[ {"id":"b500b8f2-97fe-5e74-8722-6a544aebd79d","type":"article","starttime":"1529485200","starttime_iso8601":"2018-06-20T04:00:00-05:00","lastupdated":"1529517652","sections":[{"editorial":"opinion/editorial"}],"application":"editorial","title":"Editorial: Autumn Steele and citizens' right to know","url":"http://qctimes.com/opinion/editorial/article_b500b8f2-97fe-5e74-8722-6a544aebd79d.html","permalink":"https://qctimes.com/opinion/editorial/editorial-autumn-steele-and-citizens-right-to-know/article_b500b8f2-97fe-5e74-8722-6a544aebd79d.html","canonical":"https://qctimes.com/opinion/editorial/editorial-autumn-steele-and-citizens-right-to-know/article_b500b8f2-97fe-5e74-8722-6a544aebd79d.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":1,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"Quad-City Times editorial board","prologue":"Taxpayers bought the bullet that killed Autumn Steele. They paid for the weapon that sent it flying into Steele's body. They paid Burlington Police officer\u00a0Jesse Hill's salary.\u00a0They footed the bill for the body camera that captured\u00a0the entire event on video. And, through bolstered\u00a0insurance premiums, they'll pay for the $2 million paid to Steele's family.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":[],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":null,"images":[{"id":"cdea070a-79ac-5dab-a9db-b6e4f0713fe9","description":"Scott County Sheriff\u2019s Bailiff Jim Connell wear's a body cameras while on duty at the Scott County Courthouse in September of 2016. Davenport Police began wearing body cameras on Dec. 20.","byline":"Kevin E. Schmidt, Quad-City Times file photo","hireswidth":1541,"hiresheight":1345,"hiresurl":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/c/de/cdea070a-79ac-5dab-a9db-b6e4f0713fe9/580a585918d6b.hires.jpg","presentation":"","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1541","height":"1345","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/c/de/cdea070a-79ac-5dab-a9db-b6e4f0713fe9/5b296ae77d460.image.jpg?resize=1541%2C1345"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"87","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/c/de/cdea070a-79ac-5dab-a9db-b6e4f0713fe9/5b296ae77d460.image.jpg?resize=100%2C87"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"262","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/c/de/cdea070a-79ac-5dab-a9db-b6e4f0713fe9/5b296ae77d460.image.jpg?resize=300%2C262"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"894","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/c/de/cdea070a-79ac-5dab-a9db-b6e4f0713fe9/5b296ae77d460.image.jpg?resize=1024%2C894"}}}],"revision":10,"commentID":"b500b8f2-97fe-5e74-8722-6a544aebd79d","body":"

Taxpayers bought the bullet that killed Autumn Steele. They paid for the weapon that sent it flying into Steele's body. They paid Burlington Police officer\u00a0Jesse Hill's salary.\u00a0They footed the bill for the body camera that captured\u00a0the entire event on video. And, through bolstered\u00a0insurance premiums, they'll pay for the $2 million paid to Steele's family.

And yet, due to broken promises and legislative fecklessness, those very same taxpayers will never see the footage of what actually happened outside Steele's home in January\u00a02015.

For three years, the Burlington Police Department fought tooth-and-nail to suppress the release of the footage. The local newspaper, The Hawkeye, and good government groups rightly challenged the department's rejection of a freedom of information request at the Iowa Public Information Board. To this day, the actions of a public official, captured by public hardware, remains largely hidden from public view. IPIB, looking for a compromise, brokered the release of just 12 seconds of a minutes-long event.\u00a0

Clearly, to those who fought the video's release, the public's right to know takes a back seat to\u00a0fraternal wagon circling.\u00a0

As Hill tells it, according to court documents, he was attacked by the Steele family dog. He told the Steeles to call it off. The animal bit him and he fired his service weapon, missing the dog but killing Autumn Steele.

