Monday, June 18, 2018

Hundreds of lone children kept in cages... When fact follows fiction.

It's a surreal thing to read a news article that sounds like the synopsis for Adaline.

One of the news stories that was in my feed today was the story of unaccompanied children being kept in chain link cages by Homeland Security due to illegal entry to the United States. The gist of the article, if you haven't read it, is that families who have been found to be entering the U.S. illegally are being detained. While the parents or guardians of the children are awaiting trial, their children are being sent to detention centers where they are kept in large chain-link encased holding areas. 

In Adaline, children are born into an automated society where humans are essentially bred and then curated. A collection of perfect human clones, groomed and cared for by their robot overlords for no other reason than that's what the A.I. is programmed to do. But in the real world, the kids kept in cages aren't being curated. They're being held in limbo while they wait for an unknown period of time, awaiting a fate that is both unknown and frightening.

Of course, this isn't the first time concentration camp style mass imprisonment has been used in the U.S. In Wold War II we rounded up Japanese Americans because we were sure they were in cahoots with the Japanese government who'd bombed Oahu, Hawaii. Back then, legality of residence wasn't even a consideration. Our government detained our own citizens as a knee jerk reaction for being caught off guard by a military attack.

What's interesting, comparing these two historical times, is that when the U.S. thought its own citizens were working against it, it housed families together. And now, when the emotional crisis is much less severe, the solution has been to separate children from their parents. 

In Adaline, the children have no parents. That is, they've never had them. Humans are lab experiments that are born of a petri dish. I wonder if it's more damaging to have the warmth and care of a parent stripped away, or to not know the comfort of a family at all. 

For reference, the article that I read is here: Hundreds of lone children kept in cages