Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., and Elijah Cummings, D-Md., on Thursday hammered Acting Homeland Security Chief Kevin McAleenan during a hearing on the Trump administration’s child separation policy and the treatment of migrants detained in U.S. government facilities.
Rep. Ocasio-Cortez confronted McAleenan over racist and sexist memes posted in a private Facebook group that consists of around 9,500 Customs and Border Patrol officers.
One of the memes depicted Ocasio-Cortez's violent death.
McAleenan said he read reports about the group and many individuals had been placed on administrative leave.
When Rep. Ocasio-Cortez questioned whether the policy of child separation could have contributed to a dehumanizing culture within CBP "that contributes and kind of spills over to other areas of conduct?" McAleenan answered there was not a "dehumanizing culture” at the agency.
"So you don’t think having 10,000 officers in a violent, racist group sharing rape memes of members of Congress points to any concern of a dehumanized culture?" she said.
McAleenan called the posts "unacceptable."
"They're being investigated, but I don't think it's fair to apply them to the entire organization, or that even members of that group believed or supported those posts," he answered.
Cummings ripped into McAleenan when he said CBP was "doing our best in a very challenging . . ."
"What does that mean?" Cummings asked, raising his voice. "What does that mean when a child is sitting in their own feces? Can't take a shower? Come on man. What's that about?
"None of us would have our children in that position!" Cummings, now shouting, went on. "They are human beings!"
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