Many around the world have been outraged by the Trump administration's recently-enacted zero tolerance immigration policy, which has resulted in some parents and children being separated as they cross the southern U.S. border. People have been similarly shocked to learn that, following the separation, children are then housed alone in detention facilities. To make matters even more heated, Fox News host Laura Ingraham suggested detention centers are like "summer camps" for migrant kids. Unsurprisingly, her comments have drawn extensive condemnation, especially from Twitter.
Ingraham's comments came as she offered commentary on the zero tolerance immigration policy on Fox News on Monday evening. In reflecting on the policy, Ingraham said,
Consistent with American law, when a party is arrested, your children are either sent to relatives or they become wards of the state ... So since more illegal immigrants are rushing the border, more kids are being separated from their parents, and are temporarily housed in what are essentially summer camps.
Following her "summer camps" remark, many on Twitter chastised Ingraham, noting that children attending summer camp is nothing like children being forcibly separated from their parents and detained in a facility. As one Twitter user wrote,
Welp, it's summer. I'd love to see Laura Ingraham camp with her family under these circumstances. Cages. Separated families. Foil blanks and concrete floors. Send a post card and tell us what arts and crafts was like! No? Crickets? Thought so.
Another Twitter user, comedian Steve Hofstetter, characterized Ingraham as "unfeeling" in response to her remarks. As Hofstetter wrote,
Some might call Laura Ingraham a horrifically unfeeling monster that has no place in a civilized society, let alone on television, while others would also call Laura Ingraham a horrifically unfeeling monster that has no place in a civilized society, let alone on television.
Moreover, actress Amy Brenneman also weighed in on the issue, writing, "Laura did summer theater with me. Shockingly we grew up in the same town. No tin foil blankets have ever touched her skin."
In addition to discussing her own views on the Trump administration's immigration policy, Ingraham also invited Attorney General Jeff Sessions on her show to discuss the administration's take on the family separation policy. Ingraham accused critics of the policy of "demagoguing the issue." She asked Sessions, "What is going on here?" when referring to critics characterizing the policy as a violation of human rights akin to the treatment of Jews in Nazi Germany.
In response, Sessions noted:
Well, it's a real exaggeration, of course. In Nazi Germany, they were keeping the Jews from leaving the country. But this is a serious matter. We need to think it through, be rational and thoughtful about it. We want to allow asylum for people who qualify for it, but people who want economic migration for their personal financial benefit, and what they think is their families' benefit, is not a basis for a claim of asylum.
Some on Twitter were equally appalled by Sessions' comments. Indeed, one Twitter user, journalist Victoria Brownworth, wrote:
This thread is the culmination of today. AG Sessions says #ZeroTolerance isn't like Nazi Germany because Hitler was trying to keep the Jews from LEAVING Germany. Take that in. Meanwhile, @IngrahamAngle says detention centers are 'like summer camps.' Be shocked, please.
Despite extensive criticism of the family separation policy, thus far the Trump administration has not yet given any indication that it plans to stop the practice of separating parents and children at the border. President Trump has claimed he "hates" the policy and has repeatedly blamed Democrats for its existence — even though he could end the practice.
Overall, while the family separation policy has received widespread condemnation, it is clear that Ingraham does not seem to perceive the policy as problematic. Many on social media adamantly disagreed with the Fox News host's remarks — and made sure that they voiced their strong opposition.