Dear Editor: Recently the last Nuremberg prosecutor, 99-year-old Ben Ferencz, said, “The U.S’s detention of children is a ‘Crime Against Humanity.’”

We know a newborn can mimic a facial expression of an adult. We know that given the right environment children are bilingual when they enter kindergarten.

What are babies, toddlers and children of all ages learning in the detention centers? When those in charge of the facilities have allowed observers entry, journalists, doctors and legislators are investigating the facilities and documenting the reality.

Because some facilities were built as warehouses to refrigerate produce, rooms are cold with lights on continually. Unbathed children with unwashed clothes are grossly overcrowded. Some infants are drinking from baby bottles that haven’t been washed for weeks. Lacking soap, toothbrushes and toothpaste, children are sleeping on cement floors with silver-plastic coverings. There is evidence of infection, malnutrition and psychological trauma.

Sleeping in cages, the young are learning that they’re equivalent to animals. For evaluation purposes, a few 10-year-olds were asked to do a self-drawing. Drawing themselves behind bars with no feet, hands, or facial expressions profound rootlessness and hopelessness was heartbreaking!

Depriving children from secure caregivers and healthy stimulation produces emotional and intellectual shriveling comparable to seedlings deprived of water.

At 74 years old, with an adopted daughter suffering lifelong effects of separation trauma, I am outraged! Our species is extinguishing any possibility of a healthy future for an ever-enlarging portion of our young.

Please call your representatives: “Stop this barbarism now!”

Hear voices

Get the Cap Times Opinion email delivered to you!

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

Dona Palmer


Send your letter to the editor to Include your full name, hometown and phone number. Your name and town will be published. The phone number is for verification purposes only. Please keep your letter to 250 words or less.