Attorneys for the Steele family, who have seen the entirety\u00a0of secret recording, obviously dispute this chain of events. The video doesn't at all square with Hill's description, attorney\u00a0Dave O\u2019Brien said this week when announcing the settlement.

To make matters worse, a federal judge in Davenport this past month took the almost unprecedented step of sealing most of the court documents related to the Steele family's lawsuit. Attorney's for Burlington and officer Hill will seemingly stop at nothing to protect the brand, if it's one that's allegedly regulated by the voting public.\u00a0

The Steele case is but a growing number of instances where all the promises made about body cameras are shown to be disingenuous. They'll make cops accountable, proponents said when begging for huge sums of money. Yet, in too many cases, body cameras are but a prosecutorial\u00a0tool, as police unions and city halls do everything in their\u00a0power to keep the footage from the very people who actually own it.\u00a0

But blame for city's cynical assault on transparency doesn't reside in Burlington. Nor does frustration\u00a0over IPIB apparent willingness to endorse policy expressly designed to keep the public in the dark, even while its charter dictates that openness is the default position.

The real offender here is Iowa Legislature, which has done not a thing to bolster Iowa's Open Records Law, under Chapter 22. Every session, the issue comes up. Every session, the police lobby introduces enough poison pills to kill a horse.\u00a0

While lawmakers dawdle, technology soldiers on. Suddenly, regulators at IPIB are trapped applying laws designed for pen and paper to the digital age. The result of the legislative dereliction is an unsurprising patchwork of polices throughout the state.

To be fair, most local police agencies generally take seriously Chapter 22's presumption of openness. Officials respond to freedom of information\u00a0requests and, by and large, release the footage within the timeline dictated by state law. Yet, the Steele case is among a growing number of examples that show in stark relief\u00a0why transparency policies must not be left to local interpretation.

Autumn Steele is dead. A police officer's account of events is in dispute. And Burlington will shell out $2 million. Yet, the citizens of Burlington still don't know what actually happened.\u00a0

And that's because Iowa's lawmakers lack the guts to stand for citizens' right to know.\u00a0

Editor's note: Editorial Page Editor Jon Alexander is second vice president of Iowa Freedom of Information Council, which has fought for the video's release.\u00a0

"}, {"id":"f87ea15f-e6a9-5912-9773-8ab8c3a189ac","type":"article","starttime":"1529476200","starttime_iso8601":"2018-06-20T01:30:00-05:00","sections":[{"letters":"opinion/letters"}],"application":"editorial","title":"Letter: Roberts' family needed support","url":"http://qctimes.com/opinion/letters/article_f87ea15f-e6a9-5912-9773-8ab8c3a189ac.html","permalink":"https://qctimes.com/opinion/letters/letter-roberts-family-needed-support/article_f87ea15f-e6a9-5912-9773-8ab8c3a189ac.html","canonical":"https://qctimes.com/opinion/letters/letter-roberts-family-needed-support/article_f87ea15f-e6a9-5912-9773-8ab8c3a189ac.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":0,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"prologue":"The family of Jason Blair Roberts would like to express our sincere thanks and appreciation for all of the cards, flowers, food, and other heartfelt expressions in our deepest hour of need. Our hearts are full of gratitude when we say many thanks to family members, friends and neighbors for all acts of kindness and sympathy. Jason was a wonderful man who brought people together. His life was fully expressed in all of the various forms of condolences and support the family has received. We are grateful.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":[],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":null,"revision":2,"commentID":"f87ea15f-e6a9-5912-9773-8ab8c3a189ac","body":"

The family of Jason Blair Roberts would like to express our sincere thanks and appreciation for all of the cards, flowers, food, and other heartfelt expressions in our deepest hour of need. Our hearts are full of gratitude when we say many thanks to family members, friends and neighbors for all acts of kindness and sympathy. Jason was a wonderful man who brought people together. His life was fully expressed in all of the various forms of condolences and support the family has received. We are grateful.

Thank you.

