Haley doesn’t want those children fed and sheltered in SC

Gov. Nikki Haley is walking a very fine line.

On the one hand, she decries the “humanitarian crisis” of those thousands of children, driven by desperation we can’t even imagine, who find themselves alone on this side of the border. We are told that “As a mother (emphasis mine), Republican Haley said finds it ‘disturbing’ that the migrant children would be left ‘to fend for themselves’ as they attempt to cross the border.”

Which, you know, suggests a modicum of compassion.

On the other hand, she wants to make sure that, as the government figures out what to do about this crisis, none of those children are sheltered here in South Carolina — not even on federal reservations such as military bases, which to my mind would be none of her business.

This sort of dims the halo of her compassion, to say the least.

64 thoughts on “Haley doesn’t want those children fed and sheltered in SC

  1. Doug Ross

    What Would Brad Do? (WWBD?)

    I say let every child in as long as they are sponsored by an American citizen family or a charity/church willing to assume the costs of care for the child. Allow for easy adoption or placement in foster homes. No sponsor? Return to home country.

    A news story from Lynn, Massachusetts this week detailed the problems that are just starting. One school district has to absorb over 200 non-English speaking “undocumented” students. Many of them were age 16-20 and were placed into high school. Imagine what the impact of that assimilation will be on resources… these aren’t tax paying, highly skilled workers… every one is a net negative drain on tax dollars.

  2. Karen Pearson

    As far as I can tell, Gov. Haley is about as compassionate as our previous Gov. who had all the compassion of a hungry crocodile.

    1. Bryan Caskey

      I think I already said this, but saying “I side with the rule of law, but this is a horrible situation for many people brought as kids” is not inconsistent.

      You can believe that someone should be deported and also recognize that it’s heartbreaking for them. That’s how the rule of law works.

      We should care for, feed, and shelter these children for as long as it takes to deport them – which should be ASAP.

        1. Doug Ross

          Distance from McCallen, TX (on the border) to Columbia, SC: 1,346 miles

          Distance from McCallen, TX to Guatemela City, Guatemala: 1,294 miles.

          Explain to me why we should send them twice as far away from home?

          Treat it like a natural disaster. Bring in as much portable housing, medical treatment, etc. as required to keep them at the border. Treat, process, and deport. That’s following the law. If you want to help them PERSONALLY, offer to adopt one of the children.

      1. Pam

        But under the rule of law in the United States, some of these children may be legally entitled to asylum. “Feed, shelter, deport ASAP” oversimplifies the state of our law and does so in a way I find especially repugnant given the desperate circumstances so many of these children face.

        1. Kathryn Braun Fenner

          Well, the rights get sorted out in a deportation hearing. Deportation is not a simple matter of round em up and ship em out

          1. Pam

            Sure, but frankly I didn’t think that was what the original poster meant. I could be wrong.

    2. Kathryn Fenner

      Sanford never purported to be compassionate, but the Nikster sometimes makes caring faces and such.

  3. Doug Ross

    Why does it have to be about compassion? Oh yeah, because it’s other people’s money paying for the compassion.

    Start a charity to collect money to help these children. Then let me know how much you plan to contribute personally.

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      Because she, and a lot of other GOP critics of the administration, want to have it both ways. They want to evince compassion over the plight of these children, while at the same time (in our governor’s case) , not wanting them anywhere near.

      WWBD? There is no easy answer. If the kids are allowed to stay, it does indeed incentivize more desperate parents to send their children on this staggeringly dangerous journey. And yet, the only thing that seems worse than that is sending them back to the situations that caused such desperation.

      I can sympathize with anyone genuinely wrestling with that moral dilemma. I have less sympathy for anyone whose bottom-line, core motivation can be summed up with the phrase, “We don’t want them here.” That causes me to see hand-wringing over the humanitarian crisis, on the part of some, as crocodile tears. Just to keep going with that meme…

      1. Doug Ross

        Nikki Haley as Governor MUST approach this issue from a specific angle: how would an influx of refugee children impact the state. Her first obligation as Governor is to the citizens of the state she represents. She wasn’t elected to be South Carolina’s Matron Saint.

