In video footage that has gone viral, children waiting to cross into the U.S. from Mexico were seen having numbers written on their arms.
The scene was reminiscent of Auschwitz, a concentration camp in Nazi Germany during World War II where Jews, Blacks, homosexuals, and other people were tattooed with numbers that served as a tool of identification.
Neither the U.S. or Mexican government is taking responsibility for the issuance of the numbers in black magic marker.
U.S. Congressman Beto O’Rourke shared a video on Twitter:
Visited Jurez to hear directly from asylum seekers. Met one mother who traveled from Guatemala with her 10-year-old daughter. It took them more than 3 weeks to arrive here. Their place in line to petition for asylum is now written on their arms with a marker: 2142 & 2143. pic.twitter.com/TyVKoF3v50
Beto O’Rourke (@BetoORourke) December 15, 2018
In another viral video, children show the numbers written on their arms:
Children, with numbers on their arms & their lives on the line wait to cross into the US from Juarez, Mexico. More tonight with @Lawrence on @TheLastWord #MSNBC pic.twitter.com/J4k7NWwNzP
Cal Perry (@CalNBC) December 15, 2018
A representative of the advocacy group Casa del Migrante explained that the assignment of numbers is an attempt to create order for migrants. Staff and volunteers with Casa del Migrante offer migrants the option of writing down their number on a slip of paper or on their arm so they have their number.
“I think it works in our favor,” she said.
The logic may be flawed though. If migrants are bathing, wouldn’t they risk washing the number off of their skin Or maybe this is a sign that a bigger problem is brewing and the children may be in unsanitary conditions?
As of late, conversations and awareness are being brought to the forefront with reference to the mistreatment of which migrant children are being subjected. The thought of even writing numbers on children, who have names is humiliating and degrading.
The children on the video are suspected to be Honduran refugees who reached the US-Mexican border as part of the mass migration caravan.
It’s alleged that the numbers represent the children’s place in line as they arrive at the border.