President Donald Trump continues to push for the nation's schools to reopen despite consistent record high numbers of new virus cases around the nation.
His latest White House Press Secretary, Kayleigh McEnany, appeared on Fox News this past weekend to assure that full reopening of schools was the way to go. This was days after she falsely claimed in a White House press briefing that the science universally supported full reopening.
While defending the effort, McEnany made a comically tactless assertion.
Kayleigh says Democrats “want to lock our children away" which is a very poor choice in wording pic.twitter.com/PlHnKtRjb7
— Acyn Torabi (@Acyn) July 19, 2020
"This President has broken down barriers and paved the way to move the way forward to get through this pandemic and to restart the economy. It's a stark contrast to Democrats that wanna lock our children away, keep them out of schools. They're ignoring the science, which says it's perfectly okay to do."
McEnany's claim that Democrats wanted to "lock our children away" fell flat due to the Trump administration's own actions in the past.
During the tenure of former President Barack Obama, undocumented immigrants caught crossing the border for the first time were charged with civil offenses instead of criminal ones. This prevented detention centers from becoming overcrowded, allowed immigration specialists to hear immigration cases, and kept family units together.
Under the Trump administration, all border crossings are treated as criminal offenses. This resulted in overcrowded border detention centers and—most infamously—family separation. Because guardians are charged as criminals, they're separated from their children. Some of them are never reunited.
Once separated, these children are taken to facilities and locked in chain link pens—or, for lack of a better word, cages.
People remembered this when McEnany made her claim.
I think she has her parties confused. Did she get hit on the head? Trump infamously put kids in cages — but Kayleig… https://t.co/hVUbdzEOO7— Monique Lowther (@Monique Lowther)1595167734.0
@Acyn @PressSec locking up children is the hallmark of the Trump administration— pat schwenk (@pat schwenk)1595118180.0
@Acyn Well yeah, it’s okay to lock OTHER people’s kids in cages, but American kids having to do school work online… https://t.co/8qnOmuEGpp— JayCee84 (@JayCee84)1595122059.0
@Acyn Has she been informed on cages?— emme hates Trump beyond words (@emme hates Trump beyond words)1595120073.0
@Acyn Their gaslighting policy: project everything they are guilty of onto the other party. Wear us down. It will n… https://t.co/xeiu28wrzL— Karena (@Karena)1595165625.0
@Acyn She would prefer if you would just disregard the kids locked in cages at the border, thx.— Eric Neiman (@Eric Neiman)1595118086.0
Countless Americans don't want schools to open prematurely.
@Acyn No. We just don't want to virus roulette in our families. The problem in that game is most are perfectly fine… https://t.co/GLik3O8mhp— G Surgeon 📚 (@G Surgeon 📚)1595181096.0
@Acyn I just want to be safe at school is this too much to ask for— alex wear a mask wood (@alex wear a mask wood)1595118291.0
@Acyn @PressSec Come on! Kids can’t do school alone! Even though their risk is low (or not, that pesky science gets… https://t.co/qGpac60jEg— bkatthebeach (@bkatthebeach)1595123797.0
For schools across the nation, the new term is set to begin in August. It's unclear how each state will proceed.