Enough Midsummer rain for you? I know I’ve had my fill! Congratulations to last week’s contributors:Haikai Challenge Participants
2. Ken Gierke / rivrvlogr
3. the real cie
4. Jane Dougherty
6. Reena Saxena
7. The Dark Netizen
8. Xenia Tran
|9. Linda Lee Lyberg|
11. Revived Writer
The United States celebrates Independence Day this Thursday, July 4th. This year, the celebration of the birth of the US happens in the disquieting shadow of the chaos occuring at the country’s southern border:
A chaotic scene of sickness and filth is unfolding in an overcrowded border station in Clint, Tex., where hundreds of young people who have recently crossed the border are being held, according to lawyers who visited the facility this week. Some of the children have been there for nearly a month.
Children as young as 7 and 8, many of them wearing clothes caked with snot and tears, are caring for infants they’ve just met, the lawyers said. Toddlers without diapers are relieving themselves in their pants. Teenage mothers are wearing clothes stained with breast milk.
Most of the young detainees have not been able to shower or wash their clothes since they arrived at the facility, those who visited said. They have no access to toothbrushes, toothpaste or soap.
[Hundreds of migrant children have now been transferred out of the facility.]
“There is a stench,” said Elora Mukherjee, director of the Immigrants’ Rights Clinic at Columbia Law School, one of the lawyers who visited the facility. “The overwhelming majority of children have not bathed since they crossed the border.”
Every Friday, get an exclusive look at how one of the week’s biggest news stories on “The Daily” podcast came together.By Caitlin Dickerson , “‘There Is a Stench’: Soiled Clothes and No Baths for Migrant Children at a Texas Center”, New York Times, June 21, 2019
The malicious policies toward immigrants seeking asylum in the United States scandalizes those that truly celebrate the dream. How can we Americans bear to be a party to the separation and systematic abuse of children?
We that honor our conscience cannot. Resistance to these heinous policies and their inhumane consequences arise from all quarters. Humanitarian organizations descend on the ICE “detention centers”. Workers at Wayfair staged their own walk-off rather than fulfill the company’s furniture contact with ICE.
People with a conscience have declared their independence from the actions of the government that tortures children in their name. That is the same choice the founding ancestors of the United States made when they believed Great Britain oppressed them. That is the decision any of us can make when we face our oppressor, regardless of what form it takes.
This week, write the haikai poem of your choice (haiku, senryu, haibun, tanka, haiga, renga) that alludes to independence. You do not have to address the political, although you’re welcome to. Consider the idea of independence itself, and how we manifest it–and toward what end.
Here’s how the challenge works:
1. write the haikai poem of your choice.
2. post the link of your post to Mister Linky.
3. pingback by posting the link to the challenge on your site.
4. read and comment on other contributors’ posts.
Happy Independence day, for all you American haijin out there celebrating it!