Riveted from afar, we now must take up cause of children on our own soil
I, like many, watched the riveting story of the boys in Thailand over the past several weeks. Boys, led by their adult coach, made a serious mistake entering a dangerous situation. We intently watched the drama of these boys separated from their families. The Thai nation drew upon all resources, including US service members, in an effort to save the boys and reunite their families. In short order, they accomplished the Apollo 13 of cave rescues.
Reflecting, I wonder why so many of us were focused on these boys and their safety. They are not our children, but thousands of miles away we cared deeply about them. Yet many in our nation sat idly as our government planned the mass separation of thousands of children. We watch helplessly today as our government demonstrates incompetence in completing the reunification of these children with their families — something that the president publicly promised and our courts have ordered.
We should reflect on the irony of what we have felt. We all need to have the same passion and interest about these other trapped children. We need to demand an immediate solution and hold accountable those responsible for this abuse.
For Thai parents and migrant parents, a common vigil
I agree with Michael J. Socolow that the story of those boys trapped in a Thai cave allows us to “reaffirm the most basic elements of humanity” (“The Thai teens and the baby in the well,” Opinion, July 10). We recognize the extraordinary cooperation, at least from afar, of a variety of countries who have sent their best to help. We all root for a good outcome; we want those young people to survive and thrive. I am disappointed, however, that Socolow thinks “these stories could rescue journalism.” Really, that is the best you can hope for?
I am hoping that this story, which is a real-life event, might encourage us to think about those children who are similarly trapped, in cages, because they were separated from their parents at the border. Their fate is also a real-life event. While there has been an outcry to reunite them with their parents, the process is agonizingly slow, without the need to teach them how to swim or dive or breathe through a mask.
The parallels and contrasts could not be more startling. We see the Thai parents holding on for dear life — just like the parents of those children separated at the border. To me, that is the story: the universality of parents wanting to see their children alive and well. No matter where they live.