Things That Matter

Amid Accusations Of Detained Women Drinking From Toilets And Sexual Abuse, Trump Says His Guards ‘Love’ Detainees

There are now multiple reports on the conditions in migrant detention centers housing children and adults: overcrowding, people sleeping on floors using ‘solar blankets’ for warmth in centers that were only designed for adult men staying from just a few hours to no more than seventy-two hours, not weeks and months on end.

The drinking water fountains in these facilities are a standard-issue, combination drinking-fountain, and toilet unit. 

The fountain makes up the top portion of the toilet where people urinate and defecate.

This way anyone in need of drinking water must lean over the top of the toilet to reach the fountain in a cell designed for one or two.

This morning in a press conference on the White House lawn, the president accused Alexandra Ocasio Cortez, who visited detention centers in Clint and El Paso Texas last week of lying about conditions. His accusation was made in response to claims AOC made about migrants drinking from toilets at detention centers in her testimony to the Senate Oversight Committee.

‘To have Ocasio say that they’re drinking out of toilets? She made that up, okay?’

‘That’s a phony story. She made it up,’ said the president to reporters.

Trump also stated that ICE agents ‘love’ migrants.

‘I have been with ICE and I’ve been with border patrol a lot,’ he said. ‘They love those people coming across the border. They love them, and I’ve seen it. They love them.’ 

While some are citing inconsistencies in AOC’s Tweets about detention center access to clean drinking water, it is clear that the combination drinking-fountain toilet, and use of the word “toilet” to describe it, could mean that both the president, who has not visited the detention centers, and AOC’s war of words is a matter of semantics.

On July 1, after leaving one detention center, AOC, did report that she was told by detainees that on occasions when the sinks do not work guards have told them to drink from the toilet bowl itself.

Congresswoman Madeline Dean who also toured the migrant detention centers reported similar conditions: “15 women in their 50s-60s sleeping in a small concrete cell, no running water. Weeks without showers. All of them separated from their families.”

As did Congresswoman Judy Chu who reported that women were told by guards to drink from the toilet.

In an interview that aired on NPR’s Fresh Air Tuesday, national immigration reporter for the New York Times, Catilin Dickerson, did not discuss drinking water but she did detail the unsanitary conditions in the centers, or hieleras, as they are referred to by migrants, for their uncomfortably cold temperatures inside.

In the interview with WHYY’s Dave Davies, she discussed how she was told that the temperatures are kept low to prevent the spread of communicable diseases, but Dickerson believes there’s another reason for the low temperatures has to do with the smell created by bad conditions and overcrowding:

“I know that one other factor the agents consider is the smell. These facilities tend to smell really, really bad, and they smell even worse when the temperatures are higher because people aren’t showering. And so their body odor gets worse, and I think that’s a factor as well. And we’re not talking about your standard-issue body odor. I mean, again, it’s emanating from people who haven’t been allowed to shower for weeks, and so agents describe the smell actually seeping into their clothes so that when they go home or they go out into the community, people don’t want to stand near them because that’s how powerful it is.”

It remains unclear whether the president’s attack on AOC is a matter of semantics regarding the combination drinking-fountain toilet.

Or, whether his reasons for accusing AOC of lying is a tactic designed to distract from the undeniably terrible conditions and overcrowding in the detention centers. What is clear is how this issue and AOC have become a Twitter lightning rod.

Brian Tyler Cohen responded to AOC’s  Congress Oversight Committee testimony by quoting her, and at least one hundred people responded in just a couple of hours.

 “@AOC: “I believe these women. I believed the canker sores that I saw in their mouths. I believed when they said they were sleeping on concrete floors. And what was worse was the fact that there were American flags hanging all over these facilities.”

Aaron Brodock responded, “That’s what happens when you break the law and enter the country illegally you get held in a detention center not a 5-star hotel! Don’t break the law, don’t enter our country illegally = no detention center it’s really quite simple.”

Many have responded to the situation saying that it’s not illegal to seek asylum.

This, however, women drinking out of toilets, is an absolute disgrace.

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Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Response To GOP House Candidate’s ‘Dumb Blonde’ Joke Will Leave You Breathless

Things That Matter

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Response To GOP House Candidate’s ‘Dumb Blonde’ Joke Will Leave You Breathless

BRITTANY GREESON / GETTY

Dumb blonde jokes. They’re overwrought, trite, and pretty outdated. So it’s no surprise that one that came straight from the mouth of a GOP House candidate and directed at Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez didn’t go over so well.

GOP House candidate Marjorie Taylor Greene attempted a joke at Ocasio-Cortez’s expense on Twitter Monday and it failed miserably.

Greene, whose Georgia campaign is being supported by Donald Trump, attempted to hit at AOC’s intelligence on Monday in a tweet.

