By: Lisa M. Hayes – Confluence Daily is your daily news source for women in the know.
Q: Why are these illegals OUR problem?
First of all, the majority of them are not illegal.
It is not illegal to seek asylum.
You arrive at the southern U.S. border. You ask the border officer for help, you say you are afraid. Or, you cross the border and turn yourself into officials. The moment you request protection, you are an asylum seeker. America’s laws require that you be granted an interview with an asylum officer, in which you will need to show a “credible fear” that the persecution you claim is real.
The problem is most of the determinations regarding asylum seekers at this point as being made on a dime. In light of Trump’s recent policies that substantive majority, if not all, are being denied without due process. That failure of due process is the fault of the U.S., not the asylum seekers.
Q: If a person arrives on US soil and claims asylum, does the US have to deal with their claim under international law?
Yes. Not only does the US have an international legal obligation to do so, based on the requirement of complying with the object and purpose of the 1951 Refugee Convention, and implementing legal obligations in good faith, it has an obligation to do so under its own domestic law.
The executive order cannot displace domestic legal obligations. So those who, with great difficulty, manage to reach the US will have to have their asylum claims examined. The duty not to return a person to a state where they may face torture or other serious harms is absolute under the UN’s Convention Against Torture. The US has signed and ratified this convention.
Q: What about the people who are sneaking across the border and failing to follow the laws and due process for gaining entry?
There is no process for due entry. At this point, immigrants and asylum seekers are being told if they enter the border at legal entry points they will not be separated from their families, (read we won’t steal your children). However, those entry points are closed. They arrive at the legal entry points and are turned away. This is a direct violation of international law, but Trump’s current policy has closed the Southern borders to asylum seekers.
At that point, your choice is to turn around with your family and figure something else out. The options are virtually non-existent.
Federal agents, prosecutors, defense attorneys and migrants themselves say that traffickers have begun recruiting undocumented immigrants at the border, both voluntarily and forcibly. Now, U.S. courts along the border have to decide what to do with terrified immigrants who come before them and say, “The cartel made me do it.”
“They hit us, threw us on the ground, searched us and took our money,” Rodolfo said at the Pecos Criminal Justice Center in Pecos, Texas. “Then they told us if we didn’t smuggle drugs for them, they would kill us. They didn’t give us any other option.”
So that’s what Rodolfo and Jose Luis did. They each shouldered a 50-pound backpack full of marijuana and carried it across the dry riverbed into Presidio County, Texas. The cartel guide who accompanied them carried a radio, but no weapon. So as soon as they were out of sight of the border, they dropped the dope in the brush and high-tailed it north. The next morning, Border Patrol agents found them tromping through the desert and arrested them for illegal entry.
Immigrants and children of immigrants are also fodder for the cartels for human trafficking rings. Mexican drug cartels have identified a lucrative niche of opportunity in the geostrategic position of Mexico as “bridge country” for migration flows towards the U.S., and are now actively exploiting it. These organizations have vigorously seized the human smuggling activities in the southern and northern borders of Mexico, and have transformed them into diverse forms of trafficking and exploitation.
The risks of falling prey to the cartels at the border are very high and should be a stand-alone reason to be considered for asylum.
Q: Why would we let illegals in from the Southern Border considering the higher risk of crime that comes with them?
Data on immigrants and crime are incomplete, but a range of studies show there is no evidence immigrants commit more crimes than native-born Americans. In fact, first-generation immigrants are predisposed to lower crime rates than native-born Americans. (The Center for Immigration Studies, which advocates for restrictive immigration laws, has a detailed report showing the shortfalls of immigrant crime data.)
Immigration and crime levels have had inverse trajectories since the 1990s: immigration has increased, while crime has decreased. Some experts say the influx of immigrants contributed to the decrease in crime rates, by increasing the denominator while not adding significantly to the numerator.
Q: Why Don’t They Just Get In Line?
There Is No Line for Many Unauthorized Immigrants.
Immigration to the United States on a temporary or permanent basis is generally limited to three different routes: employment, family reunification, or humanitarian protection. While the U.S. immigration system is generous, each of these possibilities is highly regulated and subject to numerical limitations and eligibility requirements. Most unauthorized immigrants do not have the necessary family or employment relationships and often cannot access humanitarian protection, such as refugee or asylum status.
Lisa M. Hayes, Senior Editor of Confluence Daily.
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