Saturday, June 22, 2019

Concentration camps

At The New Yorker, Masha Gessen writes about Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s characterization of detention facilities for migrants as concentration camps:

It is the choice between thinking that whatever is happening in reality is, by definition, acceptable, and thinking that some actual events in our current reality are fundamentally incompatible with our concept of ourselves — not just as Americans but as human beings — and therefore unimaginable. The latter position is immeasurably more difficult to hold — not so much because it is contentious and politically risky, as attacks on Ocasio-Cortez continue to demonstrate, but because it is cognitively strenuous. It makes one’s brain implode. It will always be a minority position.
As I read only yesterday in The Washington Post, detained migrant children are being held without soap, without toothbrushes, without adequate food, in conditions that make sleep impossible. Those conditions should make sleep impossible for all Americans.


Later the same day: The New Yorker has an interview with Warren Binford, a lawyer and law professor who has interviewed children at a Border Patrol “facility” in Texas. An excerpt:
“They told us that they were hungry. They told us that some of them had not showered or had not showered until the day or two days before we arrived. Many of them described that they only brushed their teeth once. This facility knew last week that we were coming. The government knew three weeks ago that we were coming.”

comments: 2

Daughter Number Three said...

Have you watched the footage of the DOJ lawyer making that argument, and the judges' responses? Stunning (and I don't like to use that word, but this almost knocked me out).

Michael Leddy said...

Yes. The Washington Post article has it embedded. It’s appalling. All I could think about the government lawyer is, Someone went to law school to be able to say these things.