So there’s a narrative going around based on a report from USA Today. It’s that the feds LOST 1,475 kids that had been scooped up at the border when they inhumanely TOOK THEM AWAY FROM THEIR PARENTS. They just *poof* disappeared!!!https://twitter.com/ComradeStar/status/1000058503548096512
The government has lost 1,475 innocent children. Nothing else matters until we find and reunite these children with their parents.— Elise Jordan (@Elise_Jordan) May 26, 2018
This is why separating immigrant families is so irresponsible. These missing kids could end up in the hands of human traffickers or worse. This is not who we are. We should be better than this. More here: https://t.co/gIbgpqBN9b
— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) May 26, 2018
Oh, you KNOW it’s BS if Kamala Harris is pushing it.https://twitter.com/Judnikki/status/999860061873651712
I’ve been outraged & sickened more times than I thought possible these last 2 years, but this… THIS??! As a parent, as an American, as a HUMAN, I couldn’t sleep last night. 1,500 kids lost? What has our country become? #WhereAreTheChildrenhttps://t.co/iJK3QrKlmf
— Bryce Tache 🇺🇸 (@brycetache) May 26, 2018
They’re chained up in Hillary Clinton’s basement!!!!
ANYWAY. It’s not true. Or at least exaggerated.
Here’s the USA Today report everyone is fuh-reaking out over:
The Trump administration recently announced a new, get-tough policy that will separate parents from their children if the family is caught crossing the border illegally.
It was a big news story. So big it overshadowed the fact that the federal government has lost — yes, lost — 1,475 migrant children in its custody.
This is false.
Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen told Congress that within 48 hours of being taken into custody the children are transferred to the Department of Health and Human Services, which finds places for them to stay.
“They will be separated from their parent,” said Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif.
“Just like we do in the United States every day,” Nielsen replied.
Now they’re conflating two separate categories. Misleading.
That is what happened to 1,475 minors swept up at the border and taken into custody by the federal government.
The Office of Refugee Resettlement reported at the end of 2017 that of the 7,000-plus children placed with sponsored individuals, the agency did not know where 1,475 of them were.
This is histrionic exaggeration.
Rich Lowry explains at National Review that this is a program where the feds are trying to deal with thousands of unaccompanied minors who arrive at the border. How do you deal with that? You put them with sponsors. Some of those sponsors report back, some of them don’t for various reasons.
Of course, all the context is left out of the USA Today piece, which at one point falsely says, “the federal government has lost — yes, lost — 1,475 migrant children in its custody.” But these children weren’t in HHS custody. They were placed with sponsors that HHS vetted. It’d obviously be better if HHS could locate all of the sponsors in its follow-up. Some of them surely moved, and perhaps others, if they or family members are illegal immigrants, may not want to be in further contact with authorities.
I’m sure this program can be improved in all sort of ways, like all government programs. But the root of the problem is that unaccompanied children are showing up at our border, a situation that is fraught with peril. We should be doing all we can to stop that flow so a federal bureaucracy doesn’t have responsibility for finding adults to care for them, but the same people frothing with outrage over the USA Today piece have very little interest in trying to do that.
He explains the program further in his piece, which you can read here.
Others are pointing out the bad reporting:
Good morning, everyone! I’m seeing a lot of tweets about how 1,475 children “taken from their parents” were lost by HHS. That’s wrong. Most children sent to HHS—before last fall, ALL children sent to HHS—arrived in the US as unaccompanied minors.— Dara Lind (@DLind) May 25, 2018
FYI, another point about this: we do not know how many of these children weren’t located because they and their relatives in the US (who might even be their parents!) made the decision to go off the grid to reduce deportation risk.— Dara Lind (@DLind) May 26, 2018
So they’re dealing with a broken system, but the media is exaggerating and lying in order to make Trump look like a horrendous evil villain.
This is what happens when you let your agenda determine the truth instead of the other way around. Both sides do it. But the left has a LOT of media allies who push their false narratives out, like this one.