“The sounds and sights of young immigrants and their families being forcibly separated at the border is a gut-wrenching human tragedy,” writes the Rev. Jaime Soto, Bishop of the Diocese of Sacramento. “The current administration has orchestrated this catastrophe, unmoved by the howling human cost.” The bishop decries “scenes of young infants yanked from their mothers’ arms” in a “campaign of terror being forced upon families at the border.”
And so on, except for the substitution of “yanked” for “ripped,” the Rev. Soto borrows the boilerplate rhetoric of leftist Democrats and parrots their borderless agenda as well. He says “the welfare of children and families should be non-negotiable” but readers might wonder.
The administration of POTUS 44 deported thousands of illegals and separated children from their parents, putting them in the care of crony profiteers from the National Council of La Raza. The Rev. Soto, whose diocese includes one million parishioners in 20 counties, kept rather quiet about that, but he’s eager to target the Trump administration and its “campaign of terror.”
Thousands of parents in Mexico and Central American have broken up their own families and placed minor children, many pre-teens, in the hands of criminal smugglers. That is child abuse on a massive scale, but the Rev. Soto spares the delinquent parents any moral criticism. So the reader could believe he approves of family breakup.
Human trafficking is a serious crime but the Rev. Soto does not subject these criminals to condemnation or criticism. Readers might wonder why this Roman Catholic Bishop looks the other way at this vile trade.
The default explanation of the open-border crowd is that Central American minors and adults alike are fleeing repression and violence in their own countries. The Rev. Jaime Soto issues no condemnation of governments in Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador, and names no repressive policies that might prompt people to flee.
Mexico has been a virtual one-party state since the 1920s and not exactly a model for democracy and human rights. But if the Mexican government ever did anything with which the Rev. Soto disagrees, it does not emerge with any clarity.
Many Central Americans claim to be fleeing gang violence, but the Rev. Soto issues no criticism of the murderous Salvadoran MS-13 gang. If the fear of gang violence is real, the Rev. Soto does not make the case why any Central American should therefore move to the United States when they would be safe in many other countries.
The Rev. Soto appears to believe that all Central Americans, and by extension all people in the world, have a right to live in the United States, and that the massive influx of unskilled workers is an unalloyed blessing for the United States. The Rev. Soto does not denounce document fraud, hardly a victimless crime. So observers could be forgiven for believing the he does not hold the rule of law in high esteem. The Bishop also seems unaware that false-documented illegals commit crimes.
In 2014, previously deported Mexican national Luis Bracamontes gunned down police officers Danny Oliver and Michael Davis. This took place right in Sacramento, in the Rev. Soto’s parish, but the Mexican’s conviction on murder charges did not move the bishop to compose a commentary condemning the killer, nor to express sympathy for the victims.
The next year, Mexican national Jose Inez Garcia Zarate, one of his many aliases, gunned down Kate Steinle on a San Francisco pier. That crime did not motivate the Rev. Soto to condemn the career criminal or oppose the sanctuary city policies that protected him from deportation. So the Bishop’s parishioners could be forgiven for believing that he approves the sanctuary policies that protect violent criminals.
Last year the Rev. Soto offered to provide refuge in churches if the Trump administration ordered mass deportations. All told, the Catholic Bishop’s rhetoric and agenda differ little, if at all, from leftist Democrats and their media-celebrity allies.
In this world, the United States in general, and the Trump administration in particular, are responsible for all evils. The “undocumented” are all wonderful people, much better than legal citizens. So the criminal gangs and corrupt regimes that drive them to flee deserve not the slightest criticism.
In 2014 Mexican police opened fire on a bus, killing six students, with more 40 others missing. Amnesty International has spoken out but nothing shows up from the Rev. Soto, who claims to believe that the welfare of families is non-negotiable. So maybe he believes, like former Mexican president Vincente Fox, that “it’s about time” the parents give up their demands on the Mexican government and “accept reality.”
Those students were heading for a protest of the Tlatelolco Massacre, when Mexican troops and police gunned down hundreds of students, permanently separating them from their families. The 50th anniversary is coming up on October 2. It will be interesting to see what the Rev. Jaime Soto and other Catholic leaders have to say about it.
Meanwhile, the Rev. Uriel Ojeda is in prison for lewd and lascivious acts with a child under 14 and another Catholic priest, the Rev. Hector Coria was arrested for statutory rape and oral copulation with a minor. Those cases took place in Bishop Soto’s parish but the Church’s sexual abuse problem is global.
The chaplains of the left might make that issue a priority. America’s elected representatives have good reason to ignore their pronouncements on the border.