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Guest Editorial: This is not how you create a stronger country

by Confluence
Reading Time: 3 minutes

By:  Vanessa Burnett – Confluence Daily is your daily news source for women in the know.

🐄🐖 One of 1,000 angles on Trump’s executive order to require meat-packing plants to stay open is that employees who are on work visas will not have a choice:

Work for these companies… or be deported.

If you doubt that the US Department of Homeland Security won’t enforce that, then you haven’t been paying attention.

✔️ This is the same department that is actively finding PPE shipments ordered by state and local governments in US Customs and diverting them… reportedly for sale to the private sector, perhaps to be sent to other states, and possibly to foreign countries.

✔️ This is the same department that separated children from families at the southern border, with no intention to return them. This is the same department that has caged people at the southern border in illegally tight quarters and and makeshift camps.

✔️ This is the same department that made it so difficult for asylum-seekers to get into the US that there has been a growing humanitarian crisis south of the southern border for over a year. That was before most immigration was halted due to the pandemic.

✔️ It’s an department I spent 9 years of my life working in to help make this country stronger. I also knew it was a department that was unsteady, filled with political appointees, and easy to corrupt. It is now being actively used to weaken our national security and hurt Americans.


And now DHS will become a department that deports, or threatens to deport, undocumented immigrants who refuse to work in packing plants known to spread a killer virus.

The spread of that highly contagious virus in those plants will kill American citizens in the plants, and in communities where they are located, as much as it kills undocumented immigrants. In parts of the country with very low healthcare system capacity.

The deaths that will occur in these communities in rural states will be on the entire Trump Administration for forcing this action.

The US government is using the Defense Production Act to keep these packing plants operating, while it refuses to use the Defense Production Act for the production of medical supplies and equipment to ramp up COVID-19 testing capacity in the US, and to keep medical personnel and first responders alive – as well as critical infrastructure operators and the rest of everyone in the whole economy.

I don’t say this lightly.

The Trump Administration is weakening America, eroding our institutions, diverting safety equipment from American citizens who funded it, weakening our national security, and significantly increasing our vulnerabilities, while other countries handle this virus better and get stronger.

Other power-hungry superpower countries are watching what’s going on in this superpower, as we are weakened.

Now the Trump Administration is forcing Americans and American immigrants to be exposed to illness that will kill many of them… to work in plants that are not yet critical to protecting life and safety. In communities that won’t be able to handle the medical surge. The deaths will happen fast.

This is not how you create a stronger country.

This is how you break it down, and sell it out.


Vanessa Burnett is a disruption coach and consultant at Counterfear.com, helping people and organizations navigate and create disruption. A career in disaster management, resilience-building, infrastructure, and technology innovation informs her current work. Vanessa is also the President of the Shift the Country PAC, working to foster tipping points across the US through connection, community, and resilience to create real world shift.


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