© Courtney Sacco

Don’t Mistake Compassion For Naiveté

Stigall Column

The Chris Stigall Show
June 18, 2018 - 3:11 pm

Philadelphia (1210 WPHT) - I can’t stand emotional manipulation.  It’s the laziest, easiest, and most dishonest way to get uninformed people whipped up to side with an argument when facts aren’t on an argument’s side.  Which is why it’s become such a useful tool of the American political class and their willing partners in mainstream news media.  I think it’s backfiring.

Surely you’ve noticed we’re suddenly immersed in a “gripping, urgent crisis” of migrant children ripped from their parents at our southern border.  This story didn’t exist two weeks ago. 

No honest person can point to major news talking about migrant children until last week.  I don’t mean an editorial here or there.  I’m talking about the wall-to-wall, morning, noon, and night news cycle now attempting to convince you we’re in the midst of a humanitarian crisis at our border because of President Trump.

Laura Bush has SUDDENLY written an editorial in the Wall Street Journal expressing her dismay at the “Trump” policy on children and illegal immigration.  At the same time, House Speaker Paul Ryan has SUDDENLY decided “Trump’s” border policy is cruel.  At the same time, faith leaders are SUDDENLY outraged en mass at “Trump’s” heartlessness.  At the same time, news media is SUDDENLY breathless on the subject, too. 

All of the sudden, folks? In the same week? Really?  Where have they been?

Want a refresher to prove this story isn’t new?  How about the Washington Post story dated January 28th, 2016:

“The Obama administration failed to protect thousands of Central American children who have flooded across the U.S. border since 2011, leaving them vulnerable to traffickers and to abuses at the hands of government-approved caretakers, a Senate investigation has found.”

How about another Washington Post story from March 15th, 2015:

“…young Mexicans are being held for months without charge in shelters across the United States, sometimes without their parents’ knowledge. Since the program began in May, 536 juveniles have been held — 248 of whom have been deported to Mexico after an average stay of 75 days, according to Border Patrol statistics. Mexican authorities say some of these repeat border-crossers have spent as much as six months in U.S. custody while they await an appearance before an immigration judge.”

Now, those are just two stories.  You can find many more, and Donald Trump has nothing to do with any of them.  There was a guy in office for eight years prior to this president. Remember him?

Yet, how many times have you heard or read in the last few days the phrase, “Trump’s policy” when referring to these children?

It’s disgusting.  It’s dishonest.  It’s transparent.

Rich Lowry has an important column at National Review Online from May 28th I highly recommend if you want the facts and the history of our border policies.  It’s called “The Truth About Separating Kids,” and it correctly points out President Trump is only enforcing a law Congress enacted in 1997, and only Congress can fix. 

Long story short, seeking asylum at legal ports of entry into this country will not separate anyone from any family member. Period. Ever. Separation only happens if criminal behavior is found, and even then, parents are often reunited with the adult and they’re all sent back to their home country within a matter of hours.   

Donald Trump is executing longstanding immigration law dating back to 1997.  Donald Trump didn’t create this law.  Going forward, I caution you any time you read the words “Trump’s policy,” on immigration - you’re listening to or reading the words of the misinformed at best, or liars at worst.

Let’s just be very clear about what’s going on here. Donald Trump had an amazing couple of weeks.  His momentum was starting to suck all the oxygen out of the left’s room.

A G7 Summit ended with the President standing firm against foreign leaders to secure fair treatment of our country in trade deals.  An historic face-to-face meeting with a North Korean dictator that just might lead to a nuclear free, peaceful Korean peninsula.

Prior to these historic moments, a high profile pardon of a black grandmother aggressively jailed over bassackwards sentencing guidelines.  Also, there’s the not-so-small matter of a roaring economy reaching statistical full employment and historic or nearly historic gains in employment for minorities and women.

The news for the country was getting just a little too good for leftists.  With Donald Trump in the White House, something had to be done.  On cue, here came the new narrative.

“Donald Trump’s policies are ripping children from their parents at the border.  How cruel!  That’s not who we are!” 

This is sick and dishonest and will disappear just as fast as every other fake crisis or protest previously peddled to the American people you’ve likely already forgotten.

What happened to the Parkland, Florida kids warring with the NRA?  Black Lives Matter?  Vagina Hats? Racist statues and monuments? #MeToo? Occupy Wall Street? Chick-fil-A? Starbucks?

We’ve been led to believe each and every issue “gripped” our nation at some point.  Media went wall-to-wall with each of those stories as though it was the most important, pressing thing in our lives. 

But it wasn’t.  It isn’t.  It never was.  Because it’s not real.  It’s politics.  It’s sick.  And it’s why Donald Trump is our president.

Frankly, if this is where the American left wants to go in attempting to sway the midterms, fine.  Those of us paying attention are wise to the game. 

Honestly, even average Americans who aren’t paying close attention instinctively know the noise is mostly nonsense.  They may not say it in polls, but they feel it quietly.  The manipulation game has become transparent.

Yes, you’ll hear polls reflecting most Americans think it’s cruel to separate children from their families at the border.  Assuming they believe that’s actually happening. 

But what pollsters aren’t asking is how those same people feel about illegal aliens using children as leverage to enter the country illegally. 

Don’t mistake Americans’ compassion as naiveté. The last time people said one thing in polls and behaved in a different way?  See Election Day 2016 for more.