I have come to expect that most weeks the editorial page of the News Leader will be a comfort zone for our Republican friends and neighbors, but I was surprised and sorry to see Phil Marraccini’s strident letter there, especially after his mellow and fair-minded front page article on the Urban Expansion meetings. (By the way, shouldn’t Mr. Marraccini’s letter have been an editorial, as he appears to be a member of the News Leader staff?) He starts off attacking our representative, Debbie Mucarsel-Powell, in a froth of righteous anger, for her letter protesting the conditions at the Homestead Immigrant center.
Yes, there may be no easy answers, but questions need to be asked, and, when children’s welfare is at risk and in our own backyard, then it’s the duty of our local elected officials to demand accountability. Surely Mr. Marraccini and the rest of our friends and neighbors are disturbed that the very name of our town is being recorded right now, for ever, as the site of a children’s prison.
And before that statement leads to another howl of outrage, let’s record what the Trump administration announced last Wednesday: budget cuts will mean no more schooling, no more soccer, no recess for these unaccompanied migrant children.
The no bid contract for the Homestead camp, the largest in the country, was awarded to a for-profit outfit, closely connected to the former White House chief of staff. Maybe we can have an in depth article about this in the News Leader and some more righteous indignation.