Donald Trump’s deportation forces have sunk to a new low. For over a year Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) have been detaining a critically ill El Salvadorian woman who couldn’t be deported while her health was in such poor condition. Recently, she was moved from the ICE detention center in Texas to a local hospital to be treated for a brain tumor she developed while in custody.
Well, under the new Trump administration, ICE agents marched into the hospital to forcibly deport the woman. They showed little compassion as they shackled the bed-ridden cancer patient chains before carrying her from the hospital.
The unidentified woman arrived illegally in the United States in November of 2015 and remained just four days before ICE captured her and placed her into custody. The woman explained that she cam to the US seeking safety – in El Salvador, her relationship with a police officer had turned members of her own family against her. The family had ties to local gangs, and they decided to murder the woman because they were afraid she would reveal their secrets to the local police.
ICE has not bothered to explain why the woman was taken to the hospital only to be removed a short time later in chains and taken back to the detention center. A local attorney, Mellisa Zuniga, is currently representing the woman and spoke out about her mistreatment at the hands of ICE officials. Zuniga said the woman was chained at the hands and ankles, and that she was now complaining of severe pain.
Many individuals are upset that Trump’s deportation officials have detained a woman with a life-threatening brain tumor for over a year, taken her from a hospital in chains, and want to send her back to a country where she is at risk to be killed by members of her own family. They believe this is a cowardly act.
The situation for the woman has become even more grim in recent days. The hospital now states that they do not wish to continue treating her. Their reason is that they fear recriminations from individuals on both sides of the immigration debate.
Only truly cowardly individuals would feel it necessary to bind the hands and feet of a woman who is near death and try to send her back to El Salvador — where she has been threatened with murder.
The tumor was discovered on February 10, 2017 when the woman collapsed while in custody. Examinations by doctors revealed that the brain tumor was in advanced stages. It has affected the woman’s ability to walk and her motor skills. If sent back to El Salvador, she would almost certainly find it impossible to care for herself. Because of her situation, none of her family can be trusted to take care of her during her illness.
The woman’s mother was permitted a brief five-minute phone call with her daughter on February 19. During that conversation, the woman revealed to her mother that blood has been issuing from her nose for many days. Her mother worries that she will die without having access to the few supportive family she has. They fear they will be denied an opportunity to say goodbye.
Danielle Bennett, a spokeswoman for ICE, attempted to clarify the policies which govern visits with family members. Bennett stated that visits must be arranged through a consulate and appeared to indicate that the process can take a lot of time. This is time the woman does not have to spare.
Sadly, situations like these are becoming a reality in the America of President Trump. There is no consideration of matters on a case-by-case basis, no compassion for the circumstances which caused an individual to enter the United States illegally, and no tolerance for those who do not see it Trump’s way.