Illegal Immigrants Ask the U.S. Government for Millions in Compensation Over Separation

U.S. Border Patrol agents conduct intake of illegal border crossers at the Central Processing Center in McAllen, Texas, Sunday, June 17, 2018. by US Customs and Border Protection, public domain as US Government works.

Three illegal immigrant fathers are asking the U.S. government for millions in damages over supposed “lasting harm” caused to them by being separated from their children while in detention.

Here’s CNN presenting this is the most one-sided light.

Three fathers who were separated from their young children when they tried to migrate to the US want millions of dollars in compensation from the US government for the toll the months of separation took on their families.

The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) and law firm Covington & Burlington filed administrative claims Thursday seeking damages from the US government on behalf of three men who were separated from their children at the border. The separation caused lasting harm for the families, the advocacy group and law firm said in a news release.

It should surprise no one that the Southern Poverty Law Center is behind this.

Just to recap, these are illegal immigrants who chose to commit a crime by crossing the border illegally. Now they want millions of dollars in taxpayer money paid out in damages for being separated from their chidren while in detention, which is required by U.S. law. Not only did they commit the original crime of illegal entry, but now they want money from the U.S. government because they chose not to break the law and keep their kids in jail with them. Yes, that’s as absurd as it sounds.

The filings describe children who cry in the night, refuse to eat and are fearful of going out, and parents struggling with guilt and anxiety.

“Thousands of children, parents and entire families will suffer the rest of their lives as a result of this administration’s intentionally cruel family separations,” said Michelle Lapointe, senior supervising attorney at the SPLC.

Look, I can sympathize with that. I can also sympathize with an American citizen who’s separated from their children while in prison. That doesn’t change the reality of the situation. There’s no doubt that there’s truth to the idea that a child is harmed by the incarceration of a parent, but that’s not the U.S. government’s fault. In fact, that’s one of the reasons to think first and not commit a crime. The consequences affect more than just the person breaking the law. If you truly care about your children, don’t break the law and end up in jail, or in this case, detention.

By the logic of this complaint, every single parent currently in prison is owed millions of dollars from the U.S. government for “lasting harm.” I see noway that any judge (if they sue after the six month waiting period) could even entertain this. It would be a Pandora’s box that essentially makes it impossible to detain people with children for criminal activity.

CNN’s piece reads like pure propaganda, offering absolutely no push back on the technical issues with these complaints, but they do stumble into the key factor.

Meantime, M.C.L. is struggling with guilt over not having done more to prevent the separation, according to the filing.

M.C.L. is the father and he absolutely should feel guilty. He drug his child on a dangerous journey, knowing he had no legitimate claim for asylum, and then chose to break the law, leading to their separation. What’s been lost in the entire immigration debate is any semblance of personal responsibility.

These complaints are frivolous on their face. Again, I’m generally sympathetic to the plight of migrants and most would consider me fairly moderate on immigration. But the idea that American taxpayers need to be fleeced further because these fathers chose to break the law is ludicrous. These kinds of things only build animosity toward those who actually have legitimate claims for asylum. It’s an unfair abuse of the system and whatever judge receives these complaints should shut them down immediately.

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