There’s a phrase we use here in Iowa to say how people should treat one another: “Iowa Nice.” We think of ourselves as kind, generous, family friendly and closely-knit, and with a knack for finding common-sense solutions together.
But “Iowa Nice” takes on a different ring in the Trump-Sessions era, when forced family separations and mass arrests of immigrants in small towns like the one where I grew up, Mount Pleasant, in southeast Iowa, are on the rise.
Mount Pleasant, population 8,539, is about as Iowa as you get – it’s surrounded by soybeans and corn, with a handful of factories. One of these, Midwest Precast Concrete (MPC), is where they used to make the yellow Bluebird school buses. On May 9, ICE raided the plant and took away 32 workers – from Mexico, Guatemala and elsewhere in Central America.
Iowans see families ripped apart like this, and it opens their eyes.Continue Reading...