Illegal immigration on the rise: Is Biden to blame?

Thanks to increasingly polarized views, immigration has been a controversial topic in American politics, especially this last decade. Opposing views on immigration were exacerbated during the Trump Administration. Anti-immigration sentiment caused immigration laws to become more strict, which led to an uptick in illegal immigration.

When Biden took office, his administration promised many positive things for migrants and an easier way of becoming a legal American citizen. Biden’s proposal promised an earned, 8-year pathway to citizenship, to update the immigration system to keep families together, work on and revise employment-based visas, and increase the number of diversity visas.

As we’re nearing the end of 2023, it wouldn’t be remiss to think that Biden’s actual policies he has put in place have done little to ease the surge of illegal immigration, nor has he made any significant advancement in his promises.

Julia Ainsley, a reporter for NBC News, details, “The number of migrants illegally crossing the U.S.-Mexico border has risen steadily since the start of September, according to two Department of Homeland Security officials, with Border Patrol apprehending more than 7,500 migrants on Sunday alone. In July, the latest month for which official data is available, the number of daily apprehensions of illegal border crossers averaged just over 4,300.”

In 2023 alone there have been 223,570 deportation orders. Photo courtesy of Raymond, Wambsgans, Flicker

Biden’s attempts to mitigate the problems with immigration have not been very effective, because if it was, migrants would cross the border legally.

My stance on illegal immigration is that the vast majority of undocumented immigrants are families with children who want to escape a dangerous environment and build a home for their families. It would be a gross misconception to believe that all immigrants who migrate to America are criminals or aren’t good people.

A clear solution to the ever-growing illegal immigration problem would be to stop demonizing migrants, especially from Latin American countries. Migrants who emigrate to America usually come from Latin America, however, it would be false to say that immigration to America only involves Latin America. 

American news seems to focus on and demonize Latin American immigration. The first step in changing the framework of immigration in America is to see migrants as people who come to America to protect and build their families, a core value many Americans claim to have but seldom display.

Another key strategy in solving the illegal immigration problem is that politicians need to keep their word and not just dress it up for public appeal. Global politics, not just American, would be much better if politicians were true to their word.

America needs to actually make it so that applications for visas are less difficult, increase migrants’ chances of gaining citizenship, and implement programs to help migrants matriculate into America as citizens.

The problem with immigration isn’t the people it brings in. It’s the misrepresentation it has in the media that causes people with families to be demonized and scrutinized as falsely accused criminals.

Ask yourself this, if you and your family were in a dangerous situation where the only viable option was to flee, would you not take that chance? The chance to live freely of fear every day, the chance to see your family grow, see them have a family of their own someday?

The problem in today’s politics is that people rarely put themselves in someone else’s shoes. If we all just put ourselves in each other’s point of view more often, the first step to true progress would be made.

Featured photo courtesy of Matt Barnard, Pexels