Willie Nelson has issued a statement on the current U.S. immigration policy, which separates children of immigrants from their family at the U.S.-Mexico border.
"What's going on at our southern border is outrageous," Nelson said in a statement, which was first reported by Rolling Stone Country. "Christians everywhere should be up in arms. What happened to 'Bring us your tired and weak and we will make them strong?' This is still the promise land."
The Trump administration's new zero-tolerance immigration policy, which calls for the penalization of everyone caught crossing the border illegally, was launched in May. Because children can't be held in custody, many are taken to buildings operated by the Department of Health and Human Services. It's estimated that about 500 children have been separated from their parents in the last month. NPR reported that dozens of immigrant children have said they've suffered abusive and inhumane treatment by the U.S. Border Patrol, citing sleep deprivation, inadequate food and water, verbal and psychological abuse and more.
The United Nations has criticized the U.S. immigration policy, saying that it "amounts to arbitrary and unlawful interference in family life" and calling the separation of children from their parents "a serious violation of the rights of the child."
This isn't the first time the country legend has spoken out on immigration issues. Back in 2014, Nelson addressed immigration in an interview with Rolling Stone.
"I've been watching, and the only thing we can do is take care of those kids, whatever it takes. They're scared. They're being mistreated. And it's not a good way to start off your life," Nelson said. "But it's a good opportunity for us to show a little bit of humanitarianism and take care of those kids. I know a lot of people want to send them back. I guess the closer you are to the situation, the more extreme emotions you have about it, but it seems to me the old golden rule, 'Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,' or 'treat other people like you want to be treated' ... Treat those kids like they were your kids."
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