President Trump was elected in large part due to his emphasis to potential voters on building “the wall” on the US-Mexican border. However, Trump’s words have been shown to be nothing more than political rhetoric. This was shown to be true first because of the fact that Trump had his wall prototypes knocked down, and then he has gone on to allow the Border Patrol to continue the previous and long-established policy of “catch and release” according to a report:
So many asylum seekers have recently crossed the Mexican border into Texas that the Border Patrol has started releasing those it catches.
One local official said there were 2,000 more migrants in McAllen alone than authorities in the city of 142,600 could handle.
“We need to find something today,” McAllen City Manager Roel Rodriguez warned late Tuesday, according to The Monitor, a local newspaper.
The situation has become so dire that some of the migrants are simply being dropped at the local bus station — where they could be seen lined up holding information packets from Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley.
Fifty migrants were let go Tuesday and several hundred more were scheduled for release.
Normally, the Border Patrol would transfer the migrants to Immigration and Customs Enforcement to be “processed” and in many cases placed in detention facilities.
But officials said that both agencies had run out of space due to a recent increase in the number of Central American families seeking asylum from violence in their home countries.
Sister Norma Pimentel, executive director of Catholic Charities, the group that runs the respite center where many migrants are staying, pleaded with authorities to stop leaving people at the bus depot.
“I told them, please just bring them here, you can’t keep dropping them off at the bus station,” Pimentel told The Monitor. “It would be chaos.”
Pro-immigration activists called the mass releases a political stunt to create a crisis atmosphere ahead of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen’s visit to Texas on Thursday.
“This is also coming shortly before a visit … by DHS Secretary Nielsen,” the Texas Civil Rights Project tweeted.
Zenen Jaimes Perez, advocacy director for TCRP, said the group sent lawyers to the McAllen bus station to advise migrants.
“Why do this now? It doesn’t make sense,” Perez told the Los Angeles Times.
“This is not something they’ve done before.”
He said the feds had dealt with bigger groups of migrants in the recent past.
A Border Patrol official denied that the release was politically motivated and said overcrowding the facilities would threaten the safety of agents and migrants.
“It is a crisis,” the official told the LA Times. “It’s not a self-proclaimed crisis.”
Border Patrol plans to make similar releases along other parts of the border, he said.
In February, the Border Patrol caught 66,450 migrants, a 38 percent increase from January and one of the highest monthly totals of the last decade. More than half of those detained were parents and children.
More migrants were apprehended at the border in February than in any month since 2007, and the influx does not seem to be slowing in March.
President Trump and other immigration hard-liners argue that migrants who are released into the populace almost universally skip their court dates.
According to the Justice Department’s statistics, 39 percent skipped their initial court date in fiscal year 2016, down from 43 percent the previous year. (source, source)
This is not a surprise at all. As we have noted, the issue with the border is a non-issue because it is but the mere continuation of the currently-existing policy.
It is true there are problems on the Mexican border, and that these problems are able to be solved. The reason they are not being solved and why they will not be solved is because it is not politically expedient to do so for either party, which use the issue and the people affected in order to advance their own power and interests. When one adds to this the fact of the existence of the narcocarteles, which it is a known fact that many are outright backed by the US government, and that the US is close to Central America, and that the US wants illegal foreign labor from those nations in order to support their agricultural policies as a part of US foreign policy.
What Trump is doing is not special. He is just following the pattern of his predecessors and that of US foreign policy for decades, including Obama, Bush, and Clinton.
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