Tysie\u00a0McDowell-Ray

Kansas City

Editor's note: McDowell-Ray is niece of Jason Blair Roberts, who was fatally shot June 9 in Davenport.\u00a0

"}, {"id":"dbb79ac7-acb8-501f-81c0-e28354f86cbf","type":"article","starttime":"1529476200","starttime_iso8601":"2018-06-20T01:30:00-05:00","sections":[{"columnists":"opinion/columnists"}],"application":"editorial","title":"Guest view: Court ruling shields counties from 'doing their jobs'","url":"http://qctimes.com/opinion/columnists/article_dbb79ac7-acb8-501f-81c0-e28354f86cbf.html","permalink":"https://qctimes.com/opinion/columnists/guest-view-court-ruling-shields-counties-from-doing-their-jobs/article_dbb79ac7-acb8-501f-81c0-e28354f86cbf.html","canonical":"https://qctimes.com/opinion/columnists/guest-view-court-ruling-shields-counties-from-doing-their-jobs/article_dbb79ac7-acb8-501f-81c0-e28354f86cbf.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":1,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"Mike Bush","prologue":"A recent decision by Iowa Supreme Court let the state's municipalities off the hook.\u00a0 The court's June 8 ruling involved a 2013 car accident on a northwest Iowa County road, which injured Kaitlyn Johnson. I am one of the plaintiff\u2019s counsel. Although Monday's story in the Quad-City Times did an adequate job of describing the court\u2019s decision, the front page quote by Mr. Thomas M. Boes, representing Iowa League of Cities, stating that: \u201cThe public duty doctrine serves all Iowans by allowing municipalities to do their job\u201d must be refuted.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":[],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":null,"images":[{"id":"e5b927b5-6dbd-5cef-b2b4-81a76477a040","description":"","byline":"","hireswidth":null,"hiresheight":null,"hiresurl":null,"presentation":"mugshot","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"150","height":"150","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/e/5b/e5b927b5-6dbd-5cef-b2b4-81a76477a040/5b293bbe10814.image.jpg?resize=150%2C150"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"100","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/e/5b/e5b927b5-6dbd-5cef-b2b4-81a76477a040/5b293bbe10814.image.jpg?resize=100%2C100"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"300","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/e/5b/e5b927b5-6dbd-5cef-b2b4-81a76477a040/5b293bbe10814.image.jpg"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"1024","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/e/5b/e5b927b5-6dbd-5cef-b2b4-81a76477a040/5b293bbe10814.image.jpg"}}}],"revision":4,"commentID":"dbb79ac7-acb8-501f-81c0-e28354f86cbf","body":"

A recent decision by Iowa Supreme Court let the state's municipalities off the hook.\u00a0

The court's June 8 ruling involved a 2013 car accident on a northwest Iowa County road, which injured Kaitlyn Johnson. I am one of the plaintiff\u2019s counsel.

Although Monday's story in the Quad-City Times did an adequate job of describing the court\u2019s decision, the front page quote by Mr. Thomas M. Boes, representing Iowa League of Cities, stating that: \u201cThe public duty doctrine serves all Iowans by allowing municipalities to do their job\u201d must be refuted.

The court ruled that the public duty doctrine immunized the county from any legal accountability to our client.

Decades prior to our client suffering paralysis and brain damage as a result of a collision with a concrete obstruction, Iowa Legislature passed a law pursuant to its duty for the safety of highways under its control. All obstructions which were in the highway right of way should be removed. The Legislature ordered counties to hold the abutting land owners responsible for removing the obstructions. In this way, the removal of dangerous obstructions would cost the government virtually nothing (as long as they identified the obstructions and so ordered the land owner) yet it would save travelers from incredible potential harm.

In our case, Humboldt County had a duty to order the land owner to remove this obstruction. The county failed to identify and order the land owner to remove this obstruction since 1972. As a result of the county\u2019s failure to \u201cdo their job\u201d the obstruction was allowed to remain as a danger to travelers on the county road.

