To follow the political news in the USA, especially when it comes to the various election campaigns already being waged, and gain a fair and balanced idea of what is happening, you’d need to watch all of the news channels twenty-four hours a day and read both the serious press and, sadly, the gutter-press too. An impossible task, no matter how good a person is.
There is no balanced reporting and there are no accurate polls. The press is biased, not necessarily through their own fault, by editorial guidelines as much as by the slant each individual reporter has on their story, following their own political beliefs and experiences. The only thing it is safe and sensible to follow is what the candidates themselves have to say, and then to form a personal opinion. This involves fact checking as much as anything, even here we cannot rely on any one source, no matter how convincing a statement, a policy paper, a manifesto may appear to be on the surface.
Photo Source: Dennis Goedegebuure – Creative Commons
There are some headlines, however, which catch our attention whether we wish them to or not. One of them – amongst many – is the demand / promise by Donald Trump to export all undocumented, all illegal immigrants from the United States back to Mexico, or wherever they came from. A glance towards Europe and the massive problems being caused by the influx of refugees from the Balkan countries, from Syria and elsewhere will show how difficult it is to stem the flow of those trying to find a better life, trying to flee from war, murder and the atrocities carried out by despotic regimes, by terrorism, racial and religious persecution.
The fact that the United States cannot afford to deport all the illegal immigrants should be clear to all: many industries rely on their undocumented, migrant workers to survive. It is, though, much more than that. The United States was born on the backs of immigrants, grew strong through their labor, and all of them were undocumented initially, all of them were illegal.
The idea of deporting eleven million – according to some figures – illegals out of the United States should, however, bring back other memories. We’ve seen it before, and within living memory. Deportation to other countries, into war zones and, above all, into camps designed to eradicate the ‘problem’, was a major part of Germany’s strategy during the late Thirties and into the Forties, and millions of people, whether they were involved or not, whether they were alive at the time or not, have sworn that such an event should never happen again.
The Holocaust memorial in Miami should remind our politicians and voters never to go this way again.
- Viktoria Michaelis.