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On Father’s Day, as Americans across our land took a moment to celebrate our appreciation for fathers, I was dismayed beyond words by my government’s treatment of children at our southern border.

What can possibly strike deeper in a father’s fiber than a man’s drive to seek security and protection for his family, for his most vulnerable children and for their mother?

Only this deepest human need and this call of paternal duty could drive a father to risk everything to leave his homeland with his family and to seek shelter in a neighboring country.

He arrives at our border with no other guarantee than his appreciation of our history as a freedom-loving nation and his desire to work hard and to sacrifice all for his family’s protection. Americans, who have gone before us, have created our history of freedom and our reputation for striving to protect human rights.

I am dismayed at the news that I learn of thousands of children who are separated from their fathers and mothers and are being held in detention at our border. The immigration policy of our federal government is simply shameful.

I beg us all, fathers and mothers, to make known to our federal elected officials that we expect them to write and enact legislation that respects the dignity and sanctity of all families at our borders.

Mark Neumann, La Crosse

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