Therefore, when Mr. Boes says that the public duty doctrine \u201cserves\u201d all Iowans by allowing the municipalities to do their job, he completely reversed the effect of the decision. Instead, the so-called public duty doctrine as recognized by the court\u2019s decision immunizes the municipality even though the county did not take a single step to do its job to identify and have this obstruction removed for more than 40 years.

The court also based its decision, in part, on the \u201climited resources\u201d of the county governments. However, when the lawmakers mandated this duty upon the counties, the Legislature and only the Legislature, was in the best position to assess the ability of the counties to carry out this law. The courts are not supposed to act as \u201csuper legislatures\u201d in order to make excuses for the counties because of alleged \u201climited resources.\u201d

Rather than allowing municipalities to \u201cdo their jobs\u201d, the court\u2019s decision means that municipalities need not do their jobs since there is no legal recourse afforded to the public by this decision.

"}, {"id":"6c6f36ac-48f9-50d5-9177-53e1209d1c67","type":"article","starttime":"1529476200","starttime_iso8601":"2018-06-20T01:30:00-05:00","sections":[{"letters":"opinion/letters"}],"application":"editorial","title":"Letter: Would Jesus condone border crisis?","url":"http://qctimes.com/opinion/letters/article_6c6f36ac-48f9-50d5-9177-53e1209d1c67.html","permalink":"https://qctimes.com/opinion/letters/letter-would-jesus-condone-border-crisis/article_6c6f36ac-48f9-50d5-9177-53e1209d1c67.html","canonical":"https://qctimes.com/opinion/letters/letter-would-jesus-condone-border-crisis/article_6c6f36ac-48f9-50d5-9177-53e1209d1c67.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":0,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"prologue":"\"Zero tolerance.\" \"Deterrent.\" \"Teach these people a lesson.\" \"Biblical.\" \"Respect for law.\" When Jesus was challenged to confront a woman accused of adultery (John 8:1-11), for which the law called for killing her by throwing rocks at her, which of these concepts did he put front and center? None of them. Grace and mercy came through.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":[],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":null,"revision":2,"commentID":"6c6f36ac-48f9-50d5-9177-53e1209d1c67","body":"

\"Zero tolerance.\" \"Deterrent.\" \"Teach these people a lesson.\" \"Biblical.\" \"Respect for law.\"

When Jesus was challenged to confront a woman accused of adultery (John 8:1-11), for which the law called for killing her by throwing rocks at her, which of these concepts did he put front and center?

None of them. Grace and mercy came through.

Maybe Christians could refine the definition of biblical to match Christ\u2019s examples?

The letter of a man-made law about national borders should never run over the spirit of Christ\u2019s command to love our neighbor as ourselves. Welcome the stranger.

For those who disagree with limiting definitions to Christ\u2019s examples, maybe this issue is why our secular constitution wisely called for not using any religious test to select our leaders and judges?\u00a0

Laura Twing

Tipton

"}, {"id":"ea3a60e6-acc3-5729-8be4-45aa852efdb4","type":"article","starttime":"1529476200","starttime_iso8601":"2018-06-20T01:30:00-05:00","sections":[{"letters":"opinion/letters"}],"application":"editorial","title":"Letter: A dictator's tactics","url":"http://qctimes.com/opinion/letters/article_ea3a60e6-acc3-5729-8be4-45aa852efdb4.html","permalink":"https://qctimes.com/opinion/letters/letter-a-dictator-s-tactics/article_ea3a60e6-acc3-5729-8be4-45aa852efdb4.html","canonical":"https://qctimes.com/opinion/letters/letter-a-dictator-s-tactics/article_ea3a60e6-acc3-5729-8be4-45aa852efdb4.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":0,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"prologue":"A dictator is a political leader that holds absolute power over a country and its people. No one is allowed to oppose the leadership. They know it all: domestic and international alike. They do not need approval from anyone, they are far superior intellectually, their mind is very sharp. They like to control the attitudes and beliefs of the citizens. They want absolute control over government and media, no negative reporting.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":[],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":null,"revision":2,"commentID":"ea3a60e6-acc3-5729-8be4-45aa852efdb4","body":"

A dictator is a political leader that holds absolute power over a country and its people.