        It’s perfectly acceptable for her to have feelings of compassion for the children but at the same time understand her job is to govern the state and it’s people first.

        1. Brad Warthen Post author

          They’ve got to be somewhere until we figure out what to do with them. What on Earth could be a legitimate reason that they not be HERE? I can’t imagine.

          Nor can I imagine the temporary presence of these children on military bases, entirely under the care of the federal government, having ANY impact on “her” state.

          Neither she, nor her constituents, would even be likely to SEE them. Which I suppose is a good thing, since their delicate sensibilities are so easily offended by the sight of children in need of help.

          1. Doug Ross

            “Neither she, nor her constituents, would even be likely to SEE them. ”

            You are not THAT naive, Brad.

            They should be held as close to the border and as close to wherever it is easiest to send them back. Do you understand the irony of sending them thousands of miles AWAY from the border when they could be sent in the other direction? The turnaround process should take less time than it takes to send them to South Carolina or anywhere else.

            Unless somebody REALLY doesn’t intend to send them back…

            1. Doug Ross

              They have a government in their home country, don’t they? And they aren’t orphans. The same parents who sent them north can pick them up.

            2. scout

              You are conflating two different points. Your opinion that they shouldn’t be transported farther away from the border is registered. It is even reasonable.

              But setting that aside, on the point that ” Nikki Haley as Governor MUST approach this issue from a specific angle: how would an influx of refugee children impact the state. ” …

              How would housing them on military bases using federal resources impact the state?

              I agree that they should be processed and sent back, but I think you are being unrealistic if you think sorting all that out appropriately “should take less time than it takes to send them to South Carolina or anywhere else.”

              I am assuming that clear communication is key to sorting out who they are, where they came from, and what their situation is, and that this information will be key to processing them and sending them back.

              On top of the already legitimate barriers to communication that multiple languages/dialects and multiple cultures present, these are stressed children, which adds a whole ‘nother dimension of communication challenges. To process and sort it out will not necessarily be quick.

              We should do what it takes to care for them humanely while it is sorted out.

            3. Doug Ross

              If you follow the news, it is obvious that military bases are not the only option being considered.

            4. Doug Ross

              And let’s think about this logically instead of emotionally. . Would it not be easier to bring resources to the children than to disperse the children across the country? Especially if the intent is to send them back?

              But we know that is not the intent, don’t we?

            5. Doug Ross

              Just came to me that the reason you’d want to disperse the kids is because it makes the problem appear less ominous. Thousands in one place is a bad photo op for Democrats.

            6. scout

              “Would it not be easier to bring resources to the children than to disperse the children across the country?”

              I really don’t know, Doug. Whichever it is, I stand by my original statement –

              “We should do what it takes to care for them humanely while it is sorted out.”

              If that’s bringing resources to them there – fine. If it’s bringing kids to the resources – fine. Either way we care for them and sort it out.

              I wasn’t advocating for or arguing against bringing them here to military bases – just responding to one of your points by reiterating one of Brad’s.

              Just to be clear, my position is:

              “We should do what it takes to care for them humanely while it is sorted out.”

  4. Bryan Caskey

    In a similar vein, the Governor of Maryland, Marin O’Malley (D) said that deporting the children detained at the border would be sending them to “certain death” — but he also urged the White House not to send them to a facility in his own state.

    “But before they hung up, O’Malley told Muñoz not to send any of the children to the facility in Westminster, Md., that the White House was looking at. It’s a conservative part of the state, he warned. The children were at risk of getting harassed, or worse, he said.”

    So….let me see if I have this straight. He’s saying the children face “certain death”, but sending them to Maryland would mean they were at risk of being “harassed or worse”? On my list of bad things, certain death is pretty much near the top.

    I love how he throws the line in that it’s the “conservatives” who are to blame for his not wanting the children. (As an aside, do they even have conservatives in Maryland? I thought that state was deep-blue.) I guess if O’Malley is SO worried about conservatives harassing the children, shouldn’t they only be shipped to liberal states and cities? I’m guessing he wouldn’t want the children coming to SC.

