I need you to clarify something for me, MAGA friend.
I’ve seen all your incendiary social media posts about the border crossers.
I’ve come across the fictional statistics about their supposed crime and alleged violence, that you so willingly repost.
I’ve read Donald Trump’s rambling, all-caps, alarmists tweets.
I’ve seen the Tomi Lahren’s of the world, daily vomit their sky-is-falling talk of “border invasions.”
I’ve heard Franklin Graham’s furrow-browed sermons about the Godless, lawless threats apparently pouring into our nation.
And you’re buying that?
That’s really why you think all these people come here?
To sell drugs?
To take your jobs?
To sexually assault people?
To overrun us with gang activity?
To avoid hard work?
Is that really the story you tell yourself?
Do you actually think people brave arrest and dehydration and death just to come here and steal from us?
Are they stuffing themselves into stifling storage containers and into hidden compartments of truck beds for hours, because they’re looking to set up illegal activity?
Are they all traversing miles of sun-scorched land, carrying their children and all that they own, because they’re lazy?
Are they leaving the only home they’ve ever known, because they look forward to being in a place where they know that the President, half the lawmakers, and much of the population openly despises them?
This is a vacation, it’s a dodge from responsibility, it’s a conspiracy against America?
Is that really what you think?
If it is, I’m going to suggest either one of two things is true about you: either you’ve been so polluted by the fear peddling, fake news of this Presidency that you’re no longer able to think critically—or you have no compassion left within you.
Honestly, either of those is a pretty grim diagnosis.
The former, means that you’re easily manipulated by the most transparent of scare tactics used to terrify fragile white people.
The latter, means you’re just a lousy human being who doesn’t give a damn about suffering beyond our borders.
Either way, I feel sorry for you.
Yeah, I know what you’re going to say: “I’m not against people coming here, I just want them to do it the right way.”
The ‘right way,” is a phrase used by people who’ve never experienced true desperation.
The “right way,” is a telling symptom of inherited privilege that was born insulated from extreme poverty and violence.
The “right way,” is the rally cry of someone who’s never been faced with the kind of urgency that leaves you utterly hopeless.
The “right way,” is what selfish people say when they don’t want other people to have what they’ve been handed with a birth certificate.
If your house is engulfed in scorching flames and you’re trying to escape, what’s the “right way” to leave? The only way you can.
If you’re driving from quickly rising flood waters, what’s the “right way” to point the car? The way that saves your life.
If you’re in imminent danger from a violent assailant, what’s the “right way” to stay alive? Immediately running in the opposite direction.
You may want to actually meet these people, to hear their stories, to listen to their fears, to ask them why they do what they do—but something tells me you’re not interested in that.
I know the big, simple lie is more convenient than the individual, complex truth.