Biden’s immigration policy is killing people
The deaths of 53 illegal immigrants underscore the inhumanity of the Biden administration’s immigration policies.
The tragic death of 53 illegal frontier workers by suffocation in a semi-truck in Texas is a horrific reminder that the Biden administration’s immigration policies continue to act as an irresistible magnet, putting hundreds of thousands of migrants from countries around the world at risk of life and limb on a perilous journey, to reach our permeable southern border. The supply of would-be migrants is endless: people who place themselves and family members, sometimes even unaccompanied children, in the hands of criminal smugglers in order to make their way into the developed world.
Even if they are desperate, these illegal migrants still base their travel decisions on the message they receive from the authorities of the destination country. And this message from the Biden administration is completely irresponsible. Even as he acknowledges the mass asphyxiation deaths, DHS Secretary Mayorkas, one of the main architects of Biden’s destructive immigration policy, still refuses to use his megaphone to tell people not come because they are rejected.
Unwilling to acknowledge any responsibility, Mayorkas tweeted: “I am heartbroken today at the tragic loss of life and pray for those who are still fighting for their lives. Far too many lives have been lost as individuals — including families, women and children — embarked on this perilous journey.” Mayorkas knows they are making this “dangerous journey” because Biden’s policies promise entry into the US
In another era, genuine humanitarian voices on the left might have conjured up Mayorka’s hypocrisy, but for those who want to use open borders policies to reshape the world, immigration, legal or illegal, is always right – no matter what how much it undermines the rule of law or disrupts families and communities or actually dies along the way.
Instead of acknowledging responsibility for fueling illegal immigration and the resulting chaos and deaths, the Biden administration has gone full throttle, blurring the distinction between legal and illegal entry. As if current U.S. legal quotas, which take in about a million immigrants annually, aren’t generous enough, many in the Biden administration are hellbent on luring and taking in hundreds of thousands of illegal migrants who are on a “dangerous journey” to our South have traveled border.
Once these migrants reach the border, the Biden administration twists existing federal laws, using schemes like “catch and release” and distorted concepts like “public interest parole” to allow them to stay in the country. It is beyond sobering to see a President ruthlessly undermine due process and tell legal immigrants and their families in the US who may have waited years for legal admission that the rule of law really doesn’t matter in our country.
Aside from its impact on the United States, another result of these lawless immigration policies is the emergence of massive international criminal smuggling networks that move people as chattels. It’s not yet documented, but it’s likely that human smuggling became an even more profitable criminal enterprise during the Biden administration than illicit drug trafficking into the US. Such smuggling networks are responsible for countless unrecorded cases of human trafficking, extortion, enforced disappearances and deaths. Clandestine migration is not a victimless crime, and Mayorkas cannot pretend that he bears no responsibility for these tragedies.
An oft-repeated lie about our globalized world is the claim that rampant immigration is not only desirable, it is inevitable. Yet even a superficial comparison between Trump’s and Biden’s border policies makes it clear that a sustained and enforced White House message that the US is not open to illegal migrants has far-reaching implications.
Deaths and disappearances of illegal migrants in America rose from 798 in the Trump administration’s final year to 1,248 in Biden’s first year. This is impartial data compiled by the International Organization for Migration — not an ally of Trump — on migrants worldwide heading to and through America, most if not all of whom intend to enter the US. This increase in deaths directly reflects migrants’ travel decisions based on an open borders policy that Biden announced to the world upon his arrival at the White House.
When a president uses his rowdy pulpit and backs his word with a rigorous border security policy, his message will spread everywhere, from teeming cities in Pakistan to remote hamlets in Ecuador. A truly humanitarian immigration policy would not lure desperate migrants to our border, but would persuade them that there is a legal process, or no process at all. Minister Mayorkas should explain why his broken heart does not move him to advocate changing Biden’s anti-humanitarian immigration policy.
Philip Linderman is a retired career diplomat whose work for the State Department has often focused on US border security, international travel, and migration policy.