No one is allowed to oppose the leadership. They know it all: domestic and international alike. They do not need approval from anyone, they are far superior intellectually, their mind is very sharp. They like to control the attitudes and beliefs of the citizens. They want absolute control over government and media, no negative reporting.

Scary? Think about it.

Ralph Bennett

Davenport

"}, {"id":"1ee0722f-1647-5451-8fa7-62614d964e78","type":"article","starttime":"1529476200","starttime_iso8601":"2018-06-20T01:30:00-05:00","sections":[{"letters":"opinion/letters"}],"application":"editorial","title":"Letter: City must invest to stop shootings","url":"http://qctimes.com/opinion/letters/article_1ee0722f-1647-5451-8fa7-62614d964e78.html","permalink":"https://qctimes.com/opinion/letters/letter-city-must-invest-to-stop-shootings/article_1ee0722f-1647-5451-8fa7-62614d964e78.html","canonical":"https://qctimes.com/opinion/letters/letter-city-must-invest-to-stop-shootings/article_1ee0722f-1647-5451-8fa7-62614d964e78.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":0,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"prologue":"The picture paired with the story of the Youth Community Action Summit, spoke volumes. The story's headline read, \"The answers are in this room,\" quoting Mayor Klipsch. After his opening remarks, I raised my hand standing to speak. \"We are not taking questions now,\" he said. \"I don't have a question. I have an answer,\" I replied.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":[],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":null,"revision":2,"commentID":"1ee0722f-1647-5451-8fa7-62614d964e78","body":"

The picture paired with the story of the Youth Community Action Summit, spoke volumes.

The story's headline read, \"The answers are in this room,\" quoting Mayor Klipsch. After his opening remarks, I raised my hand standing to speak.

\"We are not taking questions now,\" he said.

\"I don't have a question. I have an answer,\" I replied.

Open United Neighbors immediately; renaming it, The Jason Roberts Community Center Information & Referral. The mayor has the keys. The city has the power. Fund it by tapping into the revenue of St. Ambrose and Palmer. Davenport has been suffering from segregation and generational poverty for decades. And the greedy, unprincipled people who have benefited, for decades, come in both colors. Ironically, the phrase \"getting away with murder\" comes to mind.

The 'powers that be intended for these sins to be swept under the rug in the building on Harrison Street. The worst kept secret in Davenport threatens to continue to deny our children and young families an environment that feeds education and serves as a safe place to be, to know and grow. Everything needed exists to build a neighborhood, a city, that stands with its people. Embracing the volunteerism that will empower us all; including the students, teachers and staff enriched by walking off campus to meet their neighbors.

\"Education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world,\" said Nelson Mandela.

