Offers Condolences to Family of 7 Year Old Who Died in Custody – and ‘All of DHS’?
Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen is sending her condolences to the family of the 7-year old girl who died while in custody of dehydration and exhaustion. But in the same breath Secretary Nielsen, whose department is responsible for separating thousands of children at the U.S.-Mexico border from their parents, also appears to offer condolences to the entire Dept. of Homeland Security.
“Yeah, it’s heart-wrenching,” Sec. Nielsen told “Fox & Friends” Friday morning, a week after the young child’s death.
“My heart goes out to the family – all of DHS,” she said. It’s unclear if she meant she was speaking for all of DHS or if she was sending condolences to all of DHS.
Meanwhile, the embattled Homeland Security chief didn’t stop there. She then pivoted, blaming the family who “chose” to flee dangerous Central America to seek refuge in the U.S.
“You know, this is just a very sad example of the dangers of this journey. The family chose to cross illegally. What happened here was they were 90 miles away from where we could process them.”
“They came in such a large crowd, it took our Border Patrol folks a couple of times to get them all,” she insisted.
“We gave immediate care, we’ll continue to look into the situation, but again I cannot stress how dangerous this journey is when migrants choose to come here illegally.”
FOX & FRIENDS: What do you know about the 7-year-old girl who died in Border Patrol custody?@SecNielsen: “This is just a very sad example of the dangers of this journey. This family chose to cross illegally… I cannot stress [enough] how dangerous this journey is.” pic.twitter.com/bjFMdFlW3E
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) December 14, 2018
In truth, the girl was held for 8 hours before being taken to a hospital. Some have noted that is not “immediate care.”
Vox adds that “DHS hasn’t said if she was given water.”
Secretary Nielsen is being chastised on social media for the death of the child and for what many see as an offensive response.
MSNBC’s Chris Hayes blasted the statement released by DHS on the child’s death:
This is a disgusting statement dripping with cruelty, contempt and inhumanity. Everyone who worked on it should be ashamed of themselves. https://t.co/jxzxRzdFlC
— Chris Hayes (@chrislhayes) December 14, 2018
Hillary Clinton just weighed in, calling this a “humanitarian crisis.”
There are no words to capture the horror of a seven-year-old girl dying of dehydration in U.S. custody. What’s happening at our borders is a humanitarian crisis. https://t.co/8KZeynGjIv
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) December 14, 2018
Others are calling Sec. Nielsen a criminal:
— Molly Jong-Fast (@MollyJongFast) December 14, 2018
Nielsen deserves prison time for willful criminal neglect and indifference to human suffering, that her policies increase. These are crimes against humanity. She and her willing acomplices need to answer for every last one of the lives she’s help destroy.
— Jim Shepherd (@zathraslives) December 14, 2018
Anybody else think Kirstjen Nielsen should face an international criminal tribunal in The Hague?
— Nick Knudsen 🇺🇸 (@DemWrite) December 14, 2018
Nothing to see here, just the DHS Secretary blaming the death of a 7 year old girl who died while in the custody of the Border Patrol on her parents https://t.co/4TAMNFekn2
— Michael Cohen (@speechboy71) December 14, 2018
She didn’t die *on the journey* to America, @SecNielsen.
She could have grown up to be a doctor, an artist, a mom, a senator. Immigration & diversity make this country strong. We should always welcome people fleeing bad situations and seeking a new start because they will help us be great. Instead, we have a tragedy. https://t.co/waJosvlp5U
— Joyce Alene (@JoyceWhiteVance) December 14, 2018
GOP on Trump: He’s 70 and there are SO MANY laws.
— Sara Just (@sarajust) December 14, 2018
A 7 year old girl was taken away from her father by Border Patrol a week ago and taken into custody.
A) You are purposefully limiting valid ports of entry so there’s no choice but to cross illegally.
B) You feign concern for the people risking the “dangers of the journey,” yet reject the validity of their desperation by closing off asylum.
C) You are responsible for her death. https://t.co/qe34tAQIJu
— Scott Hechinger (@ScottHech) December 14, 2018