If 96 percent stay in the US, why not open the borders to young-looking migrants?

Considering migrants who’ve arrived since 2014, of those who have said that they were under 18 years old at the time of border crossing (as these folks are undocumented, there is no way to know their actual age), 96 percent are still in the U.S. according to “Hundreds of minors are crossing the border each day without their parents. Who are they?” (Washington Post):

Central American and Mexican children, tweens and teenagers traveling without parents are crossing the border in soaring numbers, once more creating a logistical and humanitarian emergency for the U.S. government.

If the climbing trend line continues, the Biden administration will take in record numbers of unaccompanied minors this month, an influx made more challenging by the coronavirus pandemic.

To accommodate the growing numbers and meet social distancing guidelines, the administration opened a tent facility in Carrizo Springs, Tex., last month. The Biden administration is planning to open additional tent sites in the coming weeks and is looking at Moffett Field in California, Fort Lee in Virginia and other federal properties where it can set up temporary shelters.

Most unaccompanied minors cross the border into the Rio Grande Valley of South Texas. Some try to evade capture after crossing, but most seek out U.S. border agents to begin the process of making a humanitarian claim.

The odds of being deported are low. DHS statistics show that just 4.3 percent of the 290,000 minors who have crossed the border without a parent since 2014 have been returned to their countries. Of the rest, 52 percent had immigration cases pending. An additional 28 percent had been granted humanitarian protection by U.S. courts and 16 percent had been ordered to leave, but lacked a confirmed departure or deportation.

Most of these folks will end up on a lifetime of means-tested “not welfare” government programs, e.g., public housing, Medicaid, SNAP (“food stamps” or “EBT“), and Obamaphone. Why add to the working taxpayers’ burden by funding immigration courts, lawyers, border guards (the “welcoming committee” since the minors do not try to avoid being “captured”), and detention facilities (#TentsNotCages?) if the almost inevitable result is the “minor” staying?

Separately, should we be funding hot drinks from Chocolate Mayordomo for migrants passing through Oaxaca (photo from a 2005 trip)?

Also from 2005, modern-day migrants repopulate, at least during the daytime, a city that had been abandoned for more than 1,000 years (Monte Alban):

4 thoughts on “If 96 percent stay in the US, why not open the borders to young-looking migrants?

  1. The real losers are not the people who read this blog, who are probably winners, but low paid workers subject to competitive wage pressure. So if you are affluent (& have no great feelings of loyalty to the deplorables, who will be the ones fighting to protect you in the next war) the downward pressure on workers’ wages is a winner. Your avocado toast can be delivered more cheaply. In the past the labor unions would have opposed this mass immigration by the uneducated but there isn’t much of that left in the private sector since manufacturing jobs have been offshored. The remaining unions are public sector and they love this sort of thing since it creates public sector jobs to provide services for these people and more public sector union power.

  2. We live in a country where even relatively wealthy kids cannot go and take their spring break vacation without wrecking the place and having the city have to call a state of emergency. Anything and everything goes. We live in crazytown from one end of our society to the to the other, and whatever will be will be. We’re basically a failed state that is keeping itself running because of the militarization of our police forces, but everything else is a disaster (even Larry Summers says so.) Mission accomplished, we’re going to reinvent the Third World.


  3. There are two groups of people who cross the border illegally: Those who come here because they imagine there’s an America that looked like it did in the 1960s. There are the rest who come here because they know they’re going to have the government take care of them. Group I is much smaller, and they’re also deluded. America is in deep, deep trouble and it is allowing this to happen because the donks in the government do not care about anything except being reelected to their “last lifeboat” jobs.

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