The “Reality” of Unauthorized Immigration

2018-06-14 – For all the political hoo-hah about unauthorized immigration, the numbers make me question how much of a problem it is at all. I think it is more of a creation of the mainstream media. Yes, the folks who are supposed to be undermining America at the behest of the liberal elite have (once again) provided fodder for the Alt-right.

How many unauthorized immigrants are there in this country? The number hovers just over 11 million. The number hit just over 12 million during the Bush administration and then began to drop slightly. Don’t get excited to say that this was Obama’s doing. The drop started before Obama was elected. Obama’s record on immigration is not unblemished.

The U.S. population now stands at about 325 million. That means that the total of unauthorized immigrants represents less than 3.4% of the population. A lot of these folks have been here for a long time. Some were children at the time (DACA kids) and some are children now. The numbers coming in are pretty low. So here is the question.

How big a threat is 3.4%? Probably not as much as people are making it out to be. So why is it such a big political gimmick?

Because most of these immigrants live in media centers. For the most part, these people go to California, Texas, Florida, New York, New Jersey and Illinois. Media people see them and they do stories. They expand the “reality” of the situation. And the media does stories about refugees around the world and conflate the American situation with the rest-of-the-world situation and with stories about drugs and guns and terrorism.

It would be pretty scary, if it were a realistic picture. It is not.

I live in an immigrant community. I’m not saying that the immigrants here are illegal. Probably most are not. But legal immigrants tend to be ethnically similar to those who are unauthorized. I see families. I see parents working hard. I see them delivering their kids to the school across the street from me. Parents have accents from their native languages. Kids do not. It’s the old American story.

These are the kinds of kids who are being separated from their parents at our border and put into cages.

For what?

It’s not going to make much of a dent in employment figures. We’re talking a pretty small number of people. It’s not going to make much of a dent in crime. Immigrants tend to have a lower crime rate than native populations. If anything, diverting law enforcement from real crime to immigration will tend to increase crime.

It is entirely political. A solution without a problem.

If a non-state actor stole kids and put them in cages, you would call them . . . what? ISIS? Boko Haram?

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