By Irish Echo Staff
In his first press conference as president Thursday, President Joe Biden, as he so often does, invoked his Irish ancestry in the context of present days issues and priorities.
Biden was asked a number of questions regarding the current arrival of thousands of people, most of them minors, at the nation’s border with Mexico.
While outlining plans on how to deal with the crisis, the president sought to explain it in terms of parents desperate for the future of their children against a backdrop of natural disaster, hunger, violence and political corruption and malfeasance.
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He said in part: “You know as well as I do; you cover it: You have serious — it’s not like somebody at a sitting hand-hewn table in Guatemala — I mean, in — in somewhere in Mexico or in Guadalupe, saying, ‘I got a great idea. Let’s sell everything we have. Give it to a coyote. Have him take our kids across the border and into a desert where they don’t speak the language. Won’t that be fun? Let’s go.’ That’s not how it happens. People don’t want to leave.
“When my great grandfather got on a coffin ship in the Irish Sea, expectation was: Was he going to live long enough on that ship to get to the United States of America?
“But they left because of what the Brits had been doing. They were in real, real trouble. They didn’t want to leave. But they had no choice. So you got — we can’t — I can’t guarantee we’re going to solve everything, but I can guarantee we can make everything better. We can make it better. We can change the lives of so many people.”