A Texas charity’s plan to house some of the immigrant children who have come to the U.S. from central America has been scrapped, thanks to conservative media.
Baptist Child and Family Services (BCFS) began operating as an orphanage for Hispanic children in 1944. BCSF Health and Human Services was granted a federal contract to renovate the Palm Aire Hotel and Suites to house children that are currently being held in a temporary detention center at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio. The intention was to create a dormitory style setting, similar to the dorms at Lackland. The facility would be totally self-contained, and would even have its own health care staff so that sick children would not have to be taken to local hospitals for treatment.
Of course, when right wing media got ahold of the story, the plan became something else entirely. Breitbart.com called the plan a “$50 million illegal alien resort spa.” Fox News contributor Todd Starnes wrote:
The Palm Aire Hotel is not exactly Club Med — but the 7-acre site features three swimming pools, lighted tennis courts, concierge service and a Jacuzzi. The property also has around 10,000 square feet of retail and meeting space.
The Gateway Pundit blog posted a story headlined “FEDS TO OPEN $50 MILLION RESORT FOR ILLEGAL CHILDREN – Complete With Tennis Courts, Sauna & Pools.”
Fox News host Gretchen Carlson said that the immigrant children would be “living the American dream on the taxpayer’s dime.” Here’s how Carlson covered the story on her Fox News show, “The Real Story”:
In response to the lies and distortions presented in conservative media, BCFS announced that it was withdrawing its plan to renovate the hotel. According to KRGV TV, BCFS issued a statement on July 16 saying it was dropping the planned purchase and refurbishing of the hotel due to “negative backlash caused by information misreported to the public.”