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Please

I have been writing this column for almost twenty years. Twenty years, folks! I have never missed a week, although once in a while something happens on the other end and the week misses me. I have shared with you things like my parents’ deaths, my cancer treatment, the silly, forgettable, funny day-to-day lives of our family and community.

I have always believed that people need to be able to smile at something, to have something in their weeks that they are able to be lighthearted about, so even when I felt like the world was coming unglued, I tried to keep things happy and sunny.

Until now.

Because if a person can be happy and sunny while families are being ripped apart at the United States border, with no assurance that they will ever be reunited, then that person has got a soul problem. If social media is any indication, we’ve got some problems right here in P’ville.

See, these people are not criminals. They are not coming here to take all our $37/hour jobs. They come here to work in domestic service, in agriculture, in construction—in short, jobs that many Americans disdain. (Look up what happened when Alabama enacted a draconian crackdown on immigrants a decade or so ago. The state lost $1.4 billion dollars in one quarter, because nobody wanted the jobs that immigrant workers vacated.)

We have ripped people’s kids away in violation of international law, locked them in cages (also in violation of international law), sent the parents back to wherever they were from, and we have used the bible to justify it. People in our own community are applauding the horror, because “they broke the law,” and “this is the punishment.”

Please read up on this issue: this is a choice we’re making here, not a legal compulsion. Go. Read. The. Documents.

Stop believing all the lies. Believe some of them if you’d like, because there are lots to choose from, but stop believing this one. We are not being “infested” with people. We are, however, endangering our immortal souls by gleefully declaring that “they’re getting what they deserve.”

Lissen. I do not want what I deserve. Oddly enough, I DO happen to profess Christianity and I DO believe what the bible says about justice and mercy. And what it says is, if you demand justice, that’s what you’ll get. Only the merciful are blessed, because they will receive mercy. Whatever else I am, when the dust settles, when my dust settles, I want to be on the side of the merciful, and I want you there with me. Please, just this once, look at what’s happening. It’s awful. It has to stop. We can stop it, but it takes all of us.

Please.

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