The same story seems to be told on repeat: the Trump Administration does something completely immoral, and California charges forward with a new legal attack. It should come as no surprise: California has consistently fought against Trump’s harsh (and illegal) immigration policies because the state has an enormous immigrant population, many of whom are undocumented workers that the administration would like to see evicted from their homes.
This time it’s a little bit different.
The Trump Administration is trying to amend laws that limit how long asylum-seeking migrants can be detained in what have been called “concentration camps” by those who advocate on their behalf. If Trump gets his way, the new law will allow legal authorities at the border to hold migrants indefinitely — meaning theoretically we could keep them imprisoned for life simply for legally entering our country to apply for asylum (also legal).
Several people, children included, have died while in custody at the border, causing an outcry from supporters who contest that the conditions the Trump Administration are keeping the migrants in are inhumane.
Authorities are legally required to provide the detained migrants with basic necessities such as food, water, shelter, clothing, and healthcare. Those who have visited the migrant shelters have witnessed anything but.
Attorney General Xavier Becerra said of the crisis: “No child deserves to be left in conditions inappropriate and harmful for their age. The actions by this administration are not just morally reprehensible, they’re illegal. Children don’t become subhuman just because they’re migrants.”
This is what led California to co-sign with Massachusetts a legal challenge to Trump’s proposed amendment. It marks the 57th such legal challenge, and this time 19 states are in on the lawsuit.
The truth is this: legally, asylum seekers must first cross into the United States at a port of entry or already be on U.S. soil before they can apply. But many Republican Trump supporters continue to contend that Trump’s treatment of the migrants is irrelevant because they didn’t enter the United States legally — even though they did.
That’s why Trump is trying to amend yet another law to ensure that migrants stopping in other countries on their way to the United States must first apply for asylum in those other countries. Once again, he wants to make it more and more difficult for anyone to come to the United States of America — “land of the free” if you still believe in that cosmic bit of hypocrisy.