U.S. Border Patrol officers set up a checkpoint to check the papers of everyone on a route to a local hospital. Among those unable to produce their papers were the parents of a 10-year-old girl with cerebral palsy who was traveling in an ambulance to emergency surgery.
Her name is Rosa Maria Hernandez, and though they allowed her to have the surgery, she was quickly detained immediately afterward and won't be allowed to see her family for weeks, or possibly even months.
Rosa Maria Hernandez was brought to the United States by her parents when she was only 3 months old.They sought to get better medical care for her that they couldn't afford in Mexico. The family lives in Laredo, Texas along with her grandfather and cousins who are US citizens. But it was when Rosa Maria needed to be transferred from a hospital in Laredo, to one in Corpus Christi for an emergency surgery that things went haywire.
The ambulance transporting her was stopped by US Border Patrol.
‘Mom, Where Are You?’: ICE Detains 10-Year-Old With Cerebral Palsy on Her Way to Emergency Surgery… https://t.co/PEjBOpxnAI— Latest Politics (@Latest Politics)1509044888.0
After the surgery was complete, agents took Rosa Maria away.
A 10-year-old girl with cerebral palsy has been detained by federal immigration authorities after undergoing surgery https://t.co/xfnbpLAslx— The New York Times (@The New York Times)1509014712.0
And Driscoll Children's Hosptial was already too risky a place for her parents to travel to for treatment.
Parents were detained while seeking life-saving surgery for their son. People shouldn't fear seeking health care:… https://t.co/XrHUijs0wa— Planned Parenthood Action (@Planned Parenthood Action)1506295387.0
Some support these kinds of hard-handed immigration enforcement tactics.Noting that the cost of treating disabled or ill children can be very high, some anti-immigration activists seem to think we should work to make sure these children are unable to get treatment in American hospitals. After all, why spend money treating sick children when we could spend it flying the treasury secretary to a better view of the eclipse. But others were outraged...
Others are understandably outraged about the aggressive pursuit of a disabled and ill little girl.
@nytimes How can this happen in America? Have we descended into a godless society? Where is mercy? Where is charity? Have we no pride?— Dan Harbaugh (@Dan Harbaugh)1509016247.0
Sick children and their families are probably being targeted because it's easy.It's frankly more convenient for the Border Patrol to catch the most vulnerable people at hospitals, homeless shelters, or courthouses, something the Trump administration has granted permission for them to do. It's much harder to catch and deport hardened criminals, who are already avoiding law enforcement anyway.
Of course, this is the kind of policy that will always find defenders.
@nytimes I bet Trump supporters will lie to themselves into thinking this little girl somehow "had it coming"— David Baer (@David Baer)1509015809.0
@nytimes @maggieNYT She ILLEGALLY entered, lived here ILLEGALLY for 3 mos & when rule of order is applied, false ou… https://t.co/QKBLx4MkJ9— antoinette@eatcake (@antoinette@eatcake)1509019395.0