U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions was on Long Island today demonstrating a firm commitment to assist local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies as they work to end the MS-13 gang's stranglehold on communities such as Brentwood, N.Y.
As we’ve seen so many times with this administration, no good deed goes unpunished. As AG Sessions was talking with stakeholders trying to control the scourge of this transnational gang, which continues to be fueled by the placement of unaccompanied children (UACs) from Central America, outside the venue more than 100 demonstrators protested the Trump immigration policies. The very immigration policies that would contribute to their safety.
Placards included “Stop breaking families apart” and “Stop the war on women, minorities, the poor, immigrants - RESIST!”
Comfortable in their ignorance, the closest most of these demonstrators have ever been to the border was a Taco Bell in Brentwood. I don't mean to be flippant about this, but I grew up, worked, and resided in Brentwood for the formative years of my life. And my fellowship with the Center for Immigration Studies has supported my research on the impact that the flood of more than 4,000 UACs there has had on the kind of vicious crime MS-13 is notorious for. I am well aware of the violence this gang has wrought in the community. And yet the protesters have the audacity to demonstrate against the very person who is there to aid in mitigating the violence that has claimed more than 30 young lives in the past seven years, and more than a dozen in just the past year and a half.
I've met the mothers of many of the victims whom MS-13 butchered on Long Island. I am confident that the mothers of Kayla Cuevas and Nisa Mickens were not among those protesting Sessions. These mothers, who lost 16-year-old daughters at the hands of MS-13 killers, are asking why more isn't getting done. Or why the Office of Refugee Resettlement continues to place UACs in Brentwood, replenishing a recruiting pool for the gang.
Law enforcement is being bolstered to apprehend the killers of four teens in Central Islip, N.Y., this month. But for every arrest that is made, the ranks will continue to swell until UACs are stopped from entering Suffolk County.
That’s what these people should be demonstrating against. They should be highlighting the impact this crime wave has had on the reputation of their communities, their property values, and the safety of their children. They obviously don’t see that. All they see is a perceived injustice against immigrants, illegal immigrants at that.
Perhaps rather than echo political rhetoric on an issue they have no knowledge about, they should be shown the crime scene photos of Cuevas and Mickens and the four kids mutilated in the Central Islip Park, or the remains of the teens unearthed at Pilgrim State Psychiatric Hospital. Then perhaps their outrage would be better directed at the poorly conceived and supervised immigration policy that contributed to these children's deaths.