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First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out….

Because I was not a Socialist.

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out…

Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out…

Because I wasn’t a Jew.

Then they came for me – and there was no one left to speak for me.

Martin Niemoller (1892-1984)

This poem has been rambling around in my head for the past several weeks.  I first became aware of the terrible, and I mean terrible policy (yes, this is a policy and not a law) of separating children from their parents who are coming across the border “illegally.”

We now have a human tragedy that often happens in other countries, not the United States.  We are supposed to be the good guys.  We’re supposed to be the people who stand up for the downtrodden.

Maybe we need to review what the inscription on Lady Liberty is.

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
“Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she
With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

This is an inspirational poem that also needs to be aspirational in today’s world.  All who visit Lady Liberty can easily find this poem, and it’s a poem we are absolutely ignoring right now in the name of controlling our borders.

Sure, border control is important.  But, so is welcoming immigrants who are escaping persecution.  In our world at Stage 2, welcoming immigrants escaping persecution trumps (no pun intended) the way we’re treating families crossing the border any day.

Let’s get a few things straight.

Many if not most of the refugees coming across the border are committing a misdemeanor, not a felony.  Second, most of these people are seeking asylum from situations in their home country that are forcing to flee for their lives.

This is not a group of gang members coming across the border to terrorize our communities.  These are people who are running away from the violence that their home countries either don’t want to or can’t control.  They see a 2,000-mile trek to our border as their only option or to be murdered.

This is personal.

This post is being written under the name of Stage 2 Planning Partners.  I, Josh Patrick am writing this on behalf of Melissa, Chris, Sandie and myself.

You see, I’m Jewish.  I’m not especially religious, and I’m all in being a cultural Jew.  What we’re seeing in our country now is dangerously close to what happened in Germany during the Weimar Republic. 

Hitler was coming to power.  The first thing he and his band of war criminals did was desensitize the population.  That’s what’s happening in our country right now and has been going on for over two years.

We have rallies where disabled reporters are mocked and the crowd cheers.  We have White Supremacist (Nazi) rallies where there are “good people on both sides.” The crowd still cheers. 

Now, we have refugees coming to the border asking for asylum, and they’re told at the regular border crossings there is no room for them and to go home.  These people go across at non-traditional crossing points, turn themselves in to ask for asylum, and they’re arrested.

That’s not the worst part.

Not only are they arrested and turned over to the Department of Justice, but they’re children are taken and after 72 hours moved to HHS where there are no systems and no methods for making sure children are promptly reunited with their parents.

As I’m writing this post, there are about 2,300 children who have been “resettled.”  Some of their parents are fast-tracked for deportation, but not with their children.  I’m afraid, and I’m not the only one that their children will never be reunited with their parents.

Here’s the icing on the cake (that is if you really want to call this icing.)

Not only are children being taken away, but babies, toddlers and very young children under ten are also being removed.  They’re not allowed to be touched by anyone.  Not caregivers, not guards and not even each other.  Siblings are placed in different facilities, and there is absolutely no support for these children.

Is this the type of country you want?  Is this what you believe our country should stand for?  How would you feel if your children or grandchildren were subject to this treatment?  I want you to answer these questions and talk about them with those you love, especially if you think this policy is a good one.

25% Really?

I’ve read the 26% of the country in a recent poll believe this policy is a good one.  Really?  On what planet is ripping children away from their parents a good idea?

You, the 25%.  Are you really that heartless that you believe that separating children from their parents against their will is a good idea?  Even, if we have some people slip through the cracks.  Isn’t that preferable to ruining and yes, we are ruining the lives of both the children and their parents?

I just have a hard time believing 25% of our country is this heartless.

I was a camp counselor

One of my favorite jobs of all times was being a camp counselor.  The only hard part was when we had new campers come, and a few would always be homesick.  They would wail for their parents.

I can only imagine what it’s like in the resettlement facilities.  Children are being separated from their parents, not told what’s going on and are too young to understand.  I have three grandchildren that I know would be traumatized for life if this happened to them.

We are not doing this as national policy as if we have the right to ruin children’s lives who are totally innocent.  Not a member of a gang, too young to cause any problems and just need the love of their parents, especially when it comes to a trip that is traumatic from the beginning and we’re turning traumatic into a nightmare. 

Is this something you think is a good idea?  We don’t.

Why we believe this is important even though this is a business blog.

I’ve believed for a long time that business is a force of good in our country.  We who own and work in small privately held companies have positively influenced our communities for years.

In our little firm, we have been talking about what’s been unfolding on our Southern Border with horror.  We’ve been talking about it and discussing whether we needed to go public with our feelings.  As you can see, we’ve decided to take a stand from our little firm.  We hope you will also take a stand.

Here’s what we would like you to do.

Please contact your representatives in Congress.  Please contact the Whitehouse and let them know this needs to stop right this second.

When you contact your Congressional representatives tell them to pass narrow legislation.  Tell them to pressure the White House, especially if you happen to live in a district that has a Republica as a representative.

If you live in a district with Democratic representation, tell them that just a narrow bill is just fine.  We do need comprehensive immigration reform, but right now we have a crisis.  Just a bill dealing with the tragedy unfolding on the southern border is enough.

You might decide to hate us.

We fully understand that some of you reading this will disagree and you might even violently disagree with us.  If you do, that’s your prerogative.  This is what we believe, and we truly hope you enough compassion in your heart that you also agree.

Please, please, please….we need to end this, and we need to end this now.





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