With the Thai cave rescue mission now at a close, Stephen Colbert called it “a great story that gives everyone hope and reminds us of the importance of permission slips for field trips to flooded caves.” Jokes aside, the host of The Late Show said President Trump could learn something from this rescue effort.
On June 23, 12 boys from the Wild Boars soccer team in Thailand, as well as their coach, became trapped deep inside a cave when rising waters barred their escape. After more than two weeks with international aid efforts, including from the Thai Navy SEALs, they were all finally extracted.
“Are you listening, Mr. President? Freeing children makes people like you,” Colbert said. “Meanwhile, the United States is still imprisoning thousands of migrant children that were taken from their parents.”
According to The New York Times, a federal judge in California rejected the Trump administration’s efforts to enact long-term detentions of migrant families. The judge also required the government to reunite detained children age 5 and under with their parents by Tuesday, but government lawyers said they were only able to vet the parents of 54 children out of 102.
“When they separated the families, there was no reunification plan in place,” Colbert said. “So there are 48 toddlers still in cages. These kids would have a better chance of being reunited with their parents if they went spelunking with a Thai soccer coach.”
Citing the same Times report, Colbert then took aim at how the staff of these child detention facilities have been instructed to reunite the children with their families. “According to reports, in an effort to avoid media and protesters, staff at child detention centers have been instructed that they are to put the children in vans and take them to locations that are as yet unknown to them. So we’re at the point, as a nation, where the good news is that the government is throwing kids into unmarked vans.”
As a reference to Stephen King’s It monster, he added, “Next we’re supposed to be cheering on America’s heroic sewer clowns.”
Watch Colbert in the clip above.