Jews and immigration

Trump has stoked the fears of the Bowerses among us
by Ruth Marcus
Washington Post Opinion, 2018-10-28

[An excerpt from Marcus's column:]


[the Jewish] religion teaches tolerance and, more than tolerance, the obligation to welcome and care for those most in need.
At least 36 times, the Torah exhorts us to embrace the outsider, the immigrant.
I chanted this passage from Leviticus at my daughter’s bat mitzvah:
“The stranger who resides with you shall be to you as one of your citizens;
you shall love him as yourself, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.”
[the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society] was founded in 1881 to help Jews, like my grandparents and great-grandparents,
fleeing the pogroms of Russia and Eastern Europe.
But its mission has broadened to fulfilling the biblical injunction to care for the stranger.
As HIAS president Mark Hetfield likes to say,
“HIAS was founded . . . to welcome refugees because they were Jewish.
Today, HIAS welcomes refugees because we are Jewish.”


Anti-Semitism is a disease without a cure and, seemingly, without end.
It persists from generation to generation and society to society.
People like Bowers [the killer of Jews at a synagogue in Pittsburgh] have always been part of an ugly American fringe.
Social media simply provides a powerful new mechanism for transmitting such long-standing venom
and amplifying preexisting hatreds in an age of increasing tribalism.


Horrifying indifference to children’s lives
by Jennifer Rubin
Washington Post Opinion, 2018-12-16

The Post reported this week:

A 7-year-old girl from Guatemala died of dehydration and shock after she was taken into Border Patrol custody last week for crossing from Mexico into the United States illegally with her father and a large group of migrants along a remote span of New Mexico desert, U.S. Customs and Border Protection said Thursday. . . .

According to CBP records, the girl and her father were taken into custody about 10 p.m. Dec. 6 south of Lordsburg, N.M., as part of a group of 163 people who approached U.S. agents to turn themselves in.

More than eight hours later, the child began having seizures at 6:25 a.m., CBP records show. Emergency responders, who arrived soon after, measured her body temperature at 105.7 degrees, and according to a statement from CBP, she “reportedly had not eaten or consumed water for several days.”

The Department of Homeland Security’s statement in response to reports of the child’s death was a moral and legal disgrace:

Traveling north through Mexico illegally in an attempt to reach the United States, is extremely dangerous. Drug cartels, human smugglers and the elements pose deadly risks to anyone who seeks to cross our border illegally. Border Patrol always takes care of individuals in their custody and does everything in their power to keep people safe. Every year the Border Patrol saves hundreds of people who are overcome by the elements between our ports of entry. Unfortunately, despite our best efforts and the best efforts of the medical team treating the child, we were unable to stop this tragedy from occurring.

“Once again, we are begging parents to not put themselves or their children at risk attempting to enter illegally. Please present yourselves at a port of entry and seek to enter legally and safely.”

For starters, the federal government is responsible for the health and welfare of anyone it detains — whether it is a criminal in a prison, a child in its foster-care system or families detained at the border.

Labels: ,