Dear Governor Abbott,
We are writing to you with deep concern about the allegations that Texas DPS troopers have been given orders to “push the people back into the water to go to Mexico” and to withhold water from thirsty migrants at the southern Texas border. These allegations, along with reports of injuries and deaths linked to your installation of buoys and razor wire in the Rio Grande as a migration deterrent, show a shocking lack of concern for human life and dignity.
Jesus said in Matthew 25 that “whatever you did not do for the least of these, you did not do for me.” He has called us to see every person as a whole human made in the image and likeness of God, worthy of the same dignity and respect that we would show Jesus himself. This is true not just of those who share our nationality and citizenship, but also for the migrants seeking safety at our borders.
Migrants matter to God, and they matter to us. We know that you are a man of faith, and we implore you to remember the call from our Savior to treat even “the least” in the eyes of the world in the same way that we would treat him.
Governor Abbott, we are calling for:
-A thorough investigation of allegations of ordered maltreatment of migrants, and swift justice if those allegations prove true.
-An end to the ongoing campaign of anti-immigrant rhetoric that devalues the dignity of our migrant brothers and sisters, and that has real world consequences in acts of violence that we have seen played out in recent years.
-A respect for both national and international laws, which do not only restrict migration, but also have provisions to protect the most vulnerable. If we care for the rule of law, that must extend not just to enforcement, but also to humanitarian laws.
-Dignified treatment of every human life by our state officials.
As Christians and as Americans, we can do better and we must do better to honor the human dignity of migrants on our border, regardless of how they arrived.