Illegal Immigrants and Crime: What’s the Answer?

I don’t comment often about political issues, but something jarred me today.

First, let me clarify my thinking on the foundational issue. A foreign national who enters the US – or any nation – by means other than those set forth by the country entered has committed an illegal act. Committing an illegal act is a crime. Committing a crime makes one a criminal. I liken it to trespassing in essence and response. By the latter, I mean that the response to entering the US illegally should be the handled similarly to our response to a trespasser. We have them leave. We don’t detain them; we don’t physically punish them. We escort them off our property. Now if they continue to trespass, our response may have to change, but that’s another post.

When illegal aliens trespass (a crime) and then commit other crimes against our citizens and others here legally, my response is still the same: Send them home. I want as little money and time spent on illegal aliens as possible which includes our criminal justice system. We can deport them and if their homeland wants to allow them to remain free, that’s their business.

Here’s what got me on this tangent in the first place:  The Texas Numbers.  In Texas alone

642,000
The number of criminal offense charges of illegal immigrants between 2007 – 13*

68,151
The number of assault charges of illegal immigrants between 2011 – 17

6,098
The number of sexual assault charges of illegal immigrants between 2011 – 17

1,162
The number of homicide charges of illegal immigrants between 2011 – 17

That is one of the United States. There are 49 more.

The rest of the nation felt the impact of crimes committed by illegal immigrants as well. In 2015 alone, 36.6 of all federal sentences of convicted criminals were for illegal aliens for crimes such as drug trafficking, kidnapping, and murder. I am sure I would be staggered by the price tag for the due process these individuals received.

Despite these numbers – and others –  between 2013 – 2015 officials in the previous administration released 86, 288 criminal illegal immigrants back into society.  They were not sent home, they were turned loose in the US. Lest someone read this and decide that these numbers are inflated with felony jaywalkers, litterbugs, and fire lane parkers, I will go “halves” with you.

If only half of those released from prison were drug dealers, killers, and kidnappers, that’s over 43,000 felons.  That reduced number is large enough to put 13 of these persons in every one of the 3,077 counties in America. Raise your hand if you want that criminal element added to the existing one in your city or town.  Remember: We reduced the original number by half. The average could be over 25 felons per county. Do you want that many convicted criminals living illegally in your county and relying on tax-payer funded aid programs?

The “halves” thing got me thinking. Go back to the Texas numbers. I’m doing this because some will look at the list and say “Oh, those are just charges. Not all of those resulted in convictions”.

321,000 (half of 642,000)
The number of criminal offense charges of illegal immigrants between 2007 – 13

34,075 (half of 68,151)
The number of assault charges of illegal immigrants between 2011 – 17

3049 (half of 6,098)
The number of sexual assault charges of illegal immigrants between 2011 – 17

581 (half of 1,162)
The number of homicide charges of illegal immigrants between 2011 – 17

Do these numbers still seem high to you? They should. Because they represent people like you and me. Someone’s father or mother or daughter or son or spouse. People who were killed or hurt by someone that shouldn’t be here.

If I want to enter another country, I get to do it on their terms, not mine. If I ignore their terms then I am subject to the penalties for doing so. If I dare commit a crime in another country that I have entered legally, then I should not balk at any effort their government expends to punish me for my crime. Much more so if I should dare to enter that country illegally and commit a crime.

Federal and state government infrastructures are overwhelmed without the added burden of people entering the U.S. illegally. The criminal justice system is overtaxed before adding the burden of illegal immigrant criminal activity.  The cost of illegal immigration is enormous in dollars and other resources.

I have no issue with people who want to come to America. Yet, citizenship has to mean something. That’s true for any nation, but we are the United States of America and that does mean something…or it should…and it used to. There is a reason why people want to come here. Despite our problems, we are the best thing going for many peoples of the world. John Adams said, “We are a nation of laws, not of men.” He was right. Yes, laws can be inconvenient, but necessary for the common good; the sustained common good. That includes immigration law.

I’ll be accused of failing to appreciate the plight of our southern neighbors who want to come here. Admittedly, I don’t know a lot about the economy, healthcare, employment, government corruption, education in central American nations. But I know about ours. If we do nothing to curb illegal immigration, the only result will be a crushing financial burden that will wreck our economy. At that point, we will be able to help no one. If we want to be able to help anyone, we must control immigration in a manner that is responsible and sustainable.

A secure border does not mean that no one gets into the country. It means the country controls who gets in. And who doesn’t.

 

 

 

*An average of one crime per hour for seven years.

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