What Senator Jeff Merkley Saw at an Immigrant Detention Center for Children
Source: The Nation
“The tiniest kid at the front of the line, he was knee-high to a grasshopper. He was 4, maybe 5 years old.”
When Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley tried to visit a detention center for child immigrants in Brownsville, Texas, last weekend, he was turned away. The Facebook Live video of his journey through the bureaucratic shadows went viral. In the 20 hours after it was shared, it was viewed 1.1 million times.
As viral videos go, it was rather low-drama: it mostly featured Merkley standing around in the hot Texas sun for almost a half hour, waiting for a supervisor of the nonprofit Southwest Key shelter to come tell him why he could not enter the facility. One high point was when the senator inadvertently shared his personal cell-phone number with his million-plus viewers, trying to get someone in authority to return his call.