To the editor:

Over the past couple of weeks, the world has witnessed the horrifying conditions of the children being held at the border apart from their parents. I often hear a response that justifies this action because they broke the law. But is this how we treat criminals? And can children as young as newborns be considered breaking the law? What kind of country are we that we rip children away from parents and hold them in places like the “dog pound” or “the freezer?” If we are a nation built on Christian principles, we certainly aren’t acting like it. As a nation, we need to ask ourselves, are we a nation that lives up to our ideals of freedom or are we a nation given to our baser fears? I believe we are a nation that is on the arc of human history toward greater human equality, and if we are not, then we need to fight to be on that arc. That is why I will be participating in the Lights for Liberty vigil at the Story County Justice Center at 7 p.m. on July 12th. I believe it is time for all of us who love our country, who believe in the words on the Statue of Liberty, to gather and support our neighbors who are affected by this nation’s policies toward immigrants and refugees.

Kimberly Stephens