Genevieve Rafferty, Jr.\u00a0

Davenport

"}, {"id":"61d8b6b7-5708-5140-b5bc-e50b3a87e8cf","type":"article","starttime":"1529391600","starttime_iso8601":"2018-06-19T02:00:00-05:00","lastupdated":"1529427119","sections":[{"columnists":"opinion/columnists"}],"application":"editorial","title":"Alexander: Our cruelty will be remembered","url":"http://qctimes.com/opinion/columnists/article_61d8b6b7-5708-5140-b5bc-e50b3a87e8cf.html","permalink":"https://qctimes.com/opinion/columnists/alexander-our-cruelty-will-be-remembered/article_61d8b6b7-5708-5140-b5bc-e50b3a87e8cf.html","canonical":"https://qctimes.com/opinion/columnists/alexander-our-cruelty-will-be-remembered/article_61d8b6b7-5708-5140-b5bc-e50b3a87e8cf.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":2,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"Jon Alexander\nEditorial Page Editor","prologue":"These children will remember. They'll remember being ripped away from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border. They'll remember being placed in chain-link cages. They'll remember American cruelty. More than 2,000 immigrant children are sitting in holding pens, some for months. Their only crime is following their parents into a country run by hardline nativists who, just recently, announced that rape and domestic abuse are no longer viable reasons for asylum.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["donald trump","politics","crime","policy","cruelty","democrats","parents"],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":"personality","images":[{"id":"d9827200-b3b3-56b3-bc96-f2366d10a769","description":"A young boy is detained along with his family members May 31 in Texas.","byline":"CAROLYN COLE, TRIBUNE NEWS SERVICE","hireswidth":1783,"hiresheight":1162,"hiresurl":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/d/98/d9827200-b3b3-56b3-bc96-f2366d10a769/5b27e8d347c58.hires.jpg","presentation":"","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1783","height":"1162","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/d/98/d9827200-b3b3-56b3-bc96-f2366d10a769/5b27e8d32ef40.image.jpg?resize=1783%2C1162"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"65","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/d/98/d9827200-b3b3-56b3-bc96-f2366d10a769/5b27e8d32ef40.image.jpg?resize=100%2C65"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"196","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/d/98/d9827200-b3b3-56b3-bc96-f2366d10a769/5b27e8d32ef40.image.jpg?resize=300%2C196"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"667","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/d/98/d9827200-b3b3-56b3-bc96-f2366d10a769/5b27e8d32ef40.image.jpg?resize=1024%2C667"}}},{"id":"82bec63e-cf72-5b85-a998-5b198a6cb8f3","description":"","byline":"","hireswidth":null,"hiresheight":null,"hiresurl":null,"presentation":"mugshot","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"712","height":"470","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/8/2b/82bec63e-cf72-5b85-a998-5b198a6cb8f3/5a78cc9ee7f73.image.jpg?crop=712%2C470%2C1%2C282&resize=712%2C470&order=crop%2Cresize"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"141","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/8/2b/82bec63e-cf72-5b85-a998-5b198a6cb8f3/567963934788e.preview-100.jpg"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"198","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/8/2b/82bec63e-cf72-5b85-a998-5b198a6cb8f3/5a78cc9ee7f73.image.jpg?crop=712%2C470%2C1%2C282&resize=300%2C198&order=crop%2Cresize"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"676","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/8/2b/82bec63e-cf72-5b85-a998-5b198a6cb8f3/5a78cc9ee7f73.image.jpg?crop=712%2C470%2C1%2C282"}}}],"revision":8,"commentID":"61d8b6b7-5708-5140-b5bc-e50b3a87e8cf","body":"

These children will remember.

They'll remember being ripped away from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border. They'll remember being placed in chain-link cages. They'll remember American cruelty.

More than 2,000 immigrant children are sitting in holding pens, some for months. Their only crime is following their parents into a country run by hardline nativists who, just recently, announced that rape and domestic abuse are no longer viable reasons for asylum.

This past week, journalists were given limited access to the new American internment camps in Texas. They saw pre-teens changing the diapers of toddlers whom they did not know. They saw detainees sleeping on bedrolls on the floor. They saw children lined up in chow lines not unlike those found in federal prisons.

Face it folks, this is what we are \u2014 fearful, racist and savage.\u00a0

These children will remember it.

They'll remember it like the children in Iraq and Afghanistan who saw loved ones killed during drone strikes. They'll remember it like those whose fathers disappeared after 9/11, whisked away to cells at Guantanamo Bay and, in too many cases, have yet to see a day in court almost two decades on. They'll remember it like \"dreamers,\" who acted in good faith only to be betrayed by the U.S. government years later.\u00a0

They'll know better than most about American hypocrisy as U.S. diplomats lambaste cruelty abroad while defending it at home.\u00a0\u00a0

Our esteemed President Donald Trump claims he doesn't like the separation policy that could result in 30,000 migrant children stuck in pens by August, according estimates reported by the Washington Examiner. He blames it on everyone but himself \u2014 past administrations, Congress and Democrats. Yet no other administration has done this and U.S. immigration law hasn't changed for years. For even the most heinous felonies, children aren't blamed for their parents' crimes in the U.S. Illegal entry is a misdemeanor under federal law.

