Libs Pushing the 1,500 Missing Illegal Kids Stat Aren't Telling the Whole Story


Liberals furiously pushed a story over the weekend that expressed great outrage over the revelation that the U.S. government had “lost track” of nearly 1,500 illegal immigrant children last month who’d been processed and released to the care of sponsors inside the country.

As with most narratives pushed by the liberal media these days, parts of it were flat out wrong, it was conflated with other similar but non-related stories and the whole context of the “missing kids” story wasn’t shared, even as it was highly relevant.

The Washington Post was one of the many outlets that helped spark the outrage, even as it offered up a semblance of explanation on Sunday to walk back portions of the narrative that had gone off the rails.

During a Senate subcommittee hearing in April, Department of Health and Human Services official Steven Wagner revealed that his agency had lost track of at least 1,475 children who had previously arrived and been detained at the southern border as unaccompanied alien children.

Those kids were processed and later released by the Office of Refugee Resettlement after being held in custody for an average of 34 days — per fiscal year 2015 numbers — with roughly 85 percent of them ultimately released to the care of sponsors who were in fact their parents or closely related family members, who are often in the country illegally themselves.

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A followup survey conducted by HHS from October through December 2017 found that of 7,635 surveyed children in the program, 6,075 were still with their sponsors, 52 were living with someone else, 28 had run away, five had been deported and the remainder — 1,475 — were unaccounted for and presumed missing.

Unsurprisingly, liberals immediately and falsely conflated those missing children as having been “ripped away” from their parents at the border by the new policies of the Trump administration and then “lost” without a care or second thought.

But as The Post and the HHS official had made clear, all of those children had initially arrived at the border in years past alone and without any parents.

Even as The Post noted that there was absolutely no connection between these “missing” children and the new policy implemented by the Trump administration of separating children from parents when detained for illegally crossing the border, the newspaper nevertheless proceeded to spend more than half its article lamenting the new unrelated policy of separating families.

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That new immigration enforcement policy which has liberals so up in arms is no different than what happens on a daily basis to U.S. citizens when any American parent and their children are separated while the parent is held in custody and prosecuted for breaking laws.

But as Quartz pointed out, the hyperventilating by the liberal media over this “missing kids” story may actually end up doing more harm than good for the cause of those who profess to actually care about those illegal immigrant children.

First of all, odds are exceedingly good — 85 percent — that most of those “missing” children aren’t exactly out and about on their own, but are actually with their parents or close family members.

The most likely reason they didn’t respond to the follow-up survey is that they feared themselves or others in their family would be tracked down, apprehended and deported and have thus “gone off grid,” so to speak.

Furthermore, the furor over the “missing kids” story has also prompted many liberals to demand that HHS and ORR be more stringent about who they accept as sponsors to whom they will release the unaccompanied children, and some have demanded the agencies track down those who are unaccounted for.

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But Quartz warned that could result in even more of the kids and their sponsors going “off grid” to avoid detection and make it even more difficult for family members or willing sponsors to step up and accept custody of the unaccompanied children in the first place.

Liberals were reminded that their outraged cries for a crackdown by those agencies would, in essence, play right into the hands of the “evil” Trump administration, who in their fevered minds are merely looking for any excuse to round up and deport any and all “vulnerable undocumented immigrants,” don’t ya know?

So as you can see, the liberal media hasn’t quite told the whole story as it pertains to the 1,500 “missing” illegal immigrant children, nor do they really want to, since accurate and neutral reporting doesn’t provoke the necessary anti-Trump outrage or drive narratives in the manner they’d prefer.

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Ben Marquis is a writer who identifies as a constitutional conservative/libertarian. He has written about current events and politics for The Western Journal since 2014. His focus is on protecting the First and Second Amendments.
Ben Marquis has written on current events and politics for The Western Journal since 2014. He reads voraciously and writes about the news of the day from a conservative-libertarian perspective. He is an advocate for a more constitutional government and a staunch defender of the Second Amendment, which protects the rest of our natural rights. He lives in Little Rock, Arkansas, with the love of his life as well as four dogs and four cats.
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