Authored by: Matt Palumbo
While combating illegal immigration has long been a bipartisan issue, the so-called anti-Trump “resistance” has decided that guilt tripping anyone who supports a sensible immigration policy is a viable political strategy. We’ve all heard the arguments; that opposing illegal immigration is preventing people from “just looking for a better life,” or over the past few months, is “separating families.” And of course there’s the most common insult, that enforcing immigration laws is “racist.”
But are America’s immigration laws, or our treatment of illegal immigrants uniquely awful?
To answer that question, let’s examine the situation in another nation: Mexico.
Mexico Rejects More Asylum Requests than the U.S.
Speaking of the rise in asylum request rejections under Trump, a writer at the American-Statesman noted a “dramatic” change. They write, “Immigration judges, who are employed by the Justice Department and not the judicial branch like other federal judges, rejected 61.8 percent of asylum cases decided in 2017, the highest denial rate since 2005.”
Meanwhile in Mexico, nearly 90 percent of asylum requests are denied (and the figures are similarly high for other Latin American countries, such as El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala).
Mexico Regulates Immigration Based on Race
I only bring this up, because for all the rhetoric about Trump’s supposed racism or disdain for certain immigrants, there is one country that does regulate their immigration flows by race, and that’s the country Trump is most accused of being racist against.
In Article 37 of Mexico’s General Law of Population, we learn that their Department of the Interior shall be able to deny foreigners entry into Mexico, if, among other reasons, they may disrupt the “domestic demographic equilibrium.” Additionally, Article 37 also states that immigrants can be removed if they’re detrimental to “economic or national interests.”
Mexico Deports More Central American Illegal Immigrants than the United States
In July 2014, former Mexican president, Enrique Peña Nieto and former president of Guatemala Otto Pérez Molina, announced the start of a migration security project called Plan Frontera Sur (Southern Border Plan). The U.S. has committed at least $100 million towards this plan to help aid Mexican border security, because it’s mutually beneficial. Both Mexico and the U.S. want to keep out Central American illegal immigrants (and they have to pass through Mexico to reach the U.S.)..
Since Plan Frontera Sur, Mexico has deported more central American illegal immigrants than we have in the U.S. Even CNN had to acknowledge that:
According to statistics from the US and Mexican governments compiled by the nonpartisan Migration Policy Institute, Mexico in 2015 apprehended tens of thousands more Central Americans in its country than the US did at its border, and in 2015 and 2016 it deported roughly twice as many Central Americans as the US did.
Since migrant children are the hot-button topic in the American immigration debate currently; In 2014 there were 18,169 migrant children were deported from Mexico, and 8,350 deported to Central America the year before. From January 2015 to July 2016, 39,751 unaccompanied minors were put in the custody of Mexican authorities.
A report this year from Amnesty International concluded that “Mexican migration authorities are routinely turning back thousands of people from Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala to their countries without considering the risk to their life and security upon return, in many cases violating international and domestic law by doing so.”
Mexico Has Their Own Southern Border – and Invisible Wall
For us much as Donald Trump is criticized by the political class in Mexico for wanting to beef up security on the U.S.-Mexico border, as previously mentioned, Mexico has accepted our help in enforcing their immigration laws on their own southern border with Guatemala. While they don’t have a literal border fence, they do have checkpoints, patrols, raids, etc. According to NPR:
Rather than amassing troops on its border with Guatemala, Mexico stations migration agents, local and federal police, soldiers and marines to create a kind of containment zone in Chiapas state. With roving checkpoints and raids, Mexican migration agents have formed a formidable deportation force.
Is there any criticism of American immigration laws that can’t be made of Mexico?