anne mikolay 2018This one will be short and to the point.

As we all know, life is not simple. Nothing is black and white. Perception is influenced by one’s personal circumstances and ideology. But during the holiday season, we are supposed to leave all that behind and focus on peace and goodwill. Nowadays, however, there’s a profound disconnect between benevolence and reality, which is clearly evident at the US border crossing in San Diego.

The San Diego border crossing was closed on Sunday when 500 migrants on the Mexico side rushed the police barricades; US border patrol agents fired tear gas into the crowd. The photographs of the event and the media reports are disconcerting. Even more disturbing is the reaction of some of the American people. A review of facebook postings reveals a great number of people supporting the actions of the US border patrol, some even advocating trading tear gas for bullets.

I am stunned.

Is this America, the land of the free, the home of the brave? Does America no longer welcome the huddled masses yearning to be free? Are we no longer the golden door? Where is tolerance? Where is consideration for each other’s situation or opinion? Where is empathy? The volatile issue of immigration, fueled by fearful, combative White House rhetoric, will not easily be resolved…but I can’t ignore the feeling that shooting the weary, needy travelers with tear gas is wrong on so many levels. Just wrong.

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I am saddened that it has come to this, saddened that so many Americans condone violence, saddened that our nation is changing, deteriorating, saddened that Christians, who proudly collect charitable donations for the poor to rack up heavenly brownie points, can’t enact that charity when the needy truly knock upon the door.

So much for peace and goodwill.

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Anne Mikolay

Anne M. Mikolay joined The Atlantic Highlands Herald as a columnist in 2008. Prior to penning “The Armchair Critic,” Anne wrote feature articles for The Monmouth Journal. Her work has appeared in national...