Young children are being held in at least three “tender age” shelters in South Texas
With the Trump administration at the helm, every day brings fresh horror. Today’s shameful headline involves small children being held in special “tender age” shelters away from their parents. Stories so unspeakable even seasoned news hosts can’t tell them without breaking down. This is who we are now.
The Associated Press broke the horrible news yesterday that babies and young children are being forcibly separated from their parents at the US-Mexico border and sent to “tender age” shelters where they’re away from their parents and cared for by the government. There are at least three of these shelters currently operating in South Texas. Lawyers and medical providers permitted to enter the shelters describe “play rooms of crying preschool-age children in crisis.”
Last night, MSNBC host Rachel Maddow tried delivering the heartbreaking update on her show. This is how it went.
Rachel Maddow chokes up and cries on air as she struggles to deliver news that migrant babies and toddlers have been sent to "tender age" shelters pic.twitter.com/O6crm8cvyR
— Justin Baragona (@justinbaragona) June 20, 2018
Yes, that’s the typically stoic and professional Maddow choking up and crying on air, unable to speak the awful realities happening at our country’s southern border. She later took to Twitter to apologize for breaking down and to share the news she was unable to read.
Ugh, I'm sorry.
If nothing else, it is my job to actually be able to speak while I'm on TV.
What I was trying to do — when I suddenly couldn't say/do anything — was read this lede:
— Rachel Maddow MSNBC (@maddow) June 20, 2018
"Trump administration officials have been sending babies and other young children forcibly separated from their parents to at least three “tender age” shelters in South Texas...— Rachel Maddow MSNBC (@maddow) June 20, 2018
"Lawyers and medical providers who have visited the "tender age" shelters described play rooms of crying preschool-age children in crisis...— Rachel Maddow MSNBC (@maddow) June 20, 2018
"Decades after the nation’s child welfare system ended the use of orphanages over concerns about the lasting trauma to children, the administration is standing up new institutions to hold Central American toddlers that the government separated from their parents...— Rachel Maddow MSNBC (@maddow) June 20, 2018
“The thought that they are going to be putting such little kids in an institutional setting? I mean it is hard for me to even wrap my mind around it,” said Kay Bellor, vice president for programs at Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service, “Toddlers are being detained.”— Rachel Maddow MSNBC (@maddow) June 20, 2018
All from this Associated Press story that broke while I was on the air tonight, but which I was unable to read on the air:https://t.co/2VBLTVxvQq— Rachel Maddow MSNBC (@maddow) June 20, 2018
Again, I apologize for losing it there for a moment. Not the way I intended that to go, not by a mile.
Support and understanding for Maddow was swift. After all, she’s far from the only American to be rendered a speechless puddle of tears by the horrors happening before our very eyes.
Whe @maddow is too choked up to finish a segment you know we are in deep fucking shit
— Clara Jeffery (@ClaraJeffery) June 20, 2018
.@maddow just lost it – understandably – at the rpt that the govt now says it is holding "tender age" children in 3 facilities in TX. Congress – dammit – make Secy Nielsen, HHS Secy Azar & AG Sessions testify under oath abt these children & the plan to reuinite w/their families.
— Sherrilyn Ifill (@Sifill_LDF) June 20, 2018
Watching Rachel Maddow break down on live television given the horror of news about where the Administration is putting babies is surreal.
— Anthony Michael Kreis (@AnthonyMKreis) June 20, 2018
@maddow In a nation that is losing its heart, never apologize for showing yours. Your emotion is the nation's. You were not and are not alone.
— Jonathan Capehart (@CapehartJ) June 20, 2018
Rachel, my friend and brilliant colleague, tonight you channeled the emotion and devastation every single person with a heart feels. God bless you. Thank you. We were all choked up right along with you. https://t.co/rnwiM57qNz
— Joy Reid (@JoyAnnReid) June 20, 2018
We love you. Thank you for what you do and never apologize for having a heart— David Arquette (@DavidArquette) June 20, 2018
Walter Cronkite cried with the world when JFK was shot. It’s in the Smithsonian. This moment is another national tragedy. Thank you for giving a fuck @maddow (I KNOW, your Mom hates swearing:). KG— Kathy Griffin (@kathygriffin) June 20, 2018
Your instinct is to want to reach through the screen & hug @maddow . Then you remember Trump has sent these babies to places where they can’t be comforted or hugged. & it’s even more horrible. https://t.co/S8N0eFI7t3
— Joyce Alene (@JoyceWhiteVance) June 20, 2018
Seeing @maddow break down in tears over babies and toddlers being taken from their mothers is one of the most emotionally distressing things I’ve ever seen.
It means it is as bad as I feared.
— Cheesehead Lucy (@cheeseheadlucy) June 20, 2018
Rachel @maddow In all the years I've been watching you report with such intelligence & tenacity, I have never seen you break down & cry like this & I want you to know the 1) I treasure you 2) Please take care of your heart. & 3) THANK YOU from the bottom of MY heart. @MSNBC
— Rabbi Jill Zimmerman (@RabbiJill) June 20, 2018
A tale of two parties…
Rachel Maddow breaks down while reporting about children being taken from their parents…
Corey Lewandowski mocks a girl with Down Syndrome being taken from her parents…
You decide which side of history you want to be on.
— Tony Posnanski (@tonyposnanski) June 20, 2018
Rachel Maddow just cried live on air. Think of what she's covered and how many times she's held it together. This isn't some wilting flower, she's a bad ass.
This news broke our rock. @maddow we're right there with you.
— Boogie (@LikeAFineWino) June 20, 2018
According to the AP, the existing three shelters for young kids aren’t even the end of it — another is slated to open in Houston soon, but city leaders are denouncing the move. Kay Bellor, vice president for programs at Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service, an organization that provides foster care and child welfare services to migrant kids, was unflinching in her assessment of the current administration’s policy of ripping babies and young kids from their parents.
“The thought that they are going to be putting such little kids in an institutional setting?” she says. “I mean it is hard for me to even wrap my mind around it. Toddlers are being detained.”
People like Maddow will be looked back on one day as being on the unquestionably right side of history. The moment we can speak of such things without heartbroken cries escaping our mouths is the moment it’s too late for our country to ever recover.