    Just following the logic here…

    I don’t see how someone can be against deporting the children while also against having them sheltered in their state. I assume he’s against deporting the children, since he says that’s “certain death”. However, that is simply an assumption on my part.

    I’m not sure I would want the children going to Baltimore, anyway. I’m pretty sure that El Salvador is safer than Baltimore. Also, those folks in Maryland put Old Bay on EVERYTHING. That ain’t right.

    1. Rose

      Baltimore is #36 on the list of the 50 cities worldwide with the highest murder rates (excluding the Middle East). Detroit is #24.
      San Pedro Sula, Honduras, is the murder capital of the world. Guatemala City, where my son was born, is #8.
      San Salvador, of El Salvador, is #27. The great majority of the cities on the list are from Central and South America.
      The nation of Honduras has the world’s highest number of homicides per capita.
      From the World Food Programme entry on Guatemala:
      “The chronic undernutrition rate for children under 5 is 49.8 percent, the highest in the region and the fourth highest in the world. Guatemala is one of the 36 countries which account for 90 percent of stunting in the world. Chronic undernutrition in indigenous areas is 69.5 percent. Fifty-three percent of the population lives in poverty, and 13 percent in extreme poverty…The most vulnerable groups are indigenous women, girls and boys living in the highlands and the “dry corridor” (a semi-arid zone with periods of droughts, degraded soils and low agricultural yields). Illiteracy is 31.1 percent in women 15 years of age and older and reaches 59 percent among indigenous women.”

      It’s so easy for coyotes to prey on that desperation and illiteracy and convince people that their kids will be safe and welcomed in the U.S. and they will have better opportunities here.

      I’ve seen comments that want the U.S. to become involved in these countries to help the economy and quell the violence so people will want to stay home. Yeah, right. Because we have such a good track record there after the CIA-supported coup in 1954 that brought on a civil war which “officially” ended in 1995. And the government we supported waged war on the indigenous people, raping and murdering with impunity and wiping out entire villages. A large part of the immigration crisis is our past failures in these countries coming back to bite us on the ass.

      1. Bryan Caskey

        That was a joke. I thought the following sentence about Old Bay was a giveaway. By the way, it only appears that Baltimore is marginally safer than El Salvador, while Detroit actually isn’t.

  5. Doug Ross

    I’m waiting to see Lindsey Graham’s response. He’s going to have to tread a fine line here – stay on the anti-Obama bandwagon or risk losing some crossover Democrats.

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      It can be done, though. The administration looks pretty feckless on this — as it does on Syria, Iraq, and various other international crises. Which is why Republicans are having such a field day with it…

      1. Doug Ross

        With John McCain flexing his muscles on Russia again, I expect him and his buddy Lindsey to issue a statement calling for nuking Guatemala as a show of force.

        We are so, so lucky that McCain was dumb enough to pick Sarah Palin as a running mate so that he never became President. With his itchy trigger finger, we’d be in an even bigger mess.

  6. Brad Warthen Post author

    In case you’d like to read our governor’s letter to Sec. Johnson, here is a link.

    After she expresses her tremendous relief that none of those kids will receive any succor in South Carolina, and pointedly insisting that she be warned if there’s any danger of that changing, she then exhibits her agility in making the logical leap that has come so easily to so many Republicans in recent days: from the humanitarian crisis, to blaming Obama:

    As a mother, the idea that thousands of children will continue to be left to fend for themselves as they attempt to cross into the United States is deeply disturbing. That they are being deserted in mass numbers is truly a humanitarian crisis. This once again highlights the failure of the federal government to adequately perform its most basic and crucial function — securing the sovereignty of the United States of America.

    I look at this crisis, and I think, my GOD, but things must be horrible at home for parents to send their children on this horrific trek — an act akin to throwing one’s child out of an upstairs window to escape a fire.

    Republicans look at it and say, “I blame Obama.”

