Heartbreak of the Day

I referenced this picture in yesterday’s post, but I couldn’t find an image of it until today. It was drawn by a nine-year-old child from Canada who was being detained at Hutto Prison in Texas. The ACLU has more information on Hutto, and the New Yorker has an extensive, aching article on the prison that you must must must read.

yourdkhani_statement_lg.jpg

What is wrong with us?


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16 comments for “Heartbreak of the Day

  1. selkie
    March 10, 2008 at 1:33 pm

    OMG! that is unbelievable! What bothers me the most is the pretence that goes on – the blind eye turned .. I cannot STAND it when people go with the status quo rather than stand up and be counted ..

  2. LivvySidhe
    March 10, 2008 at 1:59 pm

    Thanks so much for posting this, Jill. I’ve been to a couple of the vigils at the Hutto prison, and it really is enough to make you weep. They’ve stoped trains on the tracks in front of the place, presumably to block the line of sight and/or keep activists cordoned off. Of all the losses for progressivism in the past few years, I think the fact that we’re imprisoning children is the one that hits home most personally for me, probably because I live in this border state and know families that this new wave of xenophobia are impacting. Truly horrible, and I’m grateful you’re throwing some more attention in Hutto’s direction.

  3. Hector B.
    March 10, 2008 at 2:31 pm

    Immigrating illegally is not a crime. All of these people should be staying in the equivalent of a Holiday Inn, at least. Candidates for asylum should be especially well-treated. I don’t know how to get the government to pull its collective head from its collective ass.

  4. Danakitty
    March 10, 2008 at 2:53 pm

    Thanks for highlighting this. I just finished reading it yesterday, and the most heartbreaking (besides all those stories of children suffering even after they get out) part about it is that it’s cheaper to just put a tracking bracelet on an immigrant and let them go about their life until they get deported.

    It’s horrible that we are putting whole families in prisons — private prisons, no less — and treating people like criminals for trying to get out of their former country. Have we no humanity? Have we no mercy?

    Not only that, but we have public prisons for REAL criminals where they’re treated better than these families. Something needs to be done. The government cannot be allowed to treat people like criminals for immigrating, and they especially cannot be allowed to psychologically damage young children who don’t understand why it’s happening or what they did wrong.

  5. Sniper
    March 10, 2008 at 3:16 pm

    It’s horrible that we are putting whole families in prisons — private prisons, no less — and treating people like criminals for trying to get out of their former country.

    I didn’t know that private prisons existed until this issue came to the fore. What an abomination.

  6. Bitter Scribe
    March 10, 2008 at 3:55 pm

    The detail that really leapt out at me from the New Yorker piece is that when this kid’s letter to Harper was revealed, the Hutto staff responded by confiscating the markers from him and the other children.

    The worst part about being an atheist is not believing there’s a hell for people like that.

  7. March 10, 2008 at 4:37 pm

    Growing up, my grandmother would tell stories about the German POWs during the war coming into town, going to the stores, buying things to send home to their families, getting odd jobs around town. Most of the American men were gone, of course, unless they were 4F, so having healthy young men around to do some of the hardest labor was worth paying for if a person had the money. The younger women were cautious and encouraged to be so, of course, but Grandma said the men were always very nice and very polite to her. (Probably didn’t hurt that she was a drop-dead gorgeous redhead.) They had a curfew but during the day were pretty much free to come and go as they pleased. Remember, now, these were soldiers from a country with whom we were at that time at war. Nazi soldiers to be exact.

    I can’t quite put my finger one why we would imprison men, women and children today the way we imprisoned Japanese-Americans…wait! Aren’t these people predominantly Not White, like the Japanese-Americans?

    You don’t suppose…naw. It can’t be racism. We’re in a post-racist America! CNN said so and they wouldn’t lie, would they? /blinks innocently/

  8. Danakitty
    March 10, 2008 at 6:01 pm

    The worst part about being an atheist is not believing there’s a hell for people like that.

    I’m laughing bitterly and nodding along with that statement. For sure. Kinda makes you feel like saying you’re religious for a few moments so you can imagine their flesh burning. Mmm.

    Just as a side note, has anyone read the latest issue of Mother Jones, an article called Am I A Torturer? by Justine Sharrock?

    It’s all about prisons in Iraq and a few of the people that worked in them and participated in torturing Iraqi prisoners. It’s another good article if you want to look at more of the way America allows prisons to be inhumane and abusive to people of other countries/races.

  9. Lazer
    March 10, 2008 at 6:16 pm

    Guantanamo, Hutto, who knows what else…
    And they say the US strives to protect freedom and other liberal values. Good god.
    I’m afraid I may never be able to face a hard-core conservative (i.e. pro-torture, anti illegal-immigrant) again without slapping them.
    I just hate how worked up everyone is over the ev0l immigrants stealing all the jobs, when this shit goes pretty much unnoticed in comparison.

  10. March 10, 2008 at 7:24 pm

    when this kid’s letter to Harper was revealed, the Hutto staff responded by confiscating the markers from him and the other children.

    Clearly the bad thing is not that they’re doing this but that word has got out. It’s the attitude du jour.

  11. March 11, 2008 at 11:17 am

    We’re several disgusting shades of fucking amazing is what’s wrong with us.
    Scientific Fact. Don’t argue with it.

  12. March 11, 2008 at 11:39 am

    I’m in the middle of the Margaret Talbot piece (and posted about it this morning), and the whole thing is sickening. Bastards.

  13. Kevin A.
    March 11, 2008 at 12:19 pm

    Whats wrong with Canada for not doing anything about this? If hes their citizen why haven’t they come and taken them out of our country yet?

    Their country is full of immigrants. Ours doesn’t need any more. Get these people out of the USA

  14. March 11, 2008 at 12:30 pm

    Holy Cow, the BS here is running deep. Did anyone actally read that article? Canada refused this Iranian family’s petition (wrongly, acccording to the article). They kicked out the family and sent them back to Iran. They stopped in the US and tried to reenter Canada again with forged paperwork. Of course, they were held by immigration. There is no evidence they were mistreated.

  15. ChrisR
    March 12, 2008 at 2:15 am

    What is wrong with us?

    Next time you write a post like this about us, you should file it under “A–holes”.

  16. Zama.C.Mazibuko
    March 12, 2008 at 2:45 am

    what the hell is wrong with this people, immigrants are not devils one day these people are gonna pay for what they are doing to these family…idiots

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