It was not enough that the nation was reeling from two mass shootings resulting in the deaths of 31. The majority of those deaths occurred in the border town of El Paso, Texas, a city rich with Mexican descendants.

It is hard to reconcile the tears and the trauma of the survivors with a civilized nation. Harder to see the suffering of the families left to sort through the question of why. We also had to see the fallout of an ICE raid, arrests made primarily on Latinos.

The horror was watching the children of these workers sobbing for the release of their parents, begging that their parents are not criminals. Meanwhile, there was scurrying to find placement for these children.

Does this administration lay awake at night fantasizing about how cruel they can be? These children are nothing but collateral damage in the Trump administration's immigration policy. Separate families at the border, separate families at the hands of ICE, the innocent children are of no concern.

When I think collateral damage, I think war zone. Every day there is more instability and chaos in our country. Such is the state of a country adrift, whose leader is vilifying groups of people. A leader whose rallies are full of vitriol and mocking against U.S. citizens, a leader who praises himself while he visits victims of a mass shooting, a leader who grins and signals thumbs up next to a two-month-old orphan of the recent carnage.

I should not minimize a true war zone where bombs kill and destroy. However in terms of suffering and psychological pain, our damage is real. I only hope our country can survive the war Donald Trump wages against his own nation.

Beverly Laudermilk


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