What's happening in Texas is the policy of the Trump administration, one that uncomfortably resembles the shameful internment of Japanese Americans during World War II. It's implementation is a choice made by the likes of Attorney General Jeff Sessions, a man who's championed so-called \"zero tolerance\" immigration policies from the get-go. It's Trump's call to use children as leverage, holding them hostage for a $25 billion ransom for his border wall. Trump said as much in a Monday morning tweet-storm.

These are the men we put in power. They're a reflection of us, and all our racial insecurities. They're seizing on sophomoric slogans, such as \"the Heartland\" \u2014 touted by both political parties \u2014 that for decades have signaled to voters that experiences elsewhere throughout the country are somehow less American as those in distinctly white-bred regions.\u00a0

Throughout the weekend, the president continued his tirade about the alleged dangers of immigration. He fell back to his tired talking points about gangs, such as MS-13. He ignored all the evidence that immigrant populations commit less crime than native-born Americans. And on Monday, he took another shot at an American ally \u2014 Germany \u2014 where right-wing nativists are threatening Chancellor Angela Merkel's coalition. On Tuesday, he was slated to make the trek down Pennsylvania Avenue to meet with congressional Republicans about immigration.\u00a0

Those children in cages \u2014 a description that apparently makes Border Patrol \"uncomfortable,\" poor dears \u2014 they're just pawns. And it's doubtless that among the thousands, many of them will some day realize it and judge us accordingly.

"}, {"id":"048a1a0f-40dd-5bf9-85f8-851a09eb55f8","type":"article","starttime":"1529389800","starttime_iso8601":"2018-06-19T01:30:00-05:00","sections":[{"letters":"opinion/letters"}],"application":"editorial","title":"Letter: Trump prefers dictators","url":"http://qctimes.com/opinion/letters/article_048a1a0f-40dd-5bf9-85f8-851a09eb55f8.html","permalink":"https://qctimes.com/opinion/letters/letter-trump-prefers-dictators/article_048a1a0f-40dd-5bf9-85f8-851a09eb55f8.html","canonical":"https://qctimes.com/opinion/letters/letter-trump-prefers-dictators/article_048a1a0f-40dd-5bf9-85f8-851a09eb55f8.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":0,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"prologue":"President Trump's love affair with dictators grows more obvious daily. And dictators learned early on that rolling out the red carpet and turning on the cameras was all that was needed to take advantage of his weakness. He arrived late at the recent G-7 gathering of our friends and allies and left early. Then he followed up with embarrassingly rude messages to the G-7 as he flew off to Singapore to salute a North Korean soldier. He posed in front of our flags mingled with North Korean flags \u2014 our flag, that many have died for to protect our freedoms.\u00a0","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":[],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":null,"revision":3,"commentID":"048a1a0f-40dd-5bf9-85f8-851a09eb55f8","body":"

President Trump's love affair with dictators grows more obvious daily. And dictators learned early on that rolling out the red carpet and turning on the cameras was all that was needed to take advantage of his weakness.

He arrived late at the recent G-7 gathering of our friends and allies and left early. Then he followed up with embarrassingly rude messages to the G-7 as he flew off to Singapore to salute a North Korean soldier. He posed in front of our flags mingled with North Korean flags \u2014 our flag, that many have died for to protect our freedoms.\u00a0

He has insulted gold star parents and John McCain's prisoner of war experience while calling marching racists \"very fine people.\" His administration, not Democrats, is separating small children from parents seeking asylum by promising a bath, which is the same promise made to people in Nazi concentration camps before they were gassed.

The president is an inveterate liar, yet calls the free press our biggest enemy. He doesn't understand the Constitution and the rule of law gets in his way. His Cabinet members rob us blind, and most in his administration have forgotten the oath taken when they were sworn in.

Mary Tomsche

Long Grove

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