Things That Matter

These 13 Heartbreaking Moments From The Trump Administration Will Forever Be Unforgivable

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Friends, familia, there is a lot we cannot forgive Trump for, and our mamas raised us well. From the moment he opened his mouth to announce his presidential campaign by calling Mexicans “rapists” and “degenerates,” to mocking rape survivor Christine Blasey Ford in front of a crowd of people–it’s tough to narrow this list down.

But it’s important that we do because as our nation transitions from one shocking moment to another, we’re losing sight of what ‘normal’ felt like years ago. We have to stay vigilant to the horrors happening in this country at the signature of Trump’s pen or the thoughtless jeer to a crowd of people. We have to hold him, and ourselves, accountable to the truth.

1. At least five children have died in federal custody since December 2018.

@Nysteveo2AOLcom / Twitter

Before then, no children had died in Customs and Border Protection custody in ten years. Jakelin Caal Maquin is a 7-year-old Guatemalan girl who was kept in what most people would call a garage for hours until she was taken to the hospital. She died of dehydration.

2. Trump’s family separation policy has traumatized countless children.

@akri2000 / Twitter

Hundreds still have not been reunited with their families, and the evidence points to Trump’s administration not even having a plan in place to reunite them in the first place. Their mission is to deport as many people as possible, regardless of human rights violations and international law.

3. Trump stands by the use of tear gas at the border.

@leedsgarcia / Twitter

U.S. border agents fired tear gas canisters in November 2018 into Mexico to disperse a group of migrant families near the border. Doctors have protested the use of tear gas, especially at children, whose respiratory systems aren’t as resilient as adults. Reportedly, some children fainted and had to be carried away. Trump stood by the agents.

4. Trump says immigrant children don’t need soap, toothbrushes or beds.

@Stone1ML / Twitter

After an Associated Press report that detailed a lack of adequate access to food, water or medicine for 250 infants, children and teenagers detained in Clint, Texas, Trump blamed Democrats. The Flores settlement lays out that it’s the government’s responsibility to provide “safe and sanitary” conditions to migrants. According to the Trump administration, soap, toothbrushes, and beds are superfluous to “safe and sanitary” conditions for children.

5. When Trump blamed Democrats for the deaths of Óscar Alberto Martínez Ramírez and his one-year-old daughter, Valeria.

@DarrinFranklyn / Twitter

Óscar and his wife Tania Vanessa Ávalos arrived on U.S. soil from El Salvador seeking asylum–a legal right. They were held in a migrant camp on the Mexican side of the border–a new policy–which left the family in essentially a dog pound, with temperatures reaching over 110 degrees Fahrenheit.

Desperate for true safety, they attempted to cross the Rio Grande on their own. Óscar brought Valeria safely to the other side, but when he went back for Tania, Valeria tried to go after him. Oscar swam back for his daughter, but the current took them away. Tania survived to tell the horrific story.

6. Trump has made America a place that has concentration camps of brown people.

@Donald_from_HI / Twitter

According to Andrea Pitzer, author of One Long Night: A Global History of Concentration Camps, these immigrant detention centers fit the bill for “a concentration camp system” in the U.S. She defines a concentration camp as mass detention of civilians without trial.

So far, 24 people have died in ICE custody under the Trump administration. Now, Trump is using Fort Sill, a once-Japanese internment camp to house 1,400 unaccompanied migrant children.

7. Trump’s Trans military ban, which is now in effect.

@OuterPeaceGear / Twitter

The way Trump got around the obvious human rights violations is by saying that trans people can serve… but only as their sex at birth. That means a trans male would be forced to present and bunk with females, and a trans woman would be forced to have the same haircut, and presentation as men in the military.

8. When Trump threw paper towels at Puerto Ricans.

@ninersCK7 / Twitter

This photo was taken at a relief event in a church. Trump appeared as President of the United States and the best he could do was throw paper towels into a crowd of people devastated by a major hurricane. Just weeks before, Trump’s administration responded swiftly, and seriously to Hurricane Harvey victims.

9. Trump still refused to acknowledge the 2,975 deaths from Hurricane Maria.

@ajplus / Twitter

His administration announced that 64 people died from the storm. Far worse than Trump’s denial of the true tragedy of Hurricane Maria is the fact that hundreds, maybe thousands, of deaths could have been prevented by an equal response by FEMA. Similar to Hurricane Katrina, the delay in response from FEMA is unforgivable.

Trump tried to blame the “big water, ocean water” that made Puerto Rico difficult to assist, but the reality is that it’s as long a plane ride from the U.S. mainland as it is for Trump to fly to Mar-a-Lago.

10. When someone died at the hands of white nationalists and he said there were “very fine people on both sides.”

@TimMoses37 / Twitter

After white nationalists announced a march through Charlottesville, Virginia, counter-protesters flooded the streets to prevent White Power from taking over their community. One white nationalist drove his car into a sea of counter-protesters, killing Heather Heyer.

