Families Belong Together Rally In Laguna Beach
On June 30, 2018, we held a rally on Main Beach in Laguna Beach, CA, for the Families Belong Together movement. I took 160 photos of the signs and the crowd. As usual, the signs were homemade, artistic, clever, and quite touching. They expressed many of the feelings that we all have about the situation.
The Photos are on my Flickr account in the Album: Laguna Beach Families Belong Together.
Update: There were more than 750 rallies across the US. California had the most with 80 events. 50,000 participated in Washington, D. C., 30,000 in New York, 60,000 in Chicago, and 70,000 in Los Angeles.
For history, we note that a few weeks ago, it was revealed hat the Trump Department of Homeland Security had been arresting and jailing all who were picked up crossing the border illegally. Since illegal entry is just a misdemeanor, this was a new overreaction. I think Attorney General Jeff Sessions let slip that this was done to discourage those fleeing crime and violence in Central America from coming to America and applying for asylum.
The Trump administration decided to separate all children from their parents, often under deceptive methods. The parents were not allowed contact with their kids after that. After six weeks the story broke, and their were 2,300 kids in holding facilities. Health and Human Services was farming the kids out to private facilities, where the kids were confined by wire fences. They were only allowed outside for two hours a day. They were not allowed to contact their parents. This included babies, who were poorly taken care of. Despite administration denial, it appears that they lost track of the connections to their parents.
The Trump administration did not let the illegal crossers go with their families and return when a court could evaluate their asylum claims. While 98% return for their hearings, Trump publicly made out like they would not return.
Finally, a judge in California ruled that the kids under 5 must be returned in to their parents in 14 days, and the other children returned within 30 days. Can this even be done? Trump apparently will try to keep the families confined, indefinitely. However, the Forbes ruling is that kids cannot be confined for more than 20 days. As usual, Trump has laid no plans out publicly. After severe unpopularity of the separation, Trump signed one of his executive orders, but as he announced it on the fly, you could just imagine that they were still drafting it, and he had no idea what was being done.
Then Trump tweeted and pursued at rallies that people suspected of being undocumented should just be immediately tossed out of the country, violating the Fifth Amendment for Due Process.
The Families Belong Together Rallies were organized in just 13 days. Los Angeles had 50,000 turn out. Meanwhile, Trump is going to decide on a 45 year replacement for Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy in just 9 days. In two weeks, Trump is meeting with Putin, after a meeting with NATO and European Allies. Today, North Korea is building more bombs.
Police in Laguna Beach estimated that there were 500 people who turned out. Second hand, I was told that organizers were expecting 1,000. They were very loud, coordinated, and enthusiastically chanting whatever people thought up at the time.
I took 160 photos of their signs and many of the people there. It is on my Flickr account:
The Album’s title is Laguna Beach Families Belong Together. It should have had Rally added to the end. But people took this very sympathetically as exploring how they would feel if this happened to them.
For those of us who were children of a parent or parents fleeing oppression, this was especially heart rendering.