Saturday, July 12, 2014

Terrible times

I went to bed with a heavy heart last night, and it's stayed with me. Had dinner--mostly a lovely pleasant dinner at a wonderful seafood restaurant--with a friend who's a political scientist. She told me of her disappointment with President Obama, and for the first time I got it. He has done so much good--I'll never let go of that--but there are things he hasn't done, such as stand up to Republicans, curtail Wall Street and corporations. He's okayed drone strikes in the mid-East which too often kill civilians.
And the question I hear too often the last couple of days, from both sides of the aisle, is why didn't he go to the border while he was in Texas. I'd like to think he was avoiding the politics of a photo op but I think that's thin. I hear someone (Border Patrol, deportation people--if there are such) is taking immigrants several hundred miles into Mexico and dropping them off. For what? To where? If it's true, it's heartless.
I worry beyond belief at all those children being returned to their dangerous home countries--I very much doubt U.S. authorities will see that they are reunited with their families, so there they are--some as young as five or six--adrift in a dangerous country. I cannot bear to think of it, and I hope the U.S. will show its humanitarian side. Meanwhile Congress is playing politics with the lives of those children.
I don't understand world events as much as some, but I wonder about the current Palestinian/Israeli conflict. Surely the Palestinians knew they were starting a war when they kidnapped and killed three Israeli youths. And surely they knew they'd get pounded. It's all tragic, pointless and a great exercise in wasted human life. Yes, the Palestinians have had a bad deal--their homeland usurped by the Israelis. But that was generations ago--why do they continue the futile battles? Why not negotiate?
As I said I'm no expert on politics either, but I think that's part of the president's problem. Being a good and honorable and reasonable man, he expected everyone to play nice and negotiate. And he came up against the hard reality of partisan politics gone wild. If I were him, I fear I'd issue a whole bunch of executive orders.
The world, as they say, seems to be going to hell in a handbasket. I am glad some of those I loved--my parents, Uncle Charles, and other who cared passionately--are not here to see it.


Polly Iyer said...

It's hit me too, Judy, as I mentioned in one of your earlier posts on Facebook. Of all the times he hadn't stood his ground, this time with the border he did, and it was wrong. He's getting bad advice.

Anonymous said...

Please Mrs. Alter, if you have questions about the Border Patrol please call me (you know who I'm). We are not dropping off anyone anywhere other than the interior of the United States. Whether you agree with the policy of letting them stay or not the fact is that were are letting all of the these illegal aliens stay.
The Border Patrol is not cruel, I'm not cruel and if you have forgotten what a gentle soul I am; I guess I'll have to pay you a visit to remind you what a great guy I am (sarcasm of course).

Judy Alter said...

Anonymous, yes I know who you are and you are indeed a gentle soul You can still come visit me (sorry I'll miss you in Tomball).
Notice I said "If true"--I could hardly believe it. I've seen instances of great kindness by the Border Patrol on Facebook, and I know you were dealing with a really difficult situation. What strikes me is that Ferguson has driven it off the headlines, and we hear no more about it. Frankly I think it was a politically manufactured headline--haven't the refugees been there all along? I see it as a ploy to embarrass the president.

Anonymous said...

It was not manufactured Mrs. Alter. In my 17 years in the Border Patrol we have never faced such a situation. It was miserable for all involved.