    Which brings me to another point…

    This crisis has had an effect that is the absolute opposite of logical — it has driven more nails into the coffin of the already-dead hopes for comprehensive immigration reform any time in the near future. One would think it would have the opposite effect. One would think that Democrats and Republicans alike would say, We’ve GOT to come up with a rational set of policies that deal with reality and bring order to the movement of people across our border. But the very people who have stood in the way of such reform are now shouting “Hell, NO!” all the louder.

    It’s sort of like how, when there’s another mass school shooting somewhere in the country, the only legislative response is to further liberalize gun laws, sometimes in ways (think, carrying guns into bars) that sound like they were made up by the editors of The Onion…

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      For some reason, when I was typing that about The Onion, I was thinking of one of the funniest pieces I ever read in that publication. It’s a piece supposedly written by the CEO of Gillette, who’s ticked off because his competition has shown him up by going from a three-blade razor to a four-blade. His response is, “F__k Everything, We’re Doing Five Blades.

      Excuse the (bleeped) crude language, but this is a rare case in which the joke doesn’t quite work without it.

      Anyway, whenever there’s another mass shooting somewhere, the legislative reaction seems to be, “F__k Everything, We’re Doing Guns in Bars.” Or whatever…

        1. Brad Warthen Post author

          To give you a taste:

          Would someone tell me how this happened? We were the f__king vanguard of shaving in this country. The Gillette Mach3 was the razor to own. Then the other guy came out with a three-blade razor. Were we scared? Hell, no. Because we hit back with a little thing called the Mach3Turbo. That’s three blades and an aloe strip. For moisture. But you know what happened next? Shut up, I’m telling you what happened—the bastards went to four blades. Now we’re standing around with our c__ks in our hands, selling three blades and a strip. Moisture or no, suddenly we’re the chumps. Well, f__k it. We’re going to five blades.

    2. Bryan Caskey

      “One would think that Democrats and Republicans alike would say, We’ve GOT to come up with a rational set of policies that deal with reality and bring order to the movement of people across our border. But the very people who have stood in the way of such reform are now shouting “Hell, NO!” all the louder.”

      Any rational set of policies would start with “actually have a closed border” so we can allow in who we want going forward, then address who is here. The problem is that one side is not interested in stopping the flow of illegals.

      Question for the people who claim we have a moral obligation to keep taking these children: If we have a moral obligation to take them in because they are escaping from horrible places, why aren’t we morally obligated to send ships, buses and planes to go get them? Where do you draw a line? What is the limiting principle?

      1. Brad Warthen Post author

        Here’s where the line is, Bryan…

        You have a terrified, hungry, desperate, unprotected child in front of you — you take care of that child.

        Then, you look for a safe, moral approach to restoring that child to his or her family — or finding the child a new family.

        You don’t argue politics. You don’t point fingers. You don’t wring your hands about the state of immigration. You take care of the child. THEN you worry about other things…

        That’s what adults do.

        1. Doug Ross

          How many children have you signed up for? How many would you accept into your neighborhood? If you next door neighbor took in ten children aged 16-20, would you be okay with that? What about the ones who are NOT children? Do you allow them to stay as well?

          There are limits.

          1. Brad Warthen Post author

            I’m not aware that the government has resorted to billeting the children in private homes. I thought we were discussing whether they would be housed on military bases in South Carolina…

            And I DO have experience with that.

            I lived on a Navy Base in New Orleans — or rather, in Algiers, almost right across the river from the French Quarter — during Hurricane Betsy in 1965, which went down in history as the first storm to cause more than $1 billion in damage.

            Over the months after the storm, thousands of refugees were housed on our base. We had plenty of room. The WWII base had been almost completely closed down by the time we got there. There were very few of us living there, and little naval activity. There were lots of large, unused buildings, and huge fields that had once held buildings that had been torn down. (We were there because my Dad was XO on a destroyer that was stationed there. The destroyer’s mission was training reservists. The destroyer and one old sub constituted the entire fleet tied up along that wharf on the river.)

            Some of the buildings housing refugees were within a block of our apartment, which was in an old converted two-story barracks.