Trump defended the white nationalists by saying there were “very fine people on both sides” and refused to denounce their philosophy until days later. Unforgivable.

11. Trump called black athletes honoring black victims of police brutality “son[s] of bitch[es].”

@ninersCK7 / Twitter

Colin Kaepernick started a movement that has forever made an impact on sports, by taking a knee during the national anthem to protest police brutality against black and brown lives. In a September 2017 rally in Alabama, he roared at the crowd claiming that NFL owners should fire their players for exercising free speech. “Get that son of a bitch off the field right now. He’s fired. He’s fired!”

Under oath, Miami Dolphins owner, Stephen Ross, admitted that he supported the protests initially, but Trump’s comments changed his mind.

12. Trump mocked a reporter’s disability.

@VABVOX / Twitter

New York Times journalist, Serge Kovaleski, suffers from a joint condition that became the butt of a joke for Trump during his primary campaign. Kovaleski was correcting Trump’s lie that “thousands” of Muslims in New Jersey celebrated the 9/11 attacks. Trump’s response was to mock his congenital condition. We all thought that would be his last strike. Never forget.

13. When Trump took out an ad wanting to kill the wrongly convicted Central Park Five.

@morganstephensa / Twitter

The newly released Netflix series “When They See Us” depicts what happened to a collection of Black and Latino young boys who were coerced to admit guilt to raping a woman in Central Park. A big theme in the story was how it felt for the mothers of the boys and the boys themselves to see that this random, rich white man, wanted to kill them. They’ve since been exonerated.

A reporter asked Trump if he would apologize to the Central Park Five. His response was, “You have people on both sides of that. They admitted their guilt.”

This man wouldn’t know truth if it hit him in the face, and we hope it does. Hard.

READ: Migrants Children Are Getting Sick In Detention Centers But The Trump Administration Doesn’t Want To Give Them Toothbrushes

Undocumented Guatemalan Girl Escapes Iowa Couple’s Home After Repeated Sexual Assaults

Things That Matter

Undocumented Guatemalan Girl Escapes Iowa Couple’s Home After Repeated Sexual Assaults

niu niu / Unsplash

TW: This story contains disturbing anecdotes of sexual violence.

Arizona’s Customs and Border Patrol Agency (CBP) announced the arrest of an Iowa couple for human smuggling and sexual assault after a Guatemalan girl was found in the streets of Sioux City and told her story to authorities. The girl, whose name will not be released for her own safety, is being referred as  “ABF” on the federal affidavit detailing the perpetrator’s charges. Amy Francisco and her husband, Cristobal Francisco-Nicolas have been arrested and charged.

The couple was arrested in San Diego, but will likely face a federal court in Iowa.

ABF was found wandering Sioux City, urgently telling pedestrians she’d been sexually assaulted.

Credit: @CBPArizona / Twitter

From there, Sioux City police interviewed ABF to learn that she and her father, Fernando Bartolo-Francisco were smuggled into the U.S. by relatives, Cristobal Francisco-Nicolas and his wife Amy Francisco. She said they were released from El Paso Detention Center because of overcrowding and were flown to Omaha by their relatives.

The couple then locked ABF in a room with a metal bed and a bucket for a bathroom.

Google Images

Above is a Google image of the couple’s home where she was allegedly locked in. The affidavit said that, “ABF then stated Cristobal raped her and that Amy watched it happen from the door to the locked room. After being raped five times, ABF stated that one morning Cristobal left for work and did not lock the door.”

She then snuck out of the house while Amy Francisco was sleeping. She roamed the streets looking for someone who spoke Spanish to help her. 

The Iowa couple admitted to smuggling ABF in but requested an attorney when law enforcement began questioning them for the alleged rape of ABF.

Credit: @mosettastone / Twitter

Francisco-Nicolas told police that he made arrangements for a coyote to transfer the father and daughter to the U.S. after learning through his sister that they were desperate to leave Guatemala. 

“Cristobal stated he knows he messed up and the mistake he made was receiving these people,” the affidavit said. “Cristobal requested an attorney when law enforcement began to question him about the alleged rape of ABF.”

In response, some folks are taking the opportunity to demand CBP shut down the concentration camps and seek justice for victims within the system.

Credit: @johuyik / Twitter

In February 2019, a report was released that detailed thousands of immigrant children saying they were sexually abused in U.S. detention centers. Between 2012 and March 2018 alone, there were 1,448 allegations of sexual abuse filed with ICE. Certainly, not every victim files a complaint. 

Last year, the ACLU helped an asylum-seeker from Honduras file suit against an employee at a detention center for failure to protect her from sexual violence.

