'I’ve looked at their eyes': Trump's new pick for border commissioner made disturbing and bigoted remarks about migrant kids

'I’ve looked at their eyes': Trump's new pick for border commissioner made disturbing and bigoted remarks about migrant kids
PBS NewsHour

Mark Morgan, who has been serving as the acting head of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, will now be taking over as acting commissioner of Customs and Border Patrol, according to multiple news reports.


Morgan is a close ally of Trump, and he'll replace John Sanders, who resigned for unclear reasons this week. But CBP has come under intense scrutiny as first-hand accounts published in recent days revealed that the agency was keeping migrant children in abominable conditions, often lacking in basic necessities like adult supervision, toothbrushes, and bathing facilities.

Don't count on Morgan to make it a priority to rectify these horrifying failures, however. Like the president, he's a fierce immigration hardliner who expresses little empathy for the plight of immigrants.

As Politico reporter Natasha Bertrand pointed out Wednesday on the news of Morgan's appointment, Morgan has previously made disturbing comments about migrant kids in U.S. custody.

“I’ve been to detention facilities where I’ve walked up to these individuals that are so-called minors, 17 or under,” he said on a Fox News segment in January with host Tucker Carlson. “I’ve looked at them and I’ve looked at their eyes, Tucker — and I’ve said that is a soon-to-be MS-13 gang member. It’s unequivocal."

Of course, anyone 17 under is a minor, so Morgans reference to "so-called" minors is dripping with blatant animus. He is clearly trying to convince listeners that they shouldn't have any empathy or compassion for the children held by the United States government, a terrifying attitude for someone who serves as an official with authority over their lives. In fact, his claim that he can look into the eyes of migrant children and know — unequivocally, he said — that they are going to be a member of the gang MS-13 can't be called anything short of unapologetic racism.

It's particularly disturbing, then, that he can continue to be shuffled through the Department of Homeland Security without actually being scrutinized and challenged by the Senate before a confirmation vote.

#story_page_post_article

Understand the importance of honest news ?

So do we.

The past year has been the most arduous of our lives. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to be catastrophic not only to our health - mental and physical - but also to the stability of millions of people. For all of us independent news organizations, it’s no exception.

We’ve covered everything thrown at us this past year and will continue to do so with your support. We’ve always understood the importance of calling out corruption, regardless of political affiliation.

We need your support in this difficult time. Every reader contribution, no matter the amount, makes a difference in allowing our newsroom to bring you the stories that matter, at a time when being informed is more important than ever. Invest with us.

Make a one-time contribution to Alternet All Access, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.

Click to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card
Donate by Paypal
{{ post.roar_specific_data.api_data.analytics }}

Don't Sit on the Sidelines of History. Join Alternet All Access and Go Ad-Free. Support Honest Journalism.