Rachel Maddow of MSNBC breaks down while reading about “tender age” detention centers for migrant babies.

By |2018-06-20T08:49:18+00:00June 20th, 2018|Categories: Front Page, News|Tags: , , , , , , |22 Comments

Courtesy of The Hill:

MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow broke down in tears on-air over a report about the Trump administration operating “tender age” shelters for migrant babies and toddlers.

Maddow choked up while reading the first lines of the Associated Press’ report on the three facilities where children under the age of 13 are being sent after being separated from their parents at the border.

She was unable to read the description of the shelters, first asking a producer to display a graphic, and then deciding to abruptly end her segment.

“I think I’m going to have to hand this off, sorry,” the MSNBC host said through tears.

I have been a loyal viewer of Rachel Maddow’s for years now and I have never seen her respond to the news like this. 

My daughter and I were watching together when this story broke and we were stunned.

Here is the article that Maddow was trying to read when she was rendered speechless by her emotions. 

Courtesy of the AP:

Trump administration officials have been sending babies and other young children forcibly separated from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border to at least three “tender age” shelters in South Texas, The Associated Press has learned.

Lawyers and medical providers who have visited the Rio Grande Valley shelters described playrooms of crying preschool-age children in crisis. The government also plans to open a fourth shelter to house hundreds of young migrant children in Houston, where city leaders denounced the move Tuesday.

Since the White House announced its zero-tolerance policy in early May, more than 2,300 children have been taken from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border, resulting in a new influx of young children requiring government care. The government has faced withering critiques over images of some of the children in cages inside U.S. Border Patrol processing stations.

Decades after the nation’s child welfare system ended the use of orphanages over concerns about the lasting trauma to children, the administration is standing up new institutions to hold Central American toddlers that the government separated from their parents.

“The thought that they are going to be putting such little kids in an institutional setting? I mean it is hard for me to even wrap my mind around it,” said Kay Bellor, vice president for programs at Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service, which provides foster care and other child welfare services to migrant children. “Toddlers are being detained.”

Not at all hard to understand why Maddow lost it while reading through that. 

Right after the handoff to Lawrence O’Donnell I turned to my daughter and said that Rachel would be terribly embarrassed by her performance and likely open her show today with an apology. 

Well, she did not even wait that long.

Rachel Maddow, of course, has nothing for which to be ashamed. She responded to this unbelievable news like a human being.

Afterward, my daughter asked me why EVERYBODY was not responding to what was happening in a similar fashion. 

I actually attempted to explain how those in the Trump Administration viewed these immigrants, as future Democrats, as aliens, as “the other,” but then I eventually gave up and simply said: “I don’t know.”

Decades ago it was a shaken Walter Cronkite who told America that the war in Vietnam was lost and that eventually helped to bring that war to an end.

I wonder if seeing journalists breaking down while covering this story might soon bring this atrocity to an end as well? 

About the Author:

This blog is dedicated to finding the truth, exposing the lies, and holding our politicians and leaders accountable when they fall far short of the promises that they have made to both my fellow Alaskans and the American people.


  1. Anonymous June 20, 2018 at 6:25 am

    Trump’s next policy will be to shoot all men, women and kids coming across the boarder and then use the bodies to build the “wall”. Steven Miller fully approves of this plan.. Kirstjen Nielsen says this is just following the Democrat law that Obama signed.

  2. Anon June 20, 2018 at 6:57 am

    I was stunned also that Maddow broke down given she is a rock. Katy Tur struggled through tears on Lawrence O’Donnell’s show following. The report that preschoolers are being processed in court alone after a briefing of procedure was astonishing.
    This morning listening to some evangelical ministers who believe the media is falsifying the situation, believe Trump is honest because he was chosen by God was disturbing to me and sickened me.

    • Anonymous June 20, 2018 at 8:26 am

      For the gazillionth time, he was NOT chosen by God!

  3. Beaglemom June 20, 2018 at 7:42 am

    I remember Walter Cronkite tearing up as he announced the death of President Kennedy in November 1963. No one should be ashamed of responding emotionally to events. I’m sure it is really hard to remain remotely civil to Republicans who right now are trying to whitewash the kidnapping of children to hold as hostages by lying about what’s happening, who is responsible and how they will resolve it.

    • Anonymous June 20, 2018 at 8:34 am

      I remember Cronkite too, Beaglemom, and who can forget 9/11 when plenty of on-air personalities were choking back tears?
      Have we become so hardened that any honest display of emotion is seen as weakness? Rachel has no reason to apologize.

      • anonymous June 20, 2018 at 9:25 am

        Apologizing. It’s also a “thing” that divides the tribes now. I have often heard those defending Trump describing something about themselves followed by saying “for which I do not apologize!”. This phrase is said vehemently.

        It seems “apologize” has become some kind of loaded dog whistle word now. “Libs” do it all the time, Obama did it all the time. Trumpsters refuse to do it. It’s like it always made them feel inadequate that they didn’t know why or when or how, so it is thrilling to just stubbornly refuse and feel kinship with their tribe by doing so.