Untitled. Digital Image. ACLU. 17 July 2019

 Court documents detail how her abuser threatened her with possible deportation while their coworkers stood by and continued the jokes. There are laws in place that criminalize any kind of sexual behavior between a correctional facility staff member and the people in their custody. That’s because consent cannot happen when powers are imbalanced. This facility is still trying to deflect responsibility by saying the detainee “consented.”

Some people are taking the opportunity to blame Democrats for ABF’s assault.

Credit: @THE_DAILY_BLEAT / Twitter

Given that ICE and CBP are not being held accountable by anyone. That fact, among many others including the conditions of the camps themselves, has incited public outrage, nationwide protests, and finger-pointing on both sides of the aisle. 

Everyone seems to agree on one thing: prosecute.

Credit: @CAWPBT / Twitter

Folks who don’t want to see immigrants in this country are weaponizing the tragedy by alleging it as cause to close the border. Folks who care about immigrants see the instance as a clear example of why undocumented immigrants should be granted basic rights that would allow ABF’s father to be lawfully employed and to live openly.

The culture of fear for undocumented immigrants makes them among the most vulnerable members of our society. ABF was not registered with a school. Her father couldn’t go to authorities without risking deportation. It’s clear that an undocumented child wouldn’t go looking for the police unless her claims were valid. 

Yes, prosecute these individuals, and also make it safer for every family to exist without harm.

READ: Major Hotel Chains Are Rolling Out Panic Buttons To Protect Their Employees From Sexual Assault

Lindsey Graham Returns From Trip To Migrant Detention Center And Shows He Has Zero Empathy For Them

Things That Matter

Lindsey Graham Returns From Trip To Migrant Detention Center And Shows He Has Zero Empathy For Them

lindseygrahamsc / Instagram

As Trump doubled down on his tweets to AOC and other minority female congresswomen – telling them to go back to “their own countries” – Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) had just returned from a visit to two migrant detention centers. But he was quick to make his way on to Sunday morning talkshows to speak about his experience in the detention centers but also to Trump’s recent openly racist tweets at a group of sitting congresswomen.

On Sunday, Graham was on Fox News spewing hateful and hurtful language.

In his visit to the detention centers, Graham, along with the rest of his group, was seen as having shown no sympathy for any of the migrants. He stood there stonefaced. And now we have a better understanding of why.

In his appearance on Fox News’s Sunday Morning Futures, Graham gave voice to his body language, saying: “I don’t care if they have to stay in these facilities for 400 days. We’re not going to let those men go that I saw.”

You can watch the exhange below:

Graham, who said that “this was not a concentration camp that I saw,” also repeated an unsubstantiated myth broadcast by the president and the Department of Homeland Security during the last government shutdown: the idea that the southern border represents a point of entry for terrorists. “A terrorist could easily get in this group,” Graham said. “We have terrorists coming through the southern border because they find that’s probably the easiest place to come through. They drive right in and they make a left.” But as a State Department report from September 2018 found, there is “no credible evidence indicating that international terrorist groups have established bases in Mexico, worked with Mexican drug cartels or sent operatives via Mexico into the United States.”

Though let’s not forget, Graham did try to pass a bill that would of mandated that migrant minors be held in detention for 100 days.

South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham has introduced legislation aimed at changing the asylum seeking process. Specifically, Sen. Graham’s new bill would target Central American migrants arriving at the U.S.-Mexico border to legally seek asylum. Many of the Central American migrants are fleeing deadly discrimination, sexual exploitation, and rampant gang violence. Sen. Graham’s bill seeks to make asylum a harder and lengthier process.

After his shocking statements on migrants, Graham then weighed in on Trump’s blatantly racist attack on a group of congresswomen, including AOC.

Not only did Sen. Graham fail to condmen Trump’s disgusting comments, Graham decided to add fuel to the fire. Instead, he called the group of congresswomen (which included AOC, Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, and Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts) a bunch of communists.

He then added, “they hate Israel, they hate our own country. They’re calling the guards along our border, the border patrol agents, ‘concentration camp guards.’ They accuse people who support Israel of doing it for the Benjamins. They’re anti-Semitic. They’re anti-America.”

Shortly after Graham made the comments, Trump shared them in a tweet, writing, “Need I say more?”

Many on social media were rightly wondering if this man even has a conscience?

I mean when someone is capable spewing this much hate on a round of Sunday morning talk shows, it’s a legitimate question to ask.

Can we all look back on the days when Graham was a staunch #NeverTrumper?

And now one organization is putting up billboads all over his homestate to remind voters of his flip flops.

Some of the memes this generated though are all too real…

Sadly, this just seems really disturbing at this point. The former #NeverTrump Graham seems to have gone all in on racist, hateful, hurtful policies, words, and so much more.

READ: Sen. Lindsey Graham Is Proposing A New Bill To Hold Minors In Asylum For 100 Days And Twitter Slapped Him With The Best Hashtag

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