The perceived need to point out that the crying Honduran girl wasn’t actually separated from her mother, to me is like trying to point out that a Ford Mustang isn’t actually a horse.
The Mustang is a symbol, a figurehead, an icon, that vaguely represents in the vehicle in a specific sense, but also not in other senses literal to the horse itself. The car, for instance, doesn’t consume oats, it doesn’t need its hair brushed, it doesn’t need to have shoes nailed to its hooves, it doesn’t defecate all over the street when walking down one. It doesn’t walk for that matter.
The specific detail of whether the crying child in the photograph was actually separated from her mother is completely beside the point. The child is symbolic of the helplessness, despite whether they child in particular, at that moment, was helpless. The image conveys the emotion many are feeling about the idea of children being separated, but is not, as far as I can find, being reported as one such child who actually was separated.
For some reason, there has been a surge of articles popping up about how the Honduran 2-year-old and her mother “weren’t actually separated,” and I’ve been trying to find a single article, however, that does actually claim they were separated.
There seems to be some kind of outrage that the “liberal media” could possibly portray the child as having been separated, despite not actually being separated.
But, “Which members of the ‘liberal media’ did so?” is my question.
Which sources did actually report that the two were separated, or is it possibly, that you who believe they did, merely pulled that idea out of thin air when viewing with eyes glazed over from among the numerous stories?
Did you somehow just associate the photo with other photos taken of detention centers, and make your own connection? Because if others had reported it as such, then sure, you would be able to cite some.
So cite some. I’ll wait right here.
What appears here, is a case of how several members of the public have gotten it into their heads that the girl actually was separated, yet no one is able to come up with any particular article which does so, and then blaming “the media” for this information the news consumers themselves pulled out of thin air.
Possibly the main source of the idea that the photograph “could be” misleading is the border patrol agent, Carlos Ruiz, who was the agent on duty alongside the photographer at the time:
“They’re using it to symbolize a policy and that was not the case in this picture,” Ruiz said. “It took less than two minutes. As soon as the search was finished, she immediately picked the girl up, and the girl immediately stopped crying.” –CBS News article, Crying girl in iconic image was never separated from mother, ICE says
My response to this, is that this is how basically all iconic images work.
When “Tank Man” stood in front of the tank in the famous photo, is it important whether that person was actually a citizen of China? It’s the image of the plight of a solitary person in the image, that makes it meaningful — irrespective of the finer details of whether the bags he was carrying contained fruit from the supermarket, or whether the person was even a man. In the video of that scene, the person climbs onto the tank and seemingly has a conversation with the tank operator, and they appear to speak to each other briefly at times.
What was their conversation? If the tank driver was just asking directions, would that matter? It’s the idea that a single person can stand in front of a column of tanks and halt them, that is powerful. Likewise, it is the idea of the crying child that is powerful, not the details of whether they were actually separated. Do you not know that children will cry over basically anything? Why she was actually crying is irrelevant — the photograph of the child crying, itself, irrespective of the details, is the power behind it, not the specifics.
The closest thing to anyone reporting that the kid was actually separated from her mother, that I can find so far, is that the photographer only mentioned that immigrants enduring this the asylum-approval process are separated, but he never actually stated these two in particular were separated.
In case the description of the photo is altered, as of June 22, 2018, it read, “A Honduran asylum seeker, 2, and her mother are taken into custody by federal agents near the US-Mexico border. They had just crossed the Rio Grande from Mexico and were to be transported to a US Customs and Border Protection processing center. The Trump administration’s “zero tolerance” policy for undocumented immigrants calls for the separation of parents and children while their cases for political asylum are adjudicated, a process that can take months – or years. As a father myself, this photograph was especially difficult for me to take. It is one from a series i took while on a ride-along with the Border Patrol in Texas’ Río Grande Valley.”
It may be worth mentioning that the “zero tolerance” process described by the photographer (his post is dated June 13) was a concept thrown around before Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen spoke publicly dispelling several myths going around about their immigration policies on June 18, just below.
Perhaps even more alarming, that it is precisely the so-called ‘liberal media’ who is doing the reporting on the child not actually being separated. Pretty much all of the accusations being made against the liberal media of falsely reporting the child being separated, take their information from the CBS interview (here) of the border patrol agent dispelling those myths.
If you can provide any links to actual news articles stating that the child was separated from her mother, as a basis for which news articles would need to issue news alerts that the child “actually wasn’t” separated, please let me know. Or is it, that you can only find no-name bloggers (*cough*) accusing liberal media of doing so, without actually linking to the sources which do?