Country music star Willie Nelson has weighed in on the crisis of unaccompanied minors entering the United States illegally through the southern border.
“I’ve been watching, and the only thing we can do is take care of those kids, whatever it takes,” Nelson said in an interview with Rolling Stone published Thursday. “Take them in, give them some medical attention. I’m sure there are homes all over the country that would be glad to take care of one or two kids.”
Since October approximately 63,000 unaccompanied minors have been detained illegally crossing the U.S. southern border, overwhelming government resources and resulting in a humanitarian crisis.
According to the “On the Road Again” singer, the unaccompanied minors are “scared” and the situation represents a good opportunity for America to help.
“They’re being mistreated. And it’s not a good way to start off your life. But it’s a good opportunity for us to show a little bit of humanitarianism and take care of those kids,” Nelson told Rolling Stone. “I know a lot of people want to send them back. I guess the closer you are to the situation, the more extreme emotions you have about it, but it seems to me the old golden rule, ‘Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,’ or ‘treat other people like you want to be treated’… Treat those kids like they were your kids.”
Rolling Stone noted that the publication conducted the interview while Obama was in Austin and without plans to visit the border. The singer-songwriter said that he thinks Obama should visit the border.
“I think he should have gone to the border,” Nelson said. “To be that close and not go is kind of crazy, I think. But I’m sure he had all kinds of advisers, and he quit listening to me a long time ago.”
He added that he has been frustrated with Congress’s unwillingness to work with Obama and noted that he is friends with Rick Perry, whom he called “a good guy.”