A Dangerous Border

The notion that the border is dangerous is used to rally the troops into a frenzy for border security. Interesting is that the United States has two land borders and two oceans, not to mention air corridors. Actual attacks against the United States have come from land, sea and air. Of those, only a small cross border raid came from México; Pancho Villa’s raid at Columbus New Mexico. The Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor from the air. The British invaded from the sea. Most terrorists flew into America with a few crossing the border – the Canadian border that is. But the notion that the U.S.-México border is dangerous persists.

Why is that?

I was recently sent a Tucker Carlson video monologue where Carlson discusses what is driving the border security debacle today. Carlson starts out by explaining how the “progressives” are anti-immigrants and for border fences but not walls. He is right, but for the wrong reasons. Tucker Carlson uses the anti-immigration rhetoric of Cesar Chavez and the United Farm Workers as his proof that the Democrats and the “progressives” are anti-immigrant.

Tucker Carlson is correct in pointing out that Chavez was anti-immigrant and that he has been adopted by the “progressives” as a model of their movement. Carlson, like most, twist facts to make their point.

Chavez was anti-immigrant for the simple reason that immigrants compete for jobs. Unions are anti-immigrant for the same reason. It is discrimination based on economics rather than the skin color.

The Democrats, like their brethren, the Republicans use immigrants as pawns on national policy.

Tucker Carlson argues that the driving issue behind the Democrat’s refusal to fund Donald Trump’s border wall is about “power”.

Carlson is right, but for the wrong reasons, again.

Tucker Carlson argues in his monologue that the Democrats want to add voters to their voting rolls in the form of new immigrants, “millions” of them.

The Democrats are refusing to fund The Wall for power – the power to keep Donald Trump from proclaiming a “win” on his signature promise to his base. It is not about a wall on the border. The Democrats, after all, funded the existing fence on the border.

The issue is about The Wall. Note the capitalization between “The Wall” and “wall” I use on my posts?

The reason behind it is because it points out the difference between Trump’s “Wall” and the existing fence along the border or even a wall on the border.

The Democrats, the unions and even Republicans have no problem with a “wall” because it serves various domestic policy issues. Among them sovereignty, border control, smuggling and the scourge of drugs. I’d even buy into the idea of a wall when those pushing it forth acknowledge that it is about keeping economic immigrants out of the country – those looking for work.

The Trump Wall, on the other hand, is about stigmatizing people for their culture, their language and sometimes the color of their skin. Donald Trump may not have meant The Wall to be a racist, but he made it so by stating Mexicans are “rapists” and telling everyone that “Mexico will pay” for The Wall.

That chants of “Mexico will pay” for The Wall at his rallies are driven by fear, xenophobia and even racism by some.

That’s what makes The Wall versus fence/wall different.

But Tucker Carlson is right about the “power” play between the Democrats, the Republicans and Donald Trump. Note that it is a three-way power play.

Like before “fear” is the narrative that tries to convince Americans that México is dangerous to America.

But the facts simply do not support the “fear”.

Anti-immigrant and xenophobic online magazine Breitbart recently posted a “leaked” FBI report tying to prove that the U.S.-México border is a dangerous place. Again, spinning facts to serve a political agenda. Breitbart’s FBI “leaked” document purports to show that most terrorists are caught in the state’s bordering México. However, the “analysis” by Breitbart ignores fundamental realities about population densities and how the government collects the data. It also ignores the fact that the terrorist “watchlist” is not a list of actual terrorists, but rather a collection of data points that may show someone is a terrorist, even if they are not.

But in its zeal to drive its agenda, Breitbart, like everyone else ignores the facts with in the data.

The most important one being that the vast majority of those on the report are not intercepted on land, but via airlines from various parts of the world and, even, on domestic airliners, meaning that they are already in the country. Even the very few interdicted via land, are mostly arriving from the Canadian border.

The “encounter” map proudly displayed by Breitbart is color coded green, yellow and red presumably using red to demonstrate more terrorist suspect activities then the green states. California is red as well as Texas. Arizona is yellow. New Mexico, on the other hand is green.

But Breitbart uses California and Texas to make the case that terrorists are pouring over the U.S.-México border. They conveniently add Arizona, which is yellow. Although they also conveniently ignore that the colors do not represent land crossings what is most telling about the false narrative is that Florida, Illinois, Michigan and New York are also red. Minnesota and Washington State are also yellow.

So, if it is about “dangerous” border crossings where is the call to build a border wall on the Canadian border? After all Illinois, Michigan and New York, all red border Canada, not to mention the yellow states of Washington and Minnesota that also border Canada.

If it is about keeping America safe why not talk about Canada?

But, but its more than terrorism, its about drugs and crime.

So, let’s rank states by their homicide rates per 100,000 population. How many states that border México do you think are on the top ten, or top twenty? For 2017, only two states bordering México are on the top twenty states with the highest homicide rate in 2017. They were Arizona and New Mexico.

So much for the dangerous border.

But, but it’s about crime.

Ok, so let’s look at the crimes per 100,000 per state. Looking at the rates of violent crime and property crime collected by the FBI, we find that only one state that border’s México is on the top-twenty crime list. It is California, which has two cities on the top-twenty; Oakland (6) and Stockton (8).

So much for the notion of crime along the border.

But, but, it’s about the drugs.

There is no disputing that 90% of the drugs come via México.

But here is the inconvenient fact.

According to DEA’s own assessment of the importation of drugs, “the most common method employed by Mexican TCOs involves transporting drugs in vehicles through U.S. ports of entry.” That is a quote from the 2016 National Drug Threat Assessment produced by the DEA.

So much for the notion that a border wall will stop the drugs dead on their tracks.

But Tucker Carlson is right about the dangers of the border narrative being about “power”.

It is the power to misuse information and fear to drive a public policy agenda.

The embracing of immigrants by the Democrats now is about “power.” The use of fear mongering is also about power, the “power” to drive a xenophobe domestic policy.

Missing in all the noise are the facts.

The only indisputable fact is that the southern border is NOT dangerous to Americans.

Advertisements