been detained in the system.” The report shows white-domed tents surrounded by barbed wire, and are described as overcrowded warehouses of people. Those who have been through the detention centers describe beatings, racial slurs, official coverups, and threats to deport anyone who complains.

Then comes the dark punchline: "This Frontline special is from October 2011, and describes the immigration policies of the Obama administration. Clearly, these policies do not warrant a heated national conversation, are not a national scandal, outrage, or embarrassment, and do not deserve furious denunciation all across the political spectrum. If they did, we would have heard all of this eight years ago."  Doesn't everyone remember the searing media coverage of these Obama-era realities, which became a heated issue during the incumbent's re-election campaign?  No?  That didn't happen?  Even the bona fide unaccompanied minors crisis (fueled significantly by amnesty rumors, based on the administration's policies) during Obama's second term was framed by some in the political media as a "Republicans pounce" story.  I'll leave you with this:

This CNN reporter later added, "I have never seen this kind of cooperation from Mexico before in terms of immigration."

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