I've been reading a lot about the plight of these children flooding across our border to escape the horrors of their native countries. It is hard as a parent to imagine conditions so harsh that I would send my children thousands of miles away over hot, rough terrain that is infested with criminals in hopes that they may have a better life if they make it. I think of all the thousands who made the trip successfully and wonder, how many more thousands died along the way? My heart is truly broken for all involved.
I've heard from those on the right that we need to send them all home immediately, and from those on the left that we need to take them all in and let them stay. Here is the dilemma: if we send them all back now, they will be going back to the same dire conditions that prompted their parents to send them here in the first place, but if we let them stay we will be encouraging others to send their children on the same brutal journey. Either way, thousands more will die cruel and painful deaths. We need to take the rhetoric down several notches, stop the name-calling and threats so common in comments on articles about this subject, put aside our emotional, knee-jerk reactions, and work on a solution that will truly help these children.
My proposal for a solution is this: we should meet the immediate needs of those who are here, while making it clear to their native countries that they will be returned shortly and no more will be permitted to come in. We should then offer help to their governments in getting their crime and poverty situations under control, so these children will have a better home to return to. I know it will be expensive, but what price can be put on all the human lives that will be saved? In order to fund my plan, I propose that we start by cleaning up this list and use a portion of the savings to pay for this and use the rest to close our border securely.