To the Editor:
I read "Speaking Out" in the December 6 edition of the Warwick Beacon and felt the need to write in.
Doctors Lowenhaupt and Bassen make a good point about family separation. I don't think anyone wants to see that happen yet again. To preface: this is a definition of asylum from Merriam-Webster's dictionary: 1. An inviolable place of refuge and protection giving shelter to criminals and debtors. 2. A place of retreat and security. 3a: The protection or security afforded by an asylum; b. protection from arrest and extradition given especially to political refugees by a nation or by an embassy or other agency enjoying freedom from what is required by law for most people. This is not an implication that the migrants are criminals, etc. but they been portrayed as "seeking asylum". I hear this term again and again. It seems that people throw around the term "seeking asylum" for anyone who wants to enter a country to live there, no matter what the reason is. What are the migrants seeking asylum from? War? Political upheaval? Poverty? War – asylum may be necessary and there is no choice but to leave. Political upheaval – this has happened decade after decade in all countries, and many have stayed in their own countries to change the political environment so that it becomes more balanced. Poverty – it is understandable that people leave to find a better place for themselves and for their children. I'll continue about poverty. My paternal and maternal grandparents were originally from the Azores. They were poor. My maternal side of the family were dirt poor, literally because the house they lived in had a dirt floor. How did they get here? Through immigration, not seeking asylum. The doctors also mention "migrant children...were attacked with tear gas" and that adults, military forces, and governments should never abuse children. No child should be abused. I totally agree, but who put them in a position that they would tear gassed? Parents and relatives. Also, wouldn't dragging your child hundreds of miles with no certainty of the outcome of one's travel be considered some form of abuse?