U.S. First Ladies Against Immigration Policy
The policy of "zero tolerance" toward people crossing the border illegally has come under sharp criticism by lawmakers, advocates and the religious community in the U.S.A.
The fact that the migrants who illegally crossed the border wait to go through the criminal process, and their children are sent to a separate facility has shaken the American public opinion with many rights groups calling the practice inhumane.
“It's simply enforcing a law to prosecute adults that come into the U.S. illegally and that children cannot be housed with adults while they are going through the criminal process.” The Trump administration has said.
The five living first ladies, including Melania Trump, on Sunday, have weighed in on the immigration policy.
"Mrs Trump hates to see children separated from their families and hopes both sides of the aisle can finally come together to achieve successful immigration reform," the first lady's spokeswoman, Stephanie Grisham, said in a statement. "She believes we need to be a country that follows all laws, but also a country that governs with heart."
Laura Bush wrote in an opinion piece for the Washington Post on Sunday that she understands the need to secure the borders but that the current situation reminds her of Japanese Internment Camps.
“I live in a border state. I appreciate the need to enforce and protect our international boundaries, but this zero-tolerance policy is cruel. It is immoral. And it breaks my heart.” Mrs Bush wrote in her article of Washington post.
Michelle Obama retweeted Bush, adding that "sometimes truth transcends party."
Hillary Clinton also shared Bush's article by tweeting, “What’s happening to families at the border right now is a humanitarian crisis. Every parent who has ever held a child in their arms, every human being with a sense of compassion and decency, should be outraged.”
The former U.S. First Lady Rosalynn Carter called the migration policy “a disgrace and a shame to our country.” Carter also stated that she has seen first-hand the trauma of separating children from their parents.
President Trump has placed blame for the policy on Democrats saying, "I hate the children being taken away," Trump said in a press conference outside the White House on Friday. "The Democrats have to change their law. That's their law."
Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen targeted the criticism groups in a series of tweets on Sunday night.
“This misreporting by Members, press & advocacy groups must stop. It is irresponsible and unproductive. As I have said many times before, if you are seeking asylum for your family, there is no reason to break the law and illegally cross between ports of entry.”
Sec. Nielsen concluded, "We do not have a policy of separating families at the border. Period."