“As a blonde woman, I would like to take a moment to thank Congresswoman @AOC. She has single handily [sic] put an end to all ‘dumb blonde’ jokes. Blondes everywhere appreciate your service and your sacrifice!” Greene tweeted.

In response, Ocasio-Cortez retweeted Greene, writing, “Don’t worry Mrs. Greene, I completely understand why you need to swing + miss at my intellect to make yourself feel better. You seem to have some trouble spelling your own insults correctly. Next time try ‘single-handedly,’ it’ll work better.”

She signed off her tweet writing “Good luck writing legislation!”

It’s not the first time Greene has come for AOC and failed.

Greene attempted and failed to get under AOC’s skin earlier this month.

Facebook.com

In September, the candidate shared a photo of herself holding a rifle next to images of AOC and other Democratic lawmakers Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib to her Facebook page.

She captioned the post “Squad’s worst nightmare.” It was soon removed by Facebook who cited violations of its policies.

It didn’t take long for AOC’s supporters to strike back at Green to defend the congresswoman.

“Those who are jealous and envious of others typical attack those whom they envy because they need to feel important and try to gain some attention for themselves,” one user commented in the thread. “You are where you are @AOC because of your work and dedication. Mrs Greene knows she can’t compete so she attacks.”

According to People, “Greene has a track record of embracing false stories publicized by QAnon, a conspiracy theory-fueled group which alleges there’s a group of Democratic pedophiles operating around the country.”

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Users On Reddit Are Sharing Why They Didn’t Vote In 2016 And The Answers Will Make Your Stomach Turn

Things That Matter

Users On Reddit Are Sharing Why They Didn’t Vote In 2016 And The Answers Will Make Your Stomach Turn

Joe Raedle / Getty

In 2016, estimates from the U.S. Elections Project showed that nearly 43 percent of eligible voters failed to fill out a ballot for the presidential election. According to Pew Research, tens of millions of registered voters did so because of a “dislike of the candidates or campaign issues.” Shockingly, this means that in 2016, the number of people who were eligible to vote and chose not to greatly outnumbered who voted for Clinton, Trump, or a third-party candidate.

Curious about this, we turned to Reddit to find out WHY people were so quick to willfully toss out their voting power.

Check out the answers we found below.

“I wasn’t scared my brown or LBGTQ country folk would actually be fucked over. I assumed it was all his [Trump’s] ploy to get the people who voted Bush and Reagan in, to vote him in… Make the white people scared and make sure they don’t trust the Dems. or people of colour or alternative life choice. I’m from L.A.; we grow up mixed and if your a decent human you respect everyone or move back to whatever hate hole you come from.” – Sgrociopath

“I moved from a strong blue state to a strong blue state on November 7, 2016, which was too late to register to vote in this year’s election(and I re-checked multiple times to make sure that was the case).” –lovethenewname

“Didn’t pay enough attention when they first started running and by the time I was looking, everyon was so polarized biased I didn’t wanna dig through the bullshit to make an educated opinion.” –AndeeRin1031

“Didn’t find a candidate I could support. The only good thing anyone else had going for them was “eh at least it’s not Hillary” and when that’s your only good trait you’re not worth my support.” – egnards

“Because I didn’t want to pledge my allegiance to a candidate and then have to defend them for their choices. I want to complain about the president because a group of yes men ultimately get you sent to a psych ward.” –buk_ow_ski

“I didn’t have a permanent address and wasn’t sure how to even anything.” –weinerpug

“I live in a completely red state and didn’t give myself enough time. I left an hour and a half early for work, sat in line for 45 minutes, realized I wasn’t going to make it and said “fuck it” and left.” –Eensquatch

“I refused to vote (my first election that I did not) simply because both candidates were disgusting and there was simply no choice I could make.”-ultimatemayerfan

“I didn’t vote despite voting in the primaries. The reason why was aside from the fake propaganda essentially the democratic party really did know who they wanted and had enacted things to make primarying difficult in order to support Clinton. Dropping people from registries, cutting down primary locations, making it so you had to be registered so many months in advance Clinton was the only option. If your party deliberately makes it hard to vote you can’t turn around a few months later and tell everyone “Okay now get out and vote!”

Also the narrative against Sanders had been “1 man can’t change things that much”. But then when it was Clinton against Trump the narrative was “1 man will ruin everything”. You don’t get to have it both ways.

I was going to be a first-time voter but then I was basically told “we don’t want you to vote unless it’s who we tell you”

I don’t regret it. Especially since my state is so red (Utah) even had I voted for Clinton I would have just been another vote that didn’t win her the election.” –collin3000

“My ballot didn’t come in the mail.” –NutellaGood

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