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Letter: Let’s continue to share the blessing of America

By J.A. Pirum, Worthington

The recent news of what has been happening at the border has been weighing tremendously on me. While I know that is far from here, I also know Worthington is a town of beautiful diversity and love. I want to speak to the town, if I may, and not just use my voice in my small circle here, or in the echo chamber that is Facebook. My letter to the community follows:

We live a blessed life. Our nation has been one of prosperity, independence, hope — a symbol to the world of innovation and ascendance. Across this earth, men and women risk their lives, sacrifice their past and their homelands so that they might step foot upon the shores of the land of the free and the brave. Even in other developed nations and democracies, their citizens will make a new home in America, knowing that this is where they need to be to accomplish their dreams. Here, more than anywhere, is where the impossible is within reach.

And, it seems, we have become unwilling to share that blessing. More than our hoarding of freedom, we now seem to be willing to wield it against others. Even the innocent.

By now, we’ve all seen the images of the kennels of children sleeping under foil blankets. We’ve seen the 2-year-old screaming for her mother. Some of us may have even braved the audio of children crying for their parents. I, for one, could not do that last. It’s too painful.

I imagine my young children, taken from me without goodbyes. I don’t know where they are, or if I will see them again. And worst, it is not the repressive regimes or the violent gangs I have fled that have taken my babies from me. It is the very country, whose promises of freedom and a future gave me the courage and strength to bring my babies to safety, that has stolen them from me. I imagine my despair and betrayal, and I weep for the mothers and fathers who are right now enduring that very injustice. And the children. They are confused, afraid, having panic attacks and suffering anxiety. And we are allowing it that to happen.

This is not politics. This is not about the current or former president, or about Democrats and Republicans. This is about our souls. Human beings. Children.

Will you sacrifice your soul to see this evil endure one moment longer?

Will you allow yourself to see a country that is upheld as a model of freedom and morality be so debased by this outrage?

Demand an immediate change to the policies that have allowed children — infants, even! – to be torn from the arms of the parents that love them and sought to bring them into a new land of hope. And not only that, we must hold our government accountable for reuniting all the families that have been separated thus far. It is an unspeakable evil they are allowing and we must not, we cannot allow it to continue.

Here is what you can do, right now:

  • Write to and call our representative, Timothy Walz, and our Senators, Amy Klobuchar and Tina Smith;
  • Donate to organizations that legally represent the parents and children crossing the border. This helps them to have a better chance of being reunited. I personally chose to donate to RAICES, but do your research and find one that best suits your conscience;
  • Pray, if you are a believer. And pray, if you are not. I believe God hears all of us in our need. Lift your voices in unison with those in anguish;
  • And don’t argue. Don’t turn this into a debate. Certainly there will be time for that later; time for blame and accountability. But right now, a mother yearns for her baby, and a toddler wails in fear for his mother. Keep your mind and heart on their immediate need.

    Share your blessings, Worthington. Be at peace,