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FROM MY CORNER: Trump’s Refugee Jails

Howell Hurst Defining Trump, Refugees, The Border Wall, Trump

Golfer Trump bases his case for a Mexican border wall on the utterly unjustified premise that all the refugees seeking asylum in the United States are criminals. Journalists who’ve interviewed many of the refugees document this is totally against what facts actually do justify.

This is not surprising. Journalists have long documented the endless outfight lies Trump tells as he repeatedly fortifies his voter base by playing on their fears and anxiety about immigrants taking jobs they themselves are unable to find, or refuse to take due to their low pay.

A strikingly revealing story about the results of Trump’s immigration policies on human beings is reported in the March/April edition of Mother Jones magazine. If you’ve never read this magazine, you’ve been missing one of the most substantial, in-depth investigative publications in America.

Mother Jones, despite its down home name, is not some impassioned rag leftover from the “Hippie” era. It is a non-profit publication funded by readers. Its mandate is deep reporting, often about the tangible consequences of dubious politicians’ self-gratifying behavior.

The story in question is about a Haitian citizen named Ansly Damus, who entered the U.S. legally and found himself in jail with many other legal immigrants seeking asylum under existing American law.

Instead of asylum, Ansly found himself locked for two years inside a windowless cell with no contact whatsoever to the outside world. Unable to write his wife in Haiti, with no exercise freedom, denied books or newspapers, he was finally saved by an American family who offered him a place to live and fought the government for his release.

That fight had already been fought by two judges, who had judged him most likely a true refugee, but whose judgments were repealed by Trump’s criminalized policy against even legal immigrants striving to follow our laws.

The title of Mother Jones’s article is: “Get in Line. Follow the Rules. Go to Jail.”And that tells it all, except spelling out the illogical Trump assertion that all refugees are criminals. Back in Haiti, refugee Damus had been a teacher of ethics, math, and physics. Hardly the resume of a criminal.

He’d been beaten by a gang for criticizing a corrupt politician: exactly the kind of “public servant” Trump has repeatedly honored with his Twitter praise. The Philippine president Duarte is one example, North Korea’s Kim is another.

When Damus entered America legally, he was immediately thrown in jail. And there he sat in solitary confinement for two years before being released. Although judges and private citizens tried to help him, Trump’s government continuously fought to keep him jailed.

Why did this happen? It is quite simple. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement , ICE, had the mandate from Trump’s justice department to jail refugees requesting legally authorized assessment of their asylum claims.

Under Trump’s assumptive policy that all refugees are criminals, ICE ignored American law and put an ethics, math, and physics teacher in jail and threw away the key for two years. They’ve done this to many others.

As the legal director for the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio, where Damus was jailed, said: “The person that broke the law was the government.” That was not unusual. The rate of approval of asylum seekers under Trump has dropped from 92 percent to 4 percent under the blanket assumption they are all common criminals.

We’re talking about the government violating U.S. laws regarding legal refugee asylum seekers. Remarkably, illegals have an easier path out of confinement. They can be granted bond by immigration judges, who are commonly willing to allow refugees to live on the economy while their case is being reviewed – as mandated by law.

Trump’s Justice Department is now expected to soon require all asylum seekers request parole from ICE. That will insure that ICE can put all of them in jail just as they did Damus.

This is the real face of the immigration policy that Trump requires a Border Wall to solve. It is a disgusting example of the power of one crudely insensitive man in high office to reject the more humanly sensitive inclinations of 65% of the American public.

If you would like to read more stories exposing the human consequences of Trump and other fake leaders, I suggest you buy a subscription to Mother Jones. There you will start learning more facts about real America today.

Rather than about the sugar-coated country in which our major media make $millions selling ads to giant corporations by reporting daily of Trump’s infantile Twitters, instead of journalistically getting to the bottom of things that count – like people.

Until next time,


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