        I have not wandered onto any sites where the trolls have started in on Rachel Maddow, but I bet they are saying negative things about her sincere apology.

  4. Anonymous June 20, 2018 at 8:26 am

    OT. It appears that the GOP strategist who brought Sarah Plain to the stage has considerable buyer’s remorse! The headline reads, Steve Schmidt Quits ‘Corrupt’ Party Of ‘Feckless Cowards,’ Will Vote For Democrats.

    • Anon June 20, 2018 at 2:11 pm

      Little too late bubba!

  5. Anin. June 20, 2018 at 8:58 am

    I love Rachel even more after last night. She reacted as we all should react. Just because her job is to report, some things push us beyond our training.
    I’m a peds nurse. I’ve cried, my peers have cried, my interdisciplinary colleagues have cried as we deliver bad news. We aren’t supposed to, because you never want a family or patient to feel like they need to comfort you. But we cry sometimes.we are humans.

  6. Anonymous June 20, 2018 at 10:21 am

    Go to Huffington Post and read Cruel and Unnevessary:toys are taken too. Then go to tomkiefer.com and look at the photos. They look just like those taken of the stacks of shoes and glasses the Nazis took from Concentration Camp victims. The only difference being ICE tosses their favorite most precious toy in a dumpster.

    The medical community is calling this child abuse and saying it will do irreversible harm.

    Steve Schmidt has renounced the Republican party, gone Independent and says he will vote for Democrats in November and urges all to do the same to save democracy in this country.

    And the Methodists are bringing Church Charges against Jeff Sessions for violating their Book of Discipline in the form of child abuse, immortality, racial discrimination and for citing Romans 13 to justify his policies. I guess that’s the Methodist version of excommunication. Not that Sessions will care. I’m sure the Southern Baptists will be glad to take him.

    I think the Pope needs to purge the Bible of all that fake apostle Paul crap, then lets see what’s left of the New Testament for the Talibangelicals to use to justify their hate.

    How is it Trump is still president? Is the GOP still waiting to see if all this will hurt them in November?

    • Anonymous June 20, 2018 at 11:16 am

      If you are not a fan of Jim Wright on twitter or Fecebook, I suggest you become one.
      He NAILS it; also a veteran.

    • Anon June 20, 2018 at 2:13 pm

      Now now, be nice to AntiChrist.

  7. Anonymous June 20, 2018 at 10:38 am

    The Trump Administration is causing thousands of children to suffer life altering trauma that will cause mental health issues like the children in Russian orphanages.
    Reactive Attachment Disorder is almost impossible to treat and very few come through the other side. Most end up in the criminal justice system for drugs and violent crimes.
    All the stuff Trump complains about he is causing more of the problem. He is a sick individual.

  8. Anonymous June 20, 2018 at 11:09 am

    Not only did Rachael have a difficult time, but Stephanie Ruhle had a tough time making it through any of her broadcasts yesterday without crying. Makes me love them even more.

  9. Anonymous June 20, 2018 at 11:37 am

    Correct me if I am wrong but didn’t the Nazi in chief argue that he could make the Muslim ban because as president he is in charge of immigration law?

    Now he is arguing it is the Democrat’s fault, Congress’s fault, the victim’s fault. Why hasn’t a journalist thrown that in his face? Why haven’t the Democrats spelled it out clearly the executive branch writes immigration law, so fix it?

    • Anonymous June 20, 2018 at 12:00 pm

      Because this is NOT Nazi-fucking-Germany, and if HE thinks he’s going to take over the people with this maiden voyage, he just found out he’s bit off more than he can chew.

  10. Anonymous June 20, 2018 at 11:43 am

    Is the trump organization getting contracts to build child prisons?

    Businesses Have Made Millions Off Trump’s Child Separation Policy. Contracts Signed Through 2022


  11. Anon June 20, 2018 at 11:57 am

    NRA TV twists Maddow’s tears are because she cares more about MS13 gang members than our kids murdered by them.

  12. Anon June 20, 2018 at 2:23 pm

    Russia is getting joy out of yet ANOTHER “headgame’ they play on the world.
    You know, the Millenials are inquiring minds. They want to know why the Central Bank opened in 1913 with help from Woodrow Wilson? I answered the boys question with the history of Russia in that time frame. What happened? Who sent gold bullion to the USA in 1914?
    Then, why the war and deaths? Smile!
    Hello Russia! We see you in plain sight!
    Inquiring minds will expose the racket!

  13. Anonymous June 20, 2018 at 3:46 pm

    Just as I thought, so the liar in chief thinks everyone is going to be fooled into thinking his hostage kids will be returned to their parents, instead they don’t plan on doing anything. In fact I heard a journalist on PBS assuming they would be re united, don’t assume anything with the thugs in the WH.

    Never let your guard down with donald the con.

    HHS Official Tells WH Reporter No Effort to Be Made To Reunite Kids With Parents.

    An official from Health and Human Services has just told White House Correspondent for CBS News Jacqueline Alemany that there will “not be special efforts made” to reunite kids already taken from their parents under asshole’s new Executive order.


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