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  • Kenneth Park

Speechless



I don't have words.


FEELINGS I have in abundance: horror, consternation, fury; but words are failing. I've only seen two or three pictures, but they are enough. A little girl's face contorted in anguish, streaked with tears, mouth open and wailing, and the legs of two adults standing next to her. One pair of legs belonging to her mother, the other, to a border patrol agent. It is dark. They are in the harsh glare of headlights.


What are we, if we're not a beacon of freedom, safety, and opportunity? What makes us that? A better question might be what MADE us that, if indeed we were that, at some point in our history?


Yes, of course, we're a nation of laws, and everyone is subject to them, though it seems some are more subject to them than others, especially if you are poor or a person of color. If you don't fall in either of those categories, the likelihood that you will be 'subject' to those same laws in the same way decreases significantly.


The current head of our Department of Justice has stated that the parents are at fault because they chose to put their children at risk by embarking on a dangerous journey, leaving their homes, crossing an inhospitable desert, and breaking the law (as of 2005) to get into the USA. It is their fault that they are being separated from their children. In an earlier statement, he made it known that fleeing domestic abuse or gang violence would no longer be a valid reasons to seek asylum.


Imagine, if you will, being in a country where violence or the threat of violence is the norm. Where there IS no genuine rule of law, where gangs and drug cartels are in control of any given area town or city. Imagine that the 'control' they provide comes at this price: if you are a male, you must join the gang/cartel. If you are a female, you must be a ... "companion" available for the pleasure of the gang ... willingly or otherwise. Now imagine you are the parent of children under that 'control'. Or living in a society that still considers a husband's abuse of his wife and children to be, at best, a private issue, and at worst, normal, and therefore not needing rectification. These are not theoretical situations. This is what is happening. This has been documented.


THIS is why families are fleeing their countries. We could talk about where gangs originate (Google MS-13), or what country is the single biggest market for illegal drugs, which ultimately sustains the cartels, but that is a conversation for another time. Unless it's a conversation we don't really want to have. And, as with other sensitive or controversial subjects, if we don't talk about them, they don't exist.


There's a term for that in mental health circles: denial.


If there is no problem, or it's not YOUR problem, then you bear no responsibility for it.


Kenny Park

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