Two of the most vile, repulsive acts against humans in this nation’s history occurred at the hands of demagogues who treated others with insidious disregard for human compassion.
In the early 19th century, five Southeaster Native American tribes were forcibly evicted from their homeland and relocated to the Midwest, in the genocide known as the “Trail of Tears.” Thousands of indigenous people died from disease, injury and other maladies in this U.S.-sponsored genocide.
In the 1940’s, amidst the horror of World War II, thousands of Japanese-American families were forcibly rounded up and relocated to squalid internment camps, under some misguided presupposition that their ancestral lineage presupposed their loyalty to Japan and their desire to sell American secrets. This bullshit forced over 100,000 Americans of Japanese descent into place like Tule Lake and Heart Mountain and Manzanar against their will.
I bring up the Trail of Tears and the Japanese-American internments because of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’ recent political stunt. DeSantis, along with Texas Governor Greg Abbott and a few other MAGA-ass-kissing officials, have been pulling this stunt of loading non-American border crossers into buses and planes, and then transporting them across state lines to predominantly Democratic locales, then boasting about their actions as some “owning the libs” gimmick. “Oh yeah, this will show Joe Biden and Nancy Pelosi who’s boss.”
There is much to say about this. I’m going to focus right now on the big example – at least 50 different Venezuelan migrants who were coaxed onto a plane with promises of working papers and job opportunities, then were flown to Martha’s Vineyard and essentially dumped there with no return ticket. It’s the equivalent of using a trap to capture a squirrel in your backyard, then driving 20 miles and releasing the squirrel in a non-native environment and driving away.
Thankfully, the residents of Martha’s Vineyard treated the migrants with kindness, providing them with food and shelter. Communications between the migrants and the Martha’s Vineyard residents were eased with the help of high school students who were proficient in AP Spanish classes. The people of Martha’s Vineyard treated the migrants the way Ron DeSantis wouldn’t. The migrants aren’t vermin, they were humans who had escaped a brutal homeland in Venezuela and were simply looking for a better life.
And all Ron DeSantis wanted was some sort of political stunt.
Technically, Ron DeSantis and his ilk are guilty of human trafficking – dragging non-American citizens against their will and across state lines. It doesn’t matter if the human trafficking is the means behind refilling a brothel or restaffing a tobacco plantation.
Here’s the exact quotation from the U.S. Department of Justice. 8 U.S.C. § 1324, subsection (A), subsection (ii), reads: “Subsection 1324(a)(1)(A)(ii) makes it an offense for any person who — knowing or in reckless disregard of the fact that an alien has come to, entered, or remains in the United States in violation of law, transports, or moves or attempts to transport or move such alien within the United States by means of transportation or otherwise, in furtherance of such violation of law.”
This is not just human trafficking. It’s kidnapping.
And Ron DeSantis is so craven, so brazen, so repugnant, that he would use human lives as disposable political points is just completely beyond the pale.
Then again, this is Ron DeSantis, who still acts like he’s the sole authority and arbitrator for education and sexual orientation in the State of Florida.
Trust me. Ron DeSantis’ actions as Governor of Florida make me want to stay as far away from Florida as possible. He’s a weasel in a cheap suit, a demagogue who thinks he’s the Sun King of the Sunshine State.
And his re-enactment of the Trail of Tears and the Japanese interments as a cheap political gimmick show his black heart and diseased soul for all.