Just a few feet away from the White House, 12-year-old Leah Cayasso, the daughter of immigrants, faced down Trump and called him out for his abusive treatment of families. Cayasso was one of the featured speakers at the Families Belong Together rally held in Lafayette Park in Washington, D.C.
“Why do they hurt us like this?” Cayasso asked. “It is unfair that they get to spend time with their families today while there are children in detention centers and in cages all along missing their parents who are thrown in jail.”
“Shame! Shame! Shame!” The audience replied.
The Trump administration has chosen to prosecute all border crossers, triggering family separation and the removal of children from their parents, even for infants and toddlers.
“I don’t understand why this administration won’t support mothers who just want a better life for their children,” Cayasso said, adding, “This needs to change.”
Wiping away tears as she delivered her speech, Cayasso described what the Trump administration’s decision to intensify deportations has meant to her personally: “I live with the constant fear of losing my mom to deportation. My mom is strong, beautiful, and brave. She is also a person who taught me how to speak up when I see things that aren’t fair.”
“ICE wants to take away my mom from me. I don’t like to live with this fear. It’s scary. I can’t sleep. I can’t study. I am stressed. I am afraid that they will take my mom away while she is at work, out driving or at home,” she continued.
At the end of her speech, the young girl said she wanted to be an example for other children in a similar situation.
She explained, “I want to tell kids at the border and all over the country not to give up and fight for their families. We are all human and deserve to be loved and cared for. We are children. Our government has to do the right thing and stop separating us from our parents and stop locking us up.”
Thousands of Americans rose up coast to coast in revolt against Trump’s attacks on families. They were civil rights legends, lawmakers, and a lot of ordinary Americans seeking to undo an egregious wrong.
Young Leah Cayasso stated in simple terms the cruelty that Trump has embraced, and had the courage to stand up and explain how to make things right.
Published with permission of The American Independent.