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Deadly force against asylum seekers? Even this president may have hit a new low

Deadly force against asylum seekers? Even this president may have hit a new low
Central American migrants wait at a camp near the U.S.-Mexico border fence in Tijuana on Nov. 21. (Guillermo Arias / AFP/Getty Images)

To the editor: President Trump’s decision to allow U.S. troops deployed at our southern border to use potentially deadly force against asylum seekers darkens the taint of cowardice and weakness that he has cast upon the American people.

The world sees the contrast between certain European nations rescuing refugees from the waters of the Mediterranean, making space for hundreds of thousands of desperate families, and reaffirming the Christian, Jewish and Islamic values of mercy, charity and the sanctity of human life.

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Yes, many of those nations are feeling the pressure and facing difficult choices regarding refugees; no nation has unlimited resources to succor the suffering. But Trump’s America does much worse — it is not only rejecting those who need help, but also demonizing and threatening them.

Combine this with Trump’s friendliness toward Russian President Vladimir Putin and his defense of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and the world can assume Americans are cowering in fear.

E.J. Parker, Long Beach

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To the editor: Welcome to America, where the president has authorized our military to use lethal force at the border with Mexico.

Really? Against men, women and children who are so desperate that anything would be better than returning to their former lives of fear and deprivation in Central America?

What next? The construction of vast “holding centers” with barbed wire and all that might entail? The removal of the Statue of Liberty, never again to proudly stand in New York’s harbor?

Yes, our nation should safeguard its borders in every humane and legal way it can. But this smacks of something very vile and evil from the past.

When will Congress speak up, do its job and pass real immigration reform? Silence is not always golden; it can be taken as approval or indifference.

Bette Mason, Corona del Mar

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To the editor: Personally, I am not overly sympathetic to the migrant “caravan” at our border. However, there is a possible win-win outcome.

A part of Northern California has been decimated by the terrible Camp fire. The town of Paradise will require a virtual army of unskilled and skilled workers to clear and rebuild in the shortest possible time.

Yes, it would take some time to sort out which immigrants might be capable of that labor, but it can be done. With our unemployment so low, available and willing workers are hard to come by.

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Just a thought.

John Raymond, Oceanside

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