On Friday, the photo of a crying migrant child featured on the cover of Time magazine with Donald Trump that highlighted the crisis of children being separated from their families and detained was revealed to have been a photo of a child who had not been separated from her mother. Somehow, Trump supporters seized on this as a way to discredit the outrage over the 2,300 children who have been separated from their families, many as young and vulnerable as the child in the photo.
Shocked that the media and especially @time mag could be so full of crap… ? ok who am I kidding??? No one is shocked any more. There is no low they won’t go to for their narrative. https://t.co/sphcsdqTnR
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) June 22, 2018
It’s been proven that people respond more to images than words, which is exactly why the photo was one that finally opened America’s eyes to the crisis. The fact that the toddler in the photo isn’t one of those detained in tent cities or abandoned Wal-Marts does nothing to excuse the thousands of other children who have been, but Trump supporters will insist that it does.
Time stood by its photo even after correcting the story.
Time Magazine is standing by its cover of the little Honduran girl looking up at Trump https://t.co/umR6eAkg6o
— Hadas Gold (@Hadas_Gold) June 22, 2018
Editor-in-chief Edward Felsenthal said in a statement to CNN:
‘The June 12 photograph of the 2-year-old Honduran girl became the most visible symbol of the ongoing immigration debate in America for a reason: Under the policy enforced by the administration, prior to its reversal this week, those who crossed the border illegally were criminally prosecuted, which in turn resulted in the separation of children and parents. Our cover and our reporting capture the stakes of this moment.’
"Welcome to America." As thousands of immigrant children have been separated from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border, @TIME's July cover places the blame on President Trump. https://t.co/iFhonPkqTP
— USA TODAY (@USATODAY) June 21, 2018
The truth is that no one, not the media nor any lawmaker who has attempted to visit these detention centers, has been allowed to see inside. There are no images or video available other than the sanitized video released by the White House featuring only teenaged boys (it’s easier to talk about MS-13 when the only children shown are older boys).
Children who crossed the border alone or who were separated from their parents are being held in approximately 100 facilities in 17 states. https://t.co/wWgfoqLwPb
— NYT Politics (@nytpolitics) June 23, 2018
Perhaps if another image had been available, images of little girls just like the one in the photo, this crisis would have grabbed the nation’s attention sooner. Why are none of Trump’s supporters concerned about the photos we’ve not been allowed to see?
Featured image screen grab via Twitter by @KanchanGupta