Washington, DC – The parents of a teenage girl who was brutally murdered by MS-13 gang members spoke out against “disrespectful” Democrats who refused to honor their daughter’s memory at President Trump’s State of the Union speech on Tuesday night.
In his 2018 address, the president specifically recognized Elizabeth Alvarado and Robert Mickens, the parents of 15-year-old Nisa Mickens, as well as Evelyn Rodriguez and Freddy Cuevas, the parents of 16-year-old Kayla Cuevas.
"These two precious girls were brutally murdered while walking together in their hometown," President Trump said during his address. "Six members of the savage MS-13 gang have been charged with Kayla and Nisa's murders."
“Many of these gang members took advantage of glaring loopholes in our laws to enter the country as illegally unaccompanied alien minors, and wound up in Kayla and Nisa's high school," the president continued. “I am calling on the Congress to finally close the deadly loopholes that have allowed MS-13, and other criminals, to break into our country.”
The president looked up at the girls’ parents as they sat in First Lady Melania Trump’s box.
"We cannot imagine the depth of your sorrow, but we can make sure that other families never have to endure this pain," he said, while the girls’ parents struggled to hold back tears.
“Everyone in America is grieving for you,” the President said. "I want you to know that 320 million hearts are, right now, breaking for you."
But not everyone in chambers rose in honor and applause.
On Wednesday, Nisa’s parents, Elizabeth Alvarado and Robert Mickens, sat down with FOX News to discuss their reactions to the lack of respect they experienced from some of the members in attendance.
“I felt it was very disrespectful,” Mickens said. “For the simple fact that the Democrats who … did not stand up were African Americans. So that hurts me a lot to show that they did not have the respect to honor my daughter.”
“Regardless of how they feel about the President, they should show the respect,” he continued. “I would show them the respect if that was their loved one.”
The couple also addressed comments made by MSNBC host Joy Reid, who sharply criticized the president for his statements about the MS-13 gang.
“He gives a speech tonight, in which he makes it sound like the biggest issue in the United States, the biggest threat is MS-13, a gang nobody that doesn’t watch Fox News has ever heard of,” Reid mocked. “So he makes it sound like they’re the biggest threat.”
“I have no words,” Alvarado said after she watched a clip of Reid’s dismissive conclusions. “I mean, these are gang members that decided to be a judge and a jury to take my daughter out like that. It’s unacceptable. I don’t want it to happen to anybody else’s family. But, something needs to be done. And I won’t stop doing what I’m doing until everything turns out right.”
She said that the president took the time to personally meet with them at the White House prior to his speech, and that she gave him a specially-made pin in memory of Nisa.
“To have the president acknowledge my daughter and us means a lot to me, my family, the community and America,” Mickens told Newsday after President Trump’s address.