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Immigrant ‘detention centers’ added to Wikipedia’s concentration camp page
The detention centers holding immigrant children separated from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border have just earned a place on Wikipedia’s list of concentration and internment camps, Vice reported Tuesday.
From the Japanese internment camps of World War II to the Gulags of the Soviet Union, the Wikipedia list includes some of history’s most horrific detentions.
BREAKING: Wikipedia has just added Trump's Child Detention centers to their list of "Concentration Camps".
Is this the "Winning" Trump was talking about on the campaign trail?
— Brian Krassenstein (@krassenstein) June 19, 2018
The Wikipedia section, titled “Separation of immigrant children,” describes how the centers have been likened to “prisons” and “internment camps.” The entry also notes that nearly half of the centers in Texas have “previously been cited for more than 150 health violations” by officials.
Looking through #wikipedia, I found many similarities between #InternmentCamps and #immigration detention centers, but one difference really stood out: even families in internment camps were allowed to be together. #FamiliesBelongTogether #FamiliesBelongTogetherAct #Infographic pic.twitter.com/hAErAp6TaT
— Michelle LeClerc (@michelleleclerc) June 19, 2018
An initial comment on the Wikipedia’s talk page urged for the article to be locked from further edits, but the request was denied. Subsequent comments debated whether the detention centers fell under the definition of “internment,” which the website defines as “the imprisonment or confinement of people, commonly in large groups, without trial.”
Some users argued that the children are not technically being imprisoned or confined without trial and that including them on the same list as Nazi concentration camps was inappropriate.
User The Anome disagreed, saying no comparison was being made. “[T]his is a list of concentration and internment camps, and these are very clearly internment camps. For children. In America. In 2018. For shame,” the user wrote.
I don’t care whether you’re a republican, democrat, independent or nothing at all…. I think we can ALL agree that these ICE detention centers & children literally being held in cages is RIDICULOUS, INHUMANE & SHOULD BE UNCONSTITUTIONAL
— Marina Preciado (@oxminaox) June 19, 2018
We the American people must defend the Constitution from all enemies, foreign and domestic. That includes the government if it commits crimes against humanity. #KeepFamilesTogether
— Eugene Gu, MD (@eugenegu) June 19, 2018
Help us stop family separation! This spectacularly cruel policy rips frightened children away from their parent’s arms to be put in cages in detention centers. Take action: https://t.co/90M6ifESWa #FamiliesBelongTogether #KeepFamiliesTogether pic.twitter.com/S8L3qoRbWX
— Amnesty International (@amnestyusa) June 19, 2018
Trump administration officials and conservative commentators have tried to shake off the negative coverage, saying the conditions of the centers are being misreported.
“It is important to note that these minors are very well taken care of. Don’t believe the press. They are very well taken care of,” said Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen on Monday. Fox News host Laura Ingraham compared the centers to summer camps.
Kristina Nguyen is an editorial intern for the Daily Dot. She is studying journalism and American studies at the University of Texas at Austin. She has previously contributed to Orange magazine and Silk Club's QUIET! zine.