Jonathan Ryan has become the public face of the battle against President Donald Trump’s immigration policy on separating kids and parents.
Jonathan Ryan, the man leading the fight against President Donald Trump’s policy on removing immigrant children from their parents, is an Irish native who was once arrested in Mexico at the border because his Green Card had expired. He spoke about his Irish link on Texas Public Radio.
Ryan has become the face of the opposition to Trump with attracting huge media interest. Ryan is the Executive Director of the Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services, or Raices, a non-profit organization that provides low-cost legal defense services to immigrant and refugee families in Texas. It is the largest immigrant defense group in Texas.
Over the last few days the group has been showered with funds after a GoFundMe effort by a San Francisco was begun on their behalf.
The family expected to raise about $1,500, Instead they raised $15 million and counting as funds flooded in, via Facebook. Close to half a million people have donated.
“We’ve had moments of ecstasy and there have been a lot of tears in response to this outpouring of support,” Ryan, said in a phone interview with The New York Times.
“But those moments of joy are curtailed by a realization of great responsibility.”
Ryan said that the funds will go toward hiring lawyers and representing the immigrant children and their parents as well as paying bond money to have parents released from jail.
“The organization has been overwhelmed with lawyers offering help and willing to travel to Texas to assist,” Ryan said.
Here's Ryan on MSNBC on June 19, speaking about toddlers being held in camps:
Ryan stated Trump was trying to dehumanize immigrants.
“A government cannot commit open, widespread and notorious violations of human rights under both international and domestic law without substantially dehumanizing the people that they’re inflicting the pain upon to desensitize the nation to the injustices or make the injustices appear okay,” said Ryan.
“The only way to participate in such cruelty is to dehumanize them,” he added.
The AP captures thousands protesting Trump’s policies in California: