How is it possible that we now live in a country that lobs tear gas at migrants, including mothers and little children, just because they are trying to find refuge in America? Is this really America?
How is it possible that we have a president who is that cruel, that vicious, that heartless? And how is it possible that there are those among us -- probably some who are reading this blog -- who will simply shrug and say, "Well, if you don't want gassed, don't try to cross the border illegally."
What has happened to us? How can this be?
And Trump continues to lie and lie and lie. These migrants he says are trying to "invade" our country and the "invasion" includes criminals and gang members. He has no proof of that, only supposition and rhetoric designed to stir up the 38 percent of Americans who actually love what he's doing.
Many of those migrants have walked more than 3,000 miles from Honduras to the US - Mexican border seeking refuge. According to news reports, they are fleeing danger and violence and are seeking asylum, hoping to find a safe haven for themselves and their families.
Imagine. Look at the map. It's a long damn way, and to think they have walked it. And then, after all of that hardship, to be met with tear gas? That is more than I can imagine. It is a moral outrage.
Nearly every nation on earth has banned the use of chemical weapons in warfare, and that includes tear gas. What does it do to you?
Here's how the Washington Post describes a training exercise for military personnel who might encounter tear gas on the battlefield:
Military recruits enter the chamber one by one and don protective masks. Tear gas swirls. Then, the order: Take off your mask and breathe. Eyes well and throats tighten, and men and women training for war uncontrollably gag.
Nearly every uniform is coated in snot. Some recruits vomit.
The exercise demonstrates to troops that their equipment works. It also shows, in a visceral way, what happens if an enemy targets U.S. forces with an agent such as tear gas...
Welcome to America
Is this how we welcome immigrants in today's era of Donald J. Trump? By exploding gas canisters in their face?
I know, I have friends -- indeed, relatives -- who will ask? Well, Bob, what would you do? Do you want these people over-running our country, threatening our safety? Would you open your home to them?
I do not pretend to have the answer to the questions surrounding immigration, except to say that our lawmakers have for years shirked their responsibilities in establishing fair and reasonable immigration laws that recognize the principles upon which our nation was founded. Nobody wants to tackle that, especially in an election year. And keep in mind, business interests want lots of immigrants to do the work that many US citizens would rather not do -- especially in this time of low unemployment.
And, yes, if there was a mom with a little baby on our doorstep who needed refuge, it most certainly would be granted.
We are a nation of immigrants. We all come from other lands -- just go to Ancestor.com and check your DNA. "But they all came legally," those people will respond. "Let these illegals do the same, or send them home."
Well, folks, I remind you that seeking asylum is legal under the laws of the United States. Using tear gas against them? That's even been banned on the battlefield.