Americans care about children. We get upset when we hear stories or see images of children in distress. The problem is, some in positions of power exploit that concern to achieve their political agendas. They use words and show images that don’t reflect the truth. This is currently happening on our southern border with reckless abandon. The Trump administration’s immigration priorities are toppling the dysfunctional status quo in Washington, and the open borders lobby is fighting back by using a playbook that has served it well for many years. They just used it again with the children on the border crisis story with great success.
The playbook goes something like this: Identify an issue, in this case, the immigration laws whereby children of illegal aliens were housed separately while their parents’ cases are being adjudicated. Then spread wild misrepresentations, sensationalism and flat-out lies about the targeted policy. Next, deploy fellow travelers in the media, entertainment and the pundit class to pile on manufactured outrage at the enforcers of such a purportedly sinister policy. After several days of scathing media coverage declaring the entire nation aghast at the policy, the president calms his panic-stricken congressional allies and seeks to appease the angry mob.
It’s played like a street hustler’s card game, and the American people are starting to realize that they are the sucker in the game.
People are getting wise to the kind of manipulation that took place with the children at the border. They see the absurd exploitation in the news, such as the publishing of photos suggesting that Trump policies put migrant children at the border in cages, until it was revealed that the photos were from the Obama era or not from the border at all. Migrant children in U.S. government custody, it turns out, are housed in very comfortable facilities with better food, housing, medical care and education services than many American children in low-income families receive. They see that foreigners are being coached by lawyers from open borders groups to say the “magic words” that trigger the asylum process, even though their claims may be dubious at best.
Americans do not want a two-tiered justice system which gives non-citizens more rights than themselves. They are sick of politicians who value the interests of foreigners over U.S. citizens. It has been an accepted part of the social contract in America that those who commit criminal acts face criminal penalties, including incarceration. U.S. citizens who break the law are sent to prison every day with little or no weight given to the fact that they may have children. Now we are told that non-citizens who break our laws should get special treatment because they have children. That is unfair—to Americans.
More Americans see that allowing unfettered, chaotic migration to America is not an act of kindness, but an irresponsible act that Americans suffer for on a daily basis. For every illegal alien who merely seeks better financial prospects—not grounds for asylum under U.S. law, it is worth noting—there are too many others who bring with them MS-13 gang membership, drug trafficking, violent crimes and murder. They see their local schools, hospitals and social services overwhelmed. Even when nonviolent aliens enter the country illegally, they often commit identity fraud with stolen social security numbers, which forces American citizens to repair the damage to their lives. Who in the media pleads the case for these innocents? Simply put, illegally entering our country is not a victimless crime.
Much to his credit, President Trump has vowed that zero-tolerance will continue alongside his executive order requiring migrant families to be kept together in government custody. Beyond a small group of stalwart Republicans in Congress, it seems the only person in Washington even considering the interests of the American people is President Trump and his pillars of immigration reform including a real border wall and ending chain migration and the visa lottery program. Citizens of other countries seemingly have more representation in Congress when it comes to immigration than do the citizens of this country. That is an absolute disgrace.
It is clear that the outrage being hurled at President Trump has almost nothing to do with concern for the children. It is merely the latest tactic by those who desire an open southern border, to the point that the United States can no longer be considered a nation of laws and borders. Now that migrant families will be reunited on the border, the next alleged crime against humanity will be that those families are being detained at all. Those who vilify Trump’s zero-tolerance enforcement are essentially giving a government subsidy to the child smuggling black market, which sees lucrative profits as more would-be asylum seekers are drawn to what they correctly see as an easy pass into America. Open borders do not help children, they put them in peril.
If those who claim a monopoly on caring for the children at the border really want to help them, the best thing they could do is to stop conning the American people while demonizing those who only want a safe, sovereign America. Stop the games and start working on real solutions.
Brian Lonergan is director of communications at the Immigration Reform Law Institute, a public interest law firm working to defend the rights and interests of the American people from the negative effects of illegal migration.
Also published at: Brian Lonergan, Americans have been played again by open-border advocates, The Hill, June 22, 2018