Under the zero tolerance policy, families have been broken apart keeping parents in jail and children in detention centers. While it is not hard to figure out what happens to detainees in jail, there is still a question of what happens to the children. In some cases, infants and smaller children aren’t old enough to identify themselves or their parents.
“...THERE’S THIS LOVE-HATE RELATIONSHIP IN THE UNITED STATES WITH IMMIGRATION...”
We interviewed Rosemary Barbara who is a professor at LaSalle University and studies the history of immigration, immigration laws and immigrant rights from a social work perspective. During the interview we asked questions pertaining to the Trump Administration’s controversial “zero-tolerance” policy regarding immigration into the United States.
Could you just explain to us what ICE is?
ICE stands for the Immigration and Customs Enforcement. It is part of the department of Homeland Security. It replaced what was called INS (Immigration and Naturalization Service) after terrorist bombings in 2001. All issues related to immigration and customs went under that department.
Why do you think some Americans feel as though immigrants make our United States diverse?
There’s this love hate relationship in the United States with immigration, so people who are defending immigrants say it brings in this other way of seeing the world, it brings in diversity, it brings in new food and things like that. So I think people defend immigrants by saying that they have a right to be here.
What would you say to people who believe in these type of camps?
I think they’re really motivated by a sense of superiority and a really narrow sense of what the United States should be. They’re the same people who will say “well slavery is over, it served its purpose”, they’re apologetic for those kinds of things and they just feel like this country is European or European descended and that’s what it should be, and I should say, with many people you just can’t even have the discussion because they’re just not going to listen to it.
“KIDS NEED THEIR PARENTS”
Many people are fighting to end family separation. Who is paying attention?
Many students at Carver are international students, or have families (parents, aunts, uncles, etc) that have come to the United States. Whether they are documented or undocumented, they have a right to be here. Continuing this “zero tolerance policy” could further ruin families, and even ruin friendships and relationships that they may have created while in the United States.