            I don’t remember being inconvenienced in any way…

            1. Bryan Caskey

              I don’t think it would be an inconvenience whatsoever to put the children on a military base. Actually, that seems like an appropriate area for them. They can be taken care of, supervised, and accounted for. They won’t be able to easily wander off from Ft. Jackson as they would from Brad’s house.

            2. Doug Ross

              Are there not enough military bases in Texas to house them?

              Why make them travel any further than necessary? Especially if the plan is to send them back, right?

            3. Kathryn Braun Fenner

              Have you SEEN Brad’s house? I mean a whole lotta kiddos come through there

        2. Bryan Caskey

          “You have a terrified, hungry, desperate, unprotected child in front of you — you take care of that child.”

          Ok, but what about the other children who are terrified, hungry, and desperate, unprotected from criminal gangs in Guatemala (or pick a country in sub-Saharan Africa). Why shouldn’t we go get them?

          You didn’t really answer the question. What’s the limiting principle?

          1. Brad Warthen Post author

            I explained the limiting principle…

            Personally, I’d be happy to send expeditions to rescue all the children in the world in desperate situations. Not so much to bring them back here, but to work intensely with those societies to help them pull themselves out of the conditions that they find themselves in — you know, nation-building. And I’d start in our own backyard, Central America. Ideally, I’d coordinate it through the Organization of American States.

            But I’m pretty sure that’s a political nonstarter in this increasingly isolationist age, and I don’t think we have anywhere near the pull with the OAS that that would require (and a lot of OAS leaders wouldn’t want us rebuilding THEIR countries, on account of their being invested in the status quo), so let’s set that aside as not being on the table at all.

            Here’s where I said the line was, and I thought I was clear: You have a child in front of you — here, in this country, right there in front of you — who has no safe place to go, no one to provide care.

            You care for that child. Before you do anything else, you do that.

            That’s where the line is.

    3. Rose

      “This crisis has had an effect that is the absolute opposite of logical — it has driven more nails into the coffin of the already-dead hopes for comprehensive immigration reform any time in the near future. One would think it would have the opposite effect. One would think that Democrats and Republicans alike would say, We’ve GOT to come up with a rational set of policies that deal with reality and bring order to the movement of people across our border. But the very people who have stood in the way of such reform are now shouting “Hell, NO!” all the louder.”

      Absolutely right. But not even tens of thousands of vulnerable children risking rape and murder to get to our border can break through the partisanship.

  7. Abba

    Has anyone even suggested that these children should be housed in South Carolina, or is this simply another effort on the part of the Governor to shoehorn her way into this issue in order to garner some accolades from her base? It smacks of pandering, at least to me.

    An anecdote from my past about immigrant children thrust into Southern towns: When I was growing up in a rural part of Georgia in the 1960s, there was for some reason a Catholic boys home in my small town where almost every resident was either Baptist or Methodist. During the time when many Cubans were fleeing Castro, a large number of Cuban boys were sent to live at the Catholic boys home for a year or two, until they could be reunited with their families, I suppose. Many of these boys became star players on our local Little League baseball teams in the summer, playing with and against the little Georgia boys who could not speak a word of Spanish. I vividly remember a Cuban pitcher and a Cuban catcher loudly trash talking the Georgia batters in Spanish, to great effect, resulting in many strike outs. We local kids were invited to parties and dances by the nuns and residents at the boys home from time to time. It was a broadening experience for me and my friends. (I recognize that this experience 50 years ago is vastly different from what we are seeing with the Central American children. My point is only that something good can grow from something bad.)

    1. Kathryn Braun Fenner

      Ding ding ding! We have a winner! Of course no one in charge is suggesting sending kids here!

    1. Doug Ross

      As long as the left keeps calling those opposed to unlimited immigration “racists”, the problem won’t be solved.

      This is not about race. It’s about laws and the capacity of our government to handle the inflow of tens of thousands of children.

      When Obama says “I want $4 billion dollars” he doesn’t say what he’s willing to give up to pay for it.

  8. Norm Ivey

    If the United States is an exceptional nation (and I think we are), now is the time to act like one. Neither mass deportation nor blanket asylum seems like the appropriate response on our part. Each case should be examined. Those can can be repatriated safely should be. Those that cannot be should be granted asylum or refugee status. In the short term, they need to be provided safe, secure places to live, sufficient food and health care, and legal representation. If the best way to do that means they come to South Carolina, then I hope we would welcome them with compassion.

    1. bud

      Norm has it about right but I’d lean more toward the asylum end of the spectrum. Otherwise we’d be sending thousands of children back to a certain death.

    2. Doug Ross

      And where will the money come from to support these kids? Why can’t that be part of the discussion? I know it’s easier just to say take them all since you aren’t taking any..but someone has to pay for your compassion.

      I know..I know..we just crank up the magical deficit money machine and spend more on people who are a decade away from contributing to society.

  9. Burl Burlingame

    The proffered Tea Party solution to shoot the kids just before they cross the border is supposed to make the corpses Mexico’s problem. Seems harsh.

    1. Doug Ross

      And the liberal solution is to provide free airfare, free food, free housing, free schooling, free medical care… a great deal that many poor Americans might like.

  10. Harry Harris

    If the Obama administration had turned them around and shipped them across the border en masse, the Republican cry would be “No compassion, breaking the law!” As it turns out, the NIMBY crowd is being incited to join the xenophobe crowd (by some politicians (including one apparent YMCA-phobe), to add to the soured atmosphere pre-mid term election. Any unease among voters is valued as welcome fodder for anti-Obama turnout and the noise and vitriol we’ve heard for almost 6 years.

  11. Doug Ross

    In data released late Friday (which means it’s bad news for the government), it was revealed that more “family units” crossed the border than unaccompanied minors. It’s easier to pretend it’s all little children..but it’s not. The government knows how to tug on the heartstrings of liberals..playing them like violins… but you will feel better about yourself “saving” all these little tykes as long as you can continue to pretend there aren’t more adults sneaking in every day. Let them all in..we don’t need a border or laws.

    1. scout

      I’ve not heard anybody here say “we don’t need a border or laws”.

      I am amazed at your consistent ability to look at data and out of all the possible interpretations, always only see the most negative, cynical possibility.

      Granted, I readily acknowledge, I may be cursed with seeing too many possibilities on a regular basis (to the point I can become immobilized considering them all), but I believe we are likely polar opposites in this regard.

      You do know there are other possibilities, right?

      1. Doug Ross

        How is my view negative or cynical? The fact is that more family units are attempting to cross the border illegally. The issue is not just little children. That is an unbiased fact. How else could that data be interpreted?

        It is a well known fact that if you want to release information that makes you look bad, you do it on a Friday afternoon to avoid the news cycle. It’s Public Relations 101.

        I will agree that we are polar opposites. And that’s fine with me. When my interpretation of facts is incorrect, maybe I’ll change.

  12. Doug Ross

    Gee, what a shocker. Brad – do you still think these kids are going to military bases? And is the federal government correct in not providing any information to the governor’s office about these children?

    SC receives 350 children caught at US border
    The Associated PressJuly 24, 2014 Updated 11 hours ago

    COLUMBIA, S.C. — New federal data show at least 350 children caught at the U.S. border this year have been sent to stay with relatives or other sponsors in South Carolina.

    They are among more than 30,000 children who have been released to sponsors nationwide from Jan. 1 through July 7. That’s according to data published Thursday by the Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration for Children and Families.

    Gov. Nikki Haley’s office says federal officials will not provide governors any additional information. That includes details on the children’s ages, where they’re sent in South Carolina or how they arrived.

    Read more here: http://www.thestate.com/2014/07/24/3582173/sc-receives-350-children-caught.html?sp=/99/205/&ihp=1#storylink=cpy

      1. Doug Ross

        Ok, so is your complaint about Haley that was related to the children being placed at military bases now invalid?

        Does she not have the right to know how many and where the children are being placed? And if they are being placed with families that include illegal immigrants is the government just ignoring the laws?

        1. Doug Ross

          And it sure would be nice to know what the placement of a child in South Carolina entails in terms of government provided support. Are they eligible for healthcare, EBT, schools, etc. The public has the right to know the cost of this mass influx.

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