Border security has become one of the great political issues of our time, with conservatives insisting we need to properly guard our frontiers while liberals swing between saying illegal immigrants are good for the country and claiming that there aren’t many of them anyway. Now the people who actually protect our borders have weighed in with a new report — and they say there’s a crisis.
A new report issued by the United States Border Patrol this week demolishes any argument that our country is being properly protected from the dangers of illegal immigration.
- According to the report, “The entire system right now is at full capacity. Actually, it’s overwhelmed.” Last month Border Patrol agents caught more than 66,000 people trying to enter the US across our border with Mexico. That’s the highest single-month total in nearly 10 years.
- The Border Patrol says loopholes in the law, plus the outcome of court cases brought by pro-immigration activists, are changing patterns of migration and making it harder to keep illegals out.
- The 2008 Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act is one law that’s created an unforeseen problem. It orders the Border Patrol to hand unaccompanied alien children — unless they’re Mexican — to the Department of Health and Human Services, who lets them enter the US until they can have an immigration court hearing. The problem is these hearings usually take years to arrange.
- Then there’s a 2015 court case that forces the Department of Homeland Security to release all children from custody, even if they’re accompanied by their families.
- It shouldn’t have been hard to predict the results of these decisions. Firstly, the 2008 Act is being exploited by the so-called “migrant caravans” that have been assaulting our border. These gangs are mostly made up of Hondurans and Guatemalans — so, being non-Mexican, if their younger members can get across the border they’re guaranteed at least a few years in the US.
- Secondly, there’s been a huge spike in the number of children being brought across the border. In February 2017, 27% of illegals intercepted at the southern border were families or unaccompanied children. Last month — just two years later — that figure had rocketed up to 62%.
- Human traffickers and other lawbreakers are smart and adapt quickly. If we bring in laws that make it easier to get into — and stay in — the US, they’ll quickly exploit them. We need to make life easier for our over-stretched Border Patrol by writing laws that help them do their job — and building a wall to cut down the number of crossing attempts.