Activists attacked the Trump administration Sunday for its treatment of children who were detained at the border, based upon a picture that showed children sleeping in a cage.
There was only one flaw in the tweets that called the treatment “inhumane” and laid it at the door of President Donald Trump.
The image was from an Arizona newspaper report from 2014, during the second term of former President Barack Obama, The Daily Caller reported.
Former Obama speechwriter Jon Favreau began the avalanche of tweets with a since-deleted comment.
“This is happening right now, and the only debate that matters is how we force our government to get these kids back to their families as fast as humanly possible,” Favreau wrote. He added a link to the image, which was part of an Arizona Republic photo gallery from 2014.
A series of tweets followed as many used the outdated image and applied it as though it was current.
“Children of immigrants are being held in cages, like dogs, at ICE detention centers, sleeping on the floor. It’s an abomination,” Shaun King tweeted.
Context for the picture was provided by Fox News, which noted that the picture was taken at a time when immigration officials had detained more than 1,000 children who illegally crossed America’s Southern Border.
Controversy over the image reflects the debate over immigration policy that separates children from their parents.
Trump has called for changing that policy as part of broad-based immigration policy reform.
Even after the true origin of the picture was revealed, few of those who tweeted it clarified that the picture was from Obama’s days in the White House.
One who did was Jake Silverstein, editor in chief of the New York Times Magazine.
“Correction: this link, which was going around this morning, is from 2014. Still disturbing, of course, but only indirectly related to current situation. My bad (and a good reminder not to RT things while distracted w family on the weekend),” he tweeted.
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