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FILE - President Donald Trump speaks about sanctuary cities with law enforcement officers in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, in Washington, March 20, 2018. On April 12, 2019, Trump said he was considering sending detained illegal migrants to sanctuary cities. VOA

U.S. President Donald Trump said Friday that he was considering sending detained illegal migrants to so-called sanctuary cities, which oppose his tough immigration policies.

Trump made the announcement hours after White House and Homeland Security officials insisted the idea had been rejected.


He told reporters at the White House that his administration was “strongly looking at the possibly.”

Earlier Friday, he tweeted, “Due to the fact that Democrats are unwilling to change our very dangerous immigration laws, we are indeed, as reported, giving strong considerations to placing Illegal Immigrants in Sanctuary Cities.”

“The Radical Left always seems to have an Open Borders, Open Arms policy — so this should make them very happy!” he added.

Sanctuary cities are local jurisdictions — often run by Democrats — that have refused to hand over illegal immigrants to federal authorities for possible deportation.


FILE – In this June 20, 2018, photo, protesters demonstrate outside the federal courthouse in Sacramento, Calif., where a judge heard arguments over the U.S. Justice Department’s request to block three California laws that extend protections to people in the country illegally. Sacramento is a sanctuary city. VOA

Offer of pardon?

In another development Friday, CNN reported that Trump told the head of Customs and Border Protection, Kevin McAleenan, that he would pardon him if he were sent to jail for denying U.S. entry to migrants. CNN cited two unnamed officials who said Trump made the offer during a visit to the border town of Calexico, California.

Trump has since named McAleenan the acting secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, following the resignation of Kirstjen Nielsen.

A spokesman for the Department of Homeland Security said in a statement Friday: “At no time has the president indicated, asked, directed or pressured the acting secretary to do anything illegal. Nor would the Acting Secretary take actions that are not in accordance with our responsibility to enforce the law.”

Sending a message

The White House proposal to send undocumented immigrants to sanctuary cities was first reported by The Washington Post.

According to the Post, the White House told Immigration and Customs Enforcement that the plan would alleviate a shortage of detention space, as well as send a message to Democrats.


FILE – Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney speaks during a news conference in Philadelphia, Nov. 15, 2017. VOA

The Post said a White House official and a spokesman for the Department of Homeland Security said the proposal was no longer under consideration.

Revelation of the proposal drew criticism from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, as well as other Democrats.

In remarks to reporters Friday, Pelosi called the idea “unworthy of the presidency of the United States and disrespectful of the challenges that we face as a country, as a people, to address who we are — a nation of immigrants.”

Pelosi’s hometown of San Francisco is a sanctuary city. Mayors of several sanctuary cities said Friday they would accept undocumented migrants.

ALSO READ: Wall on New York’s Ellis Island Honors Immigrants is Almost Full

Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney said in a statement, “While the Trump administration’s proposal shows their disdain to basic human dignity, the City (Philadelphia) would be prepared to welcome these immigrants just as we have embraced our immigrant communities for decades.”

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said, “We would welcome these migrants with open arms, just as we welcomed Syrian refugees, just as we welcomed Puerto Ricans displaced by Hurricane Maria and just as we welcome Rohingya refugees fleeing genocide in Myanmar.” (VOA)


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The aim of the book is to teach children that families can exist in different forms, and show them how to accept the diversity in family backgrounds.

By Siddhi Jain

Delhi-based author Pritisha Borthakur is set to release her new book, 'Puhor and Niyor's Mural of Family Stories'. The 1,404-word children's book was put together to address a new kind of societal debacle in the family system. The author says the aim is to teach children that families can exist in different forms, and show them how to accept the diversity in family backgrounds.

The author who named the book after her twin sons -- Puhor and Niyor -- is a parent who has seen and heard the tales of ridicule and discrimination suffered by many in India and beyond. She says the book is an artistic illustration for kids that details how different families can live and coexist. Whether it's children with two dads or two moms, children with a single dad or single mom, and even multiracial family units, Borthakur's book teaches love, understanding, and compassion towards unconventional families.

Beyond race, gender, color, and ethnicity which have formed the bases for discrimination since the beginning of time, this book aims to bring to light a largely ignored issue. For so long, single parents have been treated like a taboo without any attempt to understand their situations; no one really cares how or why one's marriage ended but just wants to treat single parents as villains simply for choosing happiness and loving their children.

Homosexual parents, a relatively new family system, is another form that has suffered hate and discrimination for many years. Pritisha emphasizes the need to understand that diversity in people and family is what makes the world beautiful and colourful. 'Puhor and Niyor's Mural of Family Stories' is a firm but compassionate statement against all forms of discrimination on the bases of sexual identity, gender, race, and even differences in background

four children standing on dirt during daytime 'Puhor and Niyor's Mural of Family Stories' is a firm but compassionate statement against all forms of discrimination on the bases of sexual identity, gender, race and even differences in background. | Photo by Ben Wicks on Unsplash


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