This last weekend, Dodge City was one of the hundreds of cities across the U.S. to hold “Families Belong Together and Free” rallies to protest against children having been separated from their parents at the border.
The event was organized by the Dodge City Catholic Diocese and featured speeches by religious leaders and songs and prayers in both English and Spanish.
Dennis McKinney, former Kansas State Treasurer, also spoke at the event. He said the border needs to be secured, but that there’s no need to split families.
“It’s essential to understand that safety and security can be achieved, in fact, it must be achieved, without separating families and violating our most basic religious and legal values and traditions,” said McKinney.
President Donald Trump ended his administration’s “zero-tolerance” practice of separating families entering America illegally in June, following a bipartisan outcry from the public and politicians. However, many children who were detained remain separated from their parents.
The rally drew around a hundred people from Dodge and nearby communities.
Reverand Robert A. Schremmer, who also goes by Father Bob, said he was pleased by the turnout of the event.
“When you see innocent children suffering, it stirs one's soul,” said Schremmer. “Especially if you’re a parent. To have children, to imagine being separated from your children